Mr. Sulu is openly gay and raising a daughter in a same-sex relationship in “Star Trek Beyond.” However, the original actor of the character is not happy about it.
Of late, the clamor to write in an LGBT storyline is rampant in Hollywood. Fans have taken it upon themselves to initiate campaigns for this cause. A recent case in point is #GiveCaptainAmericaABoyfriend. However, the jury is still out on this one.
Meanwhile, “Star Trek Beyond” will go where the sci-fi franchise has not gone before. Actor John Chu revealed his character Hikaru Sulu is gay in the third chapter of the reboot, Herald Sun wrote. According to Chu, the matter-of-fact approach to his character’s sexuality appealed to him. He credited writer Simon Pegg and director Justin Lin for their decision to have Sulu come out. Apparently, the move is in honor of actor George Takei who kept his sexuality a secret or risk losing his job on the 1960s series.
The decision of Pegg and Lin is likely another notch to the legacy of the “Star Trek” franchise. Moreover, it would send a strong signal among other productions that might consider following suit. Yet the 79-year old actor, who eventually came out in 2005, does not seem impressed by their choice.
In an exclusive interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Takei revealed his misgivings about the gay Sulu. The actor explained that the presence of a gay character in “Star Trek Beyond” did please him. However, it unfortunately changes the original vision of Gene Roddenberry for the franchise. Surprisingly, the actor voiced his opinion earlier to Cho who informed him of the likely revelation of their character. At the time, he advised them to create a new gay character instead.
“I told him, ‘Be imaginative and create a character who has a history of being gay, rather than Sulu, who had been straight all this time, suddenly being revealed as being closeted,’” Takei revealed. The issue of Sulu’s sexuality in “Star Trek Beyond” is already a done deal, with its premiere fast approaching on July 22. However, Takei’s plans for Sulu could happen in the upcoming “Star Trek” series on CBS with Bryan Fuller.