LeVar Burton (February 16, 1957-) is an African-American actor famous for starring as Starfleet engineer Geordi La Forge on Star Trek: The Next Generation
and its subsequent films.
He first became famous for his Breakout Role
as the young Kunta Kinte in the 1977 miniseries Roots
, based on the novel by Alex Haley, before he went on to host the children's educational show Reading Rainbow from 1983 to 2006
(which he is hoping to bring back).
He has also directed several episodes of The Next Generation
, Deep Space Nine
, and episodes of non-Trek series like Charmed
and Las Vegas
Tropes applying to LeVar Burton:
- Black and Nerdy
- Doing It for the Art: He has stated in interviews that his visor on TNG was so uncomfortable he pretty much had a seven-year headache. That takes commitment to a role.
- It's also a case of extreme Method Acting as it's stated the visor also gives Geordi extreme headaches.
- He spent 26 years on Reading Rainbow, and after the show was canceled he fought savagely to own the rights, because he genuinely believes in the Reading Is Cool Aesop
- Excited Kids Show Host: He was a Type 3 on Reading Rainbow.
- I Am Not Spock: Played With. To many people, he will always be Geordi La Forge, but even before TNG, he was extremely noteworthy, having starred in Roots and hosting Reading Rainbow. In fact, when TNG first premiered, he was the biggest name in the cast (at least, in the US).
- Military Brat: He was born in Germany, where his father was serving as an Army sergeant.