Michael Ansara Dies; Star Trek Actor Was 91

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Michael Ansara, a rugged character actor perhaps best known for his role on three different TV iterations of Star Trek, has died at the age of 91.

Ansara

Ansara, who was married to actress Barbara Eden of I Dream of Jeannie fame, died July 31 at his home in Calabasas, Calif., after a prolonged illness.

Born in a small village in Syria to American parents, Ansara is beloved by Star Trek fans for his portrayal of his character, Klingon warrior Kang.

The actor played Kang on three versions of the legendary sci-fi franchise: the original (1968), Deep Space Nine (1994) and Voyager (1996).

He also had major roles in such films as Julius Caesar and The Robe, Jupiter’s Darling, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea and The Greatest Story Ever Told.

Ansara came to the U.S. with his American parents at the age of 2.

As a teen, he and his family relocated to California, and he entered Los Angeles City College with the intention of becoming a doctor, not an actor.

A stint at the Pasadena Playhouse (where fellow students included Charles Bronson, Carolyn Jones and Aaron Spelling) led to roles on stage and in films.

Michael Ansara was married to Eden from 1958-74.

Their son, Matthew Michael Ansara, died in 2001.

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I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Ansara when I was in Los Angeles about 25 years ago. I recognized him when he was walking down the street and approached him. He was very friendly ( he offered to buy me coffee so we could chat) and we spent a half hour talking about his career and some of the stars he had worked with. I asked him if he minded that some people only remember him as Kang in Star Trek and he said that ANY recognition so many years after he played that role was high praise to him. He insisted on paying, gave me a big hug( I am a girl so don't get the wrong idea) and thanked ME for being HIS fan all those years. He was a true gentleman. I will treasure that meeting even more now!

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@ riley

Re: "Riley's" post: What a great story! I too have met many famous actors and musicians during my lifetime. Most ( like Mr. Ansara) were very down-to-earth and actually very shy! If you happen to see a famous person, be respectful of their privacy ( don't shove a camera or scrap of paper in their face) be polite to them, and you will be surprised how nice they can be. After all they are basically ordinary people who became world famous.

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@ juan

I agree with Juan! A lot of famous actors or musicians are, quite frankly, rude and obnoxious and feel like their "fans" are beneath them and not worth giving their precious time to. The nice ones will always have a minute or two to pose for photos or sign autographs. They are the SMART ones who know that without fan support they are nothing!!

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When you think about this man's long and distinquished career, it's actually INSULTING to refer to him as a "Star Trek" actor! YES his character from the show played an important part in three seperate incarnations of the original show, BUT his resume before AND after his original appearance on the show deserves recognition also. Food for thought! Condolences to his family.

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It fascinates me how many people post their "diatribes" on line without checking facts( Hi Kelly!) or giving much thought as to how what is said will be perceived ( Hi Toos! and Abe). Walter ( however) clarified everything succinctly, and to the point! And he's right Kelly, CHECK YOUR FACTS FIRST!!! May I also extend my condolences to Mr. Ansara's family. My thoughts and prayers go out to you all!! God bless.

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Kelly, Kelly, Kelly!!! KHAN was played by Ricardo Montalban in the Star Trek episode "Space Seed" ( full name Khan Noonian Singh) Mr.Ansara played KANG a Klingon Commander who is forced to join forces with Kirk against a common enemy! So I quess YOU need to take your OWN advice and check YOUR facts first!!!!!!!TRUST ME ON THIS---I am a child of the 50's--I grew up watching this show---You are obviously very young, and only THINK you know the facts!!

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@ walter

Hey Walter! Nice to know someone understands what "facts" are---as opposed to "kelly" who--as you pointed out--is either VERY young, or just likes posting and making an idiot of herself for all to read! I too am a child of the fifties, and have actually met many of the original Star Trek cast including Nichelle Nichols, Leonard Nimoy, and Walter Koenig. They were all very personable, and appreciated the fan support.( Miss Nichols even kissed my cheek when I gave her flowers!!). Kelly dear, take your OWN advice----check your FACTS first---then post!!

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@ walter

Right on Walter!! Thanks for setting the record straight! Bruce Lee said it best; "Empty heads have long tongues"!!! YES I mean YOU "Kelly"!

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The name of the Star Trek character was Kahn, not kang..... Who fact checks this stuff? A few posts up Miley Cyrus is also wearing "pot leaves" on her sweater, that aren't pot leaves at all.... Smh... Educate yourselves before posting incorrect information please.

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@ Kelly

Khan*

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Unfortunately, I'm old enough to remember him from the TV show on which he starred back in the 50's or 60's, "Broken Arrow." He was great on that show.

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so Hetero Sexuals are becomming much older than F*ggots.
........THANKS TO THE WIFE'S CLUB!!

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RIP Michael Ansara, My biggest admiration of you is that you banged Barbara Eden.

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@ Toos

Re "Toos" post: How rude and insulting!!! You OBVIOUSLY aren't old enough to understand and appreciate Mr. Ansara's contributions to Cinema and television history! My condolences to his family and friends. And as for "abe"-----WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT??

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@ adam

I agree with Adam! As the old saying goes; "If you don't have anything nice to say---------SHUT UP!! ( Well that's MY version anyway!!

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