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The Rising Stars of ‘Star Trek’

May 6, 2009

Star Trek, which explores the origins of icons Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock, opens this weekend, and while the characters aboard the USS Enterprise might be familiar, some of the faces might not. Here’s a look at some of the past and future performances from the main cast:

Plays: Captain James T. Kirk, eventual commander of the Starship Enterprise.
First On-Screen Role: A 2003 E.R. episode titled “A Thousand Cranes.”
Where You’ve Seen Him Before: As Anne Hathaway’s blue-blooded, bad-boy love interest inThe Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement.
Role He Probably Wishes He Hadn’t Accepted: hapless Jake Hardin in Just My Luck opposite tabloid queen Lindsay Lohan. Any good Pine might have done in this movie was immediately overshadowed by Lohan’s numerous breakdowns and hospitalizations that year.
Next Time You’ll See Him: Carriers, about a viral pandemic, with Christopher Meloni and Piper Perabo.

Plays: Spock, the half-Vulcan science officer aboard the Enterprise.
First On-Screen Role: The second episode of NBC’s short-lived supernatural show The Others.
Where You’ve Seen Him Before: Does anyone remember a time when Quinto wasn’t “that guy on Heroes who eats brains”? Then perhaps you remember him as Adam Kaufman on “Day Three” of 24.
Role He Probably Wishes He Hadn’t Accepted: Quinto made the rounds on television before he got a regular gig with Jack Bauer; between guest spots on tween hit Lizzie McGuire, Della Reese-vehicle Touched By An Angel, and Charmed (in which he spent an hour trying to kill a cat), there’s bound to be something he regrets.
Next Time You’ll See Him: Up for debate given the season finale of Heroes. No doubt he’ll live long and prosper.

Plays: Nero, a Romulan bad guy from the future who threatens the United Federation of Planets.
First On-Screen Role: He played numerous roles on the Australian sketch comedy Full Frontal, but he didn’t make it to American screens until he portrayed “Hoot” in Black Hawk Down.
Where You’ve Seen Him Before: Getting angry in the 2003 remake of The Hulk or killing Brad Pitt’s Achilles in Troy.
Role He Probably Wishes He Hadn’t Accepted: Since he declined to reprise his role as Bruce Banner in any future movies, it seems Bana wasn’t any happier with The Hulk than audiences were.
Next Time You’ll See Him: As accidental time-traveler and frequently naked librarian Henry DeTamble in the adaptation of Audrey Niffeneger’s The Time Traveler’s Wife, opposite Rachel McAdams.

Plays: Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy, chief medical officer and apparent arbiter between Kirk and Spock.
First On-Screen Role: A heroin addict in a 1990 episode of Aussie police drama Shark in the Park.
Where You’ve Seen Him Before: Despite numerous roles on Xena: Warrior Princess, Urban didn’t really gain widespread recognition until Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers in which he played Eomer, a warrior and prince of Rohan. He followed that up with the part of an assassin in The Bourne Supremacy.
Role He Probably Wishes He Hadn’t Accepted: Just before he hit it big with back-to-back franchises, he was in Ghost Ship. Enough said.
Next Time You’ll See Him: As a smuggler in an adaptation of the crime novel Black Water Transit withLaurence Fishburne.

Plays: Nyota Uhura, USS Enterprise chief communications officer, and the only female with a regular seat on the bridge.
First On-Screen Role: Smart-mouthed ballerina Eva Rodriguez in Center Stage.
Where You’ve Seen Her Before: Sailing the high seas with Johnny Depp as Anamaria in Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl. Too bad she was thrown over board for the sequels.
Role She Probably Wishes She Hadn’t Accepted: One of Britney Spears’s best friends inCrossroads. In her defense, it was written by Shonda Rhimes, and Justin Long didn’t know what he was getting into either.
Next Time You’ll See Her: As a psychic in the horror-thriller The Skeptic and part of the ensemble cast exploring various stories throughout Los Angeles in Burning Palms.

Plays: Chief Engineer Montgomery “Scotty” Scott, as in, ‘Beam me up.’
First On-Screen Role: Six Pairs of Pants, a comedy series with future Spaced co-star Jessica Hynes.
Where You’ve Seen Him Before: Shaun of the Dead; Brits, zombies, pubs, and a love story – what more could you ask for? Also co-wrote and starred in action-spoof Hot Fuzz.
Role He Probably Wishes He Hadn’t Accepted: Tough call, but we’re going to have to go with Benji in Mission Impossible: III. Pegg was largely unmemorable as an IMF lab technician, but the movie has Tom Cruise in it, which makes it instantly regrettable.
Next Time You’ll See Him: You’ll hear him first in Ice Age III and The Adventures of TinTin before he rejoins frequent collaborator Nick Frost for Paul.

Plays: Hikaru Sulu, helmsman – or the guy who gets to steer.
First On-Screen Role: “Larry” in an episode of the sitcom Boston Common.
Where You’ve Seen Him Before: Cho’s had bit parts in dozens of films from American Pie to American Dreamz, to say nothing of guest stints on shows like Ugly Betty and Grey’s Anatomy, but most people probably know him from his trek to White Castle with Kal Penn’s Kumar.
Role He Probably Wishes He Hadn’t Accepted: If he doesn’t regret being a part of the 2001 TV movie version of Earth vs. the Spider, he should.
Next Time You’ll See Him: Gambling flick Saint John of Las Vegas with Steve Buscemi and Peter Dinklage.

Plays: Pavel Chekov, Russian Starfleet officer and Gene Roddenberry’s answer to the Cold War.
First On-Screen Role: Robbie Edelstein in the episode “Be Still My Heart” of E.R. He also had a role in the Larisa Oleynik/Shiri Appleby movie A Time for Dancing that was evidently a big hit in Italy, but wasn’t released in the United States.
Where You’ve Seen Him Before: The young boy opposite Anthony Hopkins in Hearts in Atlantis, Hank Azaria’s son on the Showtime series Huff, and more recently as the eponymous Charlie Bartlett.
Role He Probably Wishes He Hadn’t Accepted: He was “featured” in the Drew Carey horror Geppetto. Fortunately, no one seems to have minded.
Next Time You’ll See Him: As Kyle Reese, the future father of Christian Bale’s John Connor in Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins.

STAR TREK opens May 8th.


-written for Starpulse

2 Comments leave one →
  1. May 6, 2009 4:31 pm

    I saw a Chris Pine movie that I’m pretty sure was even worse than Just My Luck. It was some made-for-TV movie with Shiri Appleby.

    Speaking of Shiri… I actually recorded and watched A Time for Dancing off Showtime a while ago.

  2. May 17, 2009 4:42 pm

    Whoops, that movie starred neither Chris Pine nor Shiri Appleby. It was Rachel Leigh Cook and some British guy. Ignore me. :)

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