Thursday, January 10, 2013

Trek amumni – they're everywhere!

Often while I'm doing some mindless task in my studio (I'm a graphic designer) I have Turner Classic Movies on. I love old movies and I especially get a kick out of watching something for the first time. As luck would have it, a few weeks ago I was watching a 1951 Spencer Tracey movie called " The People Against O'Hara ". I had seen bits and pieces of this movie over the years but I had never seen the entire thing. And while I love Spencer Tracey, I have to say this is not a great movie. Not bad, by and means, but not great. Anyway, I was plugging away at some job or another and only half-watching the movie, when suddenly I heard a voice that I instantly recognized. My head shot up to the screen to see what was going on and there, There, in the middle of a scene, was a matronly-looking actress who I did not recognize. But she spoke with the familiar voice of a Star Trek character.

She spoke in the voice of T'Pau, the legendary matriarch from the TOS classic "Amok Time". Low and behold, it was none other than Celia Lovsky herself! She was playing an immigrant mother and was totally unrecognizable to me. Except for that voice. That unforgettable, distinctive voice!

Fast-forward to today. Again, I had TCM on and they were showing a 1959 film called "The Gene Kruppa Story" with Sal Mineo as Kruppa. Again, I had never seen it all the way through. Once again, though, I was jarred from my work by that familiar voice. Once again it was Celia Lovsky playing a mother – this time the main character's. It made me smile to see her yet again.

But that's not where the smiles stopped. This movie proved to be bursting with future Star Trek actors including:

James Darren (Vic Fontaine)
Susan Oliver (Vina)
Yvonne Craig (Marta)
Lawrence Dobkin (Ambassador Kell)
and, of course, Celia Lovsky

I half expected Shatner and Nimoy to make an appearance!

I see Star Trek actors appear in old movies all the time. But I've never seen so many in one place!


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