Ernie Hudson Lost Star Trek Role Because He Wasn’t Sexy Enough

By Christopher Isaac | Published

ernie hudson

Ernie Hudson certainly has not had a career to be disappointed in, receiving regular acting work starting in the ‘70s all the way up to present day. His role as Winston in the 1984 Ghostbusters is so fondly remembered that he is now reprising the role 40 years later in Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire. So he has done pretty well for himself. However, one iconic series Ernie Hudson missed out on being a part of was the legendary Star Trek franchise. And it turns out he got passed over for the lead role of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine for a reason no one likes to hear: he was not considered sexy enough for the part.

Ernie Hudson Was Almost The Emissary

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Ernie Hudson recounted his near brush with Star Trek fame for Gizmodo while doing an interview to promote Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire. He discusses auditioning for a role on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. He would ultimately lose out on that lead part of Benjamin Sisko to Avery Brooks.

The Audition

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Hudson has no hard feelings towards Brooks, but can’t help but sound a bit sad that the reason he was passed over was because apparently he did not exude enough of an attractive energy for the part.

“The audition, I thought it went very well,” said Ernie Hudson of his Star Trek try out. “And then I got a note from the producers saying ‘we want Ernie to come back, but this time, tell him to be sexier’. Now I don’t know what you do with that. Sexier? What? As opposed to…?”

Hudson Tries To Be Sexier

Ernie Hudson then recounts how he attempted to give the Star Trek producers what they were looking for. His interpretation of being sexier involved going back for another audition with his collar turned up to give off an Elvis vibe. According to Hudson, before he could complete his monologue, the producers asked him to please stop.

He was aware enough to realize that meant he would not be getting the role.

Hudson Is A Sci-Fi Fan

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As embarrassing and disappointing as it must have been to lose out on such a major role, Ernie Hudson is still able to laugh about his brush with Star Trek fame. He notes that he really was passionate about the opportunity as a fan of the franchise. Hudson says that he is a big sci-fi enthusiast because he enjoys seeing glimpses of what could be possible in the future.

He mentioned that — coming from a time before cell phones existed — when cell phones did wind up being invented, he felt like he was seeing the sci-fi genre become reality.

The Producers Regretted Their Decision

However, it is not all sad memories for Ernie Hudson’s near casting in Star Trek. Because as it turns out, in hindsight the producers really did enjoy his performance and wished they had given him a chance in the role. However, for Hudson, hearing that was really only salt in the wound.

“I did meet the producers later on,” Ernie Hudson said after his Star Trek audition, “who said they regretted not giving me the part. Which is always something you don’t want to hear.” Hudson would rather have been told he was not even close for the role. Knowing he barely missed out on such a desirable role was poor comfort and left him feeling like he lost the part through no fault of his own.

Hudson’s Impressive Career

Even if Star Trek did not wind up working out for Ernie Hudson, he has still had a great career since that time. Beyond Ghostbusters, he has done so much great movie and TV work, including currently being one of the stars on Quantum Leap, and even getting his iconic sci-fi franchise appearance all these years later with a recent part in Star Wars: The Bad Batch.

Source: Gizmodo

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