More Trek Talk From John Cho

Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay opened today and star John Cho, who plays Sulu in the new Star Trek film, has been busy promoting the film’s release. To that end, numerous interviews with Cho have popped up on the web, a few of which have Cho talking a little Trek. Here are some quotes (read below).

Keeping secrets and playing Sulu
Cho on all the secrecy surrounding the film (Wired):

J.J. wants to make it a genuine surprise. In a general way, what we’re trying to do with the movie is honor the original series, and yet push it in another direction and make it a little more active. The TV series is very thoughtful and meditative, and we’ve got a more active movie.

On what it’s like to play Sulu:

I’m really thrilled to be doing it. Most importantly because as a kid, the Sulu role was one of a very few Asian characters on television. It was a stand-up role and he didn’t have an accent. He was doing something very cool. He was flying through space! It blew me away to be able to take part in that.

Takei a beacon, the Enterprise a dream, but the acting’s the same
On George Takei, the original Sulu (ACED Magazine):

When I was a kid, George Takei was the only really Asian on television that I recall that was doing something that I was so extremely proud of. He was in space being the helmsman of this amazing spaceship. So, he was just like a beacon for me on TV. So, it is a real honor for me in that way for me to be stepping into his shoes.

Cho tells The Deadbolt that being on the bridge of the Enterprise was “more like a dream than anything else.” Cho also commented on the differences between working on Harold and Kumar and working on Star Trek:

In terms of acting, I’d say it’s pretty similar. You prepare the same way, especially as the straight man of the duo. I’m not really looking for funny bits, you know. I’m trying to stay true to the situation and stuff. But there’s some planning, and comedy gives you some extra curve balls.

Is Cho set for life? (San Francisco Chronicle) :

SF Chronicle: I know you’re sworn to secrecy and can only say about five words about the next “Star Trek” movie, but what’s it like to play Sulu?
John Cho: From what I saw on set, I think we’re making a really fun, good movie. I think people can expect something that pays homage to the original series but also does something really fresh and exciting and young and athletic. On the topic of Sulu, he was such an important character to me, seeing (original Sulu actor George Takei) as I was growing up on television. It was a huge honor for me.
SFC: You’re set for life now. If your career goes bad, you can just sign autographs at one of those conventions.
JC: Usually, people ask what you’re working on next, and you say, “Uh, it’s this show about two guys and their roommates, and one of them is messy.” People don’t care. It seems like everyone knows something about “Star Trek.” It’s such a part of American pop culture. It’s definitely bizarre being associated with something everyone knows about.

From MILF to Harold to Sulu?

RottenTomatoes: So what do you get more of now: people yelling “MILF” or people inviting you back to their dorm to smoke a bowl?
JC: Probably the latter. For a while there, I was unsure whether anything would dethrone MILF. Harold has. It’s unbelievable. I was tired of MILF. It was time for it to go away. As a cultural concept, I think it’s going away.
RT: What catchphrase is Star Trek going to cultivate?
JC: Probably, [George Takei impression] “Sulu.”

John Cho – life of the party?
According to Cho’s Harold and Kumar co-star, Kal Penn, and their writer/director pal Jon Hurwitz, John Cho is one wild and crazy guy. ( USA Today)

Hurwitz: John Cho is the life of the party. He’ll randomly start singing ridiculous songs about whatever is going on in the moment. He’s bubbly and crazy.

Penn: [Cho is] so completely different from me. John is more of a Kumar in real life. John is more of the gregarious, outgoing guy on set, and I’m a little reclusive and quiet.

As reported earlier, Cho and his wife are expecting their first child. Having completed his work on Star Trek, Cho tells USA Today it’s time for a break.

I’ve been working for a while and I’m going to take a break and be home with the kid. I’m going on maternity leave.

Even more Cho
What, haven’t had your fill of Cho? Well then check out the interviews linked below!

Houston Chronicle
LA Times
Time Out Chicago
Mercury News

Don’t forget, Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay opens today! So, like, go watch it, and stuff. For more, visit the official site.

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I’m hoping for some swordplay!

play with ur own sword then

The keywords here: “another direction” / “[was] very thoughtful and meditivate” / “[now] we’ve got a more active movie”.

He’s dumbing it down for popcorn action and “emotion”, folks. “Too cerebral” is what the bigwigs in the 1960s said, and in our shallow days, this is even more true.

Sounds good!

Really. An good action-adventure “Star Trek” sounds like a great idea as long as it’s smart – and, in fact, there’s every reason to think that it is.

Because the alternative is, you know, that “Star Trek” is dead.

#3 –

I’ve made this point before, but THE WRATH OF KHAN, inarguably the greatest TREK film, is both action-packed AND thoughtful and meditative. It’s NOT impossible to have it both ways… certainly STAR TREK has pulled it off many times in the past. Nothing to get riled-up about at all.

I am lookign forward to it, one of the most active ST movies was FC and it was, in my opinion second only to WoK….so lets see it!

cuando dejaran de repetir una y otra vez simpre lo mismo, estoy deseando que se estrene la pelicula para dejar de oir una y otra vez las mismas declaraciones de los actores, todo maravilloso, todo genial, sera una sorpresa, esperemos que la sorpresa sea buena

#3 I don’t know…”Wrath of Khan” and “Undiscovered Country” were more “active” than meditative and I those were my favorites of TOS cast movies! Give it a little slack; it’s a year out, and everyone and his little brother wants to rip it to shreds! Wait for it, see it and gosh, who knows…you might even like it.

#5 and #6 – To my mind “TOS”, as it was finally realized after “The Cage”, WAS an action-adventure that was also smart.

However, what the guy is saying is that the new movie will be LESS smart than TOS, yet MORE action-packed. Doesn’t sound like TOS or TWOK to me.

Oh, and “Undiscovered Country” an active movie? Pleeeaaaaase! That gotta be one of the more talky and insightful TOS movies.

I dont think he said it was less smart. Just that it would have more action. More action doent meam less smart. YOu can increase the action and not dumb it down.

#10 –

Cho certainly states that TREK XI wil be “more active,” but where exactly does he state that it’ll be “less smart?” Being more action-packed doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to be “dumb.”

well jj said himself that not all the characters were going to make it through so whos to say that mr sulu and some other crew members will bite the dust .

A la mission:impossible 1 route kill off the crew and make it all about kirk

was there similar buzz like this for m:i 1 back in 96

it would really make for a genuine surprise

“Less Smart:”

Isn’t this “Star Trek XI: Star Trek Babies”? Kirk’s mommy & daddy, Spock’s mommy & daddy, and they’re all meeting new friends in school!

Kirk: “Waaaaah! Spock told on me!”

Spock: “T..tis, umm….l-l-logical? Mommy? Mommy!? Waaaaah!

McCoy: “I have to go weewee!

Scotty: “Does it make a good mix with scotch?”

People need to stop freaking out.

I’m sure there’s gonna be a lot more Alias/MI3-style action and stunts in this movie than we’re accustomed to, but I SERIOUSLY doubt Abrams is making anything as ridiculous and over the top as a Michael Bay might.

It’s still a Star Trek movie in the end, after all.

a one man trek film would be interesting to see though

There’s nothing wrong with some good action. The trick is to provide a reason for the action to take place and not to turn the characters into unrecognizable cartoon people without any depth. Let them be scared, mad or remorseful when appropriate. Also, there must be at least something which is a little “smart” going on, otherwise it’s not Star Trek. The Wrath of Khan and its Genesis Device are a good example of this. Let there be a few “thoughtful and meditative” moments and conversations, just not so many that the masses’ eyes glaze over. Subsequent productions can gently push this envelope and find the sweet spot in the action/adventure-science fiction balance. We want lots of people seeing and enjoying the movie. We also want SF for our own consumption and stuff which will make critics say things like “thought provoking” in their reviews.

Okay, okay I’ll admit it. I don’t know what the M I L F reference was.

Is there anywhere I can look to find what these things mean?

I know a few of them:


but that’s about it. Where can a girl find these things out?


Katie G.
MILF means Mom I’d Love to F–k.

Who says TOS wasn’t exciting and young and athletic?

Katie G!

You just blew me away with that question, sunshine?? However, dont feel bad I dont know what ROTF or BTW means…Can someone help me out?
How do you feel with that answer #21 provided?

I hope JJ pays homage to TOS by having the stuntmen look nothing like the actors, and giving them facetime as well.

With lots of action, it would provide what the ticket-buyers want, and an hilarious *wink* to all of us TOS fans


I am for cerebral Trek but I am open minded to mixed flavors.
By the way, wasn’t “First Contact” an action movie? Still, everyone liked it. And wasn’t TMP criticized for being “The Motionless Picture” (but I liked TMP the most)?
It’s unavoidable for a big blockbuster sci-fi movie to have strong action sequences. This doesn’t imply a dumb flick.

#24. Man, I love those shots! “Space Seed” “Court Martial” and “Wolf in the Fold” are my favorites for those. In WITF, Mr Henghist’s stunt-man is about 20 yrs younger, 40 lbs heavier and a foot taller! Kirk’s stunt double in CM looks like my 9th grade science teacher! Guarantee they won’t do it in the new film (now they can do a “Running Man” and digitally superimpose the actor’s face over the double’s). Too bad. I miss those!


“I think people can expect something that pays homage to the original series but also does something really fresh and exciting and young and athletic”

no one is saying that the original series wasn’t exciting, young or athletic at the time…..but you kinda made the point for me.. “WASN’T” as in past tense.. and this is what the new film is aiming to build upon NOW.. nothing wrong with that.. nothing at all..

# 26


I just watched “Court Martial” on HD DVD for the first time, and I totally noticed those mismatched stuntmen. Hilarious! For some reason I’d never noticed that before!

Katie- I had to ask that question myself a couple days ago!

I have no problem with our next ST film having an action edge – after all, our beloved characters are younger the majority of the time. Always loved the eps where Kirk got his shirt ripped fighting that week’s bad guy.

#23. Batts

“You just blew me away with that question, sunshine?? However, dont feel bad I dont know what ROTF or BTW means…Can someone help me out?”


ROTF means Rolling On The Floor
LOL means Laugh(ing) Out Loud
BTW means By The Way

What else… oh yeah

ROTFLMAO means Rolling On The Floor Laughing My A– Off

I prefer

Rolling On The Floor Laughing My BUTT Off

I improvised and did


Rolling On The Floor Laughing My BIG FAT Butt Off

“How do you feel with that answer #21 provided?”

Regarding MILF? I feel nauseous. Guess that kind of talk makes me uncomfortable.

#29. Denise

Yes, I saw that post you made and the answer was provided but I was hoping it was just someone joking about it. Guess not.

I have seen other shortforms but don’t know if they’re internet-wide or just made up by the posters. This is still fairly new to me.

#28. Trek or Treat

Have you seen the part in “Amok Time” when Kirk and McCoy are talking to T’Pau, debating whether Kirk should fight Spock or not? Spock is supposedly off in the corner with his hands clasped under his chin, deep in the Plaktow (or whatever) but unfortunately, when the cameras were on Shatner and Kelley, you could see Nimoy in the background (through a break in the crowd) just standing there looking bored not realizing that we could see him. No one caught that. Hilarious. Go look for it. Run it by in slow motion and you’ll see. They might cut it out in the remastered set. Hope not.

Okay, everyone., What are some more real shortforms?


Katie, here some more for ya:

AFA: as far as
AFAIK: As far as I know
AFAIC: as far as I’m concerned
STFUP: Shut the [insert F word here] up
IIRC: if I recall correctly
IRL: in real life

The Vulcanista }:-|


Fair enough, but then the “but” in Cho’s sentence is wrong.

the ‘but’ could just be the way he talks… or he is comparing the film to what’s out at the moment.. not star trek…

either way, it’s not really a big deal is it.. it’s a bit petty… it’s just a snippet from one interview..