Today in Bloomington, Indiana – the future birthplace of Captain Kathryn Janeway – a monument was erected in her honor. And Star Trek: Voyager star Kate Mulgrew appeared via remote at the event and answered some questions about Voyager and Prodigy.
Mulgrew appears virtually at Janeway monument event
Star Trek: Voyager established that Captain Kathryn Janeway was born in Bloomington, Indiana on May 20, 2336. Last year the Captain Janeway Bloomington Collective fan group launched a successful campaign to fund the construction of a monument to be placed in Bloomington, Indiana, to honor Janeway. Today on a spot on B-Line Trail next to the WonderLab Museum in downtown Bloomington a bronze bust of Janeway was unveiled in a special ceremony, which included Kate Mulgrew beaming in via a live video feed. She explained that she wished she could be there, but the circumstances of the pandemic and her being focused on spending time with her new grandchild have prevented it.
She spoke about how honored she was by the monument and by carrying on the story of Janeway:
I’m not often rendered speechless, but in this moment I am. How many people have such a marvelous thing done in their honor, in their memory. It’s a wonderful comment on Janeway’s legacy… And hearing you all speak today is deeply moving to me. To realize that Janeway has had such an important role in your lives, and I think in cultural history, it not only terribly affecting for me, but makes me want to go forth in a new way. And I am doing that with Prodigy. But this recognition is something extraordinary to me and I am deeply proud to be honored in this way.
Earlier this month it was announced that Mulgrew would be returning to voice the role of Janeway for the upcoming Nickelodeon animated series Star Trek: Prodigy. During a brief Q&A today, the actress talked about what it took to convince her to return to the role:
Frankly, the negotiations took quite a long time. It was animated as you know. I think only of live-action when I think of Captain Janeway, live-action being what it is: very rigorous, very challenging, and often quite daunting. So when Alex Kurtzman presented me with this idea I wasn’t entirely sure, and then over the months the conversation evolved into what we could bring to an entirely new demographic of watchers. This being of course young people, and their mothers and their grandmothers. There will be crowded living rooms. I thought that the idea of bringing this to young minds is too exciting, too provocative, and too promising. And that is what sold me in the end.
Mulgrew then responded to a question about if becoming a role model was something she had ever anticipated:
No, it wasn’t. I think that innocence or naivete, or perhaps even that blindness has stood me in good stead when it came upon me. I think a lot of people who are lucky enough to be in leadership roles do not expect it to come. And certainly not in this way, as an actress. But it transcended acting very, very quickly. I realized that I was going to be acting as a model, particularly for young women, and even more particularly for young women in science. So being able to marry my creative passion with a legacy of this kind was wonderful and continues to be wonderful. So when I use words like how it’s a privilege, an honor, it is because there are not yet other words that can surpass them in meaning. It is a great privilege to be able to have played her and to know of her great, great resonance in the cultural world today.
Watch the unveiling
The full video of the event is available on Facebook. It includes a video tribute to Janeway featuring fans, and some Bloomington and Star Trek luminaries, including Mulgrew’s Voyager co-star Robert Picardo. It also offers some closer looks at the monument itself, including showing how it was made.
Keep up with all the Star Trek events at TrekMovie.com.