(written from a Production point of view)
Born in Flint, Michigan as Nancy Kovach, she attended the University of Michigan at the age of fifteen. She began her professional television career as one of Jackie Gleason's Glea Girls on The Jackie Gleason Show during the 1950s. This was followed by an extensive list of TV guest appearances on such programs as Perry Mason, The Alfred Hitchcock Hour (working alongside fellow TOS guest stars Frank Gorshin and Richard Hale), Twelve O'Clock High (a series starring Robert Lansing and Bert Remsen, in an episode also guest-starring Gary Lockwood), Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea (co-starring with the likes of Paul Carr, John Hoyt, Arch Whiting, and TOS star James Doohan), I Dream of Jeannie, Batman, I Spy, Family Affair (starring future Star Trek: Deep Space Nine guest actor Brian Keith), Get Smart, Hawaii Five-O (in an episode with David Opatoshu), She was also seen in two episodes of The Man from U.N.C.L.E. – one in 1964 with Abraham Sofaer and another in 1966 with Ricardo Montalban and John Winston – and was seen in multiple episodes of the classic situation comedy Bewitched.
In 1969, Kovack was nominated for an Emmy Award for her performance on an episode of Mannix entitled "The Girl Who Came in with the Tide", in which she guest-starred in the title role. Kovack went on to make two more appearances on Mannix, first in 1972 (with Barry Russo) and again in 1973.
Kovack has also starred in a number of feature film, making her debut in the 1960 drama Strangers When We Meet. Her most notable film role is that of the Medea in the 1963 adaptation of Jason and the Argonauts. (Star Trek: Enterprise star Jolene Blalock played this same role in a TV movie version of the same story in 2000.) Kovack's other film credits include the 1962 Western The Wild Westerners, the 1963 horror movie Diary of a Madman (co-starring fellow TOS alum Ian Wolfe), the 1965 Three Stooges comedy The Outlaws Is Coming (with Henry Gibson and Rex Holman), the 1966 spy thriller The Silencers (co-starring Roger C. Carmel and James Gregory), and the 1966 Elvis Presley musical Frankie and Johnny. Her last film to date was the 1969 science fiction drama Marooned, which co-starred fellow TOS guest actress Mariette Hartley.
Kovack married renowned music conductor Zubin Mehta in 1969, after which she began to focus more on married life than on acting. However, she did continue making occasional appearances on television throughout the 1970s – including becoming a regular in the short-lived series Ellery Queen (credited as Nancy Mehta), along with Monte Markham and Gail Strickland – before she retired in late 1975. She and her husband currently live in Germany.
Other Trek connections
Additional film and television projects in which Kovack appeared with other Star Trek performers include:
- Burke's Law episode "Who Killed Purity Mather" (1963, with Bill Erwin)
- Kraft Suspense Theatre episode "The Name of the Game" (1963, with Barry Atwater and Steve Ihnat)
- Burke's Law episode "Who Killed Cassandra Cass" (1964, with Nehemiah Persoff)
- Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theater episode "Parties to the Crime" (1964, with Jeffrey Hunter, Sally Kellerman, and Jason Wingreen)
- Sylvia (1965 film, with Majel Barrett)
- The F.B.I. episode "Flight to Harbin" (1966, with Stephen Brooks, Jason Evers, Julie Parrish, and Bert Remsen)
- Tarzan and the Valley of Gold (1966 film, with David Opatoshu)
- Enter Laughing (1967 film, with David Opatoshu, Michael J. Pollard, and Peter Brocco)
- The F.B.I. episode "Wind It Up and It Betrays You" (1968, with James B. Sikking)
- It Takes a Thief episode "One Night on Soledade" (1968, with Logan Ramsey, Madlyn Rhue, and Malachi Throne)
- The Name of the Game episode "Swingers Only" (1969, with Peter Duryea, Robert Lansing and Ed Peck)
- It Takes a Thief episode "38-23-26" (1969, with Malachi Throne)
- The Invisible Man episode "The Klae Dynasty" (1975, with George Murdock)
- Bronk episode "Long Time Dying" (1976, with Ken Lynch)