Walter was only to be with us for the first week of filming so his scenes had to be shot first. Many of these involved Chekov's quarters, the first sets to be ready and like everything else on this
production, they were wonderful.
It proved a skin-tingling moment for all of us when Walter finally came out of make up and wardrobe in that yellow shirt. Everyone just stopped in their tracks and applauded.
Walter has been a friend of mine for nearly 20 years, but when he stood in front of me in that uniform the actor in me disappeared and the life-long Star Trek fan just stood there speechless. That skin-tingling
sensation returned once more when Walter as Chekov walked onto the Bridge for the first time and sat at his navigation station beside Sulu.
Without thinking, Walter crossed his ankles just as he used to do all those years ago. I think Walter turned in the performance of his life during filming, especially as Chekov grew older during the episode.
In fact, at one point, the whole cast and crew were moved to tears. The man is a fantastic actor and I'm so pleased he finally got the chance to show that there is so much more to Chekov as a character,
and to Walter as an actor. Mary-Linda Rapelye was also wonderful in her role which included having to sit inside a Shuttlecraft throwing herself from side to side in true Star Trek style, and the way she
made us all feel the chemistry between her character and Chekov was beautiful.
I must also mention Andy Bray, who plays the young Chekov we knew in ST.TOS. He turned in a great performance and, each day two young girls would sit outside the studio and wave at him. Eventually we made
him invite them in to meet their hero. Could this be the start of the Andy Bray Fan Club?
The day we called the `Day of Hell' for Kevin Haney was when the script called for various alien ambassadors to come aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise. This saw Kevin and his assistants creating all kinds of
fantastic aliens like Vulcans, Tellarites, Efrosians, and also making up my wife as an Andorian Ambassador. She looked simply fantastic, as did everyone under the hands of the master Mr Haney.
Kevin (who is also a huge Monty Python fan and would have us in stitches as he went into a one man show) brought the best of Hollywood make-up to the production and, what's more, he donated he supplies
and his services for free.
One of the things which was great about this production was that even though Walter, Mary-Linda and Kevin were sort of like our honoured guests they wanted no special treatment. They stayed in the group
of cabins with the rest of the cast and crew. Most mornings, Walter and Kevin would arrive at our cabin to have breakfast with us and would return after our shoots for a late supper. One evening, Mary-Linda
joined us and brought her lovely little dog, Pistol, who barked if we came close to her, showing no respect for actor or director alike.
It was a week before I got to strut my stuff as Captain Kargh of the Dark Destroyer, but it was worth the wait. (The word soon spread that the 'British actor' - my on-set joke name - had come back again
with his supply of English tea, so many mornings saw me playing butler as people put their head around our door saying, "Any tea going?"). My wife had worked hard constructing all the Klingon costumes and
along with Mr Haney's handy work I felt every inch Kargh. My first scenes were green screen, acting to nothing, but my next were in what I thought was the next best set to the Bridge-the Briefing Room.
This set felt so real that you could really lose yourself in the part. I was Kargh and I was on the U.S.S. Enterprise. I had some great face-to-face moments with Kirk (again played by James Cawley) and
I was told the tension between our two characters really came through.
John Carrigan as Kargh (ST-NV)
Photo courtesy of John Carrigan.
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