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George Takei shares 'Star Trek' audition secrets with Neil deGrasse Tyson

What was it like to interview for the role of Mr. Sulu on "Star Trek"? Watch as George Takei talks about the experience that propelled his career.

It was the role that defined his career, and in an interview with Neil deGrasse Tyson for Tyson's upcoming TV series "StarTalk," George Takei reveals what it was like to audition for the role of Mr. Sulu on "Star Trek."

In the clip, Takei says that when he first walked into "Star Trek" TV series creator Gene Roddenberry's office, Roddenberry mispronounced Takei's surname as "Ta-Kai" instead of "Ta-Kay." Takei corrected Roddenberry, of course, but quickly pointed out that he was fine with the mispronunciation because takai means expensive in Japanese. Roddenberry then said that Ta-Kay is perfectly fine by him, which prompted another joke from Takei that Ta-Kay doesn't mean cheap, either.

Check out the excerpt from Tyson's interview with Takei in the clip above to learn even more about Takei's "Star Trek" experience, then watch the full interview on the premiere episode of "StarTalk," which debuts on the National Geographic Channel April 20 in the US and the UK and April 27 in Australia.