'Star Trek's Anton Yelchin Remembered on 30th Birthday by Family, Documentary Filmmakers

Today would have been the 30th birthday of Anton Yelchin, the actor Star Trek fans most remember as Pavel Chekov in the Kelvin timeline films. Yelchin’s family, friends, and the makers of a new documentary about the actor are remembering him today.

The documentary - titled Love, Antosha - debuted at Sundance in January. The film focuses on Yelchin’s life and acting career. Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, director Garrett Price recalls meeting with Yelchin’s parents.

“There’s a whole audience that needs to learn more about Anton,” Wang says. “I met with Viktor and Irina, and they started telling me stories about Anton, and I was hooked from day one. I knew the story needed to be told.”

Love, Antosha features interviews with stars actors and filmmaker who knew Yelchin. The list of interviewees includes fellow Star Trek alum JJ Abrams, Chris Pine, Zoe Saldana, and Simon Pegg, and others such as Jennifer Lawrence, Kristen Stewart, Jodie Foster, Willem Dafoe, Frank Langella, Ben Foster, and Bryce Dallas Howard.

“It wasn’t hard to get them,” Price says. “It really wasn’t. Everybody wanted to be a part of this. All people wanted to do was talk about Anton.”

Yelchin’s parents were touched by these remembrances.

“They all would say, ‘Thank you very much to make us a part of the movie,’” Viktor says.

“They would say ‘honored,” Irina adds. “Because everybody wants to see him alive.”

Check out EW’s full interview for more details about the film and more from the filmmakers and Yelchin’s parents.

Yelchin died in June 2016 at the age of 27 when his sports utility vehicle rolled down the driveway of his Los Angeles home and pinned him down.

The tragedy occurred between the filming and release of Star Trek Beyond. A title card with the words “For Anton” was added to the film before the end credits. Director Justin Lin made a subtle edit to the film at the last minute, adding a cut to Yelchin’s Chekov when Kirk (Chris Pine) gives a toast to “absent friends.”

Abrams has said the role of Chekov will not be recast following Yelchin's death, making it a lasting memorial to the actor's memory.

In October 2017, a statue of Yelchin was unveiled in Los Angeles during a celebration of the actor’s life. Saldana spoke at the service, which was also attended by Yelchin’s parents, Abrams, Pegg, Lawrence, Jeremy Saulnier, Drake Doremus, Jon Voight, and Emile Hirsch.

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