Actress and singer Chase Masterson's role as the gorgeous,
spirited Leeta on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, grew
from a bit part to a serious supporting presence. From D'abo
girl to the wife of the richest being in the universe in just
five years. Sci-fi-online caught up with her as season
three of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine was due for release
Sci-fi-online: Were you a Star Trek
fan before you were cast?
Masterson: I had a boyfriend who was a Trekkie and we'd watch
the show. When it was on, but I wasn't with him, I was only
allowed to call during the commercials. I also had a roommate
who was a Trekkie, so we talked about the show a lot. That
was during the Next Generation years.
What attracted you to the role in Deep Space Nine?
There's nothing more important to an actor than a good script,
and I've always loved and respected Star Trek for its
incredible writing. Also, I knew that Trek would be
a great introduction to the world of science fiction, which
I find incredibly intriguing. Plus I had a few friends associated
with the show, which only made me want it more. On top of
everything else, I'm knocked out by the faithfulness of the
fans. Even now, three years after the end of the series, I'm
overwhelmed by the response we get. I think Star Trek fans
are, by and large, a very sensitive group of people. The show
has a lot of heart, and so do they. How could I resist being
a part of that?
Weren't you initially in line for another role?
I was originally up to play Marta, the D'abo girl who dated
Jake Sisko. I auditioned for it and made it to the final two,
but obviously I didn't get it. Later on I was cast as Leeta,
and after shooting two or three episodes, one of the producers
let it slip that they'd written her especially for me. That
was an incredible compliment.
was originally only going to have four lines in one episode,
but they kept bringing me back. I never had a contract. Eventually
they gave me a story arc of my own. I started the series as
a D'abo girl at Quark's, and ended up marrying his brother
Rom, who became the Grand Nagus. So things really worked out
for Leeta. She loved Rom because he was pretty on the inside,
which is really what Star Trek is all about, looking
beyond the obvious. And Max Grodenchik, who played Rom, was
just as sweet in real life, an incredibly giving actor and
a very sensitive person. I'm thankful for all the interesting
things they did with Leeta, and grateful too, for what the
show's done for me.
Who else did you get along with on set?
Leeta had a fling with Dr Bashir for a while, and Sid [actor
Alexander Siddig] and I are still really good friends. He
was great to work with, so giving, and a great director too.
We run into each other at conventions all around the world
and it's always nice to see him.
Shimmerman [a.k.a. Quark] was also wonderful. He took Max
and me under his wing and was really there for us, very supportive
and always encouraging throughout the show.
How do you think DS9 stands apart from the other Star
believe that DS9 is a favourite with many fans because
it was relationship rather than event driven. People can relate
to it, and get involved with it. There's an intimacy to it
that they respond to.
Do you have a favourite episodes?
I loved working on [fifth series show] Dr Bashir, I Presume,
partly because I got to work with Bob Picardo. I had a lot
of fun with that. I also really enjoyed making [sixth season
show] Profit and Lace, teaching Quark how to be a woman
- it doesn't get much better than that.
Thank you for your time.
thanks to Frederique Slezak at Paramount's Press Office
Three of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine is available to
buy from Paramount
23 June 2003 RRP
a list of other relevant sites click here.