Patrick Stewart on 'Star Trek: TNG,' returning to 'X-Men,' and Wil Wheaton's beard
The Blu-ray edition of season 2 of Star Trek: The Next Generation — available starting today — includes an extended cut of one of the show’s earliest top tier episodes: “The Measure of a Man,” in which Capt. Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) defends Lt. Commander Data (Brent Spiner), an android, and his rights as a sentient being.
The trial gave Stewart a chance to show off his Shakespearean chops with a series of stirring speeches about the nature of free will and self-awareness — Star Trek: The Next Generation at its most challenging and thought provoking. So we couldn’t resist the chance to speak with the 72-year-old actor about that episode, as well as what the 25th anniversary celebrations of the show have been like. We also asked Stewart about his recently announced return to the X-Men franchise, and his answer was quite surprising to say the least. Check out our conversation below:
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: When you think about the episode “The Measure of a Man,” what first comes to mind?
PATRICK STEWART: Well, indeed, we were all very proud of that episode, because it dealt with issues in present society that we all felt were still current and important — the definition of what is humanity and if you can write off a whole race as being a subservient, second class beings. I do remember feeling when that episode came out that we were going right to the heart of the fundamentals of the Star Trek philosophy and what Gene Roddenberry had been writing about in different ways from the mid ’60s.
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