What's New August 2010

Online Again

As some of you might have noticed, my page was offline since Saturday. Since I didn't know how long it would take and had little way of letting my readers know, I uploaded a video to YouTube announcing the page was offline until furter notice yesterday in the info part for the video (see below). There were problems my provider needed to fix, which they thankfully have done by now. So, enjoy the video.


Disney-MGM Studios Theme Park Opening May 1989



Spinoff Online
May 13th, 2010
By Josh Wigler

Interview: Leonard Nimoy On The Fringe Set

Have you been watching the show pretty faithfully?

I follow as much as I can. I was not aware of the show — I shouldn’t say that, I wasn’t watching the show before all this started for me. When J.J. called me, I started working on kind of a steep learning curve, watching a bunch of episodes and getting an idea of what it’s all about. I was impressed. I was really impressed. I thought it was very surprising, the level of production quality.

I was also impressed with how hard these people work. The pilot episode that they shot in Boston, where you can see the steam coming out of their mouths because it was so freezing, freezing cold. I come from Boston, and I know how cold it is in Boston. I’m glad I wasn’t involved in that. [Laughs] I get outside on a location like that where it’s that kind of temperature and I can’t even say the lines. My mouth doesn’t even want to. These people work very hard, and I admire that.

[The publicist informs Nimoy that the pilot was actually shot in Toronto.]

Was it Toronto? I thought it was Boston. None of it was shot in Boston? [Pauses] Well, Toronto is cold, too! [Laughs]

The Jewish Daily Forward
June 09, 2006
By Alexander Gelfand

Remembering How the Yiddish Theater Turned Into Broadway

Leonard Nimoy, best known as Mr. Spock of “Star Trek,” illustrates just how porous the boundary between Yiddish and English theater once was. As a young actor in Boston, Nimoy started out with English roles. But his early grounding in Yiddish came in handy when he moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in film and television. “My grandparents spoke very little English, so my brother and I learned to speak Yiddish to communicate with them,” he told the Forward in an interview. When Yiddish touring companies visited the West Coast, Nimoy often played the juvenile roles, working alongside such distinguished Yiddish actors as Chaim Tauber and Maurice Schwartz. “It was an incredibly wonderful learning experience,” recalled Nimoy, who intends to tell the gala audience a few stories from his days on the Yiddish stage and to sing a little, as well. Even now, Nimoy retains a soft spot for Yiddish spectacle. “When I see or hear a Yiddish production, I’m very touched by that; it takes me home,” he said.



Cutting my grandson's hair. It runs in the family. My da... on TwitpicMr. Nimoy tweeted a picture of himself cutting his grandson's hair, saying "It runs in the family. My dad was a barber."





Karl Urban convention appearance at Supanova in Sydney, Australia 2009:

The last question asked was about Leonard Nimoy. Urban seemed excited to tell this next anecdote, and it was a great moment to finish off with. Urban related the surreal experience of seeing Nimoy arrive on the soundstage in full Spock makeup, with the Vulcan ears and the eyebrows, but he didn't get much of a chance to get to know Nimoy until the rounds of publicity press junkets started.

He said that, after the movie had been viewed by the cast for the first time, Nimoy wanted Urban to meet Nimoy's wife, Susan Bay. She made a point of telling Urban, "You know, when you came onscreen as McCoy and delivered those opening lines, Leonard cried."

More at Have Phaser, Will Travel

Who Killed Spock?!

Well, Mr. Nimoy said that it wasn't him who suggested Spock's death until he was blue in the face. For anyone who might still doubt his word, this Starlog interview with Jack Sowards from Feb. 1983, who admits to the deed, should settle it.

Though, Harve Bennett is also laying claim to the (in)famous idea in the second part of his recent StarTrek.com interview:

When I first took the Star Trek assignment, one of the problems was that Leonard Nimoy had already written his book I Am Not Spock. He had publically put it out there that he’d never do Spock again. And one of my first challenges was to convince Leonard that he should come back, because it wouldn’t be Star Trek without him. I finally convinced him with a very simple, actor-proof argument. I said, “Leonard, if you come back, I’m going to give you the greatest death scene since Janet Leigh in Psycho. One third of the way into the picture, we’re going to kill you. The audience will be shocked. It will be the end of your problems with Spock and we will go on to complete the story.” He said, “That’s good. I like that.” So he signed on. For a variety of reasons, including Gene and the 100,000 letters the studio received from fans after it got out that we were going to kill off Spock, we couldn’t do it the way we planned. Hence a rewrite and when Nick Meyer, God bless him, came on board we found a way to extend Spock’s role. And it was much better, because I think Wrath of Khan might have been a failure if Spock had died one third of the way through it. So we got Wrath of Khan done, Nick Meyer was brilliant, and the rest is history.

And since we're on the subject of Spock's life and death and life, here's William Shatner's enthusiastic account of that historic moment when Mr. Nimoy hinted he'd stay with Star Trek:

He tells his stories so well that the audience ceases to ask questions and begins to ask for more stories. He obliged this request by telling the story behind the controversial death of Spock as depicted in ST 2. No other aspect of the film excited more pre-release criticism than Spock's planned demise: there were threats of boycotts by fans infuriated at what was, to them an incomprehensible decision. The anger was generated mostly at the thought of Star Trek without Spock. (Could there be a Star Trek without Spock?) Shatner explained the circumstances surrounding the decision.

"Leonard had had enough of Mr. Spock" he began. "Putting on the ears meant he had to come in an hour and a half early every morning. It was tedious. He had played the role as fully as he was going to and he felt that was enough. And he hadn't liked his experience on ST 1. So he said when ST 2 was contemplated, 'Look, I've had enough of Star Trek, it's not been good professionally, being known only as Mr. Spock. I want to do other things ... (as any actor would). Len said 'I didn't sign a life contract to play Mr. Spock and it's time for me to stop.'

"But Harve Bennett, who was coming in to produce the second movie, felt he needed Spock to create the mystique. The chemistry of Star Trek is such an unknown factor that to disturb it at all may be to ruin it. Nobody wants to touch that. Harve convinced Leonard to play Mr. Spock one more time and that he would kill the character, so he could leave the Star Trek films with the fans' approval. Even Leonard felt that would be the perfect solution to end his career as Spock.

"So, the death of Spock was written. However we wanted to keep it hidden. We didn't want to tell anybody Spock was going to die, essentially because the actor had decided that 15 years of being Mr. Spock was enough. Obviously, you couldn't blame him. You had to understand and love him.

"All right," continues Shatner, catching his breath. "We're in the middle of filming. We're having a ball and laughing with Nicholas Meyer, our director, pulling Nick's pants down. Things got to be fun and Leonard was joking with me. He loves Harve Bennett, the producer and everybody's so happy. So one day, I'm sitting in Leonard's dressing room and I say, 'You know, Len, this is going so well ... gosh ... why do you want to die?'

"Leonard looked at me. 'Who said I wanted to die?'

"I said,'You mean you'll come back?'

'Yeah,' he said, 'Listen, I'm having such a good time, maybe I won't die ... forever..."

"So me, the snitch, ran up to Harve Bennett and exclaimed, 'Guess what I've got to tell you!'

"Harve said, 'Go back to the set. You're on now.'

"'No,' I told him, 'You're going to want to hear this. Leonard just told me he wouldn't mind playing Spock again!'

"Well, Harve fell down. I picked him up and he fell down again, he was rather overcome. That was half way through the movie so we had to get clever and try to make it so even though he dies, we could bring him back to life.'

(Note: page 24 unfortuantely is missing)


StarTrek.com talked to Harve Bennett about producing the movies:

Let’s move on to Search for Spock. How did Leonard Nimoy end up in the director’s chair?

Leonard came to me after Wrath of Khan and after his death scene and he said, “This is a lot of fun.” And it was. We all said it was a very jolly set. He said, “I’m game for another one, but I’d like to direct.” I said, “Terrific. I know what the next one has to be, and you got it.” So, with Leonard as director it became obvious that the next chapter in what turned out to be a trilogy would be bringing Spock back to life.

Leonard then directed The Voyage Home as well. How had he evolved as a director from III to IV?

I think Leonard put it best, actually. He said, “On Star Trek III, Harve had training wheels on me and on Star Trek IV, the training wheels came off.” Leonard didn’t have a lot of experience directing, so I spent a lot more time on the set than I would normally have, and certainly more than I had with Nick Meyer. But I think Leonard handled it very well. He got a little more resentful during Star Trek IV because he figured he had proved himself. So we had a little friction there, but we resolved it and he went on to do a magnificent job on IV. His emergence as a director was his skill triumphing over his lack of experience.


Honors & Awards Updated

In April Leonard Nimoy received the Douglas S. Morrow Public Outreach Award from the Space Foundation. Here are a few more links on the subject:

Actor Leonard Nimoy Shares Views on Creativity (Article)

26th National Space Symposium (Photos & Video)

Leonard Nimoy and Star Trek come to Colorado (Podcast)


There is another piece about Secret Selves on wbur.org radio. The page also offers a transcript of the interview.

Leonard Nimoy Explores ‘Secret Selves’ In New Show

BOSTON — Actor Leonard Nimoy, known to so many as Mr. Spock on “Star Trek,” has another side. He’s also an enterprising photographer.

A solo show of portraits by Nimoy, called “Secret Selves,” just opened at MASS MoCA in North Adams. And a retrospective of his work is on display at the Michelson Gallery in Northampton, where we met up with him recently. We found Nimoy’s show to be part art, part therapy.

For so many years, Nimoy played a logical, pointy-eared Vulcan. But the lifelong actor has been contemplating a deeply human inner conflict ever since drama school.

“I’m fascinated with the idea that most people do have some aspect of themselves that doesn’t come to light very often,” Nimoy said. “That is a hidden or fantasy or secret part of themselves that they don’t get to display.”

The Greek playwright and philosopher Aristophanes was also taken by this idea. He dreamed up a wild notion that humans, at one time, were double-people — with four arms, four legs and two heads. We were powerful in that state, and we angered the gods. So Zeus split us in two. Since then, Aristophanes postulated, humans have been full of anxiety, trying to re-integrate and feel whole again.

When Nimoy read that story decades ago he started to ask, “I wonder if there’s something here that could present itself photographically, if we asked people to come as this other part of themselves that they’re missing or that they fantasize about, what might we see?”

Well, now Nimoy knows. Nearly 100 Northampton area residents showed up for a casting call at the Michelson Gallery last year. They brought costumes and props to an event that sounds like a Halloween party with a therapeutic edge.



This is actually more of a portrait than an interview with just one quote.





Listen to the PSA for the National Jewish Center for Immunology and Respiratory Medicine here.



Reviews and more of Mr. Nimoy's efforts as a recording artist at Stax o' Wax and The Record Robot.




In February 2009 Mr. Nimoy spoke about his photography at the University of Alabama. More here and here.


In 1968 Leonard Nimoy appeared along with Roger Miller (singer of “King of the Road”), James Drury (“The Virginian”), and Minnie Pearlon on the March of Dimes Telerama, benefiting programs preventing birth defects. Source: chattanoogan.com


In March 1980 Leonard Nimoy attended a press luncheon staged by the Atlanta chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences to talk about his play Vincent and answer a few Star Trek and In Search Of... questions on the sidelines. About the press event one can certainly say that he got a most unique introduction to the crowd by the host who ended by stating "and from what I've read [is] not too bad as a lover." ^^


Frozen Film Festival 2007 - What's Going On Up There?

Description at Spike: "June 26, 2007 - From hardworking scientists and environmentalists--even a college student in Kuwait who wants to be the first Muslim woman in space--to Hollywood filmmakers, entrepreneurs, psychiatrists, historians, lawyers and preschoolers, this doc offers conversations with professionals and ordinary citizens on all sides of the space debate. Introduced by Leonard Nimoy (Star Trek), who once again asks us what Earthlings will do with the final frontier."



A Conversation with Leonard Nimoy

Leonard Nimoy will be talking about the making of Secret Selves at MassMoCA on Thursday, October 21, 2010, 5:00 pm.

More here.


Fixed links for:

Interview: Leonard Nimoy (2009)

Leonard Nimoy Alias Mr. Spock (2005)

Leonard Nimoy in Search of Human Life Forms through Photography (2009)

Leonard Nimoy Talks About Oscars, Art, ComiCon and All Things Pointy-Eared (2010)

No longer available at the source:

Nimoy Exhibit Causes Stir at Mass MoCA (2010) at the Bennington Banner (password now needed)

For Whom the Bell Tolls: Leonard Nimoy Talks FRINGE (2009). The Starlog website is down.

Thank you, Irene, for spotting the broken links.


USA Today
May 11, 2004
By Dennis Vandal

Mr. Spock embarks on journey into photography

In 2002, he published Shekhina, a book of about 40 photographs that explore his interest in the feminine aspects of Jewish divinity. Many of the images are on display this month at the R. Michelson Galleries in Northampton.

"At the heart of it all is the fact that I was trying to really completely enter into the world of the feminine," says Nimoy, 73. "I didn't want to do misty, cloudy figures. I didn't want to shroud her. I wanted to make her flesh and blood, and I wanted to make her definitively female."

ca. 2002
By Daniel Robert Epstein

Leonard Nimoy

DE: What made you want to include the Vulcan hand sign?

LN: That's what the Shekhina is all about. That's the gesture that represents Shekhina.

DE: Oh, really? So this is something that you have prepared for almost your whole life, it seems.

LN: Yeah, without realizing it.

DE: The critic whose comments are in the book, Donald Kuspit, refers to you as a Jewish heretic. What do you think of that?

LN: I guess maybe I am. I don't know. I'm not uncomfortable with that.

DE: How do you think your fans will react to the new book?

LN: I can't really say that I was concerned with that when I was producing this thing. I think it's my adventure, my trip, my journey, and I guess my attitude is, let the chips fall where they may.


Jun 26, 2009
By Mark Walters

LEONARD NIMOY interview with BIGFANBOY.com

Mark: Well obviously photography is something you're very passionate about. Looking at all these people that come to these conventions that are collectors, do you yourself have things that you collect that are personal to you?

Leonard: My wife and I collect contemporary art, which includes photography, but the focus is broader than that. Our collection is paintings, sculpture, collage, half photography. we've been doing it for almost 20 years now, and we have a pretty serious collection. We go to various museums and art fairs around the world to look at art and to buy it.

Mark: What's your most prized piece in your collection?

Leonard: Prized piece? That's like asking me which is my favorite kid. (laughter) There isn't a piece I don't love. Every now and then a piece has to go to up to be loaned for an exhibition some place, and I miss it. What we try to do is take a picture of it and put the picture on the wall. (more laughter)

The Seattle Times
October 25, 2002
By Mark Rahner

Temple audience gives Nimoy enthusiastic welcome for talk

Nimoy had been scheduled to appear at a Jewish Federation fund-raiser on Wednesday. But after his presentation was canceled, federation director Barry Goren said the nudes in "Shekhina" could be offensive to prospective donors and that Nimoy had contracted to discuss his "Jewish journey." Nimoy said the federation knew about "Shekhina" from the outset and that the cancellation seemed like censorship.

The eyebrow-raising controversy made national headlines, peaking in a "Saturday Night Live" spoof in which "Weekend Update" anchor Tina Fey joked, "Your reign of tyranny is over, Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle! Thanks to Leonard Nimoy, Seattle and its surrounding suburbs will now walk free!" ( The federation, which replaced Nimoy with comedian Al Franken, helped reschedule him with Beth Am.)

Before his presentation yesterday, a relaxed Nimoy, 71, said of the sendup, "I thought it was hilarious. I couldn't stop laughing. My only previous controversy was involving Spock's ears." (Mr. Spock is the name of the character Nimoy played on "Star Trek.")

Nimoy wasn't surprised the cancellation multiplied the attention to his photography. "Is it crass to say it probably worked out for the best?"

But not just in sales. Nimoy, who is not an Orthodox Jew, said, "The book has awakened my own new interest in spirituality and given me a new pathway into it."

As for the controversy surrounding his images, Nimoy said, "The real issue is not religious iconography, it's not nudity, but the elevation of women in the hierarchy of the religion."

That remark drew applause when he repeated it during his slide show last night. "Tonight I'm going to boldly show you what I was not allowed to show you last night," he joked. The crowd — which ranged from teens to the elderly and included a few Christians — sat silently during the presentation and then applauded warmly.

July 29, 2010
By Tom Keyser

Leonard Nimoy’s ‘Secret Selves’ exhibit opens at Mass MoCA

In 2008, his friend Richard Michelson (he owns R. Michelson Galleries) spread the word around Northampton that Nimoy was looking for models willing to pose as their secret self. Over two days, Nimoy photographed 95 in a makeshift studio at the gallery. He chose 25 for the exhibit, of which 11 are life-size.

“I really had no idea what to expect. The whole thing could have been a bust,” Nimoy says. “But the people who arrived were so committed to the idea and so generous, and made themselves so vulnerable and available. It was really quite remarkable. It was a very exhausting, at times very funny, at times terribly touching, experience.”

July 25, 2010
By Ray Kelly

Leonard Nimoy photographs expose 'Secret Selves'

Nimoy’s photographic work includes “Shekhina,” a series that explored the feminine side of God, and “The Full Body Project,” a collection of mostly nudes taken of obese women.

He said he has not decided on his next photographic project.

Nimoy has been approached to create “Secret Selves” in other communities, but he said he wants to first gauge the reaction at MASS MoCA.

“People have been touched by this,” Nimoy said. “People identify strongly with this process and they ask themselves, ‘What is my secret self?””

Dec. 2001
By Anne A. Simpkinson

Trying to Capture the Invisible

When did you start taking photographs?

I've been working with photography for many years. About seven or eight years ago, I started work on a collection of images of the female figure--some of which are on my web site

About three years ago, I was visiting a collector in New York, who has a rather impressive collection of photographs, all based on the human hand. It struck me that I had an image that might be interesting to him and it was the image of the hand in the kabbalistic gesture, the split fingers, that you might be familiar with. [On Star Trek, it was the Vulcan salute.] (more)

Chicago Tribune
October 07, 2001
By Robert K. Elder

Q&A With . . . Leonard Nimoy

Q. What are some of the concepts in the work?

A. The major conflict is between spirituality and materialism. There are other concepts that lurk in the area as well. For example, I'm conscious of the fact that in one of David's psalms he says, about God, `Thou didst clothe thyself with light as with a garment.' And light as clothing is part of what I'm doing with these photographs.

Q. What kind of resistance have you felt regarding your role as celebrity and your pursuits as an artist?

A. I don't know, it's hard. It's akin to the question I used to get years ago, `Do you think you're typecast?' You don't get a call from somebody saying, `We're not going to hire you because you're typecast.' So, it's hard to measure. I realize that I am much better known as an actor/director.

But my credentials as a photographer are real. I started studying photography at UCLA in 1970 under a man who lives in Chicago now, a brilliant artist and teacher named Robert Heinecken. Heinecken was a great motivator, and I think my work jumped forward from that time on and I'm still affected by his teaching, his approach to photography and have always taken it very, very seriously. I'm not frivolous about it.

Something Jewish
August 28, 2003
By David Silverberg

Leonard Nimoy

Whether intentional or not, the 2002 photography collection is raising eyebrows for mixing naked women with tallis and tefillin, already prompting two U.S. cities to cancel tour dates. The controversy has even been dubbed ShekhinaGate.

"I'm surprised by the reaction," says 71-year-old Nimoy from his Beverly Hills home. "Some people think simple entertainment is safer than illumination."

Nimoy talks frankly on his path of spirituality that led to Shekhina, a work inspired by scriptural mythology that "tells us that God created a divine feminine presence to dwell amongst humanity." As if prompted by a routine cue, he describes how his journey was sparked by a synagogue visit when he was nine-years-old in Boston.

HNR (HollywoodNorthReport)
September 2, 2004
By Robert Falconer


Robert: Ansel Adams once said: “When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.” Have you ever found yourself in a place that intrinsically begged to be photographed; yet the power and magnificence of the place was such that you believed no photograph could possibly capture its essence?

Leonard Nimoy: I find that experience very often. Years ago—in the 70s, for about a decade—I carried a camera every place I went. And I shot a lot of pictures that were still life and landscape, using available light. I’m still very pleased with some of those photographs and some of them were published in various books I was involved with in the 70s. But I don’t think—unless you are an Ansel Adams and a master of that particular kind of photography—that it makes much sense. My memory of those places is better than my pictures. That’s why I get much more satisfaction out of shooting thematic work that has to do with an idea that I’m searching for, or searching to express. (more)

The Boston Globe
April 26, 2009
By Charles P. Pierce

Spock Value

Years ago in the West End, you could look out the window of Max Nimoy's barbershop and see across Leverett Street down Causeway to North Station and the old Boston Garden. It was a thriving place that, one day in 1958, would fall in a brutal outburst of what was then called "urban renewal," in which the city simply bulldozed 46 acres and displaced 2,700 families. The process would not end until 1961, when the last vestiges of the neighborhood were razed and replaced by luxury high-rise apartments. Back in the day, though, businesses like Nimoy's barbershop thrived, and Max and Dora Nimoy's son, Leonard, grew up amid the tight, bustling streets. He listened to the radio, and he was especially fond of The Lone Ranger -- not for the hero, but for the other guy.

"The first one I remember is Tonto, and there's a history of this kind of sidekick character who works loyally to help the central character, hero figure, but who has special talents that are useful," Nimoy explains. "When I was a kid, the Lone Ranger was a big deal on radio, and Tonto -- his 'faithful companion,' as they said -- had special talents. Tonto could read the tracks. He could tell you about the bad guys, whether they were coming or going, and how long ago they'd passed that way. He could put his ear to the railroad tracks and tell you where the train was. Those kinds of characteristics were not unusual in a sidekick character."


Spock was anything but a sidekick when Star Trek was conceived. In the original pilot -- which was later cannibalized into a two-part episode called "The Menagerie" -- Spock's spot was held by a female officer called Number One (who, were I a Trekkie or a Trekker, I would point out was played by Majel Barrett, the future Mrs. Gene Roddenberry, who eventually became nurse Christine Chapel, whose love for Spock went largely unrequited). By the time the cast was finalized, Nimoy wound up creating an indelible character. Spock ultimately became the great fulcrum on which the entire Star Trek franchise would pivot.

The Boston Globe
May 12, 2006
By Liza Weisstuch

Hanging With: Leonard Nimoy

Leonard Nimoy confesses that he played basketball very badly as a kid. But that's OK, because playing basketball at the West End House when he was growing up in a tenement in Boston helped him cultivate one of his inherent talents: public speaking, which set him on his road to fame. Everyone who wanted to be on the team in the late 1940s had to participate in ''declamation."
''For a team to play, they had to stage a dramatic recital," Gropman says. ''The first time Lenny was in a declamation contest, he came in fourth with the 'Ye call me chief, and ye do well to call him chief' speech from 'Spartacus.' The people who ran the place realized that was going to carry you much further than basketball. Our team didn't win basketball until six years after we started." (more)

PBS (Transcript from televised episode no. 615 of Religion and Ethics Newsweekly)
December 13, 2002

Spock, Spirituality, and Star Trek

LAWTON: In his book, Nimoy says he tried to convey that reverence. He read one passage at an appearance he did make, last month, at a book fair at the Jewish Community Center in Rockville, Maryland.

Mr. NIMOY (reading from his book): My Shekhina is a woman, a creature of spiritual glory in the flesh. I search for her with my camera. I wonder where she spends her quiet and private time. What I find is sensuous and seductive, drawing me closer.

(to Lawton): There's the old legend of a juggler who goes to worship and sits down in front of the altar and juggles because that's what he has to offer. That's his art. I have this means of expression and I'm using it. If there were some other avenues to express it, I would. If I were a painter I'd probably paint about it. I happen to be a photographer.

St. Louis Jewish Light
October 31, 2007
BY Cate Marquis

An interview with Leonard Nimoy

Often, large women in poses where the conventional subjects would be young, thin women are presented in a campy or comic way. No so here. Moreover, these are grown women, not teens, as fashion models often are.

The point is to upend assumptions and make a social and artistic comment.

"These are definitely adult women. They all have various professions. The lady who started the group was an anthropologist by profession," he said.

"I asked her what she was doing with her anthropology training and background and she said 'doing this,' meaning this work on body acceptance," Nimoy said.

"She said 'Anytime a fat person steps on a stage to perform, that is not a joke, that is a political action,'" he said. "Unfortunately, she was a cancer patient and passed away several months ago."

The Jewish Daily Forward
February 15, 2008
By Josh Richman

Final Frontier Calls to Nimoy

The new “Star Trek” film’s trailer shows a vast shipyard where the U.S.S. Enterprise is under construction, as a voice intones that famous phrase, “Space, the final frontier….”

Ah, that deep, rich voice. It’s unmistakable. Spock is back.

In 2002, Leonard Nimoy, now 76, said he was retiring from acting to focus on photography. But this December, he’ll return to the silver screen as the pointy-eared pop culture icon who has been his alter ego since “Star Trek” debuted on television in 1966.

“My photography is still a major love and a major part of my creative life, but this is a ‘Star Trek’ project, so it’s something special,” Nimoy told The Shmooze by phone from Los Angeles, where he’ll be filming through next month.



Mr. Nimoy's Shekhina was made into a dance piece in 2004 and in 2009 has seen another performance:

Spirit in the Flesh will share a program with [Amy] Greenfield’s Club Midnight, a series of shorts about exotic dancers and strippers that, like Nimoy’s photos, insist that spirituality and sensuality are not mutually exclusive. “I just felt that his photos had so much to do with my films,” Greenfield told us. “It was the first thing that really related to my work. It continues to be a revelation.”

For Spirit in the Flesh, Greenfield combined Nimoy’s photos with live dance, music and spoken text from his book. “I soon realized that you can’t just stick photos on a screen,” she said, explaining that she used advanced video editing technology to create movement in the photographs. “It’s taking the photographs and the words from the book and bringing them to life through photo cinema. The dancers are wearing white material so you see the photographs on them, and the photos change as the dancers move.”

Greenfield told us that doing the project did not involve hanging out with Mr. Spock, though he gladly provided permission to use his photos. “I think he’s very happy to have me do it and not bother him,” she said. “He’s getting progress reports.”

More here.


Head over to Trek Movie for photos and a report from VegasTrekCon10.





Leonard Nimoy hosts Our 20th Century, featuring "news clips and top news stories of the decades."

There are a few more clips available on YouTube, and the whole 4 DVD set can be ordered from Amazon, who write "All of the top news stories of the 20th Century in one collection consisting of four DVD's that will bring hours of fun, entertainment, and history into your life. From amazing highlights of great moments in baseball, football, basketball, golf, horse racing, and past Olympics, to fashion changes throughout the decades, and top entertainment news, this collection captures all of the great moments of the 20th Century." The set will be produced on demand "using DVD-R recordable media"


Leonard Nimoy reads To Young for Yiddish by Richard Michelson. You can listen to it here. Roddenberry.com has an interview with both:


Richard Michelson:

13) What all was involved in bringing Leonard Nimoy on board? He’s the voice for the audio version of your book.
What a wonderful icing on the cake. The Yiddish Book Center began a project to record Jewish short stories. They asked Mr. Nimoy to record the story, and I was thrilled.

14) Was Nimoy your first and only choice for the audio book project?
First and only! Leonard and I had originally met at the Yiddish Book Center. He did a reading of Isaac Singer’s “Gimpel, the Fool.” It had long been one of my favorite stories, and he brought it beautifully to life; at the time I had no idea he would later do the same for my story.

Leonard Nimoy:

1) What drew you to it or endeared you to that book?
Mr. Michelson’s book touches me in a deep place. I lived with Yiddish speaking grandparents. They were a major positive influence on me and the language still has a great impact on my emotions.

2) Did it bring back a flood of childhood memories as you read it? If so, any good ones you’d be willing to share?
I have vivid and emotional memories of my childhood experiences as the youngest member of a Jewish family. Michelson’s book puts me in touch with those powerful memories. I hold them dear.


Found by Jackie, thank you very much.


Leonard Nimoy on the Joy Behar Show on August 3rd.



We've somehow all along known the conclusion the journalist comes to in this interview, I think, but it's fascinating still...

Nimoy's Lens

Nimoy says he has no secret self, that as an actor, he's played out every possible aspect of his personality. "At the expense of sounding flip about it, I have acted out so many aspects of myself over the last 60 years—I've been bad guys, I've been good guys, I've been crazy people, I've been intelligent people, I've been aliens, I've been foreigners of all kinds with dialects and makeup. I can't imagine any kind of character that I haven't played.

"When I did Mission Impossible for two years, I did so many different kinds of characters and personalities that the same ones started to come around again. I quit the show because I was bored," Nimoy says. "I don't have any more hidden, lost selves. I'm integrated. I'm very happy with the way I am."

From his point of view, that's no doubt true. But the rest of us have only gotten to know him at a remove, through his onscreen persona. In the 40-minute film of Secret Selves, the real Nimoy is the onscreen presence. It's a side of the man that has surely been eclipsed for most of us by his most famous, oft-revered character.

For the rest of us, Leonard Nimoy's secret self is, it turns out, an intriguing, engaging guy named Leonard Nimoy.

More here.

Tenafly High School Students Address

Leonard Nimoy encourages students to read and expose themselves to ideas.



Secret Selves

Leonard Nimoy gave an interview to WAMC Northeast Public Radio. Listen to it here. (Found by Grace, many thanks.) A recap can be found at Trek Today and Trek Movie.


Stuff you find on the net while you weren't looking for it...

Celebrity Networth offers a guess at "what your favorite star got in the bank."

Newsmeat lists celebrities contributions to political campaigns.


Actor has sitters pose as selves they wish to be


Only in the last dozen years has he been able to devoted himself full time to art work. He has exhibited in museums before, but said this is his first solo show, admitting: "I'm excited."

He said he hopes "viewers will take away a sense of our common humanity" when they see the pictures.

There were threads of similarity, he observed, in his subjects' desires for power, or creativity, or to be perceived as bolder or more adventurous than they are in real life. Some were humorous; some very moving, Nimoy said, but the chance to be their other selves for a moment "seemed to touch something very universal."

Asked if he saw parallels in his work as an actor and as a photographer, he said both allowed him to create a body of work that lives on, but otherwise "I make no connection between what I did in the past and what I do now."

In his catalog essay, John Stomberg, deputy director the Williams College Museum of Art and an authority on photography, suggests, however, that the issues of identity pervading much of Nimoy's recent work may be related to his own coming-to-terms with the over-arching Mr. Spock.

"I was fortunate," Nimoy said, of his chance to play Spock. "People took him to heart for his great dignity, intelligence and integrity ... But I'm not very much like him. I'm much more emotionally oriented.

More here.


Daily Nimoy Photo. A picture of Leonard a day, what a lovely idea. Found by Grace. Many thanks.


Listen to Leonard Nimoy read Etgar Keret`s Good Intentions at yassu.com, a "darkly comic tale of a professional hit man whose latest assignment calls him to question his line of work." The podcast you're looking for is "Lost and Found" should it not be the first one to open. Good Intentions is the first story in the stream.

July 2010 September 2010