Sonequa Green-Martin is finally clearing up some speculation about First Officer Michael Burnham, her lead character on Star Trek: Discovery.
Contrary to what some fans have speculated based on the trailer for Star Trek: Discovery, Michael Burnham is not half-Vulcan. However, she does have a close relationship with Sarek, the Vulcan father of the half-Vulcan Spock from Star Trek: The Original Series. Burnham was the first ever human to attend the Vulcan Learning Center in her youth and has spent the last seven years serving on the USS Shenzhou (it is this ship’s bridge that is seen in the trailer, not the bridge of the Discovery).
“I’m the first officer on the U.S.S. Shenzhou that is captained by Captain Philippa Georgiou, who is played by the amazing Michelle Yeoh,” Martin-Green tells Entertainment Weekly. “I have an inner war and it’s a journey of self-discovery and finding out what it means to be alive, to be human, to be a Starfleet officer, what it means to be a hero.”
“I have the Vulcan conflict in my life from Sarek and Amanda [Grayson, human wife of Sarek and mother of Spock] so there’s always going to be that inner conflict with me. But I think it’s relatable because we all have some kind of inner conflict going on — who we are versus who we present ourselves to be. There’s a lot to be discovered.”
The search for the right actor to play Michael Burnham was a long and in-depth one. When the producers found Martin-Green, they were willing to wait for her to complete her commitment to The Walking Dead in order to give her the role, which may have contributed to the production delays on Star Trek: Discovery.
“We read a lot of people and they either went way too robotic and chilly or way too emotional,” says Aaron Harberts, one of Star Trek Discovery’s showrunners. “What’s beautiful about Sonequa’s performance is she’s capable of playing two, three, four things at once. She’s got such a great command of her craft, she’s able to be aloof but warm; logical but able to surrender her emotional side to the audience.”
Star Trek: Discovery premieres Sept. 24, 2017, and CBS All Access. The remainder of the 15-episode first season will be split in two, with the first eight episodes releasing on CBS All Access on Sunday nights through Nov. 5. The second half will begin releasing
More Star Trek News: Star Trek: Discovery Showrunners Explains The Series' Production Delays / Star Trek: Discovery Premiere Mirrors The Next Generation 30 Years Later / Star Trek: Discovery To Blur Line Between Movies And TV / Star Trek: Discovery Producer On Why Fans Should Look Forward To The Series