Michael Dorn
Dorn at the 2019 GalaxyCon Richmond
Born (1952-12-09) December 9, 1952 (age 70)
Alma materPasadena City College
OccupationActor
Years active1976–present

Michael Dorn (born December 9, 1952) is an American actor best known for his role as the Klingon character Worf in the Star Trek franchise, appearing in all seven seasons of the television series Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987–1994), and later reprising the role in Seasons 4 through 7 of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1995–1999) and season three of Star Trek: Picard (2023). Dorn has appeared more times as a regular cast member than any other Star Trek actor in the franchise's history, spanning five films and 284[1] television episodes.

Outside of the Star Trek franchise, Dorn has appeared in the television series CHiPs (1979–1982), and has had voice roles as Coldstone and Taurus in the animated series Gargoyles (1994–1997), Kalibak in the DC Animated Universe, I.M. Weasel in I Am Weasel (1997–2000), Lord Darkar in the Nickelodeon dub of Winx Club (2011), and Captain Mozar in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2015–2016).

Dorn voice acted the role of Dr. John in the Sierra game Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers.

Early life

Dorn was born in Luling, Texas, the son of Allie Lee (née Nauls) and Fentress Dorn Jr.[2] He grew up in Pasadena, California, where he studied radio and television production at Pasadena City College. Following his graduation, he pursued a career in music as a performer with several different rock music bands, traveling to San Francisco and then back to Los Angeles.

Career

Early work

Dorn first appeared on-screen in Rocky, in an uncredited role as Apollo Creed's bodyguard.[3] Two years later, he appeared as a guest star on a 1978 episode of the television show W.E.B.. Impressed by his work, the show's producer introduced Dorn to an agent, through whom he met acting teacher Charles E. Conrad. Dorn studied with Conrad for six months, until he landed a regular role on the crime drama series CHiPs.[3]

Star Trek

Michael Dorn at the 2012 Phoenix Comic-Con with the cast of Next Generation. (L to R: LeVar Burton, Dorn, Marina Sirtis, Brent Spiner, and Wil Wheaton)

Dorn's most notable role to date is that of the Klingon Starfleet officer Lieutenant (later Lt. Commander) Worf in Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Dorn was the last of the main actors to be cast in The Next Generation, and prepared for his audition by isolating himself from the other actors and remaining taciturn through his interview, mimicking the personality of the character.[4] His character proved so popular amongst fans[5] that Dorn was added to the cast of spin-off series Deep Space Nine in an effort to boost ratings.[6]

He has appeared on-screen in more Star Trek episodes and movies as the same character than anyone else: he appeared in 175 episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation (missing only the episodes "Code of Honor", "Haven", and "Shades of Gray"), 102 episodes of Deep Space Nine and four Star Trek movies, bringing his total to 281 appearances as Worf. He also appeared as Worf's ancestor, Colonel Worf, in the 1991 film Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. He also directed the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episodes "In the Cards", "Inquisition" and "When It Rains...", and the Star Trek: Enterprise episode "Two Days and Two Nights".

He was one of six actors to reprise his role, in voice over, for the Star Trek: Captain's Chair virtual reality game. In 2014, he participated in the fan-produced Star Trek episode "Fairest of Them All", giving his voice to the computer of the Mirror Universe Enterprise.[7]

In 2012, Dorn announced a desire to return to his Klingon role in a television series tentatively titled Star Trek: Captain Worf. He said:

I had come up with the idea because I love [Worf] and I think he's a character that hasn't been fully developed and hasn't been fully realized. Once I started thinking about it, it became obvious to me that I wanted to at least put it out there, which I have, and the response has been pretty amazing. We've been contacted by different individuals–I can't say who and all that–about wanting to come on board and be part of this.[8]

In April 2022, it was announced that he would reprise his role as Worf in the third season of Star Trek: Picard, which aired in 2023.[9]

Other work

Dorn has appeared in a number of TV shows, films, and video games. He has been the spokesman for Neutrogena T-Gel Shampoo, and has appeared in a Dodge Dart car commercial. He voiced Frank Horrigan in Fallout 2. He appeared in a 2012 tongue-in-cheek television commercial for Chrysler as "Future Guy", a time traveler sent from the future to assist development of the 2013 Dodge Dart.[10] He also plays the role of General Thain in the Castlevania: Hymn of Blood web series.[11]

Following his Star Trek career, he had supporting roles in a number of independent feature films, including Shadow Hours (2000), Lessons for an Assassin (2001), and The Santa Clause trilogy, in which he appeared in a minor role as the Sandman. Dorn reprised his role as Worf for cameo appearances on Webster and Family Guy, the latter with several of his fellow Next Generation castmates. He had a recurring role on the television series Castle, playing the therapist of NYPD police detective Kate Beckett.[12]

In March 2023, Dorn was announced as the writer for a comic starring Steel (John Henry Irons), whom he voiced in Superman: The Animated Series. Steelworks #1 was published on June 6, 2023, with art by Sami Basri.[13]

Personal life

A member of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association,[14] Dorn is an accomplished pilot. He has flown with the Blue Angels as well as the Thunderbirds.[3] He has owned several jet aircraft, including a Lockheed T-33 Shooting Star, which he jokingly refers to as his "starship",[15] a North American F-86 Sabre, and currently owns a North American Sabreliner. Dorn also serves on several aviation organizations, one of which is the Air Force Aviation Heritage Foundation,[16] where he is on the advisory board. He has done interviews for the "Private Jets" episode of Modern Marvels on The History Channel.

Dorn stated in a 2010 interview that he had been diagnosed with an "early early" stage of prostate cancer, which led him to become a vegan.[17]

Filmography

Film

Year Title Role Notes
1976 Rocky Apollo Creed's bodyguard Film debut; uncredited
1977 Demon Seed bit part (uncredited)
1985 Jagged Edge Dan Hislan
1991 Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country Klingon Defense Attorney (Colonel Worf)
1994 Star Trek Generations Lieutenant Commander Worf
1995 Timemaster Chairman
Mission Critical Commander
1996 Star Trek: First Contact Lieutenant Commander Worf
1997 Menno's Mind Simon, Menno's Friend
1998 Star Trek: Insurrection Lieutenant Commander Worf
2000 Shadow Hours Detective Thomas Greenwood
The Prophet's Game Bob Bowman
2001 The Gristle Tar
Mach 2 Rogers
Ali Black pilot
2002 Face Value Hitman
Star Trek: Nemesis Lieutenant Commander Worf
The Santa Clause 2 Sandman Cameo
2003 Shade Jack Thornhill
Lessons For an Assassin Quinn
The Interplanetary Surplus Male and Amazon Women of Outer Space Sam the Bartender Direct-to-video
2005 Heart of the Beholder Lieutenant Larson
Thru the Moebius Strip King Tor Voice
2006 The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause Sandman
2007 Fist of the Warrior Arnold Denton
Night Skies Kyle
The Deep Below Carl Bennett
2009 Bionicle: The Legend Reborn Mata Nui Voice, direct-to-video
2012 Strange Frame Guardship Commander
2015 Ted 2 Rick
2019 Wonder Woman: Bloodlines Ferdinand the Minotaur Voice, direct-to-video

Television

Year Title Role Notes
1979–1982 CHiPs Officer Jebediah Turner 31 episodes
1981 Knots Landing Paramedic Episode: "The Vigil"
1985 227 Lester's friend 1 episode
Hunter Highway Patrolman Episode: "Waiting for Mr. Wrong"
1986–1987 Days of Our Lives Jimmy
1987–1994 Star Trek: The Next Generation Lieutenant Worf Main role, 7 seasons
1988 Reading Rainbow Himself Episode: "The Bionic Bunny Show"
1989 Webster Lieutenant Worf Episode: "Webtrek"
1991–1994 Dinosaurs Elders, Solomon the Great, WESAYSO Announcer Voice, recurring role
1994 SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron Mutilor Episode: "When Strikes Mutilor"
1994–1997 Gargoyles Coldstone, Taurus Recurring role
1995 Amanda and the Alien Lieutenant Vint Television film
World of Wonder Himself – Host Science show on the Discovery Channel
1995–1996 Fantastic Four Gorgon Voice, 2 episodes
1995–1999 Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Lieutenant Commander Worf Main role, 4 seasons
1995 The Outer Limits Pete Claridge Episode: "The Voyage Home"
1996 Adventures from the Book of Virtues Apollo Voice, episode: "Humility"
Captain Simian & the Space Monkeys Lord Nebula 2 episodes
1996–2000 Superman: The Animated Series Kalibak, John Henry Irons / Steel Voice, recurring role
1997 Street Fighter The Warrior King Voice, episode: "The Warrior King"; uncredited
1997–2000 I Am Weasel I.M. Weasel Voice, main role
1998 Haunted History Narrator Voice, episode: "Haunted History: Charleston"
1998–1999 Hercules Minotaur Voice, 2 episodes
2000 Martial Law Councilman Tynan Episode: "No Quarter"
2001 7th Heaven Mr. Johnson
2002 Through the Fire Michael Collins Television film
The Zeta Project Colonel Lemak Voice, 2 episodes
Static Shock Reverend Anderson Voice, episode: "Frozen Out"
2003 Justice League Kalibak Voice, 2 episodes
Kim Possible: A Sitch in Time Rufus 3000 Voice, television film
Spider-Man: The New Animated Series Kraven the Hunter Voice, 2 episodes
2003–2005 Duck Dodgers The Martian Centurion Robots, Captain Long, Klunkin Warrior Voice, main role
2004–2005 Megas XLR R.E.G.I.S. Mark V, Klaar's Robot Guards, Number 14 Voice, 2 episodes
2004–2007 Danny Phantom Fright Knight Voice, 3 episodes
2005 Justice League Unlimited Kalibak Voice, episode: "The Ties That Bind"
Descent General Fielding Television film
2005, 2009 Family Guy Lieutenant Worf, Himself Voice, 2 episodes
2006 All You've Got Fire Captain Diaz Television film
A.I. Assault General Buskirk Television film
Fallen Angels Taylor Television film
2007 Squirrel Boy Reuben Belmont Voice, 2 episodes
Ben 10 Viktor, Benvicktor Voice, 2 episodes
Without a Trace Nathan Riggs Episode: "Absolom"
2008–2009 Heroes US President 2 episodes
2009 Batman: The Brave and the Bold Bane, Krull the Eternal Voice, episode: "Menace of the Conqueror Caveman!"
Heroes President of the United States Episode: "An Invisible Thread"
2010 Adventure Time Gork Voice, episode: "Freak City"
It's a Trap! Lieutenant Worf
2011–2015 Castle Dr. Carver Burke 6 episodes
2011 Winx Club Lord Darkar Voice, recurring role
2012, 2014 Regular Show Thomas the Demon Voice, 2 episodes
2014 Ben 10: Omniverse Dr. Viktor, Plumber Voice, 2 episodes
2015–2016 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Captain Mozar Voice, recurring role
2016 Uncle Grandpa Crispin Mulcahy Voice, 4 episodes
2016–2017 Arrow Prometheus Voice, recurring role; uncredited[18][19]
2017 Supergirl Voice, episode: "Crisis on Earth-X"; uncredited
Transformers: Titans Return Fortress Maximus Voice, web series
2017–2019 The Lion Guard Bupu Voice, recurring role
2018 OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes Red Strike, I.M. Weasel Voice, episode: "Crossover Nexus"
2021 Invincible Thokk / Battle Beast Voice, episode: "That Actually Hurt"
2023 Star Trek: Picard Worf Season 3

Video games

Year Title Role Notes
1993 Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers Dr. John
Stellar 7: Draxon's Revenge Narrator
1995 Mission Critical Captain Stephen R. Dayna
Star Trek: The Next Generation – A Final Unity Lieutenant Worf
1996 Vikings: The Strategy of Ultimate Conquest Narrator
1997 Star Trek Generations Lt. Commander Worf
1998 Fallout 2 Marcus, Frank Horrigan
2000 Star Trek: Armada Ambassador Worf
Star Trek: Klingon Academy Thok Mak
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: The Fallen Lt. Commander Worf
Star Trek: Invasion
2001 Emperor: Battle for Dune Duke Achillus
2006 Star Trek: Legacy Worf
2008 Saints Row 2 Maero
Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures Kazim
2010 Mass Effect 2 Gatatog Uvenk
Fallout: New Vegas Marcus
StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty Tassadar
2013 Saints Row IV Maero
Star Trek: Online Ambassador Worf
2015 Infinite Crisis Swamp Thing
Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. John Henry
2016 Master of Orion: Conquer the Stars Narrator [20]
2017 XCOM 2: War of the Chosen Pratal Mox
2018 Lego DC Super-Villains Kalibak [21]
2019 Indivisible Ravannavar [22]

Web series

Year Title Role Notes
2014 Star Trek Continues Computer Voice Voice, episode: "Fairest of Them All"
2015 Con Man Himself Episode: "Thank Your for Your Service"
2017 Bravest Warriors Armada Pilot Voice, episode: "Dan of Future Past"
Transformers: Titans Return Fortress Maximus Voice, episode: "Aftermath and Rebirth"

References

  1. ^ "Michael Dorn - IMDb". IMDb. Retrieved May 2, 2023.
  2. ^ "Michael Dorn Family Tree". Freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com. Archived from the original on June 25, 2016. Retrieved August 17, 2010.
  3. ^ a b c "Star Trek Database – Dorn, Michael". Star Trek Database. CBS Entertainment. Retrieved December 10, 2011.
  4. ^ Selected Crew Analysis: Casting (DVD). Michael Dorn (actor). Paramount. 2002.((cite AV media notes)): CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  5. ^ Greenwald, Jeff (1998). "Worf Factors". Future Perfect: How Star Trek Conquered Planet Earth. New York: Viking. p. 79. ISBN 978-0-670-87399-9. Dorn plays the immensely popular Worf ... Worf may be the most complex and sympathetic character in the history of Star Trek.
  6. ^ Charting New Territory: Deep Space Nine Season Four (DVD). Robert Hewitt Wolfe (writer/producer). Paramount. 2003.((cite AV media notes)): CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link) Of Worf, Wolfe says that the studio felt DS9's ratings were sagging at the end of the third season, and he and the other writers were asked to give viewers a new reason to watch. Their answer was to make Worf a part of the cast.
  7. ^ Sloan, Sam (June 16, 2014). "Star Trek Continues: Fairest Of Them All – A Slice of SciFi Review". Slice of SciFi. Retrieved November 23, 2014.
  8. ^ Schaefer, Sandy (September 4, 2012). "Michael Dorn Confirms He's Working on a 'Star Trek: Captain Worf' TV Series". Screen Rant. IndieClick Film Network. Retrieved May 13, 2013.
  9. ^ Petski, Denise (April 5, 2022). "'Star Trek: Picard': LeVar Burton & Michael Dorn Among 6 'Next Generation' Alums Joining Third & Final Season". Deadline. Retrieved April 5, 2022.
  10. ^ Vellequette, Larry (September 5, 2012). "Chrysler's latest treat wears a silver suit". Automotive News. Crain Communications, Inc. Retrieved September 22, 2012.
  11. ^ "Warp Factor 2 announces "Castlevania: Hymn of Blood" Web Series". PRWeb. October 26, 2012. Retrieved September 13, 2013.
  12. ^ "Castle Exclusive: Star Trek's Michael Dorn Is Beckett's Shrink". TV Guide. August 4, 2011. Retrieved September 19, 2011.
  13. ^ "Star Trek Icon Michael Dorn Joins DC to Script a New Steel Series". CBR. March 10, 2023. Retrieved March 10, 2023.
  14. ^ "AOPA Online: Instructor Reports". Aopa.org. November 30, 2006. Retrieved August 17, 2010.
  15. ^ Freeze, Di (June 2008). "Michael Dorn: A Trek worth Remembering". Airportjournals.com. Airport Journals. Retrieved June 13, 2015.
  16. ^ ":::Air Force Aviation Heritage Foundation :::". Afahf.org. Retrieved August 17, 2010.
  17. ^ "Worf from 'Star Trek' goes vegan".
  18. ^ Schedeen, Jesse (June 1, 2017). "Arrow: Season 5 Review". IGN. Retrieved June 6, 2017.
  19. ^ Guggenheim, Marc (April 5, 2017). "marcguggenheim". tumblr. Retrieved August 8, 2017.
  20. ^ Forté, Malik (February 18, 2016). "Master of Orion Voice Cast Includes Mark Hamill, Michael Dorn, and More". Nerdist. Archived from the original on February 19, 2016. Retrieved February 19, 2016.
  21. ^ "LEGO DC Super-Villains Story Trailer Brings Back Classic Animated Series Voice Actors". GameRevolution. August 21, 2018.
  22. ^ "Indivisible Cast List Revealed". August 6, 2019.