In Gene Roddenberry's vision of the future there is no place for racial stereotypes as they were still commonplace in the s, or for traditional gender roles. At least theoretically. We need to bear in mind that the original Star Trek had three Caucasian men in the key roles, and that it was made under the surveillance of conservative network directors who reportedly wanted to get rid of the alien Spock as well as of "Number One", the woman in a commanding position. Yet, in the following the series spoke out against the the preconceptions and prejudices of the time on many occasions. Sometimes by breaking taboos like with Uhura's and Kirk's interracial kiss in TOS: "Plato's Stepchildren" - although that kiss was forced. A certain degree of racism and sexism still exist in today's society, and occasionally shows up in TV programs.
Star Trek Beyond's John Cho reveals that a kiss between Sulu and partner was edited out
'Star Trek Beyond' Star Says Sulu Being Gay Is 'Super Radical' | HuffPost
The British star, who is behind the new script, is open to discussion over the new angle to the character. The year-old actor - who was responsible for writing the script for Star Trek Beyond alongside Doug Jung - is disappointed George, 79, didn't approve of his character being gay. We're adults, we're not catty fighters writing comments to each other on the Internet, we're grown men. George, who is openly homosexual and an LGBT rights activist, previously said it was "unfortunate" his character was written as gay because it "twisted Gene Roddenberry's creation".
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And despite the fact that Sulu never had a female romantic or sexual partner throughout the original TV series and Star Trek movies, Takei felt Star Trek Beyond director Justin Lin and screenwriters Simon Pegg and Doug Jung should honor Roddenberry's choice, especially given the franchise's 50th anniversary. Takei said he was left to believe that his wishes were heeded, especially after receiving a supportive email from Pegg. But he said an email from Cho last week made clear the filmmakers had moved forward with their plans. According to Pegg, the filmmaking team wanted their LGBT character to be someone the audience already knew "as a human being," so that his sexuality would not be the character's "defining characteristic. Pegg added that he believed Roddenberry would have "explored Sulu's sexuality with George" during the run of the original series from to , had the culture at the time been "open minded enough" to accept it.
George Takei , the openly gay "Star Trek" actor who originated the Sulu character in the s television series and later played him in six films, called the move "really unfortunate" in a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter. Pegg, who portrays Scotty in the new film, told The Guardian in a statement, "He's right. It is unfortunate. It's unfortunate that the screen version of the most inclusive, tolerant universe in science fiction hasn't featured an LGBT character until now.