Anton Yelchin Talks Prep For Star Trek Sequel & Opines On Benicio Del Toro

yelchinAnton Yelchin has been out promoting his new indie film Like Crazy, but of course he has also been getting some questions about Star Trek. Star Trek’s new Chekov explains how he is preparing to return to the role and even opines on the possibility of Benicio Del Toro as the villain. Details below.


Anton Talks Prep For Star Trek Sequel & Opines On Benicio Del Toro

Speaking to IFC, Yelchin said that he still doesn’t know anything about the Star Trek sequel which starts production in a couple of months:

I’ve been told that at a certain point I will actually read a draft. That’s what happened last time: I went into J.J.’s office and I read a script, but I had to leave it there. So I’ll probably read a draft and then in a couple weeks they’ll send me, like, some top secret draft that I bring to set but it stays in the trailer and doesn’t leave [laughs].

But the lack of holding a script isn’t stopping the young actor from getting ready. He says he has other material to hold him over, noting:

I’m going to go back and watch the old show and movies again. I’ll dig out my old script and go through my notes on the character from that. And also, weirdly enough, I’ll rewatch ‘Star Trek’ and watch my own performance to make sure basically I’m moving the same way. I’m sure there’s things I’ve forgotten. I still have my ‘Star Trek Encyclopedia’ on my desk. I’m gonna whip that out and start reading up on things.

Regarding reports of Benicio Del Toro being in talks for the villain for the film,  Yelchin is also out of the loop, but did say he is enthusiastic about the idea:

"I think I’ll probably know when I get to work and he’s either there or not," he joked, before adding that Del Toro would be an "amazing" choice for the part. "Just the thought of him being in the film is very exciting," he said.

Anton Yelchin in "Star Trek"

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I thought he was great in the last movie. Him and Karl Urban are easily my favourites in the new cast.

This Effen Cucumber Vodka ad at the top of this screen that forces itself on you when you try to click elsewhere is effin’ obnoxious.

Any actor that keeps a copy of the Star Trek Encyclopedia gets high marks from me!

I like this kid. His Chekov is probably the widest NuTrek departure from the TOS characters, but I dig the energy he puts into it. Give him a “Russian inwention” line or two, and a skirt to chase, and I think I’ll be totally convinced.

BTW, speaking of skirts, maybe we can have shoulder tabs a la TMP for the women’s skant uniforms without sleeves (or sleeve marks). These women are highly trained professionals–you should be able to tell them apart from the 18-year-old, fresh-out-of-high-school enlistee.

All I am seeing are ads for Vodafone and holiday packages for Sydney, Australia. Cucumber vodka – I guess so. I had thought that vodka is derived from potatoes, but I could be wrong here.

Gosh, Bob and co. – give these guys a script already, a heads-up. It’s bad enough we don’t know what’s going to happen (we don’t need to), but these are the ACTORS for goodness sake!

I like him, too. He makes a good Chekov. Totaly different, but the same. ;)

Loved his Chekov. And he’s preparing with the ST encyclopedia? Wow.

The only issue I had with his Chekov was the hair. Granted, Koenig was specifically made to look like Davy Jones in the show to attract the young ladies. It just seemed a little odd to me at first. But Anton does a great Chekov!

#4 – Doubt that’s gonna happen. Furthermore, I have to admit, those male chauvanist pigs who say that the rank indication is on their underwear are sickening.

I liked the new Chekov, too. I think if Star Trek debuted on TV today, Anton Yelchin would become a teen idol, more than Mr. Koenig did, who seems to have attracted more tweens than teens (to his mild chagrin.) I asked a 20 something young doctor, who had never seen Star Trek before, which character she liked the best, and she was just ga ga over Chekov. She thought he was just adorable.

Even though I like the new Chekov somewhat better than the original, there are aspects of the original character which are kind of interesting. I would not have known about them unless I had read Mr. Koenig’s memoirs especially “Chekov’s Enterprise.” He was the only person in the history of Star Trek to keep a diary and this was his record of the making of ST:TMP.
(It’s actually a great read almost from a fan’s point of view.)

It brings to light some subtleties to Chekov. For example, Mr. Koenig looked up to Mr. Shatner to a degree which surprised even him. When asked to assume the captain’s chair in the film, he found himself mirroring some of Shatner’s hand movements and the actor realized that Chekov idolizes the Captain (the bravado, womanizing, etc.) I somehow can’t see Mr. Yelchin as a womanizer, though. Maybe a little bit of a lost boy. Yeoman Rand might have a soft spot for such a lost boy.

Mr. Koenig also writes about his discomfort and suspicion regarding his coworker Leonard Nimoy. The relationship between the two was so paranoid, that even Nimoy wrote about it. We see a little of this in TOS, where Chekov makes a “little joke” and Spock says “very little, Ensign.”
But I don’t think it’s personal, Spock always ragged whoever sat in the navigator’s chair.

Hopefully, this Chekov will continue to retain his grace under pressure and resist the urge to scream.

#6: “I like him, too. He makes a good Chekov. Totaly different, but the same. ;)”

if you are referring to him being a more believable russian, i would agree. it helps that he actually is russian and was born there.

he’s a great young actor!

He said Del Toro would be an “Amazing Choice”for the part?!…does he already know what the part is????
As far as his performance…loved it!….. #1 ..I agree….Yelchin and Karl Urban were my favorites as well.
He played off of Walter Koenig’s Chekov well…..that hair though??!!

I loved Anton as Chekov,I thought he was cute,funny,can’t wait to see him and everybody else agin! :)

Plot a course to awesome. He did a great job in Trek ’09.

#12 agreed about the hair, I think the fact that there is no physical resemblance to Koenig whatsoever is the reason why a lot of people have trouble reconciling the 2 interpretations of the character. Unfortunately for Mr Yelchin, I suspect he is one of those people who can’t do anything with his hair! I really liked the way he modelled his accent on Koenig and didn’t go for a more authentic Russian like Pegg did with his Scottish. As much as I enjoyed his performance as Scotty it was him I that had the biggest problem with in terms of accepting he was the same character from TOS.

The child prodigy aspect to the character was new but it made sense and I totally bought into him as Chekov. I recall Bob Orci discussing Uhura on here and how they had intentionally revised her by making her such a talented linguist. The logic being that you don’t get to be a bridge officer on the Federations flagship without having a lot of talent! Makes sense to me.

I was worried when I saw the still photographs of him as Chekov, but that all went away when I saw him on screen. Anton makes a great Chekov. He’s funny, smart, has a great Russian accent, and a real presence on screen.

Adding in the boy genius aspect, which was often overlooked in the original series, was also spot on.

Fabulous actor, great performance. Can’t wait to see him as Chekov again.

#15: “I really liked the way he modelled his accent on Koenig and didn’t go for a more authentic Russian like Pegg did with his Scottish.”

i took his accent as more authentic. i believe i read somewhere (probably here) that he modeled his accent after his parents’.

Gotta admire an actor that goes through that much to get the character down, especially since its not one of the primary characters. I thought he did a good job bringing Chekov’s youthful energy to life in the last film. I can only pray they didn’t bring in Del Toro to play Khan. After all the delays that would be a shame for the writers to have had that little imagination.

18# I could be wrong about the accent Shaun. Trekmovie definitely had an interview with Yelchin in which he discussed his approach to the accent. I seem to recall him saying he could have gone with a more authentic style (as he’s grown up with older family members who speak with a Russian accent) but that he wanted to honour Walter Koenig, hence the ‘nuclear wessel’ approach. It’s been a long time since the last film came out so I could easily have that back to front. Maybe Antony could clear it up since he probably did the interview!

#8 as long as they dont give him justin bieber hair, i’m happy with what’s there.

Ah yes. Hats off to Anton in his due diligence and respect for the giant shoulders of Trekdom that he’s standing on. Maybe his attitude will rub off on the director.

I like the sound of this! An actor who prepares well and respects the franchise.

If I were he, I would very carefully rewatch Space Seed and Wrath of Khan. I suspect Khan will be in Star Trek 2: he has to be doesn’t he! I also suspect that Anton’s character will have a nasty injury….it’s about time isn’t it given the original movies….!


“Yelchin: I wanted it to be close to the Chekov accent, I guess that is where our opinions differ. I have no problem doing a real Russian accent, but that wouldn’t be Chekov to me. The interesting thing about it is that his accent is a cold-war stereotype of a Russian person. And when I watched the series and the films, that is what I found interesting about it. And I adjusted it, it is not entirely the same, but Walter [Koenig] came on set and was like “that sounds like me.” And that is what was fun for me. As a person familiar with a Russian accent, and someone with Russian roots who can speak Russian and knows what Russian people sound like, it was fun to purposefully mess around with the Russian accent — to purposefully change what I thought a Russian accent was to suit that stereotype they had in the sixties.”

my apologies, Corinthian7! it was an homage to walter. the young man is talented, for sure.

Yes, it was actually noted in the DVD Special Features section, that Anton deliberately spoke the “v” like a “w” in order to sound like the original Chekov, even though the letter “v” does not sound like a “w” in Russian. And just to confuse things, in German, “w” sounds like a “v”.

BTW – how do you spell the name Chekov? The word I have just written has a red line to tell me that I should see the spellchecker for the correct spelling, and yet I have also read that spelling Chekov with an “h”, as in Chekhov, is also incorrect. I like to get my spelling correct. I like to think that if I took a spelling test, as I did as a kid, that I’d still be top of the class, as I generally was then. One of the few things I was good at.

Bob? Anyone?

Re #25 Anton Yelchin? Care to comment? If anyone is going to know, it would surely be Anton Yelchin and of course, I can safely say that the posters here welcome any contributions from any Trek actor to this site!

This kid,…the Best part of the movie, IMO.

Please don’t mess with The Wrath Of Khan!!! That is pure classic and Ricardo Montalban did such a great job. Benicio Del Toro is a great actor and I have no doubt he would be a great Khan but still, leave that one alone-and if they do decide to revisit the Khan character, I will reluctanty watch in hopes that a supreme hell of a job is presented before my eyes… By the way, I really enjoy the new Chekov. Keep up the great work!!!

This is a quote from Anton Yelchin – who knew?

“Do you want to know my deepest, darkest secret?

I’ve been to a “Star Trek” convention.

Back in middle school I was a full-on “Star Trek” nerd. I watched the shows, I read the novels, I bought the toys. God help me, I even owned a “Next Generation” costume. It was as red, the same color my cheeks get as I recount these details. I’m not proud of my Trekkie past, but after J.J. Abrams’ outstanding 2009 franchise reboot, I was a lot less not proud. That movie was both a fantastic homage to the series’ storied past and an impressive blueprint for a bright future. It made “Star Trek” cool.”

#24 Thanks for clearing that up Shaun. His performance in Terminator Salvation was a great homage to Michael Biehn, it’s just a pity the rest of the movie wasn’t up to that standard.

#29 Thats a great quote Keachick.


Yeah, but the real questions are, is Anton Yelchin a “Star Wars” fan? And is he proud of that?