Arlene Martel

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Arlene Martel
Arlene Martel 2011.jpg
Arlene Martel, with photos of her various roles, at 2011 Star Trek convention
Arline Greta Sax

(1936-04-14)April 14, 1936
DiedAugust 12, 2014(2014-08-12) (aged 78)
OccupationActress, screenwriter
Years active1958–2013
Notable work
T'Pring on Star Trek
Tiger on Hogan's Heroes
Spouse(s)Robert Palmer (divorced)
Jerry Douglas
(m. 1962; div. 1973)

Matthew B. Schoen
(m. 1980; div. 1988)
Arlene Martel as T'Pring from the Star Trek episode "Amok Time" (1967)

Arlene Martel (born Arline Greta Sax, April 14, 1936 – August 12, 2014) was an American actress, writer, and acting coach. Prior to 1964, she was frequently billed as Arline Sax or Arlene Sax. Casting directors, among other Hollywood insiders, referred to Martel as "the Chameleon," because her appearance and her proficiency with accents and dialects enabled her to portray characters of a wide range of races and ethnicities.[2]


The daughter of Austrian Jewish immigrants, Martel was billed as "Arline Sax" during the early years of her television career.

Two of her earliest appearances were in The Twilight Zone TV series. The first was the episode "What You Need" as a woman in the bar . She also appeared, billed as Arline Sax, in the episode "Twenty Two", as a nurse who repeatedly utters the sinister phrase "Room for one more, Honey!" at the entrance to a hospital morgue and at the door of a doomed airplane.

She appeared in a 1960 episode of The Rebel titled "The Hunted" in which she had a scene with Leonard Nimoy, before Star Trek. She was also featured in two 1961 episodes of Route 66: "Legacy for Lucia", in which she had the title role of a Sicilian girl who inherits an American soldier's estate, and "The Newborn," in which she played a mother who dies in childbirth. She appeared in an episode of the TV series Hong Kong in 1961, opposite Rod Taylor.

In 1962, she made the first of two appearances on Perry Mason, as Fiona Cregan in "The Case of the Absent Artist." Later, she guest starred as Sandra Dunkel in "The Case of the Dead Ringer" (1966), in which, aside from his role as Mason, Raymond Burr played the actual murderer, Grimes.

Other roles includes princess Sarafina on Have Gun – Will Travel, the evil witch Malvina on Bewitched, the French Underground contact Tiger in five episodes of Hogan's Heroes (1965–71), a female cosmonaut on I Dream of Jeannie, a Hungarian immigrant on The Fugitive episode "The Blessings of Liberty" (1966).

Martel's best known science fiction roles were in The Outer Limits episode "Demon with a Glass Hand" (1964) and in the Star Trek episode "Amok Time" (1967) as T'Pring, Mr. Spock's "wife".

In the Columbo series Martel played Gloria West, mistress of murder victim Tony Goodland (Bradford Dillman), in season 2 episode 2 "The Greenhouse Jungle" (1972).[citation needed] then later as the stunningly beautiful Salesgirl the episode "A Friend in Deed" [3] (1974).

In 1974, she was billed as "Tasha Martelle" for the role of secretary "Marty Bach" in The Rockford Files, episode "Trouble in Chapter 17." She appeared as a featured actress in the Gunsmoke episode titled "The Squaw" (1975).

Other shows on which Martel appeared included The Man from U.N.C.L.E., The Untouchables, Mission: Impossible, Here Come the Brides, The Wild Wild West, Battlestar Galactica, The Monkees, Mannix, and The Six Million Dollar Man.[4]

Martel also appeared in feature films, including Angels from Hell (1968) and Chatterbox (1977). She received top billing as the commandant in charge of a Russian road crew in Zoltan, Hound of Dracula (1978), although it was only a bit part lasting less than five minutes.

Martel semi-retired from acting in the mid 1980s, but continued to work sporadically in acting after that. She appeared in several episodes of TV and in some unsold TV pilots in the early 2000s. She stated in interviews that even in her early career, she got most of her work through word of mouth and not through talent agents. In her later years, she often remarked, "I don't have a good agent who will get me the plum roles."[citation needed]

Late-life roles included playing a Vulcan priestess in the Star Trek fan film "Of Gods and Men" in a scene with her "Amok Time" suitor Lawrence Montaigne reprising his role as Stonn, and as one of the narrators for the 2015 documentary film Unity, which was released one year after her death.[5]

Personal life[edit]

Martel attended the Performing Arts High School in New York, on which the movie Fame was based, graduating in 1953. She later studied method acting and was a member of The Actors Studio.[citation needed]

Martel married and divorced three times. Her first marriage was to Robert Palmer, with whom she had one son, Adam Palmer. Her second marriage was to actor Jerry Douglas, with whom she had two children, Avra Douglas, and journalist and designer Jod Kaftan. Her third marriage was to Matthew Schoen. She had three grandchildren.[citation needed]

In her later years, Martel wrote a screenplay, Whisper Into My Good Ear, based upon the one-act play of the same title by William Hanley. She began work on a second screenplay, Mrs. Dally Has a Lover, also by Hanley. Neither was produced.[citation needed]

She was a regular at Star Trek conventions worldwide from 1972 to 2014. Her last convention appearance was at TrekTrax Atlanta (later renamed Treklanta) in Atlanta, Georgia on April 25–27, 2014 – four months before her death.[6]


On August 12, 2014, Martel died from heart bypass surgical complications at a hospital in Santa Monica, California. She was 78 years old. She had been battling breast cancer for the last five years of her life, although this was reportedly not the cause of her death.[1]


  1. ^ a b "Arlene Martel Dead: Spock's Bride on 'Star Trek' Was 78". The Hollywood Reporter. 2014-08-13. Retrieved 2017-06-14.
  2. ^ "The Official Arlene Martel Website". Retrieved 2019-03-17.
  3. ^
  4. ^ "The Six Million Dollar Man Season 1 Episode 13". Retrieved 2017-06-14.
  5. ^ Dave McNary (April 22, 2015). "Documentary 'Unity' Set for Aug. 12 Release with 100 Star Narrators". Variety. Retrieved May 1, 2015.
  6. ^ "Treklanta". 2014. Retrieved June 14, 2017.

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