Leonard Nimoy Reveals Concern Star Trek (and Vulcan Ears) Would Make Him ‘Punch Line’ [VIDEO]

Leonard Nimoy sat down for a new video interview with the LA Times Hero Complex and the Nerdist Chanel where he talks about his photography, life as a director, meeting Jimi Hendrix, and what he thought of Star Trek before joining the series. The actor reveals that he was concerned the show (and the ears) could make him a "punch line." Watch the interview below.


Nimoy: Before starting Star Trek was concerned ears could make him a ‘punch line’

Leonard Nimoy talks about Star Trek, directing, photography and more in a video interview by LA Times’ Geoff Boucher for his Hero Complex show on the Nerdist Channel (www.youtube.com/nerdist). Regarding his first thoughts about joining Star Trek, Nimoy noted:

I had no idea what the cosmic impact [of Star Trek] might be, but I did know that I had good material to work with because what was given to me was a character who was half human/half Vulcan and had an internal struggle. As an actor that is great stuff to work with…This is a multi-dimensional character and that was very very attractive. The rest of it I had to discover. I was not totally comfortable with pointed ears for example. I thought "if this doesn’t work, I’m a joke – a punch line."

Watch the interview below

Part 2 of the interview will be online next week, so look for that here at TrekMovie.com.

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Mr Nimoy. Thank you. You are the furthest thing from a punch line. You are a great actor and a great human.

ok now. THANK YOU VERY MUCH for all your trouble in bringing us all this. You guys rock!

Looking forward to the second part !

Yes. I’m a Starfleet fan! Thanks Anthony for fixing it so fast.

Thanks Anthony. Nimoy is a class Act.

what a treasure leonard nimoy is. i could listen to him discuss relevant issues all day.

It could have, if it’d been any other actor, or any other show creator, I believe. You were the one who made sure that didn’t happen by creating a beloved, nuanced, full fleshed character. And we are all the better for it. LLAP

Typecasting is a very real thing, especially in the 60s. Nimoy’s concern was very valid, and I think he DID suffer from it for quite some time. That made him a little bitter for a while, and I don’t blame him, but he got over it and embraced his Spockiness with time. We all know he’s much more than Spock these days, but there are worse things to be known for. He has served every character well. Anybody ever see him play Van Gogh and his brother Theo? Great stuff!

Leonard sweats class. He’s infused with it, through and through.

Anthony….thank you for fix

Thank you so much for taking the part, Mr. Nimoy. Spock is such a wonderful character and my favorite!

Love this guy, Nimoy is a national treasure.

So handsome to this day and a great human being, that happens to be the most Vulcan! ;) Great interview. Thank you, Leonard! I hope you make one more stop at Vulcan, Alberta before you actually retire. ;)

I’ve seen many Nimoy interviews and (much as I love him) he, naturally, begins to sound redundant: Interviewers ask the same questions and give him little room to explore new territory. Kudos to the guy asking the questions, here–on his relaxed posture, rapport with his guest, and new angles on questioning.

I think it’s kind of amazing that these guys were all pushing 40 when they were on Trek (and it wasn’t a particularly successful show, at the time). The 70s were an odd time – TV changed completely. But they all managed to have really successful careers, despite typecasting (unlike a lot of TV stars then). Ten years later, they were all movie stars. Forty years later, they’re doing damned well.

I meant, successful careers after the 70s.

#8… That is so true, almost any other actor at that time would have made it a joke, Nimoy has had the passion, belief, and sincerity to play the character that I have seen so many over the years try to do and fail, making it a punch line.

Nimoy is a wonderful man. Very amiable and surprisingly approachable (when I met him at Comic Con). A genuinely classy guy. Meeting him in that CC of 2009 was one of the all-time greatest ‘geekout’ moments of my life (right up there with Buzz Aldrin, Ray Bradbury and Edward James Olmos!).

Live long and prosper, Mr Nimoy! ;-)

Pointy eared green-blooded hobgoblin…whoops, sorry Leanard, didn’t mean to tease you.


Thanks for posting this Anthony-

If only Leonard Nimoy would show up here to allow us to thank him personally!!! He is one of a kind, classy and a gentleman. It seems to be a rare trait seen these days in many people, celebrity or not.

He looks like he is feeling very good these days- he doesn’t look as haggard as he did during the Star Trek movie or his last stint on Fringe. His eyes are just so much brighter and his voice even sounds better!
I wonder if his full recovery from whatever condition his surgery after Star Trek addressed is at the root?
Anyone else notice how much better he looks?

I agree. Leonard Nimoy does sound better than I have heard him sound in ages. He sounded tired when he was in Star Trek and on the Fringe episodes. One of his eyes still looks very red, but no matter.

I am happy that Leonard’s health seems to have improved and that he is sounding brighter and more energetic.

@9. I saw him the other day as a killer surgeon on Columbo, it was great.

He is absolutely the best — period, exclamation point !!!!!!

Nimoy, you became a punch line the moment you signed on for JJ-Trek.

Dude. Not cool.

Mr. Nimoy you are the best and so is SHAT!!! you guys rule! Doubt i will ever get to meet either of you before the great beyond calls, but i watch star trek every day and LOVE what you gave us!!!!! Kudos and keep going! # 26 i agree with you!

That was fabulous. Thanks for posting it :)

@23. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LIIZPtJR0x4 I just LOVE Nimoy in this ep (esp the last 10 seconds. Wow.)

Great interview. LN really seemed to engage in the questions, and he looks so energized here. At first, I thought you’d pawned off something out of an archive, until he mentioned JJ. Ha! LN does not age.

Thanks, Anthony!

…and it worked Mr Nimoy. Fate? Could be:)

It might not have been easy to see, but the character of Spock was always sincere and sincerely played. May Mr. Nimoy have years more to delight us.

What a great interview!

Nice. What was the deal with the spacey pistol at the end? I mean, I’d understand if it was a phaser or something… personal. I guess it’s just a standard issue geeky image. ;-)