The death of Anton Yelchin: the investigation revealed new details of the accident

Biography of Anton Yelchin

Anton Yelchin is a native of the USSR who has achieved recognition in Hollywood. Having started his acting career in 2000, while still a child, he has portrayed more than 60 roles on screen, the most famous of which are perhaps Bobby Garfield from the film “Hearts of Atlantis” and Pavel Chekhov from “Star Trek.” He worked with recognized directors: Jim Jarmusch, Scott Hicks, JJ Abrams. His career was dizzying, Anton had great prospects. Until his life was cut short in 2020 due to an absurd accident.

American actor of Russian origin Anton Yelchin

Death of actor Anton Yelchin - murder or accident

The tragic and mysterious death of 27-year-old American actor of Russian origin Anton Yelchin raises questions among investigators, colleagues and relatives of the actor, as well as all his fans around the world. How did the young actor get caught in the metal grip of his own car? Is there any malicious intent of third parties in this tragic event? Or is the death of the actor who played his “star role” in the Star Trek trilogy a chain of tragic accidents? People's News was looking for answers to these questions.

Death under the weight of metal

On Sunday, June 19, People's News reported that Star Trek star Anton Yelchin died in an accident. An American actor of Russian origin passed away as a result of a car accident that occurred in California.

The details of the accident that became fatal for the young actor are horrifying: the body of Anton Yelchin was found near his own home in the Burbank Hills area (Burbank, California), crushed into a metal gate fence by his own car - a Jeep Grand Cherokee weighing three tons. Yelchin's body was discovered by his friends, who became concerned that the Russian actor did not come to the party at the appointed time.

The police did not specify the circumstances of the accident - however, according to a preliminary version, Yelchin’s car backed up on its own at the moment when the actor left the salon and approached the gate. As American sources explained, near the actor’s house there was a fairly sloping slope along which the car could roll down, pinning Yelchin against the gate.

Sixteen years of career: from the "Ambulance" to the seat of the "Enterprise"

Anton Yelchin is one of the few Russians who were able to make a dizzying acting career in the West. However, in order to get a chance at a career, it was necessary to go through emigration - Anton, born in Leningrad, the son of professional figure skaters, moved to the United States at the age of six months.

From a young age, Anton began to try himself in cinema: since the late 1990s, the actor has been trying himself in various films and television series. His first major appearance was the television series “Emergency” (ER) - and further roles were not long in coming. However, Yelchin also auditioned for a role in which it is already difficult to imagine anyone other than Daniel Radcliffe - the role of Harry Potter . However, fate decreed otherwise: another, truly stellar role awaited the American with a Russian soul.

In total, over 16 years of a full-time acting career, Anton Yelchin played in dozens of Hollywood films. However, the real triumph for the young actor was his role as the Russian navigator of the spaceship Enterprise, Pavel Chekhov , in the trilogy of films directed and produced by J. J. Abrams , Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness and Star Trek Beyond. Charming and charismatic, the resourceful Russian astronaut more than once saved the Enterprise crew from certain death. However, in reality, the actor was unable to get out of the metal trap that another vehicle, a more earthly one, had set for him.

Murder versions: what is the Cherokee jeep hiding?

In the very first hours after the publication of the news about Yelchin’s death, the media space began to fill with rumors: no one believed in such a terrible and unexpected death of the young actor. The statement from law enforcement agencies did not add anything to the investigation: the California police found no signs of violent death - however, the police do not discount the version that “Star Trek” star Anton Yelchin could have been killed. In addition, it became known that at the time the body was discovered, the car engine was running and the gear lever was in neutral. Now investigators have to find out why the actor got out of the car - to meet his death.

Photos from the scene of the actor’s death, published by TMZ, also added to the mystery. The photo shows how a strong metal gate was bent by a car. However, the slope shown in the photo near Yelchin’s house, down which the ill-fated car rolled, is not high enough to forcefully push a person into a metal fence.

Anton Yelchin — Death Scene Photos (PHOTO GALLERY)

— TMZ (@TMZ) June 19, 2020

As Roman Ardashev, a criminologist at the Department of Criminal Law Disciplines at ISTU , in fact there could have been an accident - the car could have been faulty, or the driver had not fully tightened the handbrake. However, the expert emphasized: the story is too mysterious at the moment, and it cannot be ruled out that actor Anton Yelchin could have been killed and the crime disguised as an accident.

“The car can independently crush a person if it is faulty, or the handbrake is not fully tightened. Or it could be simple inattention,” the criminologist noted. “However, the story, by and large, is truly mysterious. It is possible that this could be a murder, thus disguised as an accident.”

However, as Roman Ardashev notes, it is now necessary to ensure the work of forensic experts and investigators: they are the ones who can finally put an end to the case of the death of an American actor with a Russian soul.

“Only forensic experts can establish this using their own methods. Well, you can also check the recordings from video cameras and find additional witnesses,” the expert noted.

Childhood and family

Anton Yelchin was born on March 11, 1989 in Leningrad, into a sports family. The names of his parents were familiar to every Soviet citizen who was partial to figure skating - Viktor Arkadyevich and Irina Grigorievna Yelchin performed in pairs. In 1972, the stars of the Leningrad Ice Ballet received the right to represent the country at the Olympics, but the decision was later revoked due to their Jewish nationality.

Anton Yelchin in childhood

Six months after the birth of their son, the Yelchins received refugee status and emigrated to the United States, settling in California. There, Victor began his coaching career (including mentoring Olympic champion Sasha Cohen), and Irina became a director of grandiose ice shows. At first, the family spoke only Russian, so Anton’s first words were spoken in his native language. But he grew up bilingual, that is, he spoke equally well in both Russian and English.

Anton Yelchin with his parents

The baby's childhood was happy, as the former athletes had hoped. The boy listened with mixed feelings to his father's stories about how they lived in a tiny apartment that was smaller than Anton's bedroom alone in their American home. When he was capricious and did not want to share the goodies, he was told the story of the siege of Leningrad and the unfortunate people forced to eat shoe soles and belts.

Anton Yelchin in his youth

Anton did not turn out to be a figure skater - the boy was bad at skating. Perhaps the reason lay in the cystic fibrosis that he suffered from, because this disease is known to affect the respiratory system. To the credit of Irina and Victor, they did not forcefully mold the boy into a successor to the sports dynasty. And when Anton was in 5th grade, his parents took him to a social evening, where among the other guests was a professional actor. He looked at Yelchin Jr. and recommended that he take an acting class. Seeing that his son was growing into a charismatic personality who adored being the center of attention, from about the age of 11 he began going to castings, accompanied by his parents.

First steps to success

As Irina Grigorievna said, her son was already so handsome as a child that many predicted his fate as an actor. And so it happened - as soon as the boy reached ten years old, he began acting in popular TV series: “ER”, “NYPD Blue”.

Anton attended the audition for the role of Harry Potter. But at the insistence of JK Rowling, the author of the Potter series, native Englishmen can play in the film. An American actor of Russian origin with Jewish roots has nothing to do there.

And at the age of 12, Anton starred in the film “Hearts in Atlantis,” where he played one of the main roles. His partner on the set was Anthony Hopkins, a legend of American cinema! Hopkins was pleasantly shocked watching the teenager play. And at the end of filming, he gave young Yelchin a book by Stanislavsky, on the title page of which he wrote: “You don’t need to read this anymore.”

Further film roles only confirmed the words of his colleagues about the talent of the curly-haired young man. By the age of twenty, Anton had an impressive track record - dozens of films, including “Cruel People”, “New York, I Love You”, “Star Trek”, “Terminator: May the Savior Come” and “Alpha Dog”.

His career developed rapidly, directors loved him. In 2014, he moved to a cozy house in the suburbs of Los Angeles, bought with royalties.

First roles

In 2000, the boy got his first role - Robbie Edelstein from the TV series "ER". His character appears in the episode "Keep Me in Your Heart" (Season 6, Episode 13).

Anton Yelchin in the TV series "ER"

The same year marked Yelchin’s debut in a big movie: it was a small role in the musical “Man Is Made Mostly of Water.” In the action film “15 Minutes of Fame” that was released next, Anton did not have these notorious 15 minutes, but the role of a boy trying to get out of a burning building worked out well. By the way, the “bad guys” in this film were played by Russians Vladimir Mashkov and Oleg Taktarov, and Robert de Niro opposed them.

In the film “Along Came a Spider,” Anton played the son of the Russian president, Dmitry Starodubov, who is kidnapped by attackers obsessed with the idea of ​​becoming global criminals.

Anton Yelchin in the film Along Came a Spider

But Anton got his first truly serious role in 2001. This was the main role in the film adaptation of Stephen King's novel "Hearts of Atlantis", and his partner was the inimitable Anthony Hopkins.

A wise colleague suggested that the boy simply call him “Tony,” but he was too embarrassed to stoop to such familiarity, and until the end of filming he addressed Hopkins only as “sir.” And the director of the project, Scott Hicks, argued that “Anton is an incredibly intelligent and well-read boy.”

Anton Yelchin and Anthony Hopkins in the film "Hearts of Atlantis"

The story of a touching friendship between a boy and an old man, seasoned with the flavor of the 60s and a certain amount of mysticism, was highly appreciated by the audience. If for Hopkins it was one of many victories, for the young Yelchin the premiere opened up new heights.


Since Anton Yelchin refused to follow in his parents' footsteps, he decided to become a film actor. An interesting fact is that in the late 90s the young man was cast for the role of Harry Potter, but failed. As it turned out, only a native Englishman could get the role of a wizard.

Yelchin appeared on the big screen when he was only 10 years old. He was entrusted with playing small roles in the films “ER” and “NYPD Blue.” 2 years later, he played one of the key characters in the film “Hearts in Atlantis.”

An interesting fact is that the world famous actor Anthony Hopkins, who starred in this drama, was impressed by Anton’s performance. Later, he gave the young man a book by Stanislavsky, where on the title page he wrote the following phrase: “You shouldn’t read this anymore!”

Yelchin was pleasantly surprised by how highly a master like Hopkins appreciated his talent.

Later, Anton took part in the filming of the multi-part film “Doctor Huff”, where he was able to masterfully transform himself into the son of a psychiatrist. He conveyed the feelings of his character so truthfully that he was awarded the "Most Sensitive Actor in the World" award.

In 2005, the authoritative publication Hollywood Life recognized Anton Yelchin as the brightest young actor of the year. Soon the thriller “Cruel People” was released, where he got one of the main roles.

Anton was again able to prove his acting skills. This picture brought him great popularity and many positive reviews, both from film critics and famous Hollywood artists.

Anton Yelchin with his parents

Then Yelchin’s creative biography was replenished with such films as “Alpha Dog”, “College Mischief” and “Halfway to Nowhere”, where he got the main roles.

In 2007, during the filming of the film “You and Me,” Anton visited St. Petersburg. And although the city where he was born captured the actor’s imagination, he did not want to stay there.

In 2011, the premiere of the drama “Like Crazy” took place, where Anton Yelchin again got the main role. The film showed the romantic relationships of young people who were separated by life for many years.

An interesting fact is that the film was shot on a digital camera, and its budget did not exceed a quarter of a million dollars. Nevertheless, the film received the Grand Prix and a special jury prize.

Anton Yelchin had a model appearance, as a result of which various photographers and fashion designers offered him cooperation. As a result, in 2012 his photos appeared in Interview magazine. After that, the guy participated in several more photo shoots for different publishing houses.

A year before his death in 2020, Anton Yelchin starred in 7 films. The most popular of them were “Green Room” and “Experimenter”.

An interesting fact is that the last work talked about a curious psychological experiment by Stanley Milgram. This scientist proved in practice how much suffering people can cause to others if it is their responsibility.

In 2020, the film “Porto” was released with Yelchin in the title role. In the drama, the actor played Jake Kleeman, who fell in love with a French girl, Mati. In 2017, after Anton’s death, a film with his participation, “Pureblood,” was released.

Teenage years

After “Hearts of Atlantis”, Yelchin’s “children’s” filmography included several notable works, for example, Jack from the drama “Jack” - about being grateful for what you have and loving life, despite all the blows. Or young Tom from “Secrets of the Past”, who experienced his first love, the loss of a loved one. Anton's partners this time were David Duchovny and Robin Williams.

Anton Yelchin in the film "Secrets of the Past"

People also remember his role in the drama “Cruel People.” Here he is the son of a successful doctor and anthropologist. They are divorced and are fighting tooth and nail for the teenager's affections. “Against the rest, only Anton Yelchin’s hero is perceived positively. An unusually confident game,” critics wrote.

For two years (from 2004 to 2006), Yelchin also starred in the tragicomedy series Dr. Huff, about an extraordinary psychotherapist who became disillusioned with his abilities after the suicide of a patient. Anton got the role of the main character's son. The audience loved this curly-haired young man, his sincere childishness, naivety, and the way he could convey the whole range of emotions and the inner world of his characters with one glance.

Anton Yelchin in the TV series Dr. Huff

Despite his busy schedule, Anton went to school, studied well, and his favorite subject was mathematics. After graduating from school, he applied to college. “But I quickly realized that I wouldn’t make a lawyer or anything like that,” the actor recalled. The guy's other hobby was music. He played guitar in his band The Hammerheads.

“Anton Yelchin was killed by unknown assailants,” says the American actor’s producer

Actor Anton Yelchin died under the wheels of his own car. The media reported his death on Sunday morning. The actor was found pinned between his car and a large mailbox at the gate of his home in the San Fernando Valley in California.

He was discovered by friends who were concerned that he had failed to show up for a scheduled rehearsal and was not answering his phone. The engine of Yelchin's car was running, and the gearbox was in neutral. The entrance to the gate of the actor’s house has a clear slope, but it is not clear why he got out of the car and found himself trapped.

Anton died under very strange and mysterious circumstances. The actor's representative believes that he was probably killed, since everything is too illogical.

In Burbank, California, Yelchin's own car ran over him at the gate of his own home. Inexplicably, he ended up under the wheels of a car: “A very strange death. The road to Anton's house is quite steep; you have to go down the hill to the gate. And it was his body, crushed by a car, that was found at those very gates. Why did he get out of the car? Perhaps he was killed. The police admit the possibility of violent death,” said producer Sergei Konov.

But according to another version, the cause of the death of actor Anton Yelchin could have been an imperfect design of the gear lever in his Jeep Grand Cherokee. The driver may not have noticed that the lever was in neutral rather than in park, The Daily Mail reports.

The electronic lever in the Jeep Grand Cherokee bounces back to its original position when the driver moves it. You can understand whether it is in the parking position only by the sound signal when opening the door and by the signal on the dashboard. Experts believe that such a flaw could have caused numerous accidents in the United States: drivers left their cars in neutral, and it began to move randomly.

However, the exact model of Yelchin's Jeep and the circumstances of his death have not yet been established. When the actor was discovered, the car's engine was running.

As the publication notes, Jeep voluntarily recalled its vehicles in the United States and around the world due to a lever that confused drivers.

At the end of March 2020, Jeep recalled the Grand Cherokee due to possible airbag problems. On March 14, information appeared about problems in the air conditioning systems of 70 SUVs. And on March 2, a large-scale service campaign began, affecting about two and a half thousand Cherokee and Commander models produced from March 11, 2005 to August 27, 2007 and sold from October 20, 2005 to April 17, 2008.

Let us remember that Anton Yelchin is an actor of Russian-Jewish origin. When he was only 6 months old, his parents, skaters, took their son to America. Here he began his star journey. By the age of 27, Yelchin had starred in many successful films. He also played roles on the same stage with such celebrities as: Anthony Hopkins, Sharon Stone, Robert Downey Jr., Robin Williams and others.

Yelchin has starred in all of the new Star Trek films—Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness, and Star Trek Beyond, which is due out this July. In the films, he played one of the members of the spaceship Enterprise, Pavel Chekov.

He also had roles in the films “Only Lovers Left Alive,” “Terminator: May the Savior Come,” “Alpha Dog,” “New York, I Love You.” The actor also voiced characters in The Smurfs and The Smurfs 2.

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Career blossoming

Most viewers answer the question “Where did you first see Anton Yelchin?” confidently answered: “In Alpha Dog!” In this drama based on real events, Anton played the central role of teenager Zach, who was unlucky enough to be the younger brother of local drug dealer Jake. Jake owed a large sum to another businessman, Johnny, and disappeared from the radar. The lender's henchmen, themselves not much older than Zach, kidnap him and bring him to Johnny's house. But the young man does not understand that he is a hostage. He has fun: hanging out with older and interesting guys, and then with beautiful girls. But business is business, and Zach's future is predetermined. Together with Anton, young but already quite accomplished, Justin Timberlake and Ben Foster were involved in the film.

Anton Yelchin and Justin Timberlake in the movie "Alpha Dog"

At the beginning of the film, you can see clips from home videos of young children. These are real recordings of the film's actors. Anton is the last one to appear.

Well, in 2009, Anton received his most recognizable role - the co-pilot of Pavel Chekhov from the reboot of the Star Trek franchise. According to the actor, he would not be interested in playing a “simple Russian,” but Chekhov is a different matter. The history of this character goes back 40 years, and he was an outstanding person.

Anton Yelchin on the set of Star Trek

At the same time, the transition from independent cinema to Hollywood blockbusters of the first category was rapid. “I was simply invited to try out, and here I am,” Anton modestly answered such questions. In the same year, Anton appeared in the fourth part of “Terminator”, thereby consolidating the success of “Star Trek”. This time, viewers saw him in the image of young Kyle Reese, in the future - a fighter of human resistance to artificial intelligence, and in the film - a single father. In 2013, the actor appeared not only in the Star Trek sequel, but also in the vampire film Only Lovers Left Alive by art house master Jim Jarmusch, becoming part of a fantastic cast: in addition to him, the film starred Tilda Swinton, Mia Wasikowska and John Hurt.

"Star Trek": Anton Yelchin as Pavel Chekov

Personal life of Anton Yelchin

During his short life, Anton was never able to find the one who would become the love of his life.
But each of his former partners recalled the time spent together with warmth in their voices. In 2004, Anton dated the young actress Kristen Stewart - she was 14 or 15. “He broke my heart. His soul was immense, and I wanted to absorb all his interests. I wanted to be better, cooler, and... I still considered myself unworthy of him,” the actress later recalled.

Anton Yelchin and Kristen Stewart

A few years after their breakup, Anton was the first to call Kristen and ask if she wanted to talk about it. He said, “I understood what you went through during those years. I am so sorry…".

Since then, Anton has not been seen in a serious relationship. He was credited with having affairs with model Alexandra Berman and actress Imogen Poots, with whom Anton starred in Fright Night (2011) and Green Room (2011). However, there was no official confirmation of their relationship.

Anton Yelchin and Imogen Poots


Anton Yelchin's life was cut short on June 19, 2020 due to an absurd accident.
The body of the 27-year-old actor was found at the entrance to his mansion in Los Angeles. He decided to take a selfie on the hood of his Jeep Grand Cherokee, but forgot to put it on the handbrake. The car rolled and pinned Anton between a brick wall. About the causes of Anton Yelchin's death Anton's friends discovered the corpse. He was supposed to meet them in a few hours, and when he stopped communicating, they decided to pay him a visit, but it was too late. The official cause of death of Anton Yelchin was asphyxiation. It's hard to imagine what Anton's parents went through. His room in their house is still untouched: all his things stand as if he went out for a while, but will return soon. Victor and Irina could not come to terms with his death for a long time. They don't believe the handbrake was raised. A week after Anton’s death, the manufacturer of his car, Fiat Chrysler, sent a letter to the deceased’s house recalling the car due to problems with the gearbox.

Anton Yelchin's grave

The Yelchins sued Chrysler for a long time, but eventually came to an agreement, as the matter reached a dead end. Mom began writing a book about her son, and his father began filming a documentary film. The film “With Love, Antosha” was released in 2020. Since Anton's death, his parents no longer celebrate holidays.

A charitable foundation that saves children with cystic fibrosis is named after Anton Yelchin.

How Anton Yelchin died

On the morning of June 19, 2020, Anton was getting ready for rehearsal. Having already left the yard, he jumped out of the car, probably having forgotten something at home. Some say they were returning for a bag, others say they were checking their mailbox. At that moment, his impressive Jeep Grand Cherokee rolled backwards and crushed Anton with its weight against the fence. The weight of models in this series ranges from 1.6 to 2.4 tons. The actor, whose height is 1.75 m, could not resist the dimensions of the car.

Anton Yelchin died because of an absurdity. The news of this spread throughout the world in a matter of minutes. Fans and colleagues were perplexed. Nobody believed in the death of the talented and full of strength Anton. There were those who lamented the neglect of the deceased - they say, why didn’t he put the handbrake on the car?

He was only 27 years old. Doctors determined that the actor died due to asphyxia, being pinched between the bumper and the fence of his house. It's like a machine uprising...

Anton was first buried at Mount Sinai Cemetery. But, as it turned out, it is prohibited to install sculptures on its territory. Therefore, he was reburied at Hollywood Forever, where people associated with American cinema are buried. A bronze monument was erected at the grave.

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