In a press conference held in the U.S., Zachary Quinto, Leonard Nimoy, Bruce Greenwood, Zoe Saldana and Karl Urban spoke about their characters and working on Star Trek XI.
As reported by IESB.net, while Nimoy and Quinto had discussions about the character of Spock, Quinto made his own choices in playing the Vulcan. “Zach made some choices that I thought were wonderful surprises to me, in playing the Spock that he played in this film,” said Nimoy. “We did not talk about specifics, like ‘Do this. Don’t do that.'” We had very general conversations about the philosophy and psychology of the character, the philosophy of Star Trek and the fans’ reactions to various aspects of Star Trek, but there was no specific instruction. It didn’t need that, and it didn’t call for that.”Quinto’s choices, while surprising, were the right ones. “I often thought, ‘I would never have thought to do that, and I think that’s a wonderful idea,” said Nimoy. “Watching him in the film, I’m very proud of what he did. I loved the idea that he is doing the character, and that he did it so well. And, I think we have book-ended the character. He has created a Spock that comes before the Spock that I portrayed in the series, and I’m playing a Spock that comes much, much later and us much more resolved, and is much closer to who I actually am today. So, I think it works extremely well, and I admire his talent.”
Zoe Saldana also met her counterpart, Nichelle Nichols. “I did speak with Nichelle, a couple of times, and the response was completely overwhelming,” said Saldana. “We felt completely supported, and the pressure was just removed, the moment Mr. Nimoy stepped on set. I was able to meet Nichelle, and there was this overall happiness and excitement that Star Trek was coming back and that we were stepping into the family. It made it much easier for us to approach these characters, not only remembering the fundamental essences of all of them, but also not being afraid to add any innovation.”
A romance for Uhura was a surprise for Saldana, since there had been no hint of it prior to Star Trek XI, but she could see the logic in it. “They locked us in the office at Bad Robot, so that we could read the script,” explained Saldana. “I dropped it and grabbed my Blackberry and kept saying, ‘This man’s crazy! J.J.’s out of his mind. I’m not that aware about Star Trek, but I do know that they never mingled. It’s crazy!’ And then, once I finished the script, it just made so much sense. They have the most similar characteristics. I almost feel like she had this admiration for Spock because he was older and sort of like a teacher, and there was this crush or platonic infatuation with someone that’s wiser, wittier, handsome and had pointy ears. Why not?”