Two spaceships named Enterprise-America's first reusable space shuttle and "Star Trek's" movie flagship-are scheduled to be launched this year. Last night it was difficult to tell which launching is more eagerly awaited by National Space Club members.
Both Enterprises were celebrated last night at the 22nd annual Goddard memorial dinner attended by nearly 1,300 NASA and space-industry officials at the Washington Hilton.
There at the head table, with his feet firmly planted on Earth as the master of ceremonies, was Scotty, the engineer of "Star Trek's" Enterprise. And one of the awards went to Gene Roddenberry, "Star Trek's" creator, for his "outstanding contribution to the advancement of astronautics through the production of "Star Trek and its overwhelming capture of Ameircans' interest in space flight,"
The television series "Star Trek," which ran for three seasons through 1969, has a following of fanatically devoted fans who gather for Trekkie conventions and who watch reruns of the shows now showing in more than 100 U.S. cities, including Washington, and more than 54 countries.
Paramount Pictures reassembled the old crew and now is filming "Star Trek-The Motion Picture" under secrecy that would delight NASA security officers.
At a reception before the dinner, Roddenberry and James Doohan, who plays Scotty with an added British officer-type mustache in the movie, shrugged off rumors from the West Coast that all systems are not "go" with the film's special effects.
"There's always problems with optics and actors and . . .," said Roddenberry.
"And script changes," added Doohan.
Majel Barrett, who plays "Star Trek's" Nurse Chapel (she is made doctor in the film) was also at the dinner as Mrs Gene Roddenberry. "I put her in a blond wig and signed her up for the role in the pilot called 'The Cage." I also knew I wanted to marry her," said Roddenberry, who wrote his sci-fi scripts with philosophical parables.
Paramount says the movie still will open on Dec. 7-that's the date a lot of bombs fell," said Nurse Chapel.