The final film for the Star Trek: The Next Generation crew was nearly short one cast member.
According to Marina Sirtis, Star Trek: The Next Generation’s Deanna Troi, negotiations for her return in Star Trek: Nemesis were not going smoothly and at one point Paramount Pictures threatened to replace her in the film with Jeri Ryan, the actress who played the Borg Seven of Nine on Star Trek: Voyager.
“When I was negotiating for Nemesis they literally threatened to fire me and recast Troi,” Sirtis recalled during a panel at the Star Trek Las Vegas Convention (via Trek Movie). “Well not actually recast, but they said ‘We are going to fire you and hire Jeri Ryan. And I said ‘Well Jeri Ryan won’t do it for that money, that is for sure.’”
While this is the first time that Sirtis has openly discussed the threat, Ryan has mentioned in it the past, saying that she was utterly confused by how Seven of Nine could possibly make sense showing up in a Star Trek: The Next Generation movie. With Star Trek: Voyager off the air as of 2001, Seven of Nine technically wasn’t doing anything else, but with much of Star Trek: Nemesis revolving around Troi’s wedding the film’s script would have needed a serious rewrite to account for Troi’s absence and Seven of Nine’s introduction.
Sirtis brought up the story in response to a fan question about difficult contract negotiations, which led to a broader discussion about pay inequality in Hollywood.
“Women are paid less than men in Hollywood, like everywhere else,” Sirtis said. “Women are always paid less and the negotiations are always uglier because there is some kind of feeling that we don’t deserve the same money as the boys. It was always ugly. I quit smoking for six years but what got me started again was contract negotiations with Paramount. That is how bad it was.”
Sirtis got some support from her captain, Patrick Stewart, on the matter. “Women are paid less than men almost everywhere in most countries in the world. And it is an inequity that has to be corrected.”
In Star Trek: Nemesis, Capt. Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) diverts the starship Enterprise from its scheduled trip to Cmdr. Riker (Jonathan Frakes) and Counselor Troi's (Marina Sirtis) wedding to negotiate a peace treaty with the Romulans. Picard is shocked when Shinzon (Tom Hardy), the new Praetor of the Romulans, admits to being a clone of him. When the crew members discover a break-in on their computer, they are forced into a life-or-death battle to stop Shinzon's Warbird before it can destroy the Earth.
Released in 2002, Star Trek: Nemesis was directed by Stuart Baird and written by John Logan from a story developed by Logan, Brent Spiner, and producer Rick Berman. The film starred the Star Trek: The Next Generation cast, including Patrick Stewart, Jonathan Frakes, Brent Spiner, Levar Burton, Michael Dorn, Gates McFadden, and Marina Sirtis, with Tom Hardy playing the film’s villain, Praetor Shinzon.