Actress Sofia Boutella breaks out in 'Star Trek: Beyond'

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Tuesday, July 26, 2016
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One of the breakout stars of "Star Trek: Beyond" is Sofia Boutella, a 34-year-old Algerian-born actress who plays a technologically-savvy alien in the film.

One of the breakout stars of "Star Trek: Beyond," which opened this weekend, is Sofia Boutella.

The 34-year-old Algerian-born actress plays Jaylah, a strong-willed technologically-savvy alien the Enterprise crew discovers after they crash land on uncharted planet.

Director Justin Lin knew Boutella had something special the moment he saw her audition tape. She was the third person he saw in the audition process.

"I stopped the whole process, I flew her in - makeup test," Lin said. "It was so early on. That was unique in that we were able to build the character with Sofia in mind."

Boutella said that being new to the "Star Trek" franchise made her nervous at first, but she quickly fit in with the cast.

"I just wanted to do my best and have fun with it," she said.

Boutella's resume includes roles in a Michael Jackson video and as a backup dancer for Madonna.

Boutella is currently working on three films, including "The Mummy" with Tom Cruise and "The Coldest City" with Charlize Theron, both due out in 2017.

"Star Trek: Beyond" earned about $60 million in its U.S. debut weekend and another $30 million overseas. Paramount has ordered a fourth installment in the current "Star Trek" film series, with Boutella expected to return.