Some Lesser Known Facts About Leonard Nimoy

February 27, 2015

Beth Madison/Wikimedia

Leonard Nimoy, most famous for his character, Spock on Star Trek, passed away on February 27, 2015.  Here’s a look back at some of the lesser known facts about this talented actor and his wide and varied career.

Leonard Nimoy was an actor, writer, director, photographer, and a poet.  He directed Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.  He even directed the comedy, Three Men and a Baby.  He wrote two autobiographies, each appropriately titled, I Am Not Spock in 1975, and I Am Spock in 1995, along with seven books of poetry.  He had many huge successes that many of you know about, but here are some facts you might not have known.

Nimoy’s had his own Etsy shop where he sold mainly t-shirts, and even some of them had his autograph on them.

spockA script for an episode of Star Trek had Spock punch and knockout an evil incarnation of Kirk. Nimoy balked at the idea, explaining that Vulcans would have a less violent way. He pitched the idea of the famous Vulcan nerve grip which became a signature Vulcan move from then on.

Nimoy’s first sci-fi role wasn’t as Spock in Star Trek, it was actually as the character Narab in Zombies of the Stratosphere, a B-movie made in 1952.

He directed an episode of T.V.’s T.J. Hooker in 1983, which starred William Shatner.

Nimoy had T.V. roles in a variety of different shows from the mid-fifties to early seventies.  These included recurring roles on such popular shows as: Sea Hunt, Wagon Train, Gunsmoke, Mission Impossible, as well as Star Trek, of course.

Nimoy’s voice saying “Pure Energy”, was on the song “What’s on Your Mind” by the band Information Society in the late 1980’s.  It got to No. 3 on the the US Pop charts.

His performance of “The Ballad of Bilbo Baggins”, about the adventure of the character in Tolkien’s novel, The Hobbit, could be one of the most mesmerizing videos ever.  It’s hard not to watch the 60’s era production.  It was also on Nimoy’s album, Two Sides of Leonard Nimoy.  It’s obvious that he didn’t take himself too seriously.

For a short time in 1970, Nimoy opened up an exotic pet shop after Star Trek had been cancelled.

Nimoy had a Master’s Degree in Education, and he spoke Yiddish and Hebrew fluently.

He directed a music video by the The Bangles for the song “Going Down to Liverpool”, and he even appeared in it.

Nimoy married action director Michael Bay’s cousin, Susan Bay in 1988.

These are just some of the other lesser known facts about this very accomplished artist.  His full list of accomplishments is wide and varied.  It’s also not that bad of an accomplishment to be best known as Spock.

Sources:  IMDb, Forbes, ManJr

About the author 

Daniel Ganninger - The writer, editor, and chief lackey of Knowledge Stew, the author of the Knowledge Stew line of trivia books, and editor of Fact World and the Knowledge Stew sister site on Medium, our ad-free subscription sites. I hope you learn many new things here that add to your knowledge.

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