The final frontier is continuing to bring audiences inclusive characters played by members of underrepresented communities in Hollywood. The third season of CBS All Access’ Star Trek: Discovery will introduce the first non-binary and transgender characters in Gene Roddenberry’s iconic franchise that celebrates diversity via a sci-fi lens.
Blu del Barrio will make their screen acting debut as the non-binary character Adira, who is highly intelligent with a confidence and self-assurance well beyond their years. They will find a new home on the USS Discovery and form an unexpected bond with Lt. Commander Paul Stamets (Anthony Rapp) and Dr. Hugh Culber (Wilson Cruz).
Ian Alexander will play the transgender character Gray, empathetic, warm and eager to fulfill his lifelong dream of being a Trill host, but he will have to adapt when his life takes an unexpected turn.
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“Star Trek has always made a mission of giving visibility to underrepresented communities because it believes in showing people that a future without division on the basis of race, gender, gender identity or sexual orientation is entirely within our reach,” said Michelle Paradise, co-showrunner and executive producer. “We take pride in working closely with Blu del Barrio, Ian Alexander and Nick Adams at GLAAD to create the extraordinary characters of Adira and Gray, and bring their stories to life with empathy, understanding, empowerment and joy.”
Del Barrio is a non-binary actor who uses they/them pronouns. Del Barrio was in their final year of studies at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art when they auditioned for the role. Del Barrio has been acting in theater and short films before making their debut in Star Trek: Discovery.
Alexander, who uses they/them and he/him pronouns, is best known for his roles as Buck Vu on Netflix’s The OA and Lev in the video game The Last of Us Part II. Alexander made history as the first out transgender Asian-American person to act on television. He is also an advocate for transgender equality, racial justice and mental health awareness for LGBTQ+ youth. Alexander and Del Barrio will be recurring guest stars.
In addition to having the first-ever openly non-binary and transgender characters, Star Trek: Discovery was moving the needle with inclusivity since season one. Sonequa Martin-Green made history as the first woman of color to lead a show in the Star Trek franchise. In addition, the aforementioned Anthony Rapp and Wilson Cruz play the first openly gay characters who are in a same-sex marriage in the franchise.
The third season of Star Trek: Discovery will premiere October 15. New episodes of the 13-episode season will be available on-demand weekly on Thursdays.
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