Star Trek: The Motion Picture screenwriter never understood why people love Star Trek

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Star Trek has amassed a generation of fans that are passing along their love of the franchise to their families where it will, hopefully, continue for decades to come. Whether the fans love the older Trek shows or the newer Trek shows doesn't matter because Star Trek is one big family.

Yes, there are things about it that we don't like, but there are plenty of things about it we love. And those are the things that keep us coming back to Trek even after almost sixty years. There's no doubt that this is one franchise that will continue long into the next century. That's something we fans understand, but not everyone understands our love for these series and movies. Harold Livingston, who wrote the screenplay for Star Trek: The Motion Picture, was one of those people.

A quote from Livingston in The Fifty-Year Mission The Next 25 Years From the Next Generation to J.J. Abrams by Mark A. Altman and Edward Gross showed just how little he understood the franchise that is still holding fast.

""I've never understood the cultishness. Never understood it. I'm astonished. I can't tell you why people love Star Trek. I think everybody is nuts.""

Harold Livingston

While Livingston's words may sting a little for some fans, we all know that there are some people who truly will never understand why we love Star Trek so much. Is it the hope for the future? The optimism it tries to convey? The way the people work together as a team? Or the way the teams become families? I would venture to say it's all of this and more.

For some, Star Trek connected us with fans who have become lifelong friends. Star Trek gave others a cause. It has made dreams come true and has opened doors for people to do things they probably wouldn't have gotten the chance to do otherwise. Star Trek is so much more than just a franchise of great entertainment. It is a world people can get lost in.

When I was aboard the Star Trek Cruise in February, I attended the Star Trek: The Next Generation panel which was open to questions from the audience. One attendee thanked the panel for The Next Generation because she had gone through a trauma. Healing was taking a long time, and her husband introduced her to Star Trek, telling her "let me take you out of this world." The series helped her heal, and that was a moving moment for the actors on the stage as well as the attendees...because we understood. Star Trek means something to every fan. It might be something different to all of us, but we're all united in our beliefs that this franchise must never fade away.

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