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'Star Trek' Actor Anton Yelchin Dead at 27
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Anton Yelchin, known for his roles in Star Trek and Alpha Dog died early Sunday morning in Los Angeles, ET can confirm. He was 27.
The LAPD's Valley Traffic Division confirmed TMZ's first report of the death. According to the LAPD, Yelchin's friends grew suspicious when he didn't meet them for a rehearsal on Saturday. When they arrived at his house at 1 a.m. local time, they found him pinned between his car, a mailbox, and a security gate.
"The speculation is that he got out of the car and it was in neutral and rolled back on him," the LAPD tells ET.
A rep for Yelchin also confirmed the late actor's death, telling ET, "Actor Anton Yelchin was killed in a fatal traffic collision early this morning. His family requests you respect their privacy at this time."
Yelchin was born in Saint Petersburg, Russia, in 1989, the only child of famed figure skaters Irina and Viktor Yelchin.
"They wanted me to be a skater," he told ET's Kevin Frazier on the set of Star Trek Beyond in July 2015. "When I sucked, they just knew I sucked and they were cool with it."
However, his parents' figure skating background came in handy when he was developing characters. "You realize the intensity of their knowledge of the body is incredible," he said. "It's very inspiring. I'll talk to my mom about how to move. I'll be like, 'This is how I want this guy to move, what muscles should I [use]?' She knows all that."
Yelchin got his big break in 2007's Alpha Dog, alongside Justin Timberlake and Bruce Willis. His career took off from there, with a starring role in 2009's Terminator Salvation, as well as the recurring role of Pavel Chekov in the Star Trek reboot and its sequels.
"I love pushing fake buttons all day. I seriously love it. I know that sounds cynical, but I do really love it. It's like being like a little kid," he told ET while filming Star Trek Beyond last summer.
"I have the best time sitting with these people! They're the loveliest, funniest, people to be around," he said of his co-stars. "It's such a privilege to be around such intelligent, funny people!"
This camaraderie was apparent when the tight-knit cast took to social media to honor their late co-star. "I loved Anton Yelchin so much. He was a true artist - curious, beautiful, courageous. He was a great pal and a great son. I'm in ruins," John Cho tweeted.
"Our dear friend. Our comrade. Our Anton," Zachary Quinto shared on Instagram. "One of the most open and intellectually curious people I have ever had the pleasure to know. So enormously talented and generous of heart. Wise beyond his years. And gone before his time. All love and strength to his family at this impossible time of grief."