Robin Curtis replaced Kirstie Alley as Saavik in the Star Trek movies, but she could have also played the tragic love interest of TNG’s Worf.
- Kirstie Alley’s salary dispute resulted in her replacement as Lt. Saavik in Star Trek III and IV, with conflicting stories about the basis of the dispute.
- Robin Curtis turned down the role of K’Ehleyr, Worf’s lover in TNG, due to prior commitments, and Suzie Plakson was cast instead.
- Robin Curtis later played Vulcan villain Tallera in TNG’s “Gambit,” opposing alien influence on Vulcan culture. It is unclear what happened to the Isolationists after the episode.
K’Ehleyr (Suzie Plakson), the lover of Star Trek: The Next Generation‘s Lt. Worf (Michael Dorn) was originally offered to Robin Curtis, who replaced Kirstie Alley as Lt. Saavik in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock. A dispute over pay meant that Kirstie Alley didn’t reprise the role of Saavik for Star Trek 3, although there are conflicting stories about the basis of that dispute. Alley believed that she was offered a lower salary so that she wouldn’t return, while Leonard Nimoy said that a “reasonable” offer was made, to which Kirstie Alley’s agent sent an extravagant counteroffer.
Whatever the reason for the salary dispute, it meant that Robin Curtis replaced Kirstie Alley for both The Search for Spock and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. Nicholas Meyer wanted to bring Kirstie Alley back as Saavik in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, but once again, the fee would be too high, given her success in Cheers. However, Michael Dorn did appear in Star Trek 6, two years after Robin Curtis was offered a role in Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Can Star Trek TOS’ Saavik Appear In Strange New Worlds?
Saavik’s Starfleet career happens decades after Captain Pike’s USS Enterprise voyages but a young Saavik can possibly appear in Strange New Worlds.
Star Trek’s Replacement Saavik Actor Robin Curtis Was Offered The Role Of Worf’s Lover In TNG
Robin Curtis was offered the role of K’Ehleyr in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “The Emissary.” In the episode, K’Ehleyr comes aboard the USS Enterprise-D to assist the crew in dealing with a Klingon ship that is unaware that the Federation and the Empire are at peace. It’s quickly revealed that K’Ehleyr is the ex-lover of Worf, and the two rekindle their relationship. However, because K’Ehleyr is half-human, she turns down Worf’s proposal of marriage in the traditional Klingon fashion. Robin Curtis turned down this role due to commitments to a movie, and Suzie Plakson was cast instead.
K’Ehleyr would return later in Star Trek: The Next Generation, bringing Worf’s son Alexander Rozhenko along with her. It’s technically the second time that Robin Curtis has avoided playing a character impregnated by a Star Trek legend. Leonard Nimoy famously objected to Saavik being pregnant with Spock’s child in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. This wasn’t the end of Robin Curtis’ relationship with TNG, however, and she returned to very familiar ground for the season 7 two-parter “Gambit.”
Robin Curtis’ Other Star Trek Role Explained
Robin Curtis played Vulcan villain Tallera in Star Trek: The Next Generation season 7 episodes 4 and 5, “Gambit.” An undercover member of the extremist Vulcan Isolationist Group, Tallera was seeking an ancient weapon with which to overthrow the government. Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) infiltrated Tallera’s group, after he faked his own death in a bar on Dessica II. As a passionate archaeologist, Picard wanted to solve the mystery of why pirates were pillaging Romulan religious sites.
For fans that wanted Saavik to be a villain in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, “Gambit” is the closest that they’ll get. Star Trek‘s female Vulcan villain, Tallera is a reactionary bigot, who opposes all alien influence on Vulcan culture and wants it eradicated. Tallera was defeated by Picard and placed in custody by the Vulcan authorities. It’s unclear what happened to the Isolationists after Star Trek: The Next Generation. However, it’s likely that they were rooted out and incarcerated for their attempted political coup, given that Vulcan continues to be a member of the Federation in Star Trek‘s future.