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Doug Jones talks about playing an alien in Star Trek: Discovery

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Doug Jones as Lieutenant Saru and Sonequa Martin-Green as First Officer Michael Burnham.

Doug Jones is no stranger to playing alien creatures or monsters. He has brought us numerous amazing performances while covered in incredible prosthetics or motion capture – Abe Sapien in Hellboy and Hellboy II: The Golden Army, the Faun and the Pale Man in Pan’s Labyrinth, Crimson Peak and The Shape of Water. He has appeared in films such as Tank Girl, Hocus Pocus and The Bye Bye Man. He also played the Silver Surfer in the Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, as well as appearing in the TV series Falling Skies, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Guillermo del Toro’s The Strain.

We will next see him in Star Trek: Discovery where he will play an alien called Lt. Saru, a Starfleet Science Officer.

Writer-producer Aaron Harberts, who is showrunner on the upcoming CBS All Access drama along with Gretchen J. Berg, spoke to EW about the character.

What we can tell you that adds the context to that clip where he says he can sense the coming of death is that he comes from a planet where he’s a ‘prey species.’ He’s the first of his kind to make it to Starfleet.

On Saru’s planet, there’s a dominant predator species that constantly imperils another weaker species called Kelpiens. As part of the latter group, Saru has evolved with heightened survival instincts. Such prey species tend to have a cowardly reputation in the Federation, but Saru should not be underestimated.

Jones also spoke about the character.

[Producers] said Saru is the Spock of the series, he’s the Data of the series — and those are beloved characters that I always connect with whenever I would watch the past incarnations of Star Trek.

On Falling Skies, I played an alien species who came to Earth to help the humans fight back the bad aliens who’d taken over, and I was intelligent, well-spoken, had a lot of answers and science-y smart. Saru is all of those things and then some.

Discovery stars Sonequa Martin-Green (The Walking Dead) as a brilliant Starfleet First Officer — the first human educated on Vulcan — who’s forced to make an impossibly difficult decision which impacts the entire Federation.

The show stars Jason Isaacs as Captain Lorca, Sonequa Martin-Green as First Officer Michael Burnham, Doug Jones as science officer Saru, Anthony Rapp as fellow science officer Stamets, Terry Serpico as Starfleet admiral Anderson, Maulik Pancholy as chief medical officer Nambue, Sam Vartholomeos as junior Starfleet officer Connor, Mary Wiseman as Cadet Tilly, James Frain as Sarek, astrophysicist and father of Spock, Chris Obi as Klingon leader T’Kuvma, Mary Chieffo as L’Rell, a Klingon commander, Shazad Latif as Lieutenant Tyler, Rekha Sharma as Commander Landry, Kenneth Mitchell as Kol, Clare McConnell as Dennas, Damon Runyan as Ujilli, Rainn Wilson as Harry Mudd, and Michelle Yeoh as Captain Philippa Georgiou.

Star Trek: Discovery hits Netflix this autumn.

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