Anyone that has followed the Star Trek franchise since its inception obviously knows George Takei’s name. Who can forget in a hurry the man who played the character of Hikaru Sulu, the pilot of the USS Enterprise?
The actor, director, activist, and author has millions of followers on social media. This is probably down to his public involvement and support in the cause of the LGBT movement. He has received numerous recognitions for this and for his work on Japan-United States relations. It is worthy to note that his desire to build these cross-cultural understanding stems from his experience in World War II when he was interned in a US-run concentration camp.
Takei’s story is a prime example that anyone can succeed despite their sexual orientation or past experiences.
George Takei’s Life and Career
George was named after King George VI of the United Kingdom by his father, Takekuma Norman. He was born in Los Angeles, California, on April 20, 1937. From 1942, George and his family spent several years across three different Us-concentration camps in California and Arkansas. After the war, his family relocated to Los Angeles where George attended Mount Vernon Junior High School, and subsequently, Los Angeles High School where he became President of the Boy’s Division.
He went on to study architecture at the University of California, Berkeley, and a Bachelors and Masters degree in theatre from the University of California, Los Angeles. He also studied acting at the now-defunct Desilu Workshop in Hollywood.
George began his career doing voicing for the English adaptation of the Japanese monster film Godzilla Raids Again. In the years that followed, he worked on everything from Broadway shows to television series and films. In the 1960s, he was notably involved in movies like A Majority of One; Hell to Eternity; Mission Impossible; The Green Berets; and The Big Mouth. For these roles, he got to walk alongside great actors such as Frank Sinatra, Jeffrey Hunter, James Caan, and Jerry Lewis.
The Japanese-American actor came into prominence when he was cast as Lt. Hikaru Sulu. He reprised this role in the first six installments of the Star Trek franchise. He has also been on television and animated series adaptations of Star Trek in the 60s and 70s.
After the success of Star Trek, George had a brief stint in politics. He ran for a seat on the Los Angeles City Council in 1973, and for California State Assemblyman in 1980. He lost the race in 1973 and withdrew from one in 1980. The 90s and 2000s saw him take on more roles in movies and television series. These included Return from the River Kwai, Blood Oath, Heroes, Boston Legal, Larry Crowne, and Allegiance. Not to mention brief appearances in a few Star Trek-inspired series.
In June 2006, George Takei joined the cast of The Howard Stern Show as the announcer. Over the years, he has received positive reviews from fans of the show for his wit, upfront sense of humor and candor.
In January 2014, a documentary film, To Be Takei, highlighting his career and activism premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, and received positive reviews. Takei was also on a documentary film about gays and their stereotyped speech patterns. It was titled Do I Sound Gay?
At different times, he has been the spokesperson cum promoter for different companies like Rooms To Go and Pizza Hut.
Takei has received a myriad of awards in his lifetime. In 1986, he got his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In 2004, he was given the title of Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette. This was conferred on him by the Japanese government for his contributions to US-Japanese relations. He has also won a Lifetime Achievement Awards, LGBT Humanist Award, GLAAD Vito Russo Award and much more.
In 1994, NASA dedicated a newly-discovered asteroid to the veteran actor, naming it Asteroid 7307 Takei.
Who is George Takei’s husband?
To those who have known George the longest, his sexual orientation had never been a secret as he never tried to hide it from those he worked with as far back as his Star Trek days. George Takei is married to a man named Brad Altman, whom he had been dating for eighteen years prior to his public announcement of his sexuality in October 2005. This came after the then governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, vetoed same-sex marriage in California.
George’s love for his partner runs deep as he once described Altman as a saint for helping him care for his mother who was terminally ill. Takei who has traveled extensively to talk about his career and romantic life as a gay Japanese-American got married to Altman in 2008. They were the first couple to obtain their marriage license in West Hollywood. On September 14, 2008, Takei and Altman tied the knot at the Democracy Forum of the Japanese American National Museum.
George and his husband appeared in the British game show All-Star Mr & Mrs in February 2010. They were only the second same-sex couple to appear on the show.
How much is He Worth?
George Takei is on the final lap of his career now, but he has certainly done enough to leave a legacy that will be hard to forget. His most successful period was during the days of Star Trek’s boom. The pay actors receive today is way bigger than what was the norm in the 60s. this helps to keep Takei’s net worth lower than many expect. Add in his commercial ads and brand ambassadorships, Takei’s net worth stands at $12 million according to Celebrity Net Worth, while his partner Brad Altman according to online sources is reported to have a net worth of about $1.3 million.