Why was Jennifer Lien fired?

Discussion in 'Voyager (VOY)' started by Neo, Apr 22, 2002.

  1.  
    Neo

    Neo Red Pixie Boot Wearer

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    I have heard people call it a brutal firing while others said she deserved it. What happened? I'd really like ro know if someone wcan give an unbiased account
  2.  
    Aing-Tii

    Aing-Tii gimboid goddess!

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    Me too! Me too! I think that was probably one of the most stupid decisions Voyager's ptb made. She was a great character and I still miss her.

    If anyone has the scoop, please tell us!!!!!!


    :star::star::star:
  3.  
    Maria8475

    Maria8475 It goes on.....

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    i never really liked her that much, i thought her character was too trite but maybe firing her was a little harsh - i always assumed she quite - either way i'd definetly like to know why.
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    Dave

    Dave Wherever I Am, I'm There Staff Member

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    Officially, it was said that she quit because her character was not being developed. There is always more to the truth, but I haven't heard anything.

    I've said before here that I always felt her character should have been developed much more, even going as far as writing to Jeri Taylor about it. And ironically, her telekinetic powers did actually get some development in 'Cold Fire' VOY just as she was about to leave. If only they had gone further.
  5.  
    Legolas

    Legolas something more magical

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    she was FIRED?! I neva new that! I liked her! I liked her more then Seven anyway (paaah)
    :flash:
  6.  
    Aing-Tii

    Aing-Tii gimboid goddess!

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    I didn't know she was fired for sure, either. :mad::mad: It's weird how there's always so much info./gossip about everything Trek and yet this still remains a mystery? Why? Foul play?????

    I agree that Kes' character was terrific and could have undergone great story arcs and character development. Maybe she was fired because she didn't have big enough breasts, hence her replacement. :dead::rolleyes:

    Sometimes I liked Seven (though never her costumes or the camera constantly ogling her implants) and sometimes she had great material. Jeri was a variable actress, sometimes good, sometimes great, sometimes not so good.

    But I still think they either should have kept the Kes character and NOT introduced Seven of Nine or had them both together. There could have been some awesome storylines with Kes and Seven. They would have played off of each other beautifully, imo!

    Oh well...there's always the first few season repeats!


    :star::star::star:
  7.  
    Technomage

    Technomage Chocolate Connoisseur.

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    I was shocked to see how she looked when she returned to Voyager in Season 6, I thought she had just come out of rehab or something - she just didn't look well or even happy, despite the fact that she was playing the part of a very angry person.

    I think I would have liked to see more of her, but I think her character was becoming too much like Q - maybe that's why they got rid of her!
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    Draco Weyr

    Draco Weyr Dragon Wrangler

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    Wow...

    This is one of the hottest and most controversial topics on some trek related bulletin boards.

    But here is the story, heck I have heard it so many times, I can say it by heart.

    Originally Garrett Wang (Harry Kim) was to be fired from Voyager.

    All cast members original contracts (with the exception of Kate Mulgrew I think) expired at the end of season 3, and where being renegotiated.

    Originally the cliffhanger to season 3 was not suppose to involve the Borg or Species 8472, but actually meant to be "Year of Hell, Part 1", already forshadowed in the Kes episode "Before and After". Also it is to note that "Year of Hell" orginally didn't involve time ships, reset buttons or any of that jazz, it was a medium sized arc for season 4 showing what happens when Voyager gets into bad trouble.

    But at the time it was decided that some new fresh blood needed to be introduced into the show (to help boost the ratings), and thus the producers decided on creating the character of a Human, Aassimilated into the Borg at a young age and then forced by Janeway to be reintroduced back into human society. So the entire Scorpian plot was developed from there.

    Now the sticking point was that the producers wanted to keep the cast at 9 members, not have it go up to 10, so somebody had to go. And originally it was to be Garrett Wang.

    The Producers didn't particularly like Wang and he was known to be lazy (he was suspended from 2 episodes late in season 3 - "Blood Fever" and another one due to his constant lateness to the set every day).

    At the end of Scorpian Part 1, Harry Kim, after being striked by Spieces 8472 was dying - thus killing off the character.

    But something happened during the summer hiatus that changed everything - Garrett Wang was choosen as one of People Magazine's 50 most beautiful people for 1997. The producers, for goodness knows what reason saw this as a sign and decided to keep Wang. But at this time Jeri Ryan had already been signed onto the cast and the producers need to get rid of one of the cast members. The axe unfortunately fell on the lovely neck of Jennifer Lien.

    Some people accuse Jeri Taylor of delivering the pink slip, though I for one do not know.

    So the episode "The Gift" was written at the last minute as a send off for Kes.

    Personally I am disapointed Kim stayed and Kes left. Kim spent the next four years hanging around like a wet rag, and the few decent episodes he had (Timeless etc) while good, could of been done by any character. (Actually it is my opinion that Paris would of been more suited for Timeless then Kim).

    On the other hand Kes had come into her own during season 3 with fantastic Kes episodes like "Warlord" and "Before and After" and a great b-plot in "Darkling" plus she already had storylines in the work for her for season 4 (the retouched version of "Year of Hell" is just one).

    She was also one of the most unique characters in trekdom, and it was a shame she never got the chance to proberly develop.

    And just a note on Jennifer Lien's slight weight gain in "Fury". Jennifer Lien had by that stage, dropped out of the Showbiz scene and was starting a college course, thus she had no real need to stay thin and went to a dress size that she was comfortable with. Heck - gaining weight is something many of us do in college! Including myself!

    All drug addiction rumours that have circulated that internet about Jennifer Lien are totally false and incredibly nasty.

    So that is the story...
  9.  
    Draco Weyr

    Draco Weyr Dragon Wrangler

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  10.  
    Dave

    Dave Wherever I Am, I'm There Staff Member

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    Thanks Draco Weyr, I hadn't heard that.

    I liked Kim, but I think I see now why he didn't make Lieutenant ;)

    Why choose Kes though? Why not Neelix? Too many female characters? They should never have got rid of Seska either.
  11.  
    Draco Weyr

    Draco Weyr Dragon Wrangler

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    Kes

    Well there are several main rumours - some legitimate enough, some obviously out right libel (oh the fun of being a moderator on large trek bulletin board...) ;)

    What you must remember is at the end of season three, Voyager was still pretty much an ensamble cast, it didn't become the big three of Janeway-Seven-EMH until the following season. So the fact is anybody could of easily been sack with the obvious exception of Kate Mulgrew....

    But to why it was Jennifer Lien/Kes...

    The offical reason given by TPTB as to why she was sacked is that they could not write for her anymore - ie they ran out of storylines et cetera.

    To be perfectly blunt, that reason is a sack of s**t that does not hold any water. Just look at her season three storylines where you see the writers where just bringing out her character, and the fact she already had a major storyline written for her in season four ("Year of Hell"), plus the fact that she would've been used to help Seven of Nine intergrate back into the crew, makes one certain this excuse is not the real reason. (heck if you look at some of the season four work you notice several character being 'out of character' so to speaks and makes you guess that there where in place of what would of been Kes's role (ie all of Tom's medical assistant stuff, various characters working with Seven to help her recover her humanity even though they have never been the nuturing type before...) yadda yadda yadda...

    Now anyhoo...

    The rumour floating around suggest a wide range of things as to why she was sacks as opposed to say Neelix etc... One of the more nasty one (which I obviously do not believe) involve Lien, sometime late in season three, rejecting the advances of a guest actor who just happened to be related to one of the producers.

    One of the more believeable ones is that it is known that Jennifer Lien developed an allegy to the glue she wore with her Ocompan ears (thus why Lien changed hairstyles in the episode "Before and After" thus hiding her ears). And the producers decided it would be easier to write out the character rather then try and find a new glue that Lien would not be allergic to.

    But in the end I think it was the luck of the draw and unfortunately Kes was the one written out.

    I think the producers did realise this mistake latter on as they struggled to give characters such as Kim and Neelix actual storylines, where as Kes had storylines already in motion - her 'dark' side as seen in "Warlock" and "Darkling" as well as her rapid aging and elogium storylines. (and thus more Kes storylines, more Tuvok and Neelix storylines - as they where an integral part of her development as a character).
  12.  
    Tabitha

    Tabitha Save Angel!

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    That is all really interesting. I hadn't really come across any of the rumours (but I hadn't been looking), and I just assumed that Lien left of her own accord - mainly because it seemed so odd to ditch a character that would have had so much potential (as you have outlined above).
    I have to admit I wasn't that keen on Kes at the beginning, but towards the end of her time she was really interesting, and I agree that the dynamics between Kes and 7 of 9 could have been great!
  13.  
    Draco Weyr

    Draco Weyr Dragon Wrangler

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    ^yeah.

    Though one should note that Jennifer Lien is known to be an extremely quiet and non-confrontal person, who even if done wrong by, would not go out and protest. In fact it is commonly regarded she hates doing stuff like conventions due to her extreme shyness, and many people who have attended conventions with her noted her shyness in answering questions and being mother-henned/protected by other cast members.

    But it is actually believed that the producers kept everybody in the dark as who was to be fired until the cast recieved their copies of the "The Gift" script. They all knew somebody was to go (by non-renewal of contract), but they didn't know who. Thus the obvious lack of attention towards the sacking - as there was only the short period between people knowing about the sacking and the filming of the actual epsiode. Plus it was technically not sacking per se... it was non-renewal of contract (all minor cast members had only a 3 year contract to begin with) - thus she would have no legal legs to stand on.

    Though it should be noted that several cast members including Kate Mulgrew and Robert Picardo did infact protest her sacking on her behalf (which they have talked about here and there at various conventions). And Jeri Ryan has mentioned before she did recieve a rather chilly welcoming at the beggining of season four.
  14.  
    janeways7

    janeways7 Paranoid Starfleet Lacky

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    I find it very hard to believe that someone who was 'brutally' fired", would return to the show to do 'Fury' and also say the following comments, taken from THIS interview with Lien herself:

    Now for someone who was "brutally fired", you would hardly think, Lien would return and work Rick Bermann and Brannon Braga who, if the rumours we here are true, treated her so "shabbishly":

    The attitude in the interview with Lien about returning as Kes in the sixth season episode 'Fury', doesn't sound like that of a person who was treated with no respect and just 'fired' from Voyager, it seems that she was quite happy with leaving - to star in movies such 'American History X' and 'Hoofboy', not to mention starting a university course.

    Plus, although not official, it was believed that Garratt Wang, Jennifer Lien and Ethan Phillips all signed on with 3-Year contracts at the beginning of Voyager, to be renewed at the end of Season three, and this further adds weight to the fact that Lien most probably left agreeingly to pursue other matters in her life(she was recently married and had a baby also).

    There is abolsutely no proof that Lien was "brutally fired" or "tossed aside", even so, why would a person treated like that return to Voyager, take part in ideas for the script of 'Fury' and be so happy to return to the behind-the-scenes Voyager 'family' who showed her so much disrespect?

    I think rumour should remain just that.. rumour

    ;)
  15.  
    Draco Weyr

    Draco Weyr Dragon Wrangler

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    ^Did you even bother to read my posts? I was rather even-handed in my arguements and you seem to ignored them entirely. You repeated several things I had already mentioned in my posts to justify you arguement, but in turn, only made your arguments redunant.

    In regards to Jennifer Lien coming back to Voyager after being let go, you asked why would she do such a thing. Seriously, Hollywood is littered with such instances. Hollywood is a town here the almightly dollar rules. Integrity, especially for minor B grade TV actors and actress often loses out at the end of the day when money is dangled in front of them, which in turn would help them pay there bills. Not everybody is earning 20 million a movie and can live in luxery forever. Yes, she might of had a few critically recognised roles after Voyager (my fav being SLC Punk!), but it is safe to say those roles didn't exactly lead to a big hollywood career. And the university thing, while is really fantastic for Lien, didn't happen for many years AFTER leaving Voyager...

    A great example of a 'brutal firing' then coming back into the fold is Delta Burke who was quiet publically fired from "Designing Women" due to her weight problem, only to make peace with the producers a few years later for a new series "Women of the House".

    Plus as Jeri Taylor, the person who is generally accepted as the person who fired her, was no longer involved with Voyager by the time "Fury" came along, thus Lien would not have a problem with anybody on the crew... Braga and Berman, had absolutely nothing to do with the hiring and firing of people on Voyager in late season 3, early season 4, it was all Taylor teritory. Thus Lien would have no axe to grind with them even if she wanted to.


    Hollywood is politics, not peaches and cream, it is not that difficult to figure it out, and while your idealism is noteworthy, it unfortunately would get steamrolled in Hollywood.
  16.  
    Dave

    Dave Wherever I Am, I'm There Staff Member

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    Draco Weyr -- Try to attack the 'post' in future and not the 'poster.'
    While your story may be quite true, you don't actually give any evidence that she was "brutally fired" rather that simply let go at the end of a three year contract.

    I think that only Jennifer Lien could really answer that, and if she is professional she never will (unlike Robert Beltran who has been very publically critical - at conventions and interviews - of both 'Star Trek: Voyager' in general, and specifically the way in which his character was or wasn't developed.)

    So, until she does speak, it is only a "rumour", and I can understand why Janeways7 thinks unsubstantiated rumours shouldn't be spread.

    On the otherhand, your observations about Hollywood in general, and Jeri Taylors firm grip on the early seasons of 'Voyager' are correct, and I could believe there is some truth in what you say.
  17.  
    Draco Weyr

    Draco Weyr Dragon Wrangler

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    actually, if you look at my posts, I never ever ever used the term "Brutally fired". That was another poster. IN FACT I made the comment that Jennifer left Voyager due to her contract not being renewed.

    Yeah, I did use a few flowery adjectives and semantics, and will except any flack from what I actually said, but I will not accept any flack from something I didn't say.

    But still, I believe my posts where rather balanced all up and looked at both sides. Plus it is not a rumour that Wang was orignally the one to be fired, not Lien, in fact Wang has said at several conventions he was quiet lucky...

    A lot of the infomation, while I admit, has not come from Lien herself, has been mentioned by various other actors at various conventions. I do remember Mulgrew and Picardo having articles written about there comments, essentially saying that the exit of Jennifer from the show was sudden and that nobody knew about it, including Jennifer, until they had the scripted for "The Gift". I know the articles are out there, trektoday.com is a good source, though I am to tired to look for them.

    Edit for Grammer
  18.  
    Dave

    Dave Wherever I Am, I'm There Staff Member

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    I accept that you weren't the first to say she was "brutally fired", but it was in Neo's first post at the start of the thread, and what the thread is about really, was she or wasn't she 'brutally fired'?

    And sorry, but you did say "A great example of a 'brutal firing' then coming back into the fold...." in your previous post.

    Heated arguments are good, lets have more of them, I don't want to stop debate. I just thought that I would have been upset if I was on the recieving end of that post, but I expect Janeways7 is big enough to stick up for herself.

    I also fully accept that there is probably more truth to this rumour than the usual ones, especially if Mulgrew and Picardo have said as much.

    I still think that only Jennifer Lien can really give the full story, and I can't see how we will ever know the truth.
  19.  
    mysh

    mysh Orlando Blooms Love Slave

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    Re: here

    I know I'm posting this amidst lots of Garrett haters, but I can't access the website, since I have none of what they ask for.

    So, I guess, could someone send a screen shot my way or something? I thank you in advance. :D
  20.  
    RedNeckMystic2000

    RedNeckMystic2000 New Member

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    I agree with the posting regarding Garret's listing with People magazine as being part of it, however, there were other issues with Jennifer. According to several staff members, she was not happy with the show. Additionally she was challenged by an anxiety disorder.

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