After a musical career that saw her sing with legendary jazzman Duke Ellington and dance on the silver screen with Sammy Davis Jr., Nichelle joined the cast of Star Trek in 1966 as the USS Enterprise’s communications officer Nyota Uhura.
As one of the first black women to feature in a major TV series in a role other than a maid or housekeeper, Nichols’ sci-fi adventures proved inspirational not just for Star Trek fans, but for America as a whole, with none other than Martin Luther King praising her as a vital role model for black children and young women.
In November 1968 Star Trek episode ‘Plato’s Stepchildren’, Nichelle Nichols and co-star William Shatner made history when they kissed on-screen – widely regarded as the first interracial kiss on US television.
While Star Trek: The Original Series came to a close in 1969, Nichols reprised her role as Lieutenant Uhura in a string of successful Star Trek films: The Motion Picture (1979), The Wrath of Khan (1982), The Search for Spock (1984), The Voyage Home (1986), The Final Frontier (1989) and The Undiscovered Country (1991).
An enthusiastic advocate of real-life space exploration, Nichelle Nichols has also worked with NASA to recruit minority and female personnel for the US space agency.
— This news story is for May 2017’s MCM London Comic Con —