Next Generation: Where Are They Now? 4

Every ship exploring the unknown has to have a doctor aboard. In the Star Trek: Next Generation, Gates McFadden took on the character of Commander Dr. Beverly Crusher. The television series also presented her son, Ensign Wesley Crusher (played by Wil Wheaton). What are these two up to now since the cancellation of Next Generation?


Recap of the Cast


The main cast of characters and actors for Next Generation included: Captain Jean-Luc Picard (played by Patrick Stewart); Commander William T. Riker (played by Jonathan Frakes); Lt. Commander Data (played by Brent Spiner); Lieutenant Worf (played by Micheal Dorn); Commander Deanna Troi (played by Marina Sirtis); Commander Geordi La Forge (played by LeVar Burton); Commander Dr. Beverly Crusher (played by Gates McFadden); and Ensign Wesley Crusher (played by Wil Wheaton).


Gates McFadden (Commander Dr. Beverly Crusher)


Gates McFadden began her acting career as Cheryl McFadden; the name Gates is her middle name. She first appeared as a girl in the audience during a 1982 Saturday Night Live skit. Following this appearance, she landed appearances on a variety of television shows, such as “LA Law,” “The Cosby Show,” and the soap opera, “All My Children.” She also landed the role of Caroline Ryan in the movie, The Hunt For Red October.”


In the 80s, McFadden was a jack-of-all-trades when it came to show business. She was the choreographer for several projects, including the Dark Crystal, and Labyrinth. The talent carried over into her Star Trek days, when she choreographed a few episodes, such as “Data’s Day.” Following her stint on the Star Trek Next Generation television series, she completed Star Trek-related voice over work for video games, as well as appeared a few other movies.  She had appeared in 152 episodes of Next Generation.  Her latest movie appearance was in the 2005 flick, Dirty, in which she played a small part as a wife.


Did You Know?


1) McFadden held the position of a Muppeteer and movement coordinator for Jim Henson before she took on her role on the Next Generation series.


2) If you remember the ballroom scene in the Jim Henson film, Labyrinth, then you have admired McFaddens work, who was responsible for choreographing this scene.


Wil Wheaton (Ensign Wesley Crusher )


Wheaton played the son of Dr. Beverly Crusher for 86 episodes. In the early 80s, Wheaton appeared in an array of youth-centered films, as well as provided voice work for the 1982 “Secret of NIMH.” In the 1986 coming-of-age film, “Stand By Me,” Wheaton became better known as he starred with a variety of popular child actors.


After the cancellation of the Star Trek television series, he kept pretty busy with many, many film, television and voice over appearances and projects. Younger audience members may recognize his voice from the “Teen Titans” cartoon, taking on the position of Aqualad/Computer Geek. The next project to catch Wheaton in is called “Americanizing Shelley,” which is in the post production phase, scheduled for 2007.


Did You Know?


1) Wheaton’s big break into acting can from a Jell-o Pudding Pops commercial, where he appeared alongside Bill Cosby.


2) Created a popular website, where he was able to land a variety of voice voer projects.


3) He is one of the first accredited bloggers on the Web.


4) Was named #62 on the VH1 “100 Greatest Kid Stars.”