When “Q” Actor John de Lancie Was On Stargate

Frank Simmons (John de Lancie)

Stargate SG-1: “Prometheus”

It was a real treat for Stargate fans when John de Lancie joined the show. It was Season Five, and the veteran actor turned up in the recurring role of Colonel Frank Simmons — an intelligence operative at the N.I.D. It didn’t take long before it became clear that Simmons had an agenda all his own.

It was also a reunion with Stargate‘s leading man, Richard Dean Anderson, as the two had co-starred on in the short-lived adventure series Legend, which aired on UPN in the 90s. de Lancie talked about his experience on Stargate SG-1 with “Dial the Gate” host David Read.

“Frank Simmons was sort of a jerk,” de Lancie remembers. “I have less connection with that character simply because I think I only played it two or three times.” But the actor does enjoy playing villains — “especially if you consider that they are not villains but they are heroes, at least in their own minds, they are heroes. Even the most villainous of people don’t start the day looking in the mirror and saying, ‘How horrible can I be today?’ They always have a point of view and something they want to achieve.”

Watch this clip from the conversation:

Stargate also gave Richard Dean Anderson (“Jack O’Neill”) and de Lancie the opportunity to work together again. On Legend de Lancie played a wacky inventor, Janos Bartok, who partners with a drunk dime store novelist convinced to pose as his own fictional hero.

“Rick is a wonderful actor, and he really understands the camera,” he said. “He understands what’s being shot, because he and Mike [Greenburg, producer] would spend countless hours in the editing room. And that’s something that you just don’t get until you have that opportunity. He got that opportunity because of MacGyver, and then was able to take that and begin to apply it.

“When I met him with Legend it became apparent really early on — almost immediately — that he really knew his business.”

After a trio of appearances in Season Five led to Colonel Simmons’ arrest, the character returned to seize control of Earth’s new battle cruiser in Season Six’s “Prometheus.” He ended up one of the first to sit in the new ship’s command chair, thanks to a little help from his rogue N.I.D. agents and a captured Goa’uld prisoner.

Frank Simmons (John de Lancie) in command

de Lancie played the omnipotent chaos agent Q on Star Trek: The Next Generation, also making appearances on Deep Space Nine and Voyager. More recently fans can find him reprising the role oppose Patrick Stewart in the second season of Star Trek: Picard, now streaming on Paramount+.

Head over to “Dial the Gate” on YouTube to find the full interview with John de Lancie. While you’re there, subscribe to GateWorld’s YouTube channel for more Stargate content!

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