Robert Picardo has taken time out of his busy production schedule to sit done with Movie Hole to complete an extensive interview, on his life in various science fiction franchises and his plans for the future.
You can read an excerpt of the interview below:
Were you a fan of Star Trek when you were took on the role of the Doctor in Voyager?
Oh boy, I hate to get this question and you started right off the bat with it. No, I was not a Star Trek fan, but I have confessed myself to the faithful, I have thrown myself at their feet for mercy and they have forgiven me. Praise Gene [laughs]. Growing up I don’t remember being a big science fiction fan. I watched “Lost in Space” rather than “Star Trek” which I’m embarrassed to admit now but that’s the fact. Probably paid off for me because I think Dr Smith on “Lost in Space” was kind of a partial inspiration for the holographic Doctor so had I watched the original “Star Trek” well then I would have been… well, I borrowed from Bones anyway so I guess if you put Dr Smith and Bones together you come up with the holographic Doctor. I wasn’t really familiar with Star Trek the series, I was more familiar with the movies, I remember seeing the “Wrath of Khan” and the first Star Trek movie I think I saw later out of sequence but then I loved Star Trek IV, the one everyone loves, the whale movie, but when I got cast in Voyager I went to the producers and asked for some Next Gen episodes. They tended to give me the best medical shows but they also gave me I think what they considered the best episodes and I was really knocked out and became a very quick fan. You know, I still have trouble with some of the outfits in the first series but I became a very big Next Gen fan.
Were you looking to do more sci-fi when you were asked to be a guest on Stargate?
Well it’s always nice to be offered a role as an actor, we spend our lives auditioning so when someone calls you and says we have a role for you and we want you to do it, immediately your ear perks up at that. I had seen some of the original Stargate when it was on Showtime and I was a Showtime subscriber and I loved the movie that it was based on. But my understanding was it was a one day part, I had a lot of scenes in one day, and I was basically a bad guy. I was an inquisitor, just the bad guy so I never expected it to go beyond that because he was completely adversarial, the character, had no personality at all, he was like a barracouta but I think that when I met Joe Mallozzi and Paul Mullie and Brad [Wright] and Robert [Cooper]… Joe and Paul had written the episode I think, we kind of hit it off together, we had dinner together, we chatted and I think they just decided they liked me as an actor and they began the long process of Woolsey’s rehabilitation.