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To the Stars: The Autobiography of George Takei, Star Trek's Mr. Sulu Paperback – December 1, 1995


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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Note that this is an abridged edition of this title. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Asian-American actor Takei attributes his success to his role as Mr. Sulu on the Star Trek TV series and in six full-length motion pictures (1966-1991). Starting with his Japanese-American family's internment in a WWII high-security camp in northern California, this lively memoir reveals the author's upbeat but pragmatic nature. The boy's early fascination with the theater, abetted by supportive parents and a B.A. and M.A. in theater from UCLA, led to his discovery when he was 27 by Gene Roddenberry, creator/producer of Star Trek. While Takei's film credits include Ice Palace, Green Berets and [Return from the River Kwai], most of the book, of major interest to Star Trek fans, deals with behind-the-scenes accounts of the series' filming and production.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Series: Star Trek: All
  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books/Star Trek (December 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671890093
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671890094
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 1.1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #407,475 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

With a career spanning five decades, George Takei is known around the world for his founding role in the acclaimed television series Star Trek, in which he played Hikaru Sulu, helmsman of the Starship Enterprise. Takei starred in three seasons of Star Trek and later reprised his iconic role in six movies.

Mashable.com says Takei is the #1 most-influential person on Facebook, with more than 4.2 million followers. Takei has more than 700,000 followers on Twitter. Takei authored "Oh Myyy! There Goes the Internet," released in e-book and paperback earlier this year, and it ranked #10 on the New York Times E-book nonfiction list.
Takei is featured in the comedy film Larry Crowne, starring Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts, released in July 2011 by Universal Pictures.

Takei also stars in the action-comedy series Supah Ninjas, which premiered in April 2011 on Nickelodeon.
Takei and Tony Award winner Lea Salonga are developing a new musical called "Allegiance." The musical is an epic story of love, family and heroism during the Japanese American internment. Allegiance's world premiere at the Old Globe theatre in San Diego in 2012 will be followed by a Broadway run.

Takei's on-camera television credits also include guest appearances on The Neighbors, Hawaii Five-0, The New Normal, Malcolm in the Middle, Scrubs, Miami Vice, MacGyver, Hawaii Five-0, The Six Million Dollar Man, Mission: Impossible, My Three Sons, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea and The Twilight Zone. He has appeared on The Big Bang Theory, Psych, 3rd Rock from the Sun and Will & Grace.

Takei has brought his voiceover talent to hundreds of characters in film, television, video games and commercials during his prolific career. In film, Takei can be heard voicing characters in such films as Mulan, Mulan II and Batman Beyond: The Movie. He has voiced characters for numerous animated series including The Simpsons, Scooby-Do and the Samurai Sword, Transformers: Animated, Kim Possible, Futurama, El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Hey Arnold!, Samurai Jack, Hercules, Spider-Man, The Smurfs and George Lucas' Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

Adding to his resume, Takei has provided narration on many projects including the 2009 PBS series The National Parks: America's Best Idea, the 2006 Peabody Award-winning radio documentary, Crossing East, centered on the history of Asian American immigration to the United States and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (cassette) which garnered Takei a 1987 Grammy Award nomination for Best Spoken Word Album.

In addition to a busy acting career, Takei regularly appears on Howard Stern's Sirius XM satellite radio show. He is also an accomplished author having written Oh Myyy! There Goes the Internet, co-written the science-fiction novel Mirror Friend, Mirror Foe with Robert Asprin and published his autobiography To the Stars in 1994.

Takei, a Japanese American who from age 4 to 8 was unjustly interned in two U.S. internment camps during World War II, is an outspoken supporter of human right issues and community activist. Takei is chairman emeritus and a trustee of the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles. Takei has served as the spokesperson for the Human Rights Campaign "Coming Out Project," and was cultural affairs chairman of the Japanese American Citizens League. He was appointed to the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission by former President Clinton and the government of Japan awarded Takei the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette, for his contribution to U.S. - Japanese relations. The decoration was conferred by His Majesty, Emperor Akihito, at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. In 2007, Asteroid 7307 Takei, located between Mars and Jupiter, was named in the performer's honor in appreciation for his social work.
Takei currently lives in Los Angeles with his husband Brad Takei. They were married at the Japanese American National Museum in Little Tokyo on Sept. 14, 2008.

Customer Reviews

I'd give this memoir a 4.5 star rating but that's not possible.
Celestial Abyss
His easy narrative style and keen insights were a pleasure to read and the cast of characters to go through his life was amazing.
Ryan T. Flynn
Just finished reading George Takei's autobiography and enjoyed it immensely!
A. Gift For You

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Kevin T. McGuinness on July 30, 2007
Format: Paperback
I just finished reading George Takei's autobiography the other night. This guy has led a fascinating life.

When he was younger, he met Eleanor Roosevelt and Martin Luther King, Jr. His first job in show business was helping to dub "Rodan" into English. Before "Star Trek", he did movies with Richard Burton and Alec Guinness. And during the run of the show, he did a movie with John Wayne.

Till I read this book, I also didn't know that he had spent 11 years on a commission in L.A. that was responsible for getting their subway system built.

Interestingly, he doesn't go into a huge amount of detail about the show, though he makes his (and other cast members') reasons clear for not liking Shatner. And given certain revelations about Takei's personal life over the last few years, any discussion about relationships outside of his family and career are strangely absent from the book. Still, it's a good read.

I do agree with other reviewers, however, that even with a length of 400 pages, this book seemed too short. Given that it came out in 1994, I would love to see Takei update and re-release it.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 24, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I very much enjoyed Mr.Takei's autiobiography, which is actually the story of an Asian man's experience in America, from the time of his internment at the Manzanar concentration camp as a young child, to his student days at UCLA, and his subsequent struggle against ethnic stereotyping at a time of very few opportunities for Asian actors. He shares very painful and personal memories with us of his career and family; his autiobiography continues through his Star Trek days of course, up to the present, with many intriguing revelations. What makes this book my favorite is that it is extremely well-written, in his voice, without the help of a ghost-writer. I hope this will not be the last I see of his writing. I don't know why one reviewer harped on George's comments on William Shatner, saying "he couldn't even finish the book" - strange comment, considering George's feelings on Shatner come in the middle, and constitute a few pages out of the entire book.
This and Nichelle Nichol's are my two favorites from the cast, also written in her own voice, from the perspective of a minority actor in '50's America, and no less fascinating, in that she seems to have worked with or met almost every famous black performer at one time or another.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 2, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I've read most of the books from the Star Trek ensemble. I, by far, enjoy most the books that are written by the biographer his/herself, such as George Takei has done. This is a true life story, and not just another solilquy of Star Trek life. His account of his early life is particularly fascinating (to quote Mr. Spock!). His unique insight, experiences, and literary talents make this book among the best autobiographies of any type. To illustrate just how good this book is, my wife, who is not particularly a Star Trek fan, grapped up this book and read it before I could! You most definitely DO NOT need to be a Star Trek fan to enjoy this work of art.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A. Gift For You on March 4, 2000
Format: Paperback
Just finished reading George Takei's autobiography and enjoyed it immensely! George is a very talented & gifted writer who paints pictures with prose. He told very engaging stories about his family's triumphs & tribulations in America as well as his eventual rise to Sulu in the Star Trek juggernaut. His book provides a very honest & compelling view of his family's ordeal in the Japanese internment camps in the US during World War II. In spite of this awful abrogation of their constitutional rights by the US government, they still believed and never gave up on the American dream....simply amazing! The only reason I didn't give this book five stars is that his coverage of his days with Star Trek (both television series & movies) was a little thin. Given the colorful cast of characters within Star Trek as well as that dysfunctional bazaar called Hollywood, I have to believe there is more literary & comical gold to be mined from his life story.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 30, 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book is worth reading whether or not you're a Sulu fan. I found the chapters on Takei's early years in the WWII Japanese interment camps even more interesting than the Star Trek years. Though the fact of interment, itself, is grim, Takei lets us view life in the camps through the eyes of a child. Innocence and curiosity shine through. His memories are surprisingly upbeat, in spite of the horrors of displacement and prejudice. He recalls childhood friends he met in the camps (two of whom are named Ford and Chevy Nakayama--how wonderfully symbolic of their Japanese and American ancestry!) There are rich descriptions of Takei's own Japanese-American heritage throughout the book, as well. I enjoyed "meeting" his family through this book: his mother, who was determined to keep family life warm and friendly despite their barbed-wire environment; his father, who gave such a meaningful description of American ideals, notwithstanding society's frequent failure to live up to its ideals. George Takei's life is an embodiment of the true human spirit. My only regret is that the book wasn't longer. What was in the unabridged edition, I wonder?
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