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Leonard Nimoy, Mr. Spock On 'Star Trek,' Dies At 83

Updated at 1:16 p.m.

Actor Leonard Nimoy, best known for his role as Mr. Spock, the logical half-Vulcan, half-human in the original Star Trek series and several movies, has died at his home in Los Angeles, his granddaughter, Madeleine, told NPR. Nimoy was 83.

The cause was end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, she said.

NPR's Neda Ulaby, who is reporting on the story, tells our Newscast unit:

"Leonard Nimoy started acting as a teenager at a settlement house theater in Boston where he grew up. His father was a barber, a Jewish refugee from Ukraine. Nimoy felt stifled by Spock at times during his career. He also appeared on Broadway, wrote poetry and plays and directed a few blockbuster movies, including Star Trek 4. He eventually made peace with the character. Spock could have been just pointy ears and punch lines. Leonard Nimoy gave him gravitas."

Nimoy reprised the role he is most famous for in the J.J. Abrams' reboot of the franchise. He told NPR's Guy Raz in 2009: "I know why they wanted me in this last film, which was to create a bridge between the original cast and the new. But that's been done. So I would suspect that there's no need for my presence again."

Actor Zachary Quinto, who took over as Mr. Spock in the reboot and its sequel, told NPR in 2013 that Nimoy "was very supportive from the beginning, and we became incredibly good friends."

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Krishnadev Calamur is NPR's deputy Washington editor. In this role, he helps oversee planning of the Washington desk's news coverage. He also edits NPR's Supreme Court coverage. Previously, Calamur was an editor and staff writer at The Atlantic. This is his second stint at NPR, having previously worked on NPR's website from 2008-15. Calamur received an M.A. in journalism from the University of Missouri.