Last week, following the news of Roberto Orci’s departure from directing the next Star Trek film, a grassroots social media campaign, entitled #BringInRiker, gained an enormous amount of momentum on Twitter and Facebook. Thousands of fans worldwide picked up on the campaign to bring in actor/director Jonathan Frakes to helm the third installment of the relaunched film series.
Frakes, who played Commander William Riker on Star Trek: The Next Generation for seven years is an accomplished director who has, until now, stayed silent on the possibility of taking over J.J. Abrams’ vacant director’s chair.
While promoting his appearance, alongside his TNG castmates, this weekend in San Francisco and Seattle at Creation Entertainment’s Official Star Trek Conventions, Frakes excitedly discussed the potential opportunity, during a radio interview with Charlie Harger of KOMO News Radio in Seattle.
Looking back on his time as Riker on TNG, Frakes said:
“28-years ago we did this show. We’re old now! And we’re still lucky enough to be going to these conventions.”
He went on to discuss the auditioning process.
“I auditioned seven times over six weeks and I wore the same shirt — which I was convinced was my ‘lucky Star Trek shirt’ to each audition. By the end of six weeks, this shirt was so stiff, from my nervous perspiration, that it walked over and put itself on.” he joked.
Frakes recalled meeting with Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry and being inspired by his vision of a utopian future for mankind.
He recalled Roddenberry telling him:
“Jonathan, in the 24th century there will be no hunger and no greed and all of the children will know how to read.’ And I thought, ‘Oh my god this is so beautiful.’ He was so passionate about it that it made you believe that there would be no sexism, there would be no racism, and we follow the Prime Directive. If only we could lead our lives like that. I mean, we’re in a shitstorm here, this world — particularly in this country. It’s embarrassing.
“There’s a lot to be said for Roddenberry’s vision of the future, I think.”
When asked about the turmoil surrounding Roberto Orci’s departure as “Star Trek 3’s director and the #BringInRiker social media campaign, Frakes appeared excited.
“I’m all over it. I’m all over it!” he shouted.
“‘I’ve already contacted J.J. (Abrams). I’ve got my agent to stir the pot at Paramount. I’d love that job.”
“I’d say unabashedly; I’d be great at it and I’d love to do it.” he added.
“I’m trying to keep the lid on how excited I am about the possibility, knowing it’s such a long shot, but there’s nothing I would like better.”
Frakes later tweeted his support of the #BringInRiker campaign:
— Jonathan Frakes (@jonathansfrakes) December 12, 2014
While the chances of Frakes being offered the director’s still seems like a longshot, the snowballing support for him by the fans may pressure Paramount to seriously consider him for the job.
Stay tuned to TrekNews.net for continuing coverage of this story.