FUN, FRIVOLOUS & FASCINATING FACTS FROM 30 YEARS OF STAR TREK

"Star Trek" was launched in 1966 after Gene Roddenberry, who had a development deal with Desilu Productions and its president Lucille Ball, struck a deal with NBC for a pilot. However, Roddenberry was inflexible in terms of trimming the costs of the series pilot -- which could have stopped production -- until Lucy stepped in to protect his creative control, and agreed to fund the money he needed. According to then-Desilu senior vice president Edwin Holly, "If it were not for Lucy, there would be no Star Trek today."

"Trekkies," now called "Trekkers," are the only fans listed by name in the Oxford English Dictionary.

13 Star Trek books are sold every minute in the United States.

A 1993 study from Purdue University found that children learn more about science from STAR TREK than from any other source.

A syndicated follow-up series to classic STAR TREK was first attempted in 1977 with STAR TREK II, which would have depicted a second five-year mission of the Enterprise under the command of James T. Kirk, but the series was canceled shortly before it went into production. However, two of the series' scripts that had already been drafted; "The Child" and "Devil's Due" were eventually rewritten as episodes of STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION.

A vintage 1968 STAR TREK domed lunchbox, manufactured by Aladdin and featuring the Enterprise on one side and Spock and Kirk poised to fend off enemies on the other, could fetch more than $700 in today's market depending on its condition. A lunchbox from STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE, introduced in 1980 by King Seeley Thermos, could bring $80. Lunchboxes from STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION, also from King Seeley Thermos and including a 1988 version depicting the crew's cast could attract $35, while a 1989 one picturing Picard, Riker and Data is worth as much as $50.

Both Majel Barrett and James Doohan have lent their voices to automated equipment on-board the Enterprise. Barrett provided the audio for the Enterprise's computer in both classic "Star Trek" and "Star Trek: The Next Generation," while Doohan gave the computer M-5 a voice during an episode of classic "Star Trek." Barrett has most recently lent her voice to "Star Trek: Continuum" the Microsoft Network website.

Character actor Wallace Shawn was the voice behind the Grand Nagus, the Ferengi master of commerce in STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE. He also was the anxiety behind the intonations of "Rex," the incredibly nervous plastic dinosaur in the hit Disney film "Toy Story."

More than 63 million STAR TREK books are in print and have been translated into more than 15 languages including Chinese, Norwegian, Hungarian, and Hebrew.

Recently, the Postal Service held a contest which yields a STAR TREK stamp, the entertainment representation of the '60s.

STAR TREK conventions are held every weekend of every year in at least four different U.S. cities, annually attracting more than 300,000 U.S. fans and an estimated one million fans worldwide.

STAR TREK is seen in more than 100 countries and has been translated into dozens of languages.

STAR TREK the original series was launched in 1966 after Gene Roddenberry, who had a development deal with Desilu Productions and its president Lucille Ball, struck a deal with NBC for a pilot. However, Roddenberry was inflexible in terms of trimming the costs of the series pilot -- which could have stopped production -- until Lucy stepped in to protect his creative control, and agreed to fund the money he needed. According to then-Desilu senior vice president Edwin Holly, "If it were not for Lucy, there would be no STAR TREK today."

STAR TREK: VOYAGER is the only television show in TV Guide history to be featured on the cover of the publication before editors had even seen the show.

STAR TREK: VOYAGER may head up its own series now, but another Voyager (called Voyager VI) appeared in STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE.

The amount of time you could spend watching back-to-back episodes of classic STAR TREK, STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION, STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE," AND STAR TREK: VOYAGER would total 556 hours, or nearly 24 days without any sleep.

The first U.S. Space Shuttle, the "Enterprise," was given its name in 1976 after NASA received 400,000 requests from STAR TREK fans.

The furry, cuddly, prolific Tribbles appeared in a classic "Star Trek" episode entitled "The Trouble with Tribbles" and also showed up in "Star Trek III: The Search for Spock." These popular little furballs will next be seen in an episode of STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE entitled "Trials and Tribble-ations" which will air the week of November 4, 1996.

The Romulan race is the only adversary to have been featured on all four STAR TREK series.

The U.S. Space Shuttle, the "Enterprise," was given its name after NASA received 400,000 requests from Star Trek fans.

Weddings aboard Star Trek vessels have had limited success. Kirk conducted the Martine/Tomlinson wedding during an episode of classic "Star Trek" that was interrupted by a Romulan attack. While Miles O'Brien and Keiko Ishikawa did wed in 2367 during "Star Trek: The Next Generation," Lwaxana Troi's marriage to Campio was halted when the groom, uncomfortable with the Betazoid tradition of marrying in the nude, abruptly left. Also on "Star Trek: The Next Generation," the planned nuptials for Deanna Troi and Wyatt Miller were canceled after the groom chose to join the last surviving Tarellians in search of a cure for a plague.

Back to Behind the Scenes