Arlene Martel Interview

BMi: What was your time like on the Star Trek set?

AM: It was a lot of fun and it was kind of perilous because of Bill Shatner’s sense of humor. He was very naughty in terms of making fun of the Vulcan words; sort of give them a risqué twist.  The director was constantly having to come over because we were in hysterics. He would say, “You have to have more control or discipline or I’ll have to break you up and send you off the set.” I said, “Oh my God, I’m gonna be fired and I just started the job. Please Bill restrain yourself,” and he didn’t. If you tell him not to do something he’ll do it even more like a naughty child.

BMi: I take it Leonard Nimoy was a little more held together?

tpring and spockAM: Oh yes, he stayed in character; in fact he hardly said anything but hello to me even though we had worked on two other shows before. We worked on The Rebel, it was a western where he played my brother-in-law, we both spoke with western accents and we both did Mission Impossible as well.

BMi: You’ve had so many roles in so many influential series over the years, from Twilight Zone to Mission Impossible, but what would you consider to be your favorite role?

AM: My favorite role is very hard to say. You don’t have favorites because the born movie star I played on Banacek with George Peppard was totally different from the sweet Italian virginal girl I played on Route 66. There’s been such a variety that I can’t say, “Oh, this one’s my favorite.” All of the roles I’ve played were standout. I loved being on The Monkees, I loved playing Dracula’s hippy niece, I loved playing a Russian spy… I loved amok time 1doing Gunsmoke. The character I played on Route 66… was a very beautiful character, was very touching in her innocence, kind of how I felt about myself at the time. I can’t say one more than another really, to be honest.

BMi: What have you been working on as of late?

AM: Oh I wrote a book that’s been published. It’s called Mixed Messages and its gathering quite a buzz. It’s a true-life love story, my own, an experience I had through the internet. It has a lot of medical advice running through it. The person I wrote it with is a medical researcher, it puts a spotlight on depression and how it can sabotage a relationship.