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Gates McFadden reveals disappointment in Star Trek movies

Gates McFadden has revealed how disappointed she was by the role of Doctor Crusher in the TNG era Star Trek movies, and how little she got to do.

Gates McFadden as Beverly Crusher in Star trek TNG

Gates McFadden, who starred as the Star Trek character Doctor Crusher in the Star Trek series TNG and subsequent Star Trek movies, has opened up about her disappointment in the films. McFadden was one of the core cast members on the TV series, stepping into important role of Chief Medical Officer aboard the Enterprise-D.

She was replaced by Doctor Pulaski for the second season after some behind-the-scenes trouble with writers and executives, however she made her return from season 3 onwards after lobbying by fans.

McFadden is back in the role once again with Star Trek Picard season 3, in which she plays an important role in the plot as Picard and Riker begin a mission to rescue her from danger. The show promises to give her – and the rest of the crew – a proper send-off after the disappointment of the final TNG movie Nemesis.

Now, during a Happy Sad Confused live event McFadden has been asked about her views on the TNG movies, and she gave a forthright response. First, she quipped, “Wait, so I was in those films? Oh, ok!”

McFadden then spoke about how she was naïve to certain elements involved in working on the movies rather than the TV series, saying, “You know, there’s a system. There’s a studio system, and there’s Hollywood… I didn’t understand that there’s ways of doing things and politics, and you don’t always get what you want.”

She continued, “I was disappointed in my role in the films. I felt it was a character I really didn’t think was Crusher. So I’m thrilled with what’s going on now [with Star Trek Picard season 3]. I’m honoured that it’s such a great script for everybody.”

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That disappointment, and the sense that characters weren’t quite translating from the small screen to the big screen, is a view that’s widely held by fans. And, out of all the main TNG cast it is undoubtedly Doctor Crusher who has the least to do in the movies, sadly. Thankfully, that’s being made up for now.

For more on the new show, check out our guide on how to watch Star Trek Picard season 3 and learn more about new characters like Captain Shaw, Vadic, and Jack Crusher, and we’ve also got handy guides to the USS Titan and the Shrike, as well as Star Trek Picard season 3 review.