13. Martin Luther King Kept Uhura In The Show
Actress Nichelle Nichols did not have a great time filming the first series of Star Trek. Getting Lieutenant Uhura on the show in the first place was something of a coup, given the dearth of black representation on television and the network’s discomfort at there being a strong woman aboard the Enterprise. She even had to deal with Paramount security hurling slurs at her.
She was ready to tender her resignation after the first season, and actually handed in her notice. The following weekend she was at an NAACP, where she bumped into an enthusiastic fan who labelled himself as an avid “Trekker”, dismayed to hear she was leaving.
In fact, the fan managed to convince her to stay. Because that man was Dr Martin Luther King, Jr, and he was delighted at the character of Uhura. “This is why we are marching,” he told her. “We never thought we’d see this on TV.” Realising that she was making a difference, Nichols stayed with the show.