Paul McGillion Strapped In For Star Trek & Stargate Atlantis

Former Niagara resident Paul McGillion laughs about the first time he told his parents he was going to star in a new TV show called “Stargate Atlantis.”

Despite correcting them countless times, they thought he said “Star Trek.”

A few years later, he now has both franchises on the resume.

The rugged, Scottish-born actor was being seriously considered for the part of Scotty in the new “Star Trek” film, being directed by “Lost” creator JJ Abrams. The part eventually went to British comic actor Simon Pegg (“Shaun of the Dead,” “Hot Fuzz”), but Abrams was so impressed with McGillion’s audition, he gave him another small role in the $160 million revamp, which hits theatres Christmas Day.

McGillion has been in big productions before – “The X-Files,” “Smallville” – but nothing like this.

“It does feel huge,” he says from his parents’ home in Niagara-on-the-Lake this week, before starting work on Season Five of “Stargate Atlantis.”

It’s about the only thing McGillion is allowed to say about the secretive production – he had to sign a 10-page confidentiality agreement when he joined the cast.