In Brief

Five things you didn't know about Anton Yelchin

JJ Abrams leads the tributes after Star Trek actor is killed in a freak accident at his home in Los Angeles

160620-anton-yelchin.jpg

Star Trek star Anton Yelchin has died after being crushed by his own car.

The accident occurred around 1am in the driveway of his home in Studio City, Los Angeles. According to the LAPD, the car rolled down his steep drive and pinned the actor, who played Pavel Chekov in the films, against a brick post-box pillar and a security fence, "causing trauma that led to his death".

No other vehicles were involved and the death has been ruled accidental.

Tributes have poured in from his Hollywood colleagues, with the franchise's director, JJ Abrams, describing Yelchin as "funny as hell and supremely talented".

Here are five things you might not have known about the actor: 

His parents were figure skaters

Yelchin was born in Leningrad, now St Petersburg, in 1989 to a Jewish family subjected to oppression in the USSR. His parents, Irina Korina and Viktor Yelchin, were ranked as the third-top pair figure skaters and qualified for the 1972 Winter Olympics. However, they were forbidden from taking part by the Soviet authorities. The family moved to the US when Anton was six months old and received refugee status, reports the LA Times.

He played in a punk band

Yelchin started and played in a punk band called The Hammerheads while he was pursuing his acting career. "I've been playing music because I love what I do so much, and acting is incredibly important to me – just the involvement in it, and the sort of mental and spiritual involvement in it. When it's not there, I need to do something that at least sort of mirrors that. Music does that in a way," he told Flaunt magazine in 2009.

He wanted to act in Crime and Punishment

Asked which ideal character he would choose to play in the history of fiction, Yelchin said it would be Raskolnikov in Fyodor Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment. "Raskolnikov is just such a complex person. Crime and Punishment is a book about love and alienation from love, alienation to the extent that you will commit murder. Raskolnikov is burdened by this angry nihilism that I find incredibly moving. It's one of my favourite novels," he said to the Los Angeles Magazine last year.

He used to swap Hamlet quotes with Anthony Hopkins

At the age of 12, Yelchin starred alongside Anthony Hopkins in Hearts of Atlantis and apparently had long conversations off screen. Director Scott Hicks told the LA Times: "Anton is a remarkably intelligent boy and very well-read. It was wonderful to overhear snips of conversation. They would be talking about Hamlet and swapping quotes. It was quite remarkable." Yelchin later said he "learned everything" from Hopkins.

He was a huge Terminator fan

Dostoevsky and Shakespeare were among Yelchin's favourite authors but when it came to films, he loved Arnold Schwarzenegger's blockbuster Terminator series. He later starred as Kyle Reese in 2009's Terminator Salvation. "With Terminator, I've always been a huge fan. It's a classic for anyone who grew up in the late 80s, early 90s, so I couldn't not be in a Terminator movie," he told The Guardian.

Yelchin will star in the third instalment of the Star Trek series, Star Trek Beyond, which opens in the UK on 22 July.

Recommended

Blair’s hair: Brad Pitt or Gandalf?
Tony Blair
In Brief

Blair’s hair: Brad Pitt or Gandalf?

2021 films: new releases and what’s coming up
Nomadland poster
In Review

2021 films: new releases and what’s coming up

Laurence Fox to Count Binface: the most colourful London mayor candidates
Count Binface
Behind the scenes

Laurence Fox to Count Binface: the most colourful London mayor candidates

The allegations against Noel Clarke - and what happens next
Noel Clarke
Getting to grips with . . .

The allegations against Noel Clarke - and what happens next

Popular articles

London mayoral race 2021: who will win?
Night Tube Sadiq Khan
In Depth

London mayoral race 2021: who will win?

Laurence Fox to Count Binface: the most colourful London mayor candidates
Count Binface
Behind the scenes

Laurence Fox to Count Binface: the most colourful London mayor candidates

UK elections: why the results matter and who is tipped to win
Boris Johnson in Hartlepool
Getting to grips with . . .

UK elections: why the results matter and who is tipped to win