SG-1 on location!
Excerpt taken from
Cult Times #49
If you could change your shape so that you could be anything at all, would you want to be head of security on Deep Space Nine?

Rene Auberjonois charts the changing face of Star Trek’s curmudgeonly constable Odo

Over 13 years since the ABC comedy series Benson ended, people around the world still remember veteran stage, film and television performer Rene Auberjonois as political aide Clayton Endicott III. For the past seven seasons, however, Auberjonois has concealed his familiar face behind make-up as Constable Odo, the shape-shifting long arm of the law on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.

With the programme recently having finished its final season, the actor has shed his mask for good and re-emerged, he hopes, into a profession still burgeoning with possibilities and choices.

“If you do your job properly you usually learn a lot from any role you do. Of course, getting to play someone like Odo over a period of years has given me a greater understanding of the character,” notes Auberjonois. “For me, as I began to see the light at the end of the tunnel, I became aware of how on an instinctive level I made choices to cover myself.

"The mask of the character was already written into the show, but I actually lobbied for a denser and more complete mask than they initially considered. I also used very different vocal and physical qualities when playing Odo, so I really hid myself, Rene Auberjonois the person, within the character.

“In a lot of ways that was a professional decision in that I’d spent six years as Clayton Endicott III and was acutely aware after that finished how tied to the character I personally became. Clayton wasn’t me but because it looked and sounded like me people tended to really connect me with that character. "

In fact, to this day more people recognize me as Clayton Endicott III than as Constable Odo. So I think that that’s where hiding myself underneath the make-up has paid off in the sense that I will be able to leave Odo – someone I played for seven years – behind without being typecast."

Steven Eramo

Buy Cult Times #49 for the full interview!

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
current UK Transmission details
Sky 1: Weekends, 16.00; Mondays, 20.00 BBC2: See magazine for details
Have you seen our recent Deep Space Nine coverage in Cult Times?
Season Seven preview, Casey Biggs on shifting Cardassian fortunes
Issue #48, Sep 99
Dominion shape-shifter Salome Jens on DSN's conclusion
Issue #47, Aug 99
Producer Ira Steven Behr interviewed
Issue #46, July 99
Andrew J Robinson on mysterious Garak
Issue #45, June 99
Jeffrey Combs on playing two villains
Issue #43, April 99
Michael Dorn on Next Gen, DSN and the movies
Issue #42, Mar 99
Trials and Tribble-ations in focus
Issue #40, Jan 99
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