GATES MCFADDEN Biography - Actors and Actresses


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Name: Cheryl Gates McFadden                                                                 
Born: 2 March 1949 Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, United States                                     
Cheryl Gates McFadden (born March 2, 1949, in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio), usually               
credited as Gates McFadden, is an American actress and choreographer. She is               
best known for portraying the character of Dr. Beverly Crusher in the television           
and film series Star Trek: The Next Generation.                                             
She attended Brandeis University earning B.A Cum Laude in Theater Arts. After               
graduating from Brandeis, she moved to Paris and studied theater with actor                 
Jacques LeCoq.                                                                             
Before Star Trek: The Next Generation, she was mostly known as a choreographer,             
often working on Jim Henson productions including the films The Dark Crystal,               
for which she was a choreographer, Labyrinth, for which she served as Director             
of Choreography and Puppet Movement, and The Muppets Take Manhattan, in which               
she has a brief on-screen appearance. As a way of distinguishing her acting work           
from her choreography, she is usually credited as "Gates McFadden" as an actress           
and "Cheryl McFadden" as a choreographer.                                                   
She appeared briefly in the Woody Allen film Stardust Memories, and in The Hunt             
for Red October as Jack Ryan's wife Cathy, though most of her scenes were cut in           
McFadden also appeared in the made-for-television movie Crowned and Dangerous               
with Yasmine Bleeth in 1997.                                                               
In 1987, McFadden was cast as Dr. Beverly Crusher on Star Trek: The Next                   
Generation. The Crusher character was slated to be Captain Jean-Luc Picard's               
love interest, and this aspect of the character is what attracted McFadden to               
the role. Another important aspect of the character was being a widow balancing             
motherhood and a career. McFadden left after the first season, in part because             
series executive producer Gene Roddenberry was never enthusiastic about casting             
McFadden in the first place. Roddenberry also wanted to give the role of ship's             
doctor to actress Diana Muldaur, with whom he had worked on the original Star               
Trek series and many other occasions. Muldaur's character, Dr. Katherine Pulaski,           
proved very unpopular with fans and left the show after the second season.                 
McFadden was approached to return for the third season. At first she was                   
hesitant, but after a phone call from co-star Patrick Stewart, McFadden was                 
persuaded to reprise her role.                                                             
At the Dallas Comic Con, 2006.                                                             
Photo by Corey Bond.                                                                       
From the third season on, Crusher was still under-used, but the character was               
mellowed slightly. McFadden remained vocal about her disappointing screen time,             
especially during TNG movies. McFadden also directed the TNG episode "Genesis"             
and choreographed the dance routine in "Data's Day". In interviews, she                     
expressed disappointment over not being given the opportunity to direct more               
episodes despite her requests.                                                             
In the spring of 2006, McFadden appeared in a series of television commercials             
for Microsoft.                                                                             
She has taught at several universities and is currently listed as an adjunct               
faculty member in the School of Theater at the University of Southern California.