A Russian immigrant who came to the United States with his figure-skater parents when he was merely six months old, Anton Yelchin found success in his new land since making his acting debut at the age of nine in A Man Is Mostly Water (1999). Acquiring an impressive résumé by the ripe old age of ten, Yelchin appeared in no less than three major motion pictures in 2001 alone, including 15 Minutes, Along Came a Spider, and Hearts in Atlantis opposite Anthony Hopkins. He transitioned to older roles, taking the lead in Alpha Dog (2006) and playing the title character in Charlie Bartlett (2007). In 2009, Yelchin assumed two famous roles: Pavel Chekov in Star Trek (a role he'd reprise in two sequels) and Kyle Reese in Terminator Salvation. He voiced Clumsy Smurf in the 2011 big-screen version of the film and several subsequent sequels and shorts. Yelchin died in 2016, at the age of 27, after a freak car accident.
Biography by Jason Buchanan
- Emigrated from the Soviet Union as an infant with his figure skater-parents Viktor and Irina Yelchin, who were granted political asylum in the United States.
- Took acting lessons as a child in order to overcome shyness.
- First professional acting assignment: a Chuck E. Cheese commercial.
- Won a Young Artist Award for Hearts in Atlantis.
- Was a member of the L.A.-based band The Hammerheads.