Earlier this year, Jonathan Frakes' time hosting the television series Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction went viral. Two different supercuts of the show, one of Frakes telling you that you're wrong or right and another of Frakes asking some very odd questions of the audience, made the round on social media. Frakes even became a host again in a version of the show created for another TV series. Frakes reprised his role once more for FOX's Kickoff NFL pre-game show. In the clip, he "hosts" a Beyond Belief style show taking shots as targets like the NFL East division and the Cleveland Browns for failing to live up to their potential this season. You can watch the clip above.
Frakes doesn't do as much in front of the camera work these days, but he's returning to the role of Will Riker from Star Trek: The Next Generation in the upcoming series Star Trek: Picard. During a recent convention appearance, Frakes admitted to being nervous about returning to the role.
“I hadn’t acted in a long, long, long time,” Frakes said. “I hadn’t played Riker in 18 years, and I’ve been very fortunate to be busy directing. I acted briefly in a movie in Winnipeg about 10 years ago. And I had a major anxiety attack because, for whatever reason, I’d forgotten to act. I forgot how to act. I was not a pretty picture for a few hours. I got my s--t together and ended up doing fine.
“I had just directed two episodes of Picard with Sir Patrick and, as I said, his acting muscle was well-toned. And Marina (Sirtis) had just closed having starred in a play in the West End in London. So, I knew she was going to be in good form. So, I was a nervous wreck. It ended up going very well. But don’t let anybody tell you it’s like getting back on a bike. That’s bulls--t. That’s acting bulls--t.”
Frakes is also an accomplished director. He started directing while working on Star Trek: The Next Generation. He's directing two episodes of the first season of Star Trek: Picard. Frakes has said he’s happy to be back in Star Trek’s orbit again.
"Eighteen years later. I think the fans are going to be thrilled and excited and surprised,” Frakes said. “I have had the privilege of reading the first couple of episodes and I have spent some time with Patrick who is so engaged [laughs] Sorry. It’s wonderful. It’s smart. I’m excited about it. He is obviously more excited. His announcing of it at Las Vegas — which I believe was his idea —was very smart. You know he is 78, and he is going to be carrying the show on his shoulders, his considerable shoulders.
“I’m excited for him and personally, I feel so blessed to back,” he continued. “It’s so ironic that I spent so many years trying to expand where I was working and I was lucky enough to get onto other types of shows. The directing has been a mitzvah for me—to learn another craft. And now I am deeply ensconced in the world I was in 31 years ago—and I’ve got to say—incredibly grateful for it, between The Orville, and Discovery and Picard. And hopefully the Empress Georgiou show.”
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