George Takei thinks gay character in the original Star Trek would be ‘too far’
George Takei says including a gay character in the original Star Trek series would have been ‘a bridge too far’ for audiences at the time.
The actor played Mr Sulu on Star Trek alongside William Shatner back in the 60s.
He recalled speaking to show creator Gene Roddenberry about including a gay character, shortly after they caused controversy by airing an interracial kiss.
According to the star, Roddenberry wanted to avoid ruffling feathers again, despite saying it would ‘like to’ introduce a gay character.
On PBS News Hour, Takei quoted Roddenberry saying: ‘The interracial kiss was very controversial. So I’ve got to keep the show on to tell the stories that I’m telling, which aren’t being dramatised metaphorically on any other show.
‘I’ve got to keep the show on. And [a gay character], as you say, may be a bridge too far.’
Star Trek aired between 1966 and 1969 for three seasons.
The 2016 film Star Trek Beyond revealed that Sulu, played John Cho, was gay and had a daughter with his male partner.
However a kiss between the two men was removed from the sequel.
Cho told Vulture in an interview at the time: ‘It wasn’t like a make-out session. We’re at the airport with our daughter. It was a welcome-home kiss. I’m actually proud of that scene, because it was pretty tough.’
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