Beloved Star Trek Icon Refused To Return, Now We Know Why

By Jason Collins | Published

Star Trek: Voyager

According to /Film, Star Trek’s Roxann Dawson was recently put in charge of two episodes on Season Two of Apple TV+’s Foundation, a sci-fi series based on Isaac Asimov’s novels. In an exclusive interview with the source, Dawson spoke about the possibility of returning to the Star Trek franchise in any capacity. According to Dawson herself, the producers (and quite possibly Paramount) have approached her with the offer to return to the franchise, but she didn’t feel the need to go back to Star Trek.

“I have thought about it, and they have kindly also come to me about a few of the shows, but I think at the time they were starting to come out, I hadn’t done science fiction in a while and I was trying to move away from that — I didn’t feel a need to go back. And then this science fiction show [Foundation] came up, so this was the first science fiction that I’d done in a while.”

Roxann Dawson

The Star Trek franchise has a long record of stars becoming directors; Leonard Nimoy directed Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and several subsequent releases. Jonathan Frakes, aka William Riker, is also quite a regular occupant of the director’s chair when it comes to several Star Trek shows and movies. However, Star Trek: Voyager also gave rise to a rather unique character, B’Elanna Torres, whose actress, Roxann Dawson, found great success as a television director.

For those that aren’t so familiar with the Star Trek franchise, Roxann Dawson made her directorial debut on Star Trek: Voyager and directed a total of 10 episodes of the series, which follows the Starfleet vessel USS Voyager as it attempts to return to the Alpha Quadrant after being stranded in the Delta Quadrant, on the far side of the Milky Way galaxy.

roxann dawson
Roxann Dawson as B’Elanna Torres

Paramount has commissioned the series to accompany the then-ongoing Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Roxann Dawson’s character, B’Elanna Torres, appeared in a total of 168 episodes.

As previously stated, this isn’t a novelty, and Star Trek has a long list of stars who, like Roxann Dawson, made a leap to the other side of the camera lens and landed in the director’s chair. Many of said stars returned to the franchise in one way or another, mostly as cameo appearances.

However, for Star Trek fans who found themselves hoping for another reunion with Dawson as a director or B’Elanna Torres in the series, the actress/director doesn’t have any encouraging words. In fact, she stated that the time for her return to Star Trek has come and gone.

“And I remember, I probably shouldn’t say this, but one of the first things [Foundation creator David Goyer] said to me, he goes, ‘You know, we’re not going to be shooting Trek’ here. This is not ‘Star Trek.” I went, ‘Yes, I understand. I understand.’ And I was kind of like, ‘Well, have you really seen ‘Star Trek?’ The current versions of ‘Star Trek’ I think are wonderful. I’ve seen ‘Discovery,’ I’ve seen ‘Picard.’ I think there’s such wonderful and modern work being done there right now that we really can’t categorize it in the way that we might have in the ’90s. But no, I haven’t really wanted to go back. I feel like I’ve been there and I’ve done that, and I love moving on to other things. So that’s where I am at with it.”

Roxann Dawson

However, she did say that she appreciated the direction that Star Trek has taken in recent years with series such as Picard, stating that the current versions of the show are wonderful. Unfortunately, it would seem that Roxann Dawson has no plans to return to the Star Trek universe in any capacity—and the massive loss of Star Trek’s fandom is Foundation‘s gain. Truth be told, directorial roles suit Dawson; she made wonderful work of House of Cards, The Deuce, and This is Us.

This is particularly true when it comes to Foundation, a television series loosely based on Asimov’s work. The series premiered in September 2021, and its massive success warranted a second season, which premiered two months ago, with the third season currently in filming. Roxann Dawson is currently directing two additional episodes of Season Two of Foundation and has no immediate plans to return to Star Trek in any capacity, at least not for the time being.