(written from a Production point of view)
Bruce French (born 4 July 1945; age 69) is a veteran actor who has appeared in three different Star Trek series as well as Star Trek: Insurrection. Hailing from Reinback, Iowa, French is a graduate of the University of Iowa, where he majored in Speech and Theater. He is married to actress Eileen Burnett.
French has more than 150 film and television appearances to his credit. He has held recurring roles on such series as Dallas (working with Susan Howard, Leigh J. McCloskey, William Smithers, and Morgan Woodward) and Ally McBeal (co-starring Albert Hall). He is currently known for his roles as Jim Burns on the FX series The Riches (starring Gregg Henry and Todd Stashwick) and as Father Lonigan on the NBC soap opera Passions.
In addition, French has made guest or co-starring appearances on such television series as The Waltons, Hardcastle and McCormick (starring Brian Keith and Daniel Hugh Kelly, in an episode with Gail Strickland), Magnum, P.I. (with Ed Lauter), The A-Team (starring Dwight Schultz), L.A. Law (starring Corbin Bernsen), Cheers (with Kirstie Alley, Vaughn Armstrong, Kelsey Grammer and Bebe Neuwirth), Night Court (with John Larroquette and Roy Brocksmith), Picket Fences (with Roy Brocksmith, Leigh Taylor-Young, and Ray Walston), The West Wing (with Thomas Kopache and Glenn Morshower), and JAG (with Scott Lawrence, Zoe McLellan, Terry O'Quinn, and Eric Pierpoint). More recent TV appearances include episodes of House (starring Jennifer Morrison) and Boston Legal (with John Larroquette, Daniel Hugh Kelly, Lawrence Pressman, Derek Webster, and William Shatner).
French made his feature film debut in the 1974 thriller Man on the Swing, starring Joel Grey. Film credits since then have included Coming Home (1978, with Jonathan Banks and David Clennon), Airplane II: The Sequel (1982, starring William Shatner), In 1983, Frech appeared in the automotive-themed thriller Christine with fellow TNG guests David Spielberg and Doug Warhit and Mr. Mom co-starring Teri Garr, Christopher Lloyd, Graham Jarvis, Carolyn Seymour, Miriam Flynn, Derek McGrath, and Michael Ensign), Fletch (1985, with Richard Libertini, Kenneth Mars, and James Avery), Jagged Edge (1985, with Michael Dorn), Legal Eagles(1986) with Robert Curtis-Brown and David Clennon, Martians Go Home (1990, co-starring Roy Brocksmith, Ronny Cox and Gerrit Graham), Jurassic Park III (with Linda Park), Enough (2002, co-starring Billy Campbell, Bill Cobbs, and Jeff Kober), and Mr. Deeds (starring Winona Ryder, Erick Avari and Harve Presnell).
More recently, French had a small role in Paramount Pictures' 2006 film Mission: Impossible III. Many of the filmmakers who worked on this film – including director J.J. Abrams, writers Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, cinematographer Dan Mindel, production designer Scott Chambliss, and casting director April Webster – also worked on the upcoming Star Trek, set for release in 2009. Among French's co-stars in M:i:III were Ellen Bry, Tracy Middendorf, and Simon Pegg.