Ethan Peck is Spock in Star Trek: Discovery, but he didn’t realize he was trying out for such an iconic role when he first auditioned.
Speaking to ComicBook.com as the TCA Winter 2019 Press Tour, Peck says he had no clue he was auditioning to play Spock and that may actually have helped his performance.
“It's incredible,” Peck says. “It's unlike any pressure I've ever felt. It means a lot to me that it's done well. And I came into the experience just filled with terror. But as I mentioned before to have the faith, I didn't know what I was auditioning for when I first read for it. This isn't something I would have been like, ‘Yeah, that's the role for me’ kind of thing, you know? But I connected with this sort of mock-up scene that they'd written for me and to have the faith of somebody as prestigious and achieved as Alex Kurtzman is really a blessing for somebody walking into an iconic role like that that carries such weight.”
He went on to describe the mock scene, which was an intimate conversation between Spock and foster sister Michael Burnham in an unusual environment.
“So I got, it was like five pages,” Peck recalls. “It was practically a monologue, and there's an alien in a cave. It was originally disguised as an Andorian and he, I'm not even sure it was gender specific, but he was sort of wandering through this abstract landscape in his mind, instead of trying to hold onto reality. And Burnham approaches him and tries to bring him out. And you see him sort of flick into reality in the present moment, but mostly he's lost in his thoughts and it seems. I was like, ‘What is this?’ you know? But to me, it seemed like somebody who was struggling to come to terms with emotions that had been hidden for a long time. And that's kind of where we find Spock. There's really the emotion and the logic, the human and the Vulcan sides coming to a head and interfacing externally and hopefully come to some sort of reconciliation.”
Peck hasn’t actually made his debut as Spock on Discovery just yet, so time will tell if this mock scene speaks to the arc of Spock’s relationship with Burnham.
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New Star Trek: Discovery episodes become available to stream Thursdays at 8:30 p.m. ET on CBS All Access.
Additional reporting by Scott Huver