Rest in peace, Harve Bennett. We’ll always be grateful that you saved “Star Trek.”
The first “Star Trek” movie had come out in 1979 to mixed reviews and, by some estimations, disappointing box office.
Paramount didn’t give up on the franchise, but decided to economize on the second installment. The studio handed control to Paramount TV producer Bennett, who had produced “Mod Squad,” “Six Million Dollar Man,” “Bionic Woman” and other series.
Bennett produced “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan,” directed by Nicholas Meyer, on a modest $11 million (!) budget by reusing models and footage from the first movie.
The resulting movie, released in June 1982, was a critical success and a crowd-pleaser, bringing in $78 million at the box office.
And guaranteeing the movie series would continue.
Thank you, Mr. Bennett.