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Dorn never expected `Star Trek' to turn into a long-running gig

When Michael Dorn was cast as a Klingon named Worf in "Star Trek: The Next Generation" back in mid-1987, he didn't quite know what he was getting himself into. He certainly never expected to still be playing the part as the 1990s near an end.

"The thing is that when we all started, we all thought, "Oh, a couple of years. Make a couple of bucks,' " Dorn said in a recent interview with the Deseret News. "We could work for a year and then go on about our business. None of us expected this."And certainly no one expected Dorn to play Worf not only through all seven years of "The Next Generation" but into another series. He's in the midst of his third season as a regular on "Deep Space Nine" and holds the record for appearing as an actor in more episodes of "Star Trek" than anyone else in the long history of the franchise.

"At last count, I've done 266 (episodes) and three movies," Dorn said. "Who would have thought?"

(Majel Barrett-Roddenberry has done more episodes when you count her voice-overs as the voice of the computer on various ships but far fewer in acting roles as the original Number One, Nurse Chapel and Lwaxana Troi.)

On the big screen, Dorn has not only played Worf in both "Star Trek: Generations" and "Star Trek: First Contact," but he also played Worf's grandfather in "Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country."

And he's signed on to co-star in the next, as-yet untitled "Trek" film, which is scheduled to begin production this spring.

"Oh, yeah," he said. "Another job."

But, like the cast of the original "Star Trek," Dorn can see the day when he and the "Next Generation" cast will be a bit long in the tooth to continue their roles.

"Next year, Worf should be in a home or something," he said.

SHE'S OVER HIM: Dorn was part of "Star Trek" history earlier this season when his character, Worf, and Jadzia Dax (Terry Farrell) became the first regular characters in the history of the franchise to get married - and to each other.

But longtime Trekkers recall that Worf became romantically involved with Deanna Troi (Marina Sirtis) as "Next Gen" drew to a close. And there's at least a touch of the feeling that Worf is somehow cheating on Troi.

But not from the woman who played Deanna.

"You know what? She's welcome to him," Sirtis deadpanned. "I think they make a perfect couple.

"I was just glad to be rid of him, to be honest."

It might be fun to see Troi show up on "Deep Space Nine," but don't hold your breath. There's nothing like that in the works.

"I think this is it. After being on the show, I'm too much trouble," Dorn said. "You don't want those `Next Generation' people on the show."

IN THE DARK: Sirtis, like Dorn and the rest of the "Next Generation" cast, has signed on to appear in the next theatrical "Trek" film. Not that they know what they've signed on for.

"We haven't got a script yet so we don't know. We have no idea," Sirtis said.

"We figure we'll get a script before we start (filming)," Dorn said. "How long before, we don't know."

ANOTHER SEASON? Nothing has been confirmed yet, but it would appear that Dorn's career as Worf won't be ending anytime soon.

It's extremely likely that there will be a seventh season of "Deep Space Nine" beginning in the fall.

"We don't know yet, but the prognosis is excellent that there will be another season," said executive producer Rick Berman.

"Oh, I think it's going to happen," Dorn said. "And I'll be there.