Patrick Stewart, who was well known in the Royal Shakespeare Company for twenty years before becoming Captain Picard in 1987 on ST:NG, is back onstage in London in the title role of of Macbeth. He talked to the New York Times about his acting career and shot the breeze about working on Trek:
To his bemusement he was described in the Los Angeles Times, he said, as "unknown British Shakespearean actor Patrick Stewart." On set he had difficulty fitting in and took offense at the way he felt his castmates tended to horse around. So he called a meeting and "lectured them about having to be more serious," he said. That did not go over very well. "It was really awful, being dressed down by the captain," said Spiner, who played the android Data, and is still close to Stewart. "We really thought, 'Well, please, get over it.' "
Stewart's certainly no longer "unknown," and he's getting a lot of love from critics for his role as the bloodthirsty (and newly sexy) Macbeth, though apparently this wasn't always the case with his fellow Brits:
Critics who sniffed that he had sold out "to zoom about television screens in a preposterous spacesuit," as Nicholas de Jongh put it in the Evening Standard of London, have showered him with perhaps the highest compliment they can conjure. He has, they say, overcome the technique-destroying indignity of being a major U.S. television star...[later] De Jongh called Stewart "one of our finest Shakespearean actors"...
Huh. Wonder what they said about his role in "American Dad."
Article [SF Gate]
Macbeth Review [The New Yorker]
I saw him in Antony & Cleopatra and The Tempest when the RSC was in Ann Arbor about a year and a half ago… Turns out he’s a pretty damn fine actor. 🙂
I saw him in Star Trek: The Next Generation. Yeah. He’s not too bad. 😉
I saw him in the BBC series, “Fall of Eagles” – as V.I. Lenin. Pulled my Lenin poster off the wall & held it up to the screen just to check – yep, a dead ringer! Well played, too – particularly the penultimate episode of the series (I think he was only in two of them).
I read about Patrick Stewart playing in MacBeth a few weeks ago. I’d love to travel to Britain to see him perform, but sadly, I’m stuck in the US.