“Star Trek Beyond” will make history by being the first Star Trek film featuring a gay character, but George Takei, the most famous openly gay actor from the original show, is not pleased that his character of Sulu was chosen for that milestone.
“I’m delighted that there’s a gay character,” Takei told THR. “Unfortunately, it’s a twisting of Gene [Roddenberry’s] creation, to which he put in so much thought. I think it’s really unfortunate.” Actor Jon Cho plays Sulu for third time in the film, which hits theaters July 22.
Why is Takei disappointed in the decision? Roddenberry had always seen Sulu as a heterosexual character, the actor said, citing the fact that Sulu had fathered a daughter named Demora, who appeared in the 1994 film “Star Trek Generations” and was played by actress Jacqueline Kim. “It was, to put it crudely, a one-night stand with a glamazon,” Takei told THR. “A very athletic, powerful and stunningly gorgeous woman. That’s Demora’s mother.”
The revelation that Sulu’s character would be revealed to be gay in the upcoming film was doubly disappointing for Takei due to the fact that he had been led to believe that director Justin Lin was going to heed his advice to create a new character who would be gay.
“I said, ‘This movie is going to be coming out on the 50th anniversary of ‘Star Trek,’ the 50th anniversary of paying tribute to Gene Roddenberry, the man whose vision it was that carried us through half a century,” Takei said. “Honor him and create a new character. I urged them. He left me feeling that that was going to happen.”