Star Trek’s Funniest Alien Says He’ll Come Back For Worf’s Paycheck
Between Patrick Stewart returning as both Jean-Luc Picard and Professor X, Ewan McGregor reprising the role of Obi-wan Kenobi, and multiple actors coming back for their old superhero and supervillain parts in last year’s Spider-Man: No Way Home; we seem to be living in the Age of the Revival. Nothing is immune and Star Trek is far from an exception. With almost the entire lead cast of Star Trek: The Next Generation returning for the third and final season of Star Trek: Picard; there are rumors, hints, speculation, and more about similar revivals for Voyager and Deep Space Nine. Now Armin Shimerman, who played the Ferengi bartender Quark on DS9, is saying he’d love to play Quark again, but with conditions; one of them is he wants the same kind of money Michael Dorn is being paid to play Worf.
Shimerman was at the Fanboy Expo in Knoxville earlier this month (via TrekMovie) when he was asked whether or not he’d reprise the role of Star Trek’s Quark. “The answer is yes,” Shimerman said. “I would happily do it.” But, he had some caveats. “I would not do a series regular again,” Shimerman warned. “I would not undergo that makeup for another seven years… But for a guest star or to do what they’re going to do on Picard with some of the characters coming back… Yeah, I would do that. But! They’d have to pay me like they paid Michael Dorn.” You can watch a recording of Shimerman’s appearance below.
That might not have been a realistic expectation around the time Star Trek: Deep Space Nine shuttered in 1998. In the 2018 crowd-funded documentary What We Left Behind, there’s a lot of talk from the interviewed cast and crew about how DS9 fell under too many radars for many years. Most credited the show’s presence on popular streaming services for its new popularity. DS9 was the first Trek series to use a more serialized storytelling format; something delivered much more smoothly on a binge-able platform like Netflix. Now with DS9 on a more level-playing field with TNG, Shimerman likely has a better shot at a Worf-sized paycheck.
As any DS9 fan will tell you, Shimerman definitely deserves the pay bump. His character proved to be one of the most popular on DS9, and for good reason. Not only did he supply the series with some much needed comic relief, but he embodied everything that was different between DS9 and the rest of Star Trek. Quark was the very first regular series character in a Trek show to not be a part of Starfleet, the United Federation of Planets, or to even pretend to agree with their ideals. Without doubt he was the most morally ambiguous regular character on the series, and perhaps in all of Trek’s shows (for those getting ready to argue–remember Andrew Robinson’s Garak was recurring). While he was rarely a full-on bad guy, he could certainly skirt the line; like in season 2’s “Invasive Procedures” when he sneaks crooks on board the station who take the crew hostage and come close to murdering Jadzia (Terry Farrell).
Even if he doesn’t return to the role in live-action, there’s a fair chance we’ll at least hear Shimerman reprise the role. The season 3 trailer for the animated series Star Trek: Lower Decks revealed the crew of the USS Cerritos would be visiting Dee Space Nine, and we’d be disappointed to not find Quark still behind the bar.