Nichelle Nichols On ST09: Feels ‘Honored’ By Abrams and Saldana

This weekend is the annual TrekFest in Riverside Iowa (the futre childhood home of James T. Kirk). On hand will be stars of the classic Star Trek, Nichelle Nichols, Walter Koenig, and George Takei. Nichols has a new interview promoting the event, where she talks about her career and what she thinks of the new Star Trek movie.

 
Nichols seen New Star Trek twice
Nichelle Nichols, the original Uhura, tells the Iowa Gazette that she has seen JJ Abrams Star Trek twice and plans to see it ‘two or three more times.’ Nichelle is particularly impressed with Zoe Saldana. From the article:

“When I see her come on, that’s me and I’m living it,” she says. “A little ways into the movie I realized she had taken to heart what I said and became more reserved and tighter. I’m so proud of her. She took a role that was established and gave it life.

“Now I know who I was before I got on that ship for that first mission. It’s so exciting for me and rewarding.

“J.J. and she did me honor,” Nichols says. “J.J. with his casting did all his characters honor. It’s so nice to see Spock back in the future.”

As for if there is any Star Trek in her future, the actress notes that she does not know what will happen next, especially with all the secrecy, but also notes that "Star Trek is not my full career."

More from Nichelle at gazetteonline.com

TrekFest 25
This week is the 25th TrekFest in Riverside, Iowa. The event is part Star Trek convention, part town fare. The events kicked off today, with the Star Trek celebrities showing up tomorrow, along with the town’s famous parade. More information at trekfest.com.

 

More from Nichelle on ST09
And in case you missed it before, here is a video of Nichelle talking about the new Star Trek movie at a special screening for the film in May.

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Rhett Coates

Nichelle is a Class Act. Period. And I have to agree with her: Zoe did the role PROUD. Live Long And Prosper, Nichelle and Zoe!

Nichelle Nichols aged really gracefully~

scifib5st

What agreat and classy lady!!!!!!!

Millennium Vulcan

I always felt that Uhura was one the least developed main characters in all of Trek.

No disrespect to Ms. Nichols opinion, but I felt Saldana’s interpretation of Uhura was unrecognizable from hers. Maybe for the better.

Cool-
RIP Michael Jackson : (

ElwoodJD

One word: classy

Also, she is looking even better now than when she did the fan dance :)

Ms. Nichols is so amazing :) the new Uhura was alright, but there’s no comparison.

Bart

JJ absolutely did honor Nichols with his casting of Zoe Saldana. She, like every other actor absolutely became those characters. I never thought I’d be able to accept other actors in those roles, but for me, it was effortless.

I thought Saldana was so strong, bringing an additional depth to Uhura that were weren’t able to see before. The scene in the turbolift with Spock was so brilliantly played by both actors. It’s one of the highlights of the whole movie for me. Such a great moment for Saldana. I know Nichols had to be very proud right there.

Sehlat Whisperer

I loved both. I feel like Zoe was much more outgoing and sassy than Nichelle, but like I said, they are both incredible, and love Uhura both ways!!!!

Phasers On Stun

I couldn’t agree more with Nichelle. I think Saldana did a wonderful job with the character. The scenes with Spock were wonderful to see as well as the interaction with Kirk and crew.

Again I think some folks keep forgetting this is the beginning. We don’t just pop out of the womb with a 30 to 40 year old personality. The fun part will be to see how the events to come will shape their characters. Will Uhura become softer over time, a quiet force? Will she become more of an overachiever to compete with the guys? What direction will this character as well as the others take? We will have to patiently wait and see.

I agree that Zoe’s performance was both respectful and at the same time invigorating. Saldana brought a sense of grace and control to her performance, both of which were essential to establishing continuity with Nichols’ original.

And amen to everyone who has said (or who will ever say) that Nichelle Nichols is a class act. There’s no better way to put it; she’s as gracious and fine a soul as I’ve ever encountered, and extremely patient and giving with her time around fans.

Nichols is pure class and always has been.

Brett Campbell

I thought I’d be original and say what a class act Nichelle Nichols is. ;-)

But I see, thankfully, that a dozen other posters have already beaten me to it, and I am sure that dozens more will follow.

It’s amazing how graciously the stars of TOS have given their blessings to these new young performers in stepping into these iconic roles.

God bless all of you for doing so, and you will all always be the original and beloved crew of the Enterprise.

I was going to say what a class act NN is.

Then I read the first twelve comments. So I was going to second everyone and complain about how you all beat me to it.

Then I read #13.

Curse you, #13. I second you, #13.

Brett Campbell

14 – I was born on a Friday the 13th! I am already cursed! ;-)

And bless you all the same, sir!

There can’t be too many kind things said about this wonderful woman!

Jim Nightshade

I remember during the 40th Anniv. Trek Con in Vegas, she was on stage with Takei and Koenig and she gave an impassioned speech about our current freedoms and fear mongering from the government-Some conservative guy stood up and shouted out that he disagreed and she was rather upset and walked offstage for about five minutes, but we were happy she came back. The three ended up singing God Bless America.
Later during the Photo Op shoot, Sheri and I got our pics taken with the three of them and I thanked Nichelle for speaking out and caring and told her that we all(the fans) loved her. She turned to me and said thank you and she was very warm and gracious for the 30 seconds we got to be with them to have our picture taken with them….
Nuff Said..A very beautiful and gracious caring lady at any age. I also recently got her hardcover Saturna sequel signed by her from Renegade Studios….and she was great in that Disney comedy too, Snow Dogs I think it was! Thanks Nichelle for all that you are and do and thanks to Zoe for picking up the mantle for a new generation….and some of us old too heheh

Jim Nightshade

Well RIP Michael Jackson—Guess the rumor about him taking over the Star Trek The Experience space for doing concerts for Las Vegas Hilton was either not true or can’t come true now…

For all his problems he was a very talented musical artist…Captain Eo at Disneyland was one of the first really cool 3d movies too…

and also Rest in Peace Farah Fawcett—I will always remember her in one of my fave scifi movies of all time LOGANS RUN she had a small but fun part for her….

rm10019

17 wow, that was pretty random and OT.

Thanks to Nichelle for over 40 years of great Trek! You are beautiful.

Jordan

Whew… I thought this was a post saying she died too when I saw the picture first.

JonWes

Ugh, do people have to bring up Michael Jackson’s death EVERYWHERE? Yeah, we know.

Anyway, Nichelle Nichols is pretty cool. You know, all of the cast has seemed very gracious in the face of something that, to be frank, I would have thought would have been very hard for them. I mean, it’s kind of like being dumped for someone younger. But I guess it’s been long enough it might be easier for them now. In any case, even if they are secretly fuming they’ve all been very nice in public and that is… dare I say it… classy. :)

SChaos1701

Very classy.

Cyberghost

Still beautiful inside and out. Had the pleasure of meeting her on several occasions, what a class act.

Jefferies Tuber

She’s extremely beautiful in person, especially with her striking white hair. I’m glad he gave Saldana the full attaboy.

Spockish

Nichelle has done humanity proud, in her works of Star Trek, proving that the stereo types of her race were just that stereo types made of BS. I have always viewed people as people it did not matter on the color they were painted, it was how their brain preformed that matters.

In history I hope she is given recognition for her efforts in correcting wrong miss-beliefs that many narrow minded and closed minded wrongly viewed and preached.

As for the original persona’s of Star Trek praising the newbies, I see it as this. As then new people carry on the persona’s that they created, so indirectly they will be remembered through history.

One question I did not see anything about her part in Hero’s, if there was I missed it, and I blame my cat that wants attention, she already jumped up on my computer desk this afternoon to give me her new toy, a poor blue jay bird in her mouth. Hope I got all the feathers out of my keyboard.

What a beautiful and classy lady. It was with great interest I read this, as only a day or so ago I posted another lengthy entry on her with an article from a 1980 Starlog. She has aged so gracefully and still looks so good.

Shadowcat

I have always admired Nichelle Nichols. Lt. Uhura was my role model as a little Black girl growing up in Ohio. There were very few Black women on TV at that time (1960’s). I even dressed up like her for Halloween one year. I became interested in science and space because of Lt. Uhura and Star Trek. Zoe just brought a new dimension to Uhura’s character. JJ Abrams did a fantastic job of casting. I hope a new generation of little Black girls (and girls of other races too) all over the world grow up seeing such a positive and uplifting role model. My teenage neices love Nichelle and Zoe. Both Nichelle and Zoe are beautiful, strong, and yes classy women.

Gul B.

As most of you already said: Nichelle is a really graceful, classy lady. Good to hear from her.

I wish JJ would give her a small role in the next movie (if she wants to) – but not as Uhura Prime or Zoe’s mother or grandmother (even if Nichelle would look great in an African dress), but maybe as an alien Empress or as T’Pau.

I’m glad she approves of Zoe’s performance, which I liked very much – even if she’s still “the girl” among the main cast. :(
More ladies, good or bad, in the following movies, please!

Mike Ten

#27 That’s a good idea.Not only could you have Ms Nichols play another character but this is how they could have gotten Mr. Shatner in the movie.
Put alittle alien makeup on and Ms. Nichols or Mr. Shatner could be a admiral or President of the Federation.

Gul B.

Shatner could play Harry Mudd: KIIIIIIIIRKKK!

#8: You’re so right, the turbolift scene is one of my favorite moments in the movie. Just a wonderful, touching scene. Nichelle Nichols is indeed a classy lady, and Zoe did her proud with an amazing performance.

Capt Mike of the Terran Empire

Nichelle is one class act. Vey gracious and very nice.

JeFF

I love Nichelle Nichols! She is stunning and classy!

Lt. Bailey

What a wonderful person she is. Having met her at the LV convention last year was great and she treated all her fans so graciously. The stars of today can take some lessons from her. She always wore that red uniform with class.