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Anton Yelchin Biography

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Birth Name: Anton Yelchin
Born: 03/11/1989
Birth Place: Russia

Born on March 11, 1989, in St. Petersburg, Russia, Yelchin was the son of professional figure skaters Viktor and Irina Yelchin. Despite having been popular performers with the Leningrad Ice Ballet, Yelchin's parents - both Soviet Jews who were denied the chance to represent their country at the 1972 Olympic Games due to discrimination - immigrated to the United States soon after their son was born, where they were granted asylum as political refugees. Settling in Tarzana, CA, his parents found work as figure skating coaches, while Yelchin declared his intentions of becoming an actor when he was four years old. With his parent's encouragement, Yelchin began taking acting classes. By the time he was 10, he made his onscreen debut in a 2000 episode of the long-running medical drama, "ER" (NBC, 1994-2009).

The role soon led to him landing his first big break in the drama "Hearts in Atlantis" (2001). Adapted from a novella by Stephen King, the film performed disappointingly at the box office, but earned Yelchin critical praise for his portrayal of the fatherless young protagonist, Bobby Garfield, who befriends an otherworldly older man (Anthony Hopkins) with supernatural gifts. Yelchin immediately followed with smaller parts in "15 Minutes" (2001) and "Along Came a Spider" (2001), and continued turning in guest spots on hit shows like "The Practice" (ABC, 1997-2004), "Without A Trace" (CBS, 2002- ) and "NYPD Blue" (ABC, 1993-2005). Continuing his steady employment on the small screen, Yelchin had an amusing appearance on "Curb Your Enthusiasm"(HBO, 2000- ), which he followed by starring in the made-for-cable movie "Jack" (Showtime, 2004), a coming-of-age drama about an adolescent dealing with his burgeoning sexual feelings while his parents go through a divorce.

Yelchin graduated to regular series status when he landed on the short-lived cult favorite, "Huff," playing the miscreant son of a Los Angeles-based psychiatrist (Hank Azaria) who is forced to deal with all manner of traumas after a 15-year-old gay patient commits suicide in his office. Though "Huff" lasted only two years, Yelchin received considerable praise for his performance on the award-winning show. Alongside episodes of "Criminal Minds" (CBS, 2005- ), and "Law & Order: Criminal Intent" (NBC/USA, 2001- ), the young actor returned to the feature world with a turn in the coming of age drama, "House of D" (2004), in which he played an adolescent boy whose friendship with a mentally challenged man (Robin Williams) leads to unfortunate circumstances. In "Fierce People" (2006), he was the adventurous son of a drug- and alcohol-addled Manhattan socialite (Diane Lane) who is forced into living with her billionaire paramour (Donald Sutherland), which ultimately results in tragic consequences.

Yelchin continued to rise with his starring turn in the independent coming-of-age comedy "Charlie Bartlett" (2008), in which he was a public high school student kicked out of every possible boarding school who sets up his own psychiatric practice - complete with dispensing drugs - for the youthful populace. He was set for superstardom when he was announced to play a young Pavel Chekov, the Russian navigator aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise, in J.J. Abrams' highly anticipated reboot of "Star Trek" (2009). Shortly after that sci-fi movie became a blockbuster, he appeared within the genre again for "Terminator Salvation," which received a mixed reception.

Continuing to be incredibly busy, Yelchin was featured in a slew of 2011 movies, including the romance film "Like Crazy," the CGI-heavy cartoon-inspired "The Smurfs" and a lively remake of the horror comedy "Fright Night," co-starring Colin Farrell and David Tennant. In 2013, he returned to the Enterprise for "Star Trek Into Darkness," another top-tier installment in the franchise, and reprised his role as Clumsy Smurf in "The Smurfs 2," which was critically lambasted but made a killing at the box office.