The Online Encyclopedia and Dictionary






Wil Wheaton

Wil Wheaton (2001)
Wil Wheaton (2001)

Richard William (Wil) Wheaton III (born July 29, 1972 in Burbank, California) is a former child actor, now a writer and father. He is best known for his portrayals of Wesley Crusher on the television series Star Trek: The Next Generation (TNG) and Gordie LaChance in the film Stand By Me.



Like many talented actors who were popular from their work in the Star Trek franchise, much of Wheaton's career has been limited to Trek-oriented appearances. During his youth, he was a prominently featured guest at Star Trek conventions and very popular in teen magazines. However, barring teen work in the 1980s and Stand By Me, he has done little else of note in the way of performing. As he left TNG during the middle of its television run, and as three other Trek series have come since, Wheaton eventually faded from the convention scene as well, replaced by more popular actors/characters.

Like many actors attempting to revitalize their careers, he has as of the late 1990s embraced independent film with various appearances. Several of his independent films have won awards: The Good Things, in which Wheaton portrays a frustrated Kansas tollbooth worker, was selected Best Short Film at the 2002 Deauville Film Festival. He also received the Best Actor award at the 2002 Melbourne Underground Film Festival for his performance in Jane White Is Sick And Twisted. He was also a contestant on a Star Trek themed episode of The Weakest Link, and performs improvisational and sketch comedy at the ACME Comedy Theater in Hollywood. He has a travelling sketch comedy/improv troupe called "EarnestBorg9" that performs Sci-Fi and geek-related comedy at conventions.

Although his character (and by extension Wil himself) was loudly hated by a small but vocal group of Trekkers (see Usenet group alt.ensign.wesley.die.die.die or alt.wesley.crusher.die.die.die) during TNG's first run, Wheaton has emerged as a vocal member of the geek / nerd community and runs his own weblog web site, Wil Wheaton Dot Net. The majority of his present popularity comes from this web site, the books it has spawned, and from fans who admire his earlier work. He is a frequent poster at Slashdot and Fark, and is heavily involved with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, promoting free speech and privacy issues. Wil also contributes regularly to the Los Angeles based Metroblogging site. His work as a voice actor can be found in such diverse places as the Disney animated film "Brother Bear", as Aqualad of the cartoon "Teen Titans" and, most recently, as the voice of radio newsman Richard Burns in the smash hit video game "Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas," latest in Rockstar Entertainment's GTA series.

Wheaton married Anne Prince in 1999. He lives with his wife and two step-sons in Los Angeles, California. Wheaton is often confused with Will Wheaton Jr. , a jazz musician who contributed to the film Mystery Men, among other works.

In the spring of 2003, Wheaton founded the independent publishing company Monolith Press and released a book of his memoirs, entitled Dancing Barefoot. Most of the entries are extended versions of his online blog entries. Wheaton sold out three printings in four months, and in the winter of 2003, the book's success caught the eye of publisher Tim O'Reilly, who signed Wheaton to a three book contract. O'Reilly acquired Dancing Barefoot, and published Wheaton's extended memoirs, Just A Geek in summer of 2004.

Wil has a monthly column "Wil Save" in the Dungeons and Dragons based magazine Dungeon, where he relates anecdotal tales of his life in relation to the famous fantasy RPG. In January of 2005, Wil began a column about video games in The Onion.

In February of 2005, Wil announced that he had won the role of a one-off character, the crack addicted homeless man Walter, on CSI (Episode #5.17: "Compulsion" March 10 2005). A March 10 New York Times column by John Schwartz [1] portrayed Wil's role in a highly favorable light. Duane Clark director of the episode is quoted as saying "[Wil brought] a lot of scary volatility [to the role]. He really dug his teeth into it, and on his own came up with a backstory of who Walter was. He really filled out what could have been a caricature."


Wesley Crusher's name first appeared on Usenet in 1987 as a quote attached to a signature in the comp.os.cpm group. see the post here

Wil's Geek Code:

Version: 3.12 GPA d-- s+: a C+++ UL+++ P+>+++ L+++ E--- W+++ N+ o+ K+++ w-- O---- M+ V-- PS++(+++) PE Y++ PGP++>+++ t++@$ 5++ X+ R+ tv- b++ DI+ D++ G++ e h---- r+++ y+++

Of note, the "t++@$" tag for Star Trek decodes to:

It's the best show around. I have all the episodes and the movies on tape and can quote entire scenes verbatim. I've built a few of the model kits too. But you'll never catch me at one of those conventions. Those people are kooks. But that varies... Getting paid for it!



  • Brother Bear (2003) (voice)
  • Neverland (2003)
  • Four Fingers of the Dragon (2003)
  • Star Trek: Nemesis (2002) (scene deleted but appears as DVD extra)
  • Fish Don't Blink (2002)
  • Jane White Is Sick & Twisted (2002)
  • The Good Things (2001)
  • Speechless... (2001)
  • Python (2000)
  • Deep Core (2000)
  • The Girls' Room (2000)
  • Foreign Correspondents (1999)
  • Fag Hag (1998)
  • Tales of Glamour and Excess (1997)
  • Flubber (1997)
  • Trekkies (1997)
  • Boys Night Out (1996)
  • Pie in the Sky (1996)
  • "Lifestories: Families In Crisis" (1995)
  • The Liars' Club (1993)
  • December (1991)
  • Toy Soldiers (1991)
  • She's Having a Baby (1988) (uncredited Cameo)
  • The Curse (1987)
  • Stand By Me (1986)
  • The Buddy System (1984)
  • The Last Starfighter (1984) (scenes deleted from film but included as DVD extra)
  • Hambone and Hillie (1984)
  • The Secret of NIMH (1982) (voice)


Video games


External links

Last updated: 05-18-2005 18:49:57