‘Star Trek’ icon Nichelle Nichols recorded screaming for her life in audiotaped fight with son
The famed actress who is best known for her trailblazing role in the sci-fi series and movies, is reportedly fighting her son for control of her estate
Star Trek star Nichelle Nichols has been captured in audio obtained by Atlanta’s WGCL, screaming for her life in a battle with her son.
Nichols, now 86 and suffering from dementia, has generated an army of fans for her portrayal of U.S.S. Enterprise communications officer Lt. Nyota Uhura over the course of the last 50 years. But now she is in a battle with her son over guardianship and her friends and associates tell the station that her son has evil intentions.
“I’m the boss of me, Gil, he’s not the boss of me,” Nichols is heard saying on the tape, turned over to the station by Gilbert Bell, who identifies himself as Nichols’ friend and manager.
Bell told the station that the recording took place as he and Nichols were reviewing court documents filed by the actress’ son in an attempt to take control of her estate, according to WGCL.
As they are going over the papers, Nichols is heard saying, “I didn’t give permission to have conservatorship over me. I didn’t know what he was doing.”
At that point, Nichols’ son allegedly enters the room and Nichols is heard screaming.
“You get your hands off me,” she is heard shouting. “You’re trying to get rid of me.”
At another point, the son is heard saying, “Mother, we are going home,” which prompts Nichols to respond, “Help! No! No! No!”
The WGCL story does not identify Nichols’ son, but other news outlets confirm that her son is Kyle Johnson, the actor.
The station reported that it reached out to Nichols’ son and he said that his mother does not have a management team. He declined to respond to the allegations or to the existence of the tape.
Nichols has continued acting despite suffering a stroke in 2015.
She most famously played Uhura during the three year run of Star Trek from 1966-69, and continued the role in an animated version of the series from 1973-74 and in six feature films. She notably spoke of meeting Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. who convinced her to remain on the show after its first season when she had decided to leave for Broadway.
“He asked what I was talking about, and told me that I can’t leave the show,” she told the Wall Street Journal in 2011. “We talked a long time about what it all meant and what images on television tell us about ourselves.”
She later shared the first interracial on-screen kiss with co-star William Shatner, who played Capt. James T. Kirk in the 1968 episode “Plato’s Stepchildren.”