(written from a Production point of view)
Joe Gieb (born 24 April 1954; age 65) is the actor who portrayed the post-atomic horror bell ringer in the Star Trek: The Next Generation pilot episode "Encounter at Farpoint". As a background performer, Gieb received no credit for his appearance.
Gieb started his acting career in the late '70s with appearances in the horror film The Manitou (1978, along Michael Ansara and Felix Silla) and the television series Supertrain (1979, starring Joey Aresco). Throughout the '80s, Gieb had supporting roles in the comedy Under the Rainbow (1981, with Patty Maloney, Jim Boeke, Felix Silla, and Dennis Tracy), the science fiction comedy Weird Science (1985, with Robert Rusler, Michael Berryman, and Wallace Langham), the television horror comedy The Midnight Hour (1985, with LeVar Burton, Kurtwood Smith, Mickey Morton, and Scott L. Treger), and the comedy Going Overboard (1989, with Tom Hodges), and in television series such as Gimme a Break! (1984, with John Hoyt), Fame (1986, with Bebe Neuwirth), and was a regular on the comedy series Short Ribbs (1989), which also featured Patty Maloney.
Gieb, who is married to actress Kathy Gieb since 1983, continued his acting career in the '90s with guest roles in television series such as Davis Rules (1992, with Gregory Itzin), The Jackie Thomas Show (1992, with Jeanetta Arnette), Johnny Bago (1993, with Larry Hankin), Seinfeld (1994, with Jason Alexander, Thomas Dekker, and Michael Rivkin), 7th Heaven (1998, starring Catherine Hicks and Stephen Collins), Ladies Man (1999, starring Sharon Lawrence and Stephen Root), and Ally McBeal (1999, with Renee Goldsberry, Jim O'Heir, Gina Philips, Ron Taylor, and Cindy Sorenson). In the latter one, Gieb portrayed one of the Christmas Elves who had a fight with Courtney Thorne-Smith's character.
Further film credits include the horror sequel Howling VI: The Freak (1991), the television drama Harry Anderson: The Tricks of His Trade (1996, with Brent Spiner), the television horror film Trilogy of Terror II (1996), the comedy Whatever It Takes (2000, with Manu Intiraymi and Jay Harrington), the short comedies Bit Players (2000) and The Big Leaf Tobacco Company (2001), the drama The Breadbasket (2002), and the short comedy The Plight of Clownana (2004). Gieb also had guest roles in the television series Titus (2000, along Jacqueline Schultz), My Wife and Kids (2002 and 2004), Fat Actress (2005, starring Kirstie Alley and Rachael Harris and with Wallace Shawn and Susan Rossitto), and Everybody Hates Chris (2006).
More recently, Gieb had featured roles in the comedy Epic Movie (2007, with Scott L. Schwartz), the television comedy The Dukes of Hazzard: The Beginning (2007, with Christopher McDonald, Sam Zeller, and Beans Morocco), the comedy The Hottie & the Nottie (2008), and guest roles in The Game (2007, with Sean Smith) and The Unit (2007, with Chino Binamo).