Leonard Nimoy Talks More About Retirement – Zachary Quinto Responds

Leonard Nimoy came out of retirement to appear in JJ Abrams Star Trek (and Fringe), but now he is ready to exit the acting stage again. In a new interview promoting his appearances this weekend in Canada, the actor talks about his final acting performances. Plus, Star Trek’s new Spock Zachary Quinto comments on Star Trek without Nimoy.



Nimoy – exiting the stage

This weekend Leonard Nimoy will be appearing at the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo, and he is going to kick off the weekend on Friday afternoon at an event in Vulcan, Alberta where they will be unveiling a bust of the actor.

In a new interview with the Toronto Sun promoting his Canadian events, the actor again spoke about his plan to retire again from Star Trek, after recently appearing in the latest Star Trek movie:

I want to get off the stage. Also, I don’t think it would be fair to Zachary Quinto. He’s a terrific actor, he looks the part, and it’s time to give him some space. And I’m very flattered the character will continue.

Nimoy also confirmed that he recently completed work on the JJ Abrams TV show Fringe, and he expects that to be his last work as an actor, saying:

"I’ve been doing this professionally for 60 years,” he says with a laugh. “I love the idea of going out on a positive note. I’ve had a great, great time.”

“I was away from acting for 12 years, so I guess I was seducable. But since J.J. Abrams revived the Star Trek franchise, I felt I owed him something. And I’m glad I did it because he promised me a good story, and it was.

Leonard Nimoy
Leonard Nimoy filming "Fringe" in Vancouver, April 6th
(credit: A. Hermida, Flickr)

Quinto responds to Nimoy’s (re)retirement

Recently Zachary Quinto has said he would try and talk Leonard Nimoy into doing one more Star Trek, but it seems he is now resolved to being the only Spock in the Star Trek sequel.
Last night Zachary Quinto appeared WET Production’s "Stars Give Love" benefit performance in New York, and NBC New York reports the actor said this of Nimoy’s latest comments:

There’s not even a script and Leonard just announced his retirement — he’s not going to do another movie. Frankly, Leonard has got a mind of his own and he’s going to do what he wants regardless of what other people tell him. I’m just glad that he’s my friend.

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Zachary Quinto and Mamie Gummer at ‘Stars Give Love’ event in New York – April 19th (credit: J. Foust, Space Review)

Nimoy’s ‘Victory Lap’

As noted, Leonard Nimoy will be appearing this weekend at e Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo and in Vulcan, Alberta. Mr. Nimoy has already attended a number of cons and events in 2010. He says of this final tour:

I’m so grateful to the fans. I call these kind of experiences a victory lap … It’s like having a family meeting — a family reunion.

Here is a list of upcoming appearances for Mr. Nimoy in 2010:

June 25-27
Official Star Trek Convention – Vancouver, BC

July 29 & 31
Secret Selves Exhibition R. Michelson Galleries & Mass MOCA – Northampton, MA
Book signing & reception (July 29), Opening reception (July 31)
rmichelson.com & massmoca.org

Aug. 5-8
Official Star Trek Convention – Las Vegas, NV

Oct. 22-24
Official Star Trek Convention – Rosemont, IL (Chicago area)

Keep track of Mr. Nimoy on Twitter @therealnimoy

Leonard Nimoy
Leonard Nimoy at Emerald City Comic Con, Seattle WA – March 13th
(credit: Kelita, Flickr)

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I’d love to see him in another Trek, but if the man’s had enough he’s had enough. God knows he’s earned his stripes. :)

hes the man

Mr. Nimoy you are great, your performances have enriched us all

He is an amazing man and an amazing actor. Now he’s taking time to let us know he’s an amazing photographer and author too. A true Renaissance man. We’ve been lucky to have him as an actor for 60 years, and as Spock for 40. He is a gracious, generous person who has handed off the baton to a new generation, and is letting them run with it.

It is sweet that each is being so giving. Instead of Nimoy being ‘dog in the manger’ and saying nobody could do what he did, he is encouraging Quinto to fully inhabit the role. Instead of being insecure or territorial, Quinto has found a friend and a mentor and wanted to find a way to be able to work and spend more time with him.

And we have been graced with two true gentlemen to play the same great role. I hope that Nimoy enjoys his ‘retirement’ (touring for his photography exhibits isn’t exactly puttering around the house and playing shuffleboard), and wish Zachary Quinto many more years playing a now Iconic role that is practically an American institution at this point, and many other roles to come.

Zachary Quinto is not a number! He is a free man! (Is he the new No. 2–of course, Nimoy will ALWAYS be No. 1).

4. Karen Brown

Lets give Spock his due… He played the Character from 1964 – 2009, that is 45 years.

45 years!! Has any other actor played a part in television/movies so long??

well he did have a 12 year break, but the character never died… and he did play it again…

I think what is sad to me is that part of the fondness we have for these characters is that they have been around for so many years. I mean the characters and the actors who have played them.

The new cast did wonderful work but i wonder if it would even be possible to expect these new actors to be reprising these roles 40 years from now.

It would be a nice thought but not sure it is practical.

If it is only three films then that will be nice, more would be gravy.

As i say the fondness we have for these characters comes from years of commitment from Nimoy, Shatner and kelly along with others. I’m sure our gratitude is known.

The longest Running Top Billed Star Trek Actor is of course, Michael Dorn
with 11 full seasons

Pardon my lack of edit button… he did “Die” but that was 28 years ago LoL!

Both very classy men- thanks for the article~

Pardon My lack of a further Edit button…

Dorn has

11 Seasons as Worf
4 movies as Worf
1 movie as Worf, Grandfather of Worf (billed as “Klingon Defence Attourney”

Beat that!

I’m sad, but I have to respect his decision. OTOH, I have just lost my last iota of interest in seeing the sequel.


If seeing the sequel before even knowing the storyline or anything is dependent on 80 year old actors appearing, you won’t be very interested in Nu Trek going forward..

Personally i have been addicted to Trek for 25 years, all trek is trek.

Mr. Nimoy, thank you for everything. Enjoy your retirement!

A staggering achievement. A great career that has enriched us all.

Maybe that’s a wrap.

We will miss you Leonard Nimoy! I saw you in person pre-TMP, back when you were “not Spock”.

Now, about the future Trek. A new movie every three years will not be enough. We need a new “good” TV series… please!

#13 C’mon, Michael Dorn may have the numbers under his belt, but sir, he isn’t in the same league as Nimoy or Shatner. If you are sugesting he is then I’m afraid you are seriously deluded.

God bless him. I’ve always been a fan, and always will be. He’ll be one of those actors who is remembered forever…

19. I was just saying that in the grand scheme of things Nimoy has a pretty short “on screen” run as Spock. I love him, this is just facts.

Truly looking forward to meeting Nimoy this June in Vancouver!!

#13 It seems Mr. Dorn believes in quantity instead of quality. The opposite is true of Mr. Nimoy.

Nimoy’s such a saint about leaving his role to Quinto….

darn it.

Leonard Nimoy what a legend! It would be great to see him in the next film not as a main part but just a few scenes.

#23–hence was also true about most of the producers and showrunners of Trek in the 90s and 2000’s…quantity over quality…and Nimoy on-screen will be missed..

If Mr. Nimoy has had enough I wish him the best of luck,

I wonder if they will explain what happended to Spock Prime? After all he is a rather significant part of the new timeline.

P.S. Lets hope he changes his mind for one last go around.

I love Nimoy, but in Trek 09 I felt his character was out of place. Just like Indiana Jones in Indy 4 was a shadow of himself. It’s time to move on and let the new actors walk on their legs.

True, 45 years. ST is one year older than I am. *laugh* Nimoy has been incredibly supportive, handing over the role.

For the one who won’t see it based solely on Nimoy’s non-participation, to be blunt, the original cast is not immortal. Either the franchise would end, or new cast members have to be found. Simple as that.

I think it would be fantastic if Leonard’s last convention appearance was with all of his surviving co-stars from the original show. That would be one very moving experience.

Is it at all possible to not cap on TNG or it’s producers or stars in most of the articles around here? Somebody mentions the fact that Dorn has been in a lot of Star Trek too, and that is an open invitation to belittle the contributions of the actor, the producers and that portion of the franchise. I didn’t read in the comment that Dorn was the superior Trek actor or had a more important contribution than Nimoy. Just that perhaps he spent a longer time onscreen as his Trek character of Worf than Nimoy did as Spock.

But of course we have identified almost all Trek on TV from the 80’s through to the new movie to be unworthy. Only TOS and TOS-like materials are to be accepted according to a vocal contingent on this site.

Enough already. TOS was a great show. It bore great movies. TNG, DS9, and even Voyager and Enterprise were given to greatness. And ALL of the above had occasion to suck putrid swamp water from time. A little perspective please.

@8: Well, technically the character did die at one point, but he got better… ;) :P

saddening yet understandable, thank you mr nimoy

To go back to the Dorn and Nimoy argument, I agree with 31….. there was no implication that he was better, we were referring to the facts that Dorn is on screen longer than Nimoy…. REGARDLESS: 13 was right.

Moving on: I think it is fascinating (sorry) that the two characters who were in the series the ‘longest’ both in screen time and in years, were the two actors who didn’t want to be in the series after it’s initial run. Nimoy was reluctant from the TMP on, and Dorn was reluctant from the get go after TNG. Many people seem to forget that Dorn took a lot of talking to to get him involved in DS9 and the Three TNG movies that succeeded Generations.

Nimoy is famous (or infamous) for his reluctance to continue with the character Spock so it doesn’t need to be harped on again.

Interesting though…….

Leonard Nimoy: The Brett Favre of STAR TREK.

See you again in 2015 for STAR TREK 3.0: THE RETURN OF SPOCK PRIME!


Actually, he played Spock from 1966 until 2008 when filming wrapped on the reboot. That’s 42 years which can be rounded to 40 for conversation’s sake.

So :p!

# 28. Paulaner

I couldn’t disagee more.

Of coarse the character nor the actor is going to be the same. The actor has aged 45 years and the character has aged 100 plus years.

People and characters get older. We should celebrate that and not simply recast to get rid of a few wrinkles. If Leonard Nimoy wants to play Spock when he is 100 years old I will be first one in line.

Besides, he added so much to the film. Nimoy’s presence gave the film a legitmacy it would never have had without him.

P.S. Harrison Frod back as Indy was the one and only reason to watch that last piece of trash they made.

^7 & 36. “The Cage” was filmed in 1964, but Star Trek (2009) was filmed in 2007-2008, so to be fair, using air/release dates only, it’s 43 years.

Regarding the question of which actor reprised a role over the longest period of time, there may be many candidates, but one of similar iconic stature is Sean Connery as James Bond, tied with Nimoy at 43 years, from Connery’s Bond debut in Dr. No (1962) to his all-new voice performance in the 2005 video game of From Russia With Love.

31. THX-1138 – April 20, 2010

” Is it at all possible to not cap on TNG or it’s producers or stars in most of the articles around here? Somebody mentions the fact that Dorn has been in a lot of Star Trek too, and that is an open invitation to belittle the contributions of the actor”

Well said THX!

Dorn didn’t deserve that diatribe regarding either his quantity or quality of his work. Shatner dished out more than his fair share of cheese in the three TOS seasons. And he would have stayed for more “quantity” if given the chance. In my opinion Dorn is a better actor and is a genuine nice guy in real life.

such bickering is illogical.

Live long and prosper, Mr. Nimoy. I’ve enjoyed your work immensely

The dude’s going to 80 next year and he looks amazing.

#39 Enterprisingguy

Thanks youse.


Well, if he’s in good health when they’re filming the next one, maybe they could talk him into doing a cameo… Then he could say a “good-bye” on screen. Whaddya think, Boborci?


I’ve always felt that Leonard Nimoy understood his character better than any other actor with their’s.

No on screen goodbyes, no big send offs. Remember Generations? Eesh.

With respect to those who reference other trek actors who have done more screen time i will point out that there will never be a demand or a reason to bring those characters back anytime in the future.

I am sure that doing so may appeal to a few but only a few. Not enough to make it doable.

The original characters are unique in that sense,

@7 Bill Roach has played the same character continuously for 50 years in the UK.

If the sequel requires Nimoy’s services I’m sure he will come out of retirement. He would not leave Abrams high and dry if there is something worthwhile left for Spock Prime to accomplish.

I still say he could record a message to ZQ’s Spock to let him know how the new Vulcan colony is doing, or to get him some advice. ifhe doesn’t want to film it, just record the audio. If he doesn’t want to do either, Spock could refer back to a written note from Spock Prime. I can her the dialogue.

Checkov: Keptin! Sensors are peeking up a DY-100 wessel.

Spock: DY-100?! Chekov, lock phasers on vessel and FIRE!

Kirk: Spock, what the hell do you think you’re doing?

Spock: Captain, my older self said that if we were to ever encounter a DY-100 in this part of space, we should “use it for target practice.”

Kirk: Did he say anything else?

Spock: “Believe me. You won’t be sorry.”

*Sigh* I wish I could spell, or type w/o errors…