Today marks 39 years since Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan debuted in theaters, and it’s still as popular today with fans as it was then. Over the course of the last three, almost four, decades, much has been revealed about what took place behind the scenes and how the film was produced. But here are a few facts you may not know.
- Originally, the movie was going to end with William Shatner’s recitation of the last line of A Tale of Two Cities, but the producers wanted to provide more hope for Spock’s return.
- One discarded plot point had Lt. Saavik and Admiral Kirk’s son, David, involved in a steamy love affair.
- George Takei quit the movie because he thought that Sulu was basically nothing more than a prop who walked around with little, if anything, to do.
- DeForest Kelley was opposed to the script as he thought it had too many storylines, most of which neglected the character of Bones.
- It was Shatner’s idea for Spock and Kirk to be separated by the glass barrier when Spock was dying. He felt being unable to embrace or comfort Spock in his last moments would only add to his grief.
- The U.S.S. Reliant set didn’t exist. Because of budget issues, the furniture was rearranged on the bridge of the Enterprise and some small cosmetic changes were made so that it could be utilized instead.
- One studio executive wanted the father/son embrace between Admiral Kirk and David to be removed because he thought David should be angry at his father for not being a part of his life.
- Director Nicholas Meyer was vehemently opposed to Spock’s coffin ending up on the Genesis planet as he thought the ending worked without the idea of bringing Spock back.
- While Wrath of Khan was still playing in theaters, a sequel to the movie had already been set into motion.