Kate Mulgrew: I've Grown To Love Science Fiction

By Christian
April 13, 2001 - 5:12 PM

Cinescape March/April 2001 Prior to joining 'Star Trek: Voyager in 1994, Kate Mulgrew (Kathryn Janeway) had never appeared in any science fiction project before and was unfamiliar with the genre. In a new interview with Cinescape Magazine, Mulgrew revealed that since then she has grown to appreciate science fiction very much.

"When you're immersed in something and when you're devoted to it, you acquire a very genuine regard for it," Mulgrew told writers Gregory L. Norris and Laura A. Van Vleet. "I've studied science fiction. I've grown to love it in many ways I certainly never thought I would."

"I would say my love of this genre springs from the love of the craft," she explained. "Anybody who does science fiction and does it well is aces in my book, because it's highly stylised. This is difficult stuff, which is why I always point to Bob Picardo [the Holodoc], who is the consummate actor. He brings so much to what was nothing. He fashioned out of so little clay this absolutely extraordinary character. I love his gift. That goes for all actors who've executed this kind of work with any grace."

An aspect of Voyager that Mulgrew has always appreciated is the fact that it features a female captain, and she said she felt privileged to be the one to put a woman in the Captain's Chair. "This character of Janeway is a pretty good start for changing society's view on women, particularly middle-aged women. [...] I'm 45 years old, I run this ship and I don't believe I've sacrificed my humanity or my femininity or my laughter to do it."

"Let's face it," she said, "in the beginning it was my genitals they were worried about. It took a lot of stength, because I knew they were looking at my breasts and my maternity and my womanhood. But I said to myself, 'Just commit to this totally, and eventually they'll be looking at the captain, [not his or her sex].'"

In the full interview, Mulgrew talked a bit more about the gender issues related to her role, but also spoke about the high workload the show presented, how she expected to feel during the final days on filming, and how she envisioned the next few years of her life. The interview can be found in the March/April issue of Cinescape Magazine - to subscribe to Cinescape ($17.95 for a full year, or 50% off the cover price!), please follow this link.

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