Star Trek Pin-up #45 FRAMED George Takei Mr. Sulu

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Description

Hikaru Sulu is a character in the Star Trek media franchise. Originally known simply as ‘Sulu’, he was portrayed by George Takei in the original Star Trek series. Sulu also appears in the animated Star Trek series, the first six Star Trek movies, one episode of Star Trek: Voyager, and in numerous books, comics, and video games. Sulu having the first name ‘Hikaru’ appeared in a 1981 novel, well over a decade after the original series had ended. John Cho assumed the role of the character in both the 2009 film Star Trek and its sequel, Star Trek Into Darkness.

Takei recalled Gene Roddenberry wanted the character to represent all of Asia, which symbolized the peace of the Trek universe in spite of the numerous wars in the continent. Roddenberry did not want a nationally specific surname, so he looked at a map and saw the Sulu Sea. “He thought, ‘Ah, the waters of that sea touch all shores’,” the actor recalled, “and that’s how my character came to have the name Sulu.”

Throughout the series, Sulu is shown having many interests and hobbies, including gymnastics, botany, fencing, and ancient weaponry. In the episode “The Naked Time” (1966), Spock observes that Sulu “is at heart a swashbuckler out of the 18th century”.

The character is promoted to lieutenant commander some time before Star Trek: The Motion Picture, and to full commander by the time of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. During the first five Star Trek movies, he serves as helmsman aboard both the USS Enterprise and USS Enterprise-A. He is promoted to captain and given command of the USS Excelsior three years before the events of Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.

Star Trek Generations introduces Hikaru’s daughter, Demora Sulu, whose origins are also depicted in Peter David’s non-canon novel The Captain’s Daughter.

George Hosato Takei (April 20, 1937) is an American actor, director and author, originally known for his role as Hikaru Sulu, helmsman of the USS Enterprise in the television series Star Trek. He also portrayed the character in six Star Trek feature films and in an episode of Star Trek: Voyager.

Takei’s involvement in social media has brought him new fame. He currently has over 7 million likes since joining Facebook in 2011, frequently sharing photos with original humorous commentary.

He is a proponent of LGBT rights and active in state and local politics apart from his continued acting career. He has won several awards and accolades in his work on human rights and Japanese‚ÄďAmerican relations, including his work with the Japanese American National Museum.

In 1942, the Takei family was forced to live in the horse stables of Santa Anita Park before being sent to the Rohwer War Relocation Center for internment in Rohwer, Arkansas. The family was later transferred to the Tule Lake War Relocation Center in California. He and his family returned to Los Angeles at the end of World War II.

It was intended that Sulu’s role be expanded in the second season, but Takei’s role as Captain Nim, a South Vietnamese Army officer, alongside John Wayne’s character in The Green Berets, meant that he only appeared in half the season. Walter Koenig as Pavel Chekov substituted for him in the other episodes. When Takei returned, the two men had to share a dressing room and a single episode script. Takei admitted in an interview that he initially felt threatened by Koenig’s presence, but later grew to be friends with him as the image of the officers sharing the ship’s helm panel side-by-side became iconic.

Takei has since appeared in numerous TV and film productions, reprising as the voice of Sulu in Star Trek: The Animated Series from 1973-’74, including the first six Star Trek motion pictures, and today he is a regular on the science fiction convention circuit throughout the world. He has also acted and provided voice acting for several science fiction computer games, including Freelancer and numerous Star Trek games. In 1996, in honor of the 30th anniversary of Star Trek, he reprised his role as Captain Hikaru Sulu on an episode of Star Trek: Voyager, appearing as a memory of Lt. Tuvok, who served on the USS Excelsior under Sulu, during the events of Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.

Takei is one of a number of Star Trek supporting cast members whose difficulties with William Shatner have become public.

In the summer of 2007, Takei reprised his role of Sulu in the fan-made Internet based series Star Trek New Voyages: Phase II.

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