Sonequa Martin-Green and Cast of ‘Star Trek: Discovery' on Breathing New Life Into the Iconic Franchise

Sonequa Martin-Green discusses the leap from 'Walking Dead' to 'Star Trek: Discovery'

The cast and crew of "Star Trek: Discovery," including Sonequa Martin-Green, Jason Isaacs and Mary Wiseman, took to the New York Comic-Con over the weekend to discuss reviving the iconic franchise. 

Did your time as an ensemble player on "The Walking Dead" prepare you to lead an ensemble cast for an iconic franchise like Star Trek?

Sonequa Martin-Green: One thousand percent. All roads have led me here. I was on the show for five years so it was very much a post-graduate degree. I learned an incredible amount about what it means to be an actor and to be a professional. Those people will always be a part of my heart and a part in my journey. So to be on that goliath of a show that means so much to so many people... I felt it was the perfect experience to trampoline into this because now I have the privilege to be on the ground. I came into "Walking Dead" when it was already established and this gigantic thing. But to be on the ground and to already have intimate understanding of an environment that is collaborative, familial where the creativity is encouraged and nurtured, I knew what that environment felt like and I knew what it took to get it from watching my fellow actors and crew at walking dead. I saw it work and now here's an opportunity to create and cultivate that here. 

Did you look for inspiration from any previous Trek actors to guide your performance?

SMG: Leonard (Nimoy) for sure. But honestly I really am inspired and informed by the actors that I’m working with now. I feel that everyone jumped off the cliff and they’re going wherever the story leads them. The work becomes so very alive because of who we have on set.

Can you speak to the interpersonal relationships on set between the various female cast members?

Mary Wiseman (Cadet Sylvia Tilly): I’m new to this situation. I’ve never had a role this size on this type of franchise before and Tilly... her whole world is opening up. She's on this new ship and for the first time she's exactly where she wants to be. And she comes into contact with this woman (Martin-Green) who is strong and warm and empathetic and she kind of blows her mind. She is in a place of pure possibility right now and I feel like that too. To have Sonequa... I mean she might not be the captain of the ship, but she's the captain of this freaking show. She is a mother and a sister and a friend to all of us. I feel that way about all the women behind the scenes. All the stories that you will see on screen reverberate backwards and between us all and its really special.

Jason Isaacs (Captain Gabriel Lorca): And there are people who are upset that there's a woman lead or a woman of color lead or the fact that we have a  diverse platform where we have people from every gender or sexuality is represented. The people upset with that can go f--- themselves.

"Star Trek: Discovery" can be seen on CBS All Access.

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