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Grace Lee Whitney Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (5) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (2) | Trade Mark (4) | Trivia (11) | Personal Quotes (6)

Overview (5)

Born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
Died in Coarsegold, California, USA  (natural causes)
Birth NameMary Ann Chase
Nicknames Amazing Grace
Gracie
Height 5' 6" (1.68 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Grace Lee Whitney was a versatile actress and vocalist born in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Beginning as a "girl singer" on Detroit's WJR radio, she soon opened in nightclubs for Billie Holiday and Buddy Rich, and toured with the Spike Jones and Fred Waring Bands. Grace debuted on Broadway in "Top Banana", and subsequently appeared in the United Artists film Top Banana (1954). Grace is probably best known for her portrayal of Yeoman Janice Rand on the original Star Trek (1966) series. She later reprised her role for a string of successful Star Trek films: Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979), Star Trek III: The Search for Spock (1984), Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986), and Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991). Grace continued to delight fans in personal appearances at conventions and events throughout North America and Europe. In 1998, she appeared in an episode of Diagnosis Murder (1993) with her Star Trek castmates George Takei, Walter Koenig and Majel Barrett. Grace Lee Whitney died at age 85 of natural causes in her home in Coarsegold, California on May 1, 2015.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Anthony Wynn <StarParty@aol.com>

Spouse (2)

Jack Dale (14 February 1970 - 1991) (divorced)
Sydney Stevan Dweck (28 December 1954 - 1966) (divorced) (2 children)

Trade Mark (4)

Platinum blonde hair
Sparkling blue eyes
Voluptuous figure
Seductive deep voice

Trivia (11)

Mother of Jonathan Dweck and Scott Whitney.
Had a singing group called "Star", with which she regularly entertained at nightclubs and at Star Trek conventions.
Two Star Trek action figures were made in the likeness of her Star Trek character, Yeoman Janice Rand.
Had appeared in episodes of three different series with George Takei: Star Trek (1966), Star Trek: Voyager (1995) and Diagnosis Murder (1993).
Was a professional singer before becoming an actress, and at one point, toured with Red Ingle and his band.
Best known by the public (and by many sci-fi fans) for her role as Yeoman Janice Rand on the original Star Trek (1966) series.
In 1998, she appeared in an episode of Diagnosis Murder (1993) with her Star Trek (1966) castmates George Takei, Walter Koenig and Majel Barrett.
According to her autobiography, "The Longest Trek: My Tour of the Galaxy", she struggled with and overcame alcoholism and drug addiction, particularly marijuana.
Her famous role as Yeoman Janice Rand in the first season of Star Trek (1966) was supposed to be the lead female character. However, the producers let go of the character after the first half of the first season, much to the fans' regret. However, she was asked back for most of the Star Trek movies, reprising her role as Janice Rand.
Moved to Coarsegold, California in 1993 and continued her fellowship work in Fresno and Madera Counties, completely dedicating her life to helping herself and others find daily sobriety and a higher power out of addiction. She wanted to be known more as a survivor of addiction than as a Star Trek (1966) cast member.
Since she has passed away, William Shatner is now the oldest living cast member of the original Star Trek (1966) series.

Personal Quotes (6)

[on the famous 'Yeoman Rand' basketweave hairstyle from the original Star Trek (1966) series] It was so heavy it kept listing to the left, I swear they had to nail that thing to my head! It was gorgeous Max Factor hair. It cost a lot of money and somebody stole it. I still have visions of that damn wig turning up. I go down to Skid Row for my recovery program - I'm clean and sober now - and I keep expecting to find some bag lady or drag queen wearing it!
[interview in iFMagazine, October 2006, asked if she is surprised at how popular the original Star Trek (1966) series has become] Oh, yeah. It was an acting gig and we thought that Spock was weird and we thought the only reason we were being hired was to sell color television sets, and wasn't Kirk cute? I mean, gosh, he was cute! I was in the middle of the both of them [Kirk and Spock]. Then after the series, I went on to do Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979), and that was supposed to be a series originally. They wrote it as a series, and when Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) came out, Paramount jumped off the roof and they went into the motion picture, and George Takei and I did Star Trek: Voyager (1995). That was going to be a series. We were supposed to have our own show, and they did Star Trek: Enterprise (2001) instead. It was supposed to be George and Gracie [i.e., The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show (1950)] on the Excelsior.
[interview in iFMagazine, September 2006, on Star Trek: Of Gods and Men (2007)] It's cute because I have a nice interchange with Pavel Chekov, and I have a nice interchange with Uhura. It's like old times. It's all very déjà vu. It's like no time has gone by at all. We did Voyager [Star Trek: Voyager (1995)] in 1996. It's like ten years, and in Star Trek ten years is not very long at all. Look at how much time was between the original series and the Motion Picture.
[interview in iFMagazine, September 2006, asked for her opinion on Star Trek (2009) being a prequel film] I don't know how that's going to go. I just don't know about that. I don't know how fans will react to that. How can you go back beyond the classic Trek? They tried that on Star Trek: Enterprise (2001), but did it go, did it work? I think Scott Bakula was terrific on that show. But it didn't last as long as some of the others, and I wonder what happened and why that is.
[on her termination from the original Star Trek (1966) series] They wanted William Shatner to have romances in each episode with a different person, because for him to be stuck with one woman was not good for him and it wasn't good for the audience. That's what they told me, so I was written out. There were two blonde girls and one black girl. Nichelle Nichols was a more important character and couldn't be written out. Everything's political in America. One of the blondes have to go. The other one was engaged to the boss, so guess who went? I just about killed myself. I drank, that's what we do, we drink to get rid of pain. I was really mad. My God, was I bitter.
[2013] When I told the fans I was an alcoholic, they all applauded. When I told them I had given myself to a higher power, they cheered again. I'm in a great place because I've gone full circle.

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