In 1993, Avery Brooks made Star Trek history by becoming the first black actor to lead Star Trek TV show when he became Commander Benjamin Sisko on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. However, he wasn’t the only one who auditioned for that role, and the list of would-be Siskos includes a couple of familiar names.
Perhaps most notable now, though less notable at the time, is Peter Capaldi, who is best known these days for being the Twelfth Doctor on the BBC’s Doctor Who.
Another notable name for genre television fans is Anthony Stewart Head, best known for playing Buffy Summers’ watcher, Rupert Giles, on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Fans may actually be thankful that Head didn’t land the Star Trek role since Deep Space Nine’s television run, 1993-1999, overlapped with Buffy’s 1997 debut, meaning Head wouldn’t have been available to play Giles.
Here’s a look at Capaldi and Head in their audition tapes.
The chances of either Capaldi or Head landing the role of Sisko weren’t great. The Deep Space Nine creators have stated that they always planned to cast a person of color in the role, though not necessarily an African-American. However, plans can change, and so they also auditioned several Caucasian British actors for the role.
Fans may still have a chance to see Capaldi and Head’s auditions for Sisko. The team behind the Deep Space Nine documentary What We Left Behind is hoping to include the audition tapes as part of the film, or at least as bonus features with the release. However, there are still some rights and licensing issues to work out on that end.
What We Left Behind does not have a firm release date yet, but the producers are hoping to release it in 2018 to coincide with Deep Space Nine’s 25th anniversary.
Star Trek: Discovery star Sonequa Martin-Green will follow in Brooks' footsteps, making Star Trek history as the first woman of color to lead a Star Trek series.
via Trek Movie