Jonathan Frakes is an American actor and director, most notably recognized for his role as Commander William T. Riker in the Star Trek franchise. He gained significant fame in the late 1980s and early 1990s through his association with the Star Trek universe, particularly in the television series “Star Trek: The Next Generation” and its subsequent films. His directorial ventures within the same universe, like episodes of “Star Trek: Voyager” and “Star Trek: Discovery,” further solidified his reputation as a versatile force in the entertainment industry.
Frakes has diversified his career beyond Star Trek as well. He lent his voice to the character David Xanatos in the animated series “Gargoyles,” which ran from 1994 to 1997. He also branched out into directing, having helmed episodes for a variety of shows including “Burn Notice,” “Leverage,” and “The Librarians.” In the realm of film, Frakes directed the family adventure movies “Clockstoppers” and “Thunderbirds,” adding another layer to his multifaceted career.
Throughout his journey, Jonathan Frakes has collaborated with numerous celebrities, thereby enriching his professional portfolio. Among these individuals are Patrick Stewart, LeVar Burton, Marina Sirtis, Brent Spiner, Michael Dorn, Gates McFadden, Kate Mulgrew, Avery Brooks, Scott Bakula, and Sonequa Martin-Green. Whether he’s sharing the screen with these actors in various Star Trek series or directing them, Frakes’ collaborations have left an indelible mark on science fiction television history.
In 1996, Frakes was nominated for a Saturn Award for Best Genre TV Actor for his role in “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” He also won the 1994 Online Film & Television Association Award for Directing in a Genre Series for his work on “Star Trek: First Contact.” His directing for the show “Roswell” garnered him a nomination for the 2001 Saturn Award for Best Direction. In 2018, he received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Directors Guild of Canada Awards.