Sir Patrick Stewart’s latest play Bingo: Scenes of Money and Death, opens this week at the Chichester Festival in the UK. And in a new interview promoting the play, Stewart reflected back on his time as Jean Luc Picard and how he has faced typecasting in Hollywood. We also have photos of rehearsals from the new play.
Patrick Stewart’s Star Trek Pain
In an interview (portsmouth.co.uk) promoting his upcoming appearance at The Chichester Festival, Patrick Stewart talked about the ‘albatross’ of his Star Trek fame, recounting:
‘One distinguished Hollywood director I wanted to work for said to me "Why would I want Captain Picard in my movie?" That was painful.
‘I’m not saying that’s all over. On the contrary, next year I hope to be active in film again. But I’m hoping in a way to go in through the back door rather than wearing the Star Trek spacesuit.’
This is not the first time Sir Patrick has spoken about the two sides of his Star Trek fame. The actor seems to have a complex view of his time as Capt. Picard. In just the last few years he has talked about how much he "loved" his time with Star Trek, how "thankful" and "grateful" he was for the opportunity, and how "proud" he is of the work. He has has defended Next Generation, calling it a "quality project" and refuting suggestions that he was slumming. He has even defended the Trek fans. But Stewart has also said that going from the theater to Hollywood was a "calamity" and the work "lacked substance" compared to his
stage acting. He has also previously lamented being typecast. Of course, Stewart has also recently said he would be interested in appearing in the Star Trek sequel, so he is willing to keep that Trek image going.
Patrick Stewart at in opening shot of "Star Trek: The Next Generation" (1987) and closing shot of "Star Trek Nemesis" (2002)
Stewart opens as Shakespeare this week
Stewart will next be seen on stage at The Chichester Festival Theatre in Edward Bond’s Bingo: Scenes of Money and Death, where he will play William Shakespeare during his last days. As Stewart tells Portsmouth’s The News:
For two hours, audiences can have Shakespeare alive in front of them. They will get to know him very, very well and I think that’s fascinating.
Patrick Stewart rehearsing for "Bingo: Scenes of Money and Death"