Kate Mulgrew made “Star Trek” historical past when she turned Captain Kathryn Janeway, the primary feminine lead within the franchise. As she advised the authors of “Star Trek Voyager: A Celebration,” Mulgrew knew that being the primary feminine lead of a “Star Trek” show was monumentally vital. She additionally knew that she’d be coping with plenty of sexism on the set as a result of the studio and the producers have been nervous about placing a girl within the captain’s chair. However, Mulgrew was decided to dwell as much as the expectations of the studio and the followers.
As she took on the impossibly busy schedule required of a tv main woman, Mulgrew was additionally navigating single motherhood. She had two younger boys at dwelling, who she needed to join with round her work schedule.
The rigorous filming schedule took such a toll on her and her household that at one level, she virtually walked away from “Star Trek: Voyager.”
The Grueling Schedule
Mulgrew had been working in television for nearly 20 years by the point she landed the position of Janeway. So, she was used to the lengthy days required for filming a tv show. However, she’d by no means been the lead in a sequence earlier than.
Mulgrew advised the authors of “The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years” that she was not ready for the grueling schedule required when she was wanted for nearly each scene.
“Put your self in my footwear. My four-and-a-half inch heels that they needed to have made for me in Italy as a result of I used to be a lot shorter than everybody else. Take me away from my 9 and ten-year-old sons. I’m leaving the home at 3:45 within the morning and I’m returning round 11 at night time. It’s an 18 hour day. On Friday nights I’m going into Saturday mornings. The exhaustion… I misplaced 20 kilos in a month. Rick [Berman] would name me and say, ‘You may wish to eat one thing.’ The challenges, the dialogue, the center… and I used to be in each scene.”
In an interview with Working Mother Magazine in 1995, Mulgrew revealed that she adopted this schedule for 10 months out of the 12 months. She had two months off every year to commit to her sons, which she cherished. At the time, Mulgrew believed that although the schedule was robust, it labored for her household as a result of “youngsters get pleasure from a mom who’s fulfilled.”
Eventually, The Schedule Took Its Toll
By the time the show was in its sixth season, Mulgrew felt in another way about how her job was impacting her household and her private life. In an interview with Starlog journal in 1999, Mulgrew admitted that she had missed plenty of vital occasions in her sons’ lives, and it was carrying her down.
In an interview with Little Review the identical 12 months, she stated that her marriage to Ohio politician Tim Hagan pressured her to reassess her priorities. Since she labored in L.A. and he labored in Ohio, they needed to handle a cross-country courtship. Though they have been deeply in love, balancing a long-distance relationship, their careers, and parenting was practically unimaginable. Their youngsters did not even meet one another till the marriage.
Mulgrew went from being a single mom of two to a married mom of 4, negotiating a relationship with two step-children. She struggled to steadiness a brand new marriage and parenting her personal youngsters and her stepchildren together with her demanding job.
When contract negotiations for the seventh season started, Mulgrew demanded extra flexibility in her filming schedule. The studio and the producers weren’t eager on the concept.
Mulgrew Almost Walked Away
Mulgrew advised Little Review that the contract negotiations for season seven of “Voyager” have been extremely tough. She admitted that she got here very near strolling away.
Mulgrew was vocal about her job dissatisfaction. As Starlog reported, throughout press for the sixth season, Mulgrew strongly hinted that she wished to depart the sequence. This left followers questioning if their beloved captain could be gone earlier than the show’s ultimate season.
Fortunately, the studio and the producers got here again with a suggestion Mulgrew felt good about. Mulgrew advised Starlog that if the workforce behind “Voyager” hadn’t been prepared to make changes to her schedule, she would have left. The stress of filming continually for over 5 years had lastly turn out to be an excessive amount of.
“It actually concerned my happiness quotient. In some ways, I set the tone on the set. My temper and my method are crucial, and I believe there’s nothing worse than an expert actress who’s sad as a result of she misses her husband and kids. But [Berman and Braga] realized that. And if I could say so, they weren’t solely gents about it, however very gracious. I’m a lot, a lot happier now.”
Mulgrew advised Little Review that when the contract negotiations have been tough, she regarded to Janeway for inspiration.
“My massive battle all through this renegotiation was that Janeway wouldn’t renege. She would full this mission. And that is what I’m going to do… All of my inventive funding, my ego is invovled on this, my deepest emotions about what I’ve achieved – not the least of which is the truth that I used to be the primary feminine captain. To inform you the reality, with out me, I believe it would not fly. They’d be all proper, they’d discover a approach, however I felt very strongly that it would not be the identical. So I’m going to finish this sequence with as a lot panache as I can.”
“Voyager” wrapped up after seven seasons, with Captain Janeway on the helm till the very finish.
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