New Interview Excerpts From Main Trek Cast From SciFiNow and more

Yesterday we had excerpts from JJ Abrams, Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman from the new issue of SciFiNow magazine (#27), going on sale this week in the UK. Today we have excerpts from the cast interviews, including Chris Pine, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Bruce Greenwood and Simon Pegg. We also have some excerpts and links to a couple of other interviews with John Cho and Zachary Quinto.


Actors talk to SciFiNow
In the extensive spread in the new issue of SciFi Now there are quotes and interviews with most of the main Star Trek cast, here are some excerpts.

Chris Pine (Kirk) describes his character:

He’s a kid from Iowa whose father was a famous captain of Starfleet, who’s approached one day by Captain Pike to see if he wants to join Starfleet like his father. His aptitude tests are off the chart and he obviously shows a lot of promise, but hasn’t really been doing anything with his life other than getting in bar fights and drinking too much.

Karl Urban (McCoy) on Bonses’ background in this film (asked about euthanasia scene in Star Trek V):

That’s huge, though not referenced in this film. But his divorce is. He’s immediately coming off the back of that. That was always in the back of my mind as well – the divorce as well as that are two incredibly painful episodes to have had to occur to anybody. At the beginning of this film, when we find McCoy, he is literally running away to join Starfleet. At the same time, he has this incomprehensible fear of space flight and space itself. You know, Alex and Robert wrote the most amazing dialogue for me. Lines like, “Space is full of disease and danger wrapped in darkness and silence” – that, to an actor, is just gold.

Simon Pegg (Scotty) on canon

It’s only a small amount of people, but there’s this sort of preemptive rejection of the film that’s gone on, because it’s somehow perceived as sacrilegious. Yet its credentials are enormously encouraging: from Paramount, Leonard Nimoy is in it, and it’s made by someone who completely gets the spirit and point of the show. The whole notion of it being non canon is ridiculous. The fact that Leonard Nimoy is in it as older Spock does hint in some respect that it can’t be anything but canon, because if it isn’t, he wouldn’t exist.

Bruce Greenwood (Pike) on the difference between his and the original Pike:

I think the fundamental difference between the Hunter Pike and the Greenwood Pike is that our dilemmas are different. Hunter’s being that he was terribly ambivalent about his place in the Federation; he was torn by whether or not he wanted to go back and have a smaller life or that of a commander. My Pike doesn’t have an internal wrestling match the way the earlier one did, but he does have second thoughts and misgivings about the way Starfleet is training officers as by-the-book products that may not, at the end of the day, be what’s required for a great leader. So he keeps his eye out for that kind of special young man and as it happens, Kirk seems to fill that bill.

Zoe Saldana (Uhura) describes her character:

Actually there’s an androgynous essence to Uhura. Even though she’s very beautiful and her feminine presence is obvious, there’s this energy and leadership to her that sort of gives you that feeling that her sex appeal is probably observed and admired by the audience, but her coworkers just acknowledge her energy and authority. And I love that. She’s in charge of so many things and she has so much control of herself, her emotions and she is considered capable enough to run the linguistics department on her own, and I just find that amazing.

Much more in new issue of SciFiNow + giveaway promotions
There is much more from these actors and others (as well as JJ Abrams and other Star Trek filmmakers) in the new issue of SciFiNow. There is also a DVD giveaway and other Star Trek promo giveaways in the issue. For more on the magazine, visit

Cover of May issue of SciFiNow

More Interviews: Cho & Quinto

John Cho (Sulu). Australian film site CineFools has posted an interview with John Cho. Here is an excerpt of what it was like for the Harold and Kumar star to jump from comedy to action:

It was fun . I liked jumping around from genre to genre when I can and sometimes when you do a drama it’s great to do a comedy to clean the palate and goof off for a while and vice versa. It helps. Even when I am doing some serious stuff sometimes I look for a way to make a joke in a scene cause people make jokes in life sometimes in dramatic situations because it relieves the tension . People do that . So my comedy sensibilities sometimes help out in dramatic roles and vice versa and doing comedy I like to think of it as a drama because generally comedy is about people that are having awful, dangerous things happening to them and it’s funny. As a character you have to play it like it’s life or death. So it’s funny how one feeds off the other.

Zachary Quinto (Spock). Star Trek’s new Vulcan has an interview in the May issue of Playboy magazine. There is an excerpt from this online at, here is Quinto’s thoughts on Trekkies reactions to his performance as young Spock:

I don’t want to sound callous if I say I don’t care, but I don’t care. [laughs] I feel I brought the character as much heart and respect for Leonard Nimoy and the journey of the franchise as I could. I’ve done it with regard for them, and that’s all I can do.”


Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

I have to say, Quinto makes it work. He really does. At no point in the movie do you ever think anything other than ”That’s Mr Spock!”. He’s not an impersonator or a caricature or even a replacement. He’s just Spock. End of.

@ 1
Thank you for actually adding something of value, an opinion, to the discussion and not going down the usual path of “FIRST! DURR”

I actually like Quinto’s quote above. He only really cares about what Nimoy thought of his performance. He probably thinks that if it’s good enough for him, it should be good enough for us. I don’t think he’s dissing the movie going audience or Trek fans, just saying it like it is. Nimoy would be the best critic of Quinto’s work.


These actors clearly have a lot of passion to give to the Star Trek universe. I’m counting the days…

The interviews are really good – I got the magazine today. I’m not sure if the DVD was worth it, nothing we haven’t seen before. There’s nothing exclusive, unless I can’t find it…

Looks like Bruce Greenwood watched “The Cage.” Good on him.

(Naturally, one wouldn’t expect Greenwood to draw anything useful from Pike’s performance by Sean Kenney in “Menagerie.”)

This movie is going to be good. Simon Pegg convinced me.

Oooh tetchy Mr Spock. And Who is this Sulu guy trying to be? Shatner?

#6 “Naturally, one wouldn’t expect Greenwood to draw anything useful from Pike’s performance by Sean Kenney”

At least, not until he’s bombarded by delta rays…

Good for Quinto! If actors spent too much time focusing on what the audience ‘wants’ from them, they’d have no time to actually deliver a fine performance.

You go Zach!

But does McCoy still have a daughter?

Atta be, Zach! If Leonard Nimoy thinks it’s good, than who cares what anyone else thinks? Nimoy has great taste. Anyone remember Generations?

I was glad they mentioned Bones’ divorce. Another bit of backstory (like Kirk’s parents) that had been written about, but never before shown onscreen. And good for Urban for keeping the death of McCoy’s dad in mind, too! See, Closet, I told you TFF was good for something…

Karl Urban = Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy

All are good comments, but Urban’s stands out for me: It’s like he devoured the role with great relish-you can see it just in the previews.

Is it me, or does Pine inject a little James Dean into young Kirk’s character? I’d like to think that this will be the origin of the impish grin that Shatner/Kirk gives from time to time….

(If someone could CGI a young Shat a-la twilight zone era and do a voice over for the Uhura bar scene, I’d pay money for that!!!!!!!

“So….you’re a…….cadet, you’re studying…….what’s……your focus?”

I really look forward to the character development of Uhura, Sulu and Chekhov-you got little tidbits in TOS and the Movies, but they were largely in the background. It looks like they are going to ‘step up’ a bit.

Greenwood as the “father-figure” and mentor (stands to reason that he’s a bit older than his alternate-universe counterpart) I really look foward to that.

got the 4-in-1 comic series from Amazon-let me say that I am NOT a comic book fan, but I was impressed; it was very nicely done (would have made a fantastic animated movie!) Orci & Kuzman did their homework on the TNG background, I can’t imagine that they would not be equally diligent for the movie. I think a lot of nay-sayers will pleasantly surprised.

I can’t wait. . . . .

#15 … Agreed. Of all the principal cast, I felt he did the best job. Pegg was wonderful too, but his role is very small. There’s always the sequel.

Mr. Pegg, I respect you and your opinions. However, some of us haven’t just preemptively rejected the film. I do disagree with the creative decision that was made that took out a majority of Kirk’s backstory (namely Tarsus IV). From a creative standpoint, I thought that was the most interesting of all the Star Trek characters backstories, period.

Whenever you read snippets like these, as a Star Trek fan, you run the risk of being insulted. And it’s happened again; never mind. And what’s this about Uhura, a Communications Officer, having ‘leadership’ and ‘authority’? Let’s not forget who’s Captain of the big E…

15 – Urban is wonderful as Bones. But I really think the whole movie is perfectly cast from top to tail. Every recast is a great fit. They just ARE the characters. The people we already know. You don’t question it. The casting director did a magnificent job. IMHO, of course.

-I’ll gladly do the voice over if someone else does the CGI.

: )

18 – I always thought ‘The Conscience of the King’ was kind of lame myself. Oddly, it took Shatner’s book ‘Collision Course’ for me to find the ‘Kodos the Executioner’ stuff in anyway compelling. I wouldn’t miss it, were it gone. But, I don’t see any reason why the events described in that episode can’t happen off screen, between scenes in the movie. No reason at all..

19 – Uhura has authority because she’s an officer and a specialist. She needs it. She has it. Wonderful Nichelle Nichols had it back in the day. Remember the Mr Adventure scene in ‘The Search for Spock’? Or her standing up to Khan in ‘Space Seed’? Or even BEM or ‘The Lorelei Signal’?

#18 Got proof Tarsus doesn’t happen at all in the JJ-verse? We didn’t know about it during TOS *until* “The Conscience of the King”, the 13th episode. Did Kirk somehow suffer because we didn’t know about it through the first 12 episodes?

Unless something definitively removes a known element of “canon”, there’s no reason not to keep them in some form or fashion. I’m willing to wait and see what O&K&L dream up for the two sequels. After having introduced the major players, there’s now room to introduce Carol Marcus, or Gary Mitchell… perhaps they will.

If it turns out that instead of losing his father on Tarsus (which has been a long-held assumption), he lost his father 13 years earlier to that on Nero’s attack on the Kelvin, at the end of the day, George Kirk remains dead.

“Whenever you read snippets like these, as a Star Trek fan, you run the risk of being insulted. And it’s happened again; never mind.”

There is a contingent of Star Trek fans who seem to spend their entire waking lives looking for opportunities to be insulted. It must take a great deal of energy; it certainly wastes a great deal.

“”And what’s this about Uhura, a Communications Officer, having ‘leadership’ and ‘authority’? Let’s not forget who’s Captain of the big E…””

Uhura is an officer. Therefore, she possesses, by definition, the authority of her rank and the leadership over those below her. And I believe, if you look up the words “leadership” and “authority” in a dictionary, nowhere will you find that those words apply only to the captain of a ship. However, you did manage to find here another wholly spurious opportunity to be insulted. Allow me to be the first to congratulate you.

A lot of what happens in the film sticks to Trek history ,
It just unfolds differently .
the tragic events are still there,
just told in a different way.
And like you,
I am not entirely certain we wont here about Tarsus down the road.
I have faith in the writers.
Well said .

These are a list of things from TOS I would love to see in sequels:

Tarsus IV massacre (from ep “Conscience of the King”) a la Schindler’s List
“Obession” creature (from ep “Obsession”) a la Alien
Attack on Cestus III (from ep “Arena”) a la Saving Private Ryan
Talos IV (ep “The Cage” WNMHGB”) think of the possibilities for a movie where an alien race can make you live through any dream…or nightmare.
Ryjak (ep “Wolf in the Fold”) I always wanted to see Trek deal with the supernatural.

Zoe is quoted without (deleted?) F-bombs here. She may be portraying a linguist, but she certainly demonstrated a lack of same in her Esquire feature. Not an endearing quality.

#19 “Whenever you read snippets like these, as a Star Trek fan, you run the risk of being insulted”

Insulted? I love this guys for bringing Trek back from the grave. I feel cosy, warm and excited, not insulted.


John, I see you passion for Trek history, but what about something new? :)

I think Karl Urban will be the best of these new versions

but to me Doctor McCoy is always going to be DeForest Kelly

I am scared the new kids will forget or be ignorant of the originals.

I don’t want them to be because the originals will always be the better ones. No disrespect to the new actors as I know they will do good but I feel concerned that the newbies will get to see the originals the way we grew up watching them.

Was watching Star Trek III: The Search For Spock tonight and that crew had great chemistry.

The scene with McCoy’s Dad and Spock’s birth and Kirk’s rejection of Sybok’s offer to take his pain is the best scene in The Final Frontier

I haven’t rejected the film. By their own admission the people in charge have put us on notice: These are not the character from TOS. They are characters that use the same names and have some similar qualities. This story and subsequent stories take place in a different “universe.” If you’re cool with that, fine. If not, well . . . .


A linguist using language. Yes, I can see how you could find that shocking.

I seriously think that my favorite character, Dr. McCoy, is going to be played BRILLIANTLY by Urban…he seems so enthusiastic, like he absolutely is allowing himself to be wrapped in his character…based on the short clip of his first meeting with Kirk, he’s got the accent down, the attitude…I mean, they catch him hiding out in the bathroom because there are no windows!!! The first lines that lept out were “I don’t need a doctor, I AM a doctor!” and “Don’t pander to me, kid!” Pure Bones!!

That being said, I’m a little bit dissapointed with Pine’s sounded like he was basically reading the back jacket of the novelization: “Cocky Iowa farm boy, etc etc…” But honestly, Kirk’s character has never really been explored in depth…In essence, during TOS Kirk was basically William Shatner chewing the scenery and hamming it up, and by the time the movies came around it was Kirk facing middle age, so I guess that I really don’t have anything to gauge Pine’s performance off of…it will be very interesting so see where Kirk has come from, since so much of his previous portrails leave his M.O. veiled behind his cocky, outgoing persona

Still, sounds like these actors are taking this seriously, and I am so happy…it isnt just a paycheck for them, it sounds like they had a blast filming this, that they are proud of the final product, and that they really tried hard to make a decent film…Kudos to the crew!!

Quinto is the only actor in this I have trouble with. I haven’t seen the movie, only the trailers and ads, so I hope Jim Smith @1 is right about Quinto and that he does a better job than we’ve seen so far in the promotion and marketing.

I’m not a fan of his work in ‘Heroes’ at all (though I stopped watching that show toward the end of the first season), but interviews, Quinto at least says all the right things and seems to have his heart in the right place, so I’ll give him a chance.

Spock/Nimoy was always the heart and soul of Star Trek…

Thinking about what I posted, I didnt mean to insinuate that Kirk was a shallow character by the way, what I mean is that as the C.O. of his ship, its an unspoken rule that he is more reserved and private than his subordinates…In any command situation, the man (or woman) at the top needs to give off the veneer of being in control at all times for the sake or morale, so I what I really mean is that it would be expected for his subordinate officers to be open to him with their own problems, but in order to maintain authority Kirk needs to be reserved…in a way, he’s like Picard…deeply private, but behind the facade of the capable commander there’s a hint of pain that I hope is explored in this film

#27: “Zoe is quoted without (deleted?) F-bombs here. She may be portraying a linguist, but she certainly demonstrated a lack of same in her Esquire feature. Not an endearing quality.”

Allen Funt is somewhere around here, isn’t he?

24 24 24. bravo!

Sometimes im ashamed to be a trekkie when i see my fellow friends always complaining on what is supposed to be very exciting. I really dont understand, star trek was dead since enterprise and nemesis even before that , it was living on artificial life . Its back with even more fun and budget, enough to piss off star wars fans.( i hope it will) The thing i like, is that its not only going to be the most thrilling star trek movie ever but for once a good movie period. Good photography , acting, effects, and directing. If people are still not satisfied they could always go back watching old carboard sets repeat’s with the enterprise attached to a string.

“The creative decision that was made that took out a majority of Kirk’s backstory (namely Tarsus IV).”

That would be unfortunate if this part of his back-story was destroyed. I always thought of it as a defining moment in his life. But that doesn’t detract from my interest in this story!

These interviews are fantastic. I’m really looking forward to seeing Urban’s McCoy.

I’m glad that McCoy’s divorce is in his backstory. It’s a great bit of non-official cannon. Nice to see it buttoned up. What about Joanna?

#39 “Sometimes im ashamed to be a trekkie when i see my fellow friends always complaining on what is supposed to be very exciting…..If people are still not satisfied they could always go back watching old carboard sets repeat’s with the enterprise attached to a string.”

..really? Well you know what I hate? Uninformed opinions passed off as if they were fact by uninformed fans trying to be clever. TOS never had any “cardboard” sets and the Enterprise was 12 feet long and mounted on a stand.

I understand your position, and I’m all for the new movie, but please get your facts straight if you want to get your point across.

36 – I’ve only ever seen her HEROES pilot and I don’t recall if Quinto’s character was in it or not. I came to this knowing nothing about Quinto at all but a lot about Spock and found, I think, just Spock himself on the screen. The boy who plays the pre-teen Spock is also excellent. So with Nimoy also on duty that’s three excellent Spocks for the price of one.

#42 : I think you should look up “hyperbole”. It’s a valid rhetoric device. And yeah, the Enterprise model was 12 feet long (one of them was, there were two) and the camera moved past the model rather than the other way around (the same way they did Star Wars) but it was still basically a piece of plastic that looked like a piece of plastic. We didn’t mind it (then or now) because it was all we had. BUT $150 million buys you a really nice ILM Enterprise…

For the sake of visual unity between interior and exterior shots, the new 1701 should, in fact, look like smooth white plastic. Just very expensive and high-tech plastic.

I’m a HUGE fan of Bruce Greenwood, and I like his comments on the Cpt. Pike character. For me Greenwood is still *the* casting gem of the whole film.

#44 “,,,, it was still basically a piece of plastic that looked like a piece of plastic.”

Buzzzz. Wrong answer. It was basically wood that didn’t look like wood. And, again…I get the idea of slamming the past efforts or “admiring” them with backhanded compliments to try and present the modern efforts in a better light, but please try and know what you’re talking about if you’re going to toss about “factual”statements like the one I quoted.

btw, the smaller one was made of wood as well…in case you’re wondering.

And for the record, aside from the large bulbous nacelles, I like JJ’s new ship. What I don’t like is uninformed people using uninformed opinions to try and present the original model in a negative manner.

Simon Pegg really needs to stop worrying about what the old fans think unless he wants his career to go the way of most of the cast of TOS, TNG, DS9, VOY & ENT.

Also he’s wrong … if TrekMovie is any indication, most of the fans have accepted being eased into the reboot and seem to be very enthusiastic about the new movie, canon or no.

He’s also wrong about what Leonard Nimoy represents in the movie. The issue of “Canon” with a big “C” representing official back-story produced by Paramount and it’s subsequent spawn is not in question. Whatever is presented on screen IS Canon. The point Pegg is missing (and why most actors should keep their mouths shut most of the time), is not whether Canon exists, but whether “canon” with a small “c” representing everything that has been established prior to the start of this movie, exists anymore in the new franchise. Whether Leonard Nimoy’s character of “prime” Spock exists or not has nothing to do with whether they honor canon from the prime universe in this alternate universe. What is OBVIOUS is that the producers are NOT honoring established canon as the franchise moves forward, but rather redefining Canon for the franchise. And THAT is the problem some of the original fans are having with the movie – the fact that it has been RE-BOOTED and not simply updated, picking and choosing the trivial bits of canon that serve their new vision without getting in the way of the major changes they have made to canon. The Paramount/Abrams conspiracy to “ease” the old fans into the new idea most likely backfired for this now seemingly minority group. But all of that is irrelevant now with less than 3 weeks to go and the blockbuster locomotive is barreling its way down the tracks to be one of the biggest hits of all time, solidifying not only Star Trek as a major new franchise, but confirming Abrams self-righteous vision that he was right all along and entitling him to continue to re-invent the Trek universe leaving canon ever further in the dusty past and rendering it meaningless for a new generation of fans.

So Simon, just let it die, you are only making things worse with comments like that which show that you do not understand the first thing about it and seemingly do not care to those fans you seek to placate

#48 “Simon Pegg really needs to stop worrying about what the old fans think unless he wants his career to go the way of most of the cast of TOS, TNG, DS9, VOY & ENT.”

Pegg hasn’t a thing to worry about regarding his career.

… to the last poster … while I agree that for the most part the producers and even the backers of this movie could care less about the views and opinions of people who in the 1960’s, 1970’s 1980’s and 1990’s have poured BILLIONS of dollars into the Star Trek Franchise. After all, that well has run dry, and those supporters have fled the coup. Well, truth is Star Trek somewhere between Voyager and Enterprise fled the coup, and drive Star Trek into the ground.

Today’s producers and backers seek a new “target demographic” is today’s 15-25 year old crowd), it’s important to the old people in charge of marketing this film (to include “releases” to this site) to have people believe that there is still respect for the original, even if it turns out to be no more true than other “remake” efforts like Bewitched, Lost in Space, Bionic Woman, etc.

I’ve heard it both ways – that this is NOT a reset, and that it IS. I happen to believe that it is, only because of the Chekov dilemna. But you might notice that even in all of the marketing efforts – the differences between the “real” Star Trek ship and this movie version are mimimized – all of the angles on the cereal boxes of the ship or the people feature angles that diminish the incredible differences between the old and new ways of seeing things. They hope not to need the old fans drawn in because of the Star Trek name, and they hope this movie is likewise attractive to a new generation by the merits of its own stand-alone look. I suppose at this point I can’t criticize the effort to get the crowd into the threatre. It’s what we’ll find there that will be worth criticizing – or not. In every way so far I have nothing to say but good about the movie per people who have seen everything from greenscreen dailies to early edit constructions, and I think even Nimoy is over-analyzing this movie, comparing it to some rise of the Messiah to stand tall in leadership over wanting and hopeless masses, and politicizing it by saying he was so disappointed the movie didn’t get into screens before Obama got into Office, because he sees some parallel. I think all of these actors are overanalizing all of this – all these years later they’re talking about work in front of a green screen that took place 2 years ago for less than a month.