Star Trek has created a fascinating universe of new worlds and civilizations throughout the franchise’s many series and movies, but it also created an interesting world behind the scenes.
It has taken thousands of actors, writers, producers, directors, makeup artists, and set designers to bring these worlds to life, and it has not always been easy.
However, in all the hard work behind the scenes, the cast and crew still find time to have a little fun on the set.
Across the series and movies, the actors and production crew have had a good time playing various alien species, transforming into the Borg, working with their usual makeup and prosthetics, relaxing on set, and giving their castmates and coworkers a hard time.
Since the first series was created in the 1960s, the Star Trek crews have been breaking the tension on set and going through their normal days in unconventional ways, from playing jokes on the guest stars to taking over the bridge.
These photos are a glimpse behind the camera at the everyday life of bringing Star Trek to the screen for the past few decades.
Here are the 20 Star Trek Behind The Scenes Photos Every Fan Needs To See.
20. The Rock vs. producer Rick Berman
In Star Trek: Voyager‘s sixth season, the cast welcomed an illustrious guest star: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. The Rock was already well known as a WWE wrestler, and he was making his break into acting as the Pendari fighting champion in Voyager‘s episode “Tsunkatse”.
Johnson used many of his signature wrestling moves against Seven of Nine, and despite the use of stunt doubles and fight choreography, Jeri Ryan was reportedly still sore after the first day’s shooting going up against Johnson.
The Voyager cast and production crew seemed to enjoy having The Rock on set, making a ton of promotional photos with the famous wrestler. Even producer Rick Berman, pictured here, joined in the fun.
19. Terry Farrell “helps” with Odo’s mask
Even more arduous than Terry Farrell’s hand drawn makeup for Dax was Odo’s complicated Changeling makeup. Rene Auberjonois endured a makeup process of two and a half hours every day. Auberjonois hated the makeup and removed it as soon as he could, and he seemed to have some fun with that judging by these behind the scenes photos.
In this photo, Terry Farrell, who would have at least partly understood Auberjonois’ pain, is “helping” Auberjonois with Odo’s mask, creating a strangely disturbing and unsettling image.
In the process of removing the Odo mask, Auberjonois and Farrell may have created the creepiest Star Trek species to date. At least one entire episode could be devoted to the terrifying alien species in half-removed and distorted Changeling makeup.
18. Locutus assimilates the script
In Star Trek: The Next Generation‘s episode “Best of Both Worlds,” when Picard was captured by the Borg Collective, Patrick Stewart had to transform into Locutus of Borg.
Stewart seems to be enjoying his new character in this photo, as he went around the set attempting to assimilate a script for the upcoming fourth season.
The episode was a tragic turn of events for the crew of the Enterprise, but evidently a fun day on set for Patrick Stewart. At the time of the cliffhanger, most of cast thought Patrick Stewart was in a contract negotiation and might not return for the next season.
17. The Ferengis and Leeta
Leeta, the Bajoran dabo girl who worked for Quark, was an adorable addition to the Deep Space Nine cast.
Leeta became involved in many of the Ferengi plotlines, as she worked for Quark and developed a relationship with and married his brother Rom. She later became an important character when she joined the anti-Dominion resistance cell alongside many of the main cast.
Chase Masterson, who played Leeta, originally auditioned for Jake Sisko’s girlfriend, for which she was rejected. She was asked to return as Leeta.
Leeta was supposed to appear as a one-episode character, but producers liked her so much that she was written into further episodes and eventually joined the cast as a recurring character. In this photo, she also seems to be quite well-loved by the Ferengi actors she often shared her episode plotlines with.
16. Andorian Blues Brothers
The Andorians have played a part in several of the Star Trek series since they were introduced in the Original Series. It was Enterprise, though, that brought the Andorians to the forefront, particularly with the fan-favorite Andorian Commander Shran.
The actors who played the Andorians had to go through quite a makeup transformation, as Brannon Braga discussed when bringing the species back for Enterprise.
Braga said, “The Andorians were ludicrous! I never thought in a million years that I would get Rick to agree to have them on the show, because of the way they looked.”
These actors, however, seemed to be quite happy in their ridiculous makeovers, turning themselves into the “Blues Brothers” with some sweet pairs of sunglasses that definitely should have been incorporated into their costumes.
15. The Doctor and his guitar
Robert Picardo’s musicality worked its way into many episodes of Star Trek: Voyager through the Doctor’s love of music. He used his musical skills on several occasions, from the Doctor’s opera performances to his attempts to get Seven of Nine singing You Are My Sunshine.
Star Trek has always tended to show off any special musical skills its cast possessed, and Voyager was certainly no exception when it came to Picardo’s talents.
In this photo, Picardo seems to be showcasing some different musical skills with his fabulous space-themed instrument. It’s a shame Voyager never showcased this talent of the Doctor’s in all of his musical performances. He also seems to be taking over the Captain’s chair, which Janeway probably would not be too happy about.
14. Kirk and Spock struggle through imprisonment
In the Original Series episode “Patterns of Force,” Kirk, Spock, and the rest of the Enterprise crew ended up on a planet that followed the path of Nazi Germany. During the episode, Kirk and Spock were captured, tortured, imprisoned, and (of course) forced to be shirtless the entire time.
Kirk and Spock then had to work together to escape their prison cell, taking along the member of the underground with whom they were imprisoned.
The escape plan involved an injured Kirk having to lift Spock so he could arrange a laser for their escape. It was a difficult struggle for Kirk and Spock, but evidently much more fun for William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy behind the scenes.
13. Jonathan Frakes shares a laugh with the Borg Queen
After getting his start on the show by playing Riker on Star Trek: The Next Generation, Jonathan Frakes transitioned into directing many episodes of the series, several episodes of other series, a couple of the Next Generation movies, and a variety of other famous projects.
He became known for his efficient directing while he was at the helm of First Contact, getting the name “Two-Takes Frakes.”
In this photo, he’s cozying up to the Borg Queen, played by Alice Krige. Krige was uncomfortable throughout much of the filming, as the costume and silver contacts for the Borg Queen caused extreme discomfort and could not be kept on for long.
12. Marina Sirtis excited about TNG comic books
Star Trek had many spinoff stories in a variety of forms, from novels to video games, but one of the most creative was the series of comic books based on the adventures of the Star Trek crews.
DC Comics produced several comic books based on Star Trek: The Next Generation, adding to their on-screen adventures in a new form.
It was not the first time Star Trek had been turned into comic books, formerly focusing on Kirk’s crew, but in the 1980s it was new for the Next Generation cast.
The Next Generation crew was evidently very happy about being immortalized in comic book likeness, if Marina Sirtis is any indication. In this photo, Sirtis seems to be quite excited about the new comics, showing them off on set.
11. Archer and Mayweather threaten Dr. Phlox
The cast of Star Trek: Enterprise seems to be one big family behind on set, as the cast always seems to be on the best of terms, but perhaps not always.
In this behind the scenes photo, the cast acts out a scene where Captain Archer and Travis Mayweather threaten Dr. Phlox, goofing off between scenes on the set.
Their fake scene does not come with nearly enough backstory, however, and leaves too many question in our minds. Why is the captain threatening Dr. Phlox? What did the lovable Dr. Phlox do to make them angry, and why does he seem so happy about it?
10. The women take over the Enterprise
The women of Star Trek have had a long voyage to stake their place in this bold, new universe.
Since the earliest days where a female second-in-command in “The Cage” was considered too progressive, the Star Trek women have finally made it to the point of commanding starships. Before Voyager, however, women did not have much of a place commanding the bridge.
In these behind-the-scenes photos, the Next Generation women have taken over the bridge in what is surely a small fantasy fulfillment for many Trek-loving female fans.
Troi and Dr. Crusher seem to be vying for their place in the Captain’s chair, but Tasha Yar may be the one fans would prefer to see take command of the Enterprise. In any of those three alternate realities, it would be interesting adventure.
9. Leonard Nimoy and his son
The families of the Star Trek crewmembers have become, by extension, members of the Star Trek family.
Such was the case for Adam Nimoy, Leonard Nimoy’s son, seen here visiting the set of the Original Series with his father. Leonard Nimoy is already in costume as Spock, and in this photo, Adam Nimoy has also gotten the Vulcan treatment. This photo gives us a look at the adorable Spock family we never got to see on the screen.
Adam Nimoy went on to become a member of the Star Trek family in more ways than one. He later directed episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation and recently got engaged to Deep Space Nine‘s Jadzia Dax, Terry Farrell. He has come a long way from the days of joining Leonard Nimoy on the Enterprise bridge.
8. Applying Dax’s makeup by hand
Many Star Trek cast members had an arduous makeup process, such as Terry Farrell’s makeup for Jadzia Dax. Dax’s spots were hand drawn by the lead makeup designer and supervisor, Michael Westmore.
Westmore considered her spots a work of art and numbered them with Roman numerals every time he drew them, as shown here. By the time Terry Farrell left the show, Westmore had gotten up to number 479.
The makeup process took an hour every day, but Westmore eventually got this down to only 40 minutes.
Dax’s Trill makeup was supposed to include the forehead appliance shown for the species, but the production crew considered Terry Farrell too beautiful to cover up with forehead prosthetics. Instead, all Trill following Dax showed her characteristic spots.
7. William Shatner misuses the equipment
In the episode “What Are Little Girls Made Of?” in the Original Series, Captain Kirk contended with a mad scientist and an android duplicate of himself.
During an attempt to investigate a distress call sent out by Nurse Chapel’s missing fiancé, Kirk is captured and duplicated in the android duplicating machine, pictured here, with his android duplicate sent back to the Enterprise. The Kirk duplicate is eventually killed by the android Andrea, played by Sherry Jackson.
The android duplicating machine is likely a delicate piece of equipment, but William Shatner and Sherry Jackson were apparently not too concerned about that in this photo. This would definitely be a misuse of the android creation equipment, but Captain Kirk never seemed to care much about rules like that.
6. Dancing Khan
In Star Trek Into Darkness, Benedict Cumberbatch took over the famous and infamous role of Khan Noonien Singh. The creators of Into Darkness were not sure about including Khan in the storyline, but the writers made it work well with the casting of Benedict Cumberbatch.
Co-writer Damon Lindelof said, “When you can get [a] monologue to come out of [his] mouth, does the ‘writing’ even matter? I mean, seriously, I made that guy say ‘Milk, milk lemonade, and this is where the fudge is made’ and it scared the living s*** out of me.”
The production was not taken too seriously, though. As always seems to be the case with Abrams Star Trek movies, there was a lot of levity behind the scenes, including an unexpected dance number from Benedict Cumberbatch and some of the Star Trek cast.
5. Discovery Klingons check their email
Star Trek: Discovery brought Star Trek back to the small screen for the first time in over a decade, bringing the exciting technological developments of the modern world into the production of the futuristic series.
The new series brought a lot of changes to the Star Trek universe, including the interesting and controversial new look of the Klingons. The new Klingons are shown here taking a break from filming.
Among the other changes the modern world brought to Star Trek, it revolutionized how the actors spend their downtime.
Discovery is the first Star Trek series produced since the popularization of smartphones, so now the Klingon actors can check their email and Twitter between takes, and hopefully that might make those extremely long makeup processes a little bit easier.
4. Robert Picardo directing gets out of hand
Star Trek has a long history of launching directing careers for many of the Star Trek alumni, such as Jonathan Frakes, Roxann Dawson, and Robert Duncan McNiell. Robert Picardo was one of many Star Trek stars to double as production crew.
While playing the Doctor on Star Trek: Voyager, Robert Picardo also directed two episodes (“Alter Ego” and “One Small Step”) and wrote a third episode (“Life Line”).
In this photo, while Robert Picardo is directing, fellow Voyager director and cast member Roxann Dawson appears to be giving Picardo a hard time in his production role, taking advantage of his Hawaiian wear for the episode “Alter Ego.”
3. Worf considers buying a boat
The Star Trek regulars have always needed something to kill the downtime required for the extensive production processes required to make a Star Trek series.
This day on set was evidently no exception, as Michael Dorn takes a moment during a set break to consider yachts. Unless, of course, that’s actually a deleted scene of Worf considering buying a boat, in which case he definitely deserves that break.
One can hope Federation employment pays well enough for Worf to afford that boat, especially as he is a high-ranking officer who hopefully got some kind of hazard pay for all of the danger he has been through on The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine. Evidently, employment as a Star Trek main cast member definitely pays well enough.
2. A Fantasy Island joke on Ricardo Montalban
Between Ricardo Montalban’s first appearance as Khan on the original series and his reprisal for The Wrath of Khan, Montalban had developed a flourishing acting career.
At the time he came back for Wrath of Khan, he had also become famous for playing the seemingly omniscient and omnipresent wish-granter Mr. Rourke on Fantasy Island. Montalban had worked to make sure Khan would not sound like Mr. Rourke after his long stint as the Fantasy Island character.
This photo captures a Fantasy Island joke played on Ricardo Montalban, where he was surprised on set with a tiny balloon version of Mr. Rourke’s sidekick Tattoo, a joke Montalban seemed to enjoy very much. Even when portraying Khan, it seems Montalban could not escape his other famous character.
1. Leonard Nimoy directs while still dressed as Spock
After making his mark playing Spock in the Original Series, Leonard Nimoy went on to be an accomplished director. He directed two of the Star Trek movies in which he also starred, Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home.
In this photo, he is shown multitasking in his dual role as director and star, setting up the scene while still in his costume as Spock for The Voyage Home, a movie he also co-wrote.
Nimoy was approached to direct and cameo in Star Trek: Generations, as well, but he turned down the offer. He stated he did not want to appear in or direct any Star Trek movie where Spock was not an integral character in the story, so Spock was edited out of the movie entirely.
Do you know of any other amazing Star Trek behind the scenes photos that other fans need to see? Let us know in the comments!
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