The American actor was killed in a traffic incident early yesterday morning, his publicist confirmed.
According to TMZ, which first reported the news, he was pinned by his own car at his San Fernando Valley home.
Friends apparently became concerned when Yelchin did not show up for a rehearsal. According to the report, they found him at his home, pinned between his car and a brick mailbox.
Police reportedly told TMZ that the engine was still running when he was found, and that his car was in neutral. It’s not clear what caused the accident.
Yelchin started his acting career as a nine-year old.
He impressed critics and audiences with a series of prominent roles, holding his own against the likes of Anthony Hopkins and Robin Williams. He had parts in indie films and television shows such as Judging Amy and The Practice before getting his big break in 2006 crime thriller Alpha Dog.
His biggest role to date has been as Chekov in the rebooted Star Trek films.
The third film — Star Trek Beyond — is due to be released next month. Several celebrities have paid tribute to the actor on Twitter.
Actress Anna Kendrick wrote: “This is unreal. Anton Yelchin is such a talent. Such a huge loss.”
Little Britain star Matt Lucas said Yelchin was “an amazing actor”.
Glee actor Kevin McHale said: “Anton Yelchin has always been one of my favorite actors.
“I’ve seen every movie. This is awful. I’m so sorry for his family & friends.”
Yelchin, an only child, was born in Russia. His parents were professional figure skaters who moved the family to the United States seeking political asylum when Yelchin was just six months old.
The actor’s family has requested privacy at this time.