Trek Vets Pick Up (And Give Away) Oscars At 2009 Academy Awards

The 81st Academy Awards were held tonight, and Star Trek was all over the place, albeit indirectly. For starters, a few Trek alumni walked home with a golden statuette. Not only that, but several Trek veterans were on hand to co-present a few awards. Oh, and then there’s the fact that the show’s orchestra was conducted by the man who wrote the score this year’s Star Trek. Check it out below.

Trek vets win the Button gold
For those of you who don’t remember our report from January, the Academy nominated ten individual Trek vets this year (I know I said nine before, that was a mistake, sorry). Of those ten, three walked away with the Oscar, all for their work on Paramount’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Veteran Trek effects supervisor Craig Barron and Star Trek 2009 special effects coordinator Burt Dalton both won in the Visual Effects category and Star Trek: The Undiscovered Country makeup effects designer Greg Cannom won in the Makeup category.

(L-R) Visual effects artists Burt Dalton, Craig Barron, Eric Barba and Steve Preeg accept the Best Visual Effects award for “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”

Makeup Artist Greg Cannom accepts the award for Best Makeup award for “Curious Case of Benjamin Button”

More Trek vets at the Oscars
The Oscars introduced a new presentation format for the acting categories this year. Rather than simply having the previous year’s winner of a category present all the nominees of that category, this year they had five past Oscar-winners co-presenting, with each introducing one of this year’s nominees. Whoopi Goldberg (TNG’s Guinan) was among the five actresses who presented this year’s nominees in the Best Supporting Actress category (having won in the same category for Ghost back in 1991). Goldberg introduced nominee Amy Adams (Doubt), explaining Adams’ role and why she was being nominated. Joel Grey (Caylem in VOY’s “Resistance”) did the same thing for Josh Brolin (Milk) in the Best Supporting Actor category, having won that Oscar himself back in 1973 for Cabaret.

Goldberg, second from left, presents Best Supporting Actress award

Grey , far left, presents Best Supporting Actor award

Although Frank Langella (Minister Jaro Essa on DS9) lost the Best Actor Oscar to Sean Penn for Milk, the Frost/Nixon nominee received some special attention from host Hugh Jackman early in the show. This culminated in Jackman, tired from the recent dance number, momentarily sitting on Langella’s lap. Another Oscar-nominated Trek acting alum who was somewhere in the audience was Virginia Madsen (Kellin in VOY’s “Unforgettable”). Also in the audience was Wrath of Khan computer graphics artist Ed Catmull, the recipient of the Academy’s Gordon E. Sawyer Award.

Jackman sits on Langella’s lap

Gordon E. Sawyer Award recipient Ed Catmull at the 81st Academy Awards’ Scientific And Technical Awards ceremony  (held February 7th)

Trek music at the Oscars + Trek vets In Memoriam
Conducting the music throughout the entire ceremony was Michael Giacchino, the composer who recently scored the music for 2009’s Star Trek. Giacchino at one point received a special shout-out from Hugh Jackman just before he began conducting a special showcase featuring excerpts from the five film scores that were nominated in the Original Score category. Giacchino’s orchestra also played a brief ‘sting’ of the original Star Trek theme earlier the show.

The Academy’s In Memoriam sequence — presented to us with a camera annoyingly hovering around the stage as the names scrolled by on various screens — featured a few of the Trek vets who died in the past year. The first was Star Trek IV composer Leonard Rosenman, himself a winner of two Oscars. He was shortly followed by Khan actor Ricardo Montalban, who was practically a shoe-in for the reel. One of the more surprising inclusions was that of character actor Robert DoQui, who played Nogga in the DS9 episode “Sons of Mogh.”

This video clip shows both the musical sting and an appearance by Giacchino, along with the Trek vets being remembered. (thanks Kelvington)

No Star Trek 2009 preview
At the end of the broadcast, there were a number of clips from upcoming movies for 2009, including a few Summer tent poles, however Paramount’s big two (Star Trek and Transformers) were not in the mix.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Nice article. Apparently they didn’t show Star Trek or Transformers 2 with their “2009 Preview.”

Trek will win an Oscar.

It appears to me that most of Hollywood does not know what black tie attire really is. (Hint: It doesn’t include high fastening vests, notched lapels, or long ties.) They could do with checking out

Appearance aside, congrats to everyone.

I *knew* I heard the Trek theme in there somewhere! It didn’t last long, but it was there.


Since I missed the memoriam piece on the Oscars broadcast tonight I will look forward to seeing your tribute video

It was nice to see Montalban, but no Majel Barrett Roddenberry? I was a bit disappointed to not see Star Trek in the 2009 preview. A perfect opportunity to flash a new scene for us to drool over was lost.

Did the Oscars show Majel and Ricardo for “those we lost” presentation? or any of the background TREK contributors?

Can anyone verify that Majel Roddenberry played a bit part in the movie in the 1970s “Westworld?” I seem to recall she played a robot saloon girl in the flick, but can’t find any info confirming it.

Re: The In Memoriam reel–*SIGH* No Majel!

7. Yes, ajel played “Miss Carrie.” Look here:

That would be “MAJEL.” (Wish I could type!)

Sorry, but I honestly doubt if a movie like Dark Knight didnt even get nominated (not counting Heath’s win) I doubt this year’s Star Trek will not only get a nomination but win. Im not saying anything against the movie, but lets face it, it seems like the accademy only goes for certain kinds of movies and overlooks others altogether, despite how good they are. I just see Star Trek as being in the group (the same one that Dark Knight falls into) that’s gonna get overlooked next year. I didnt bother watching because of the DK issue. And to me it Id guess that the reason they passed over Majel (from what Im reading here) is because this is a group of people that doesnt take Star Trek seriously. I doubt this new movie will change that.


you’re probably right!


there is nothing but empty space where your video link is supposed to be…


OPPS…there it is sorry….Please ignore previous posting…

Red faced here….


I was disappointed to see that Star Trek was not in the 2009 preview at the end of the show. I’m sure there’s a reason behind it, but it’s disconcerting to see Star Trek getting snubbed by the Oscars already! ; )


They showed transformers 2. It’s Trek that they snubbed. Don’t worry, we will have our revenge! =))

The only part of the AA I saw was the Best Picture acceptance speech and 09 movie preview. The only thing that kept me watching even that much was the hope that I would see STXI somewhere in there. Hey, they showed Terminator…
alas, Trek was snubbed for seemingly every other dime-a-dozen flick coming out this next year.
I’m afraid I will have to agree with Will up there and say that the Academy Awards lean heavily on certain movie genres (the ones I don’t watch) and snub genre films. DK being case in point

One of the two clips they showed for Ricardo Montalban was from TWOK, it’s good to see Trek getting some respect, however miniscule (I am far from vindicated, though)

#8/9: thanks ster julie!

I knew I wasn’t crazy remembering that miniscule detail. well, um, at least I remembered Majel was in the film…

as tO bEinG cRAzy, tHaT iS a sUBjeCtiVe term — LoL!!!

(yes, I am killing time until we fly home later today)

I watched some of the Oscars for the first time in…. years…. I actually thought it was overall an improvement over years past. But I do wish they could have remembered that the folks at home might want to be able to actually see what’s on those screens during the memorium segment… on the other hand, Queen Latifah was awesome singing the song.

Tilda Swinton is worthy of Star Trek. She’d make a great captain or villain.

TDK and Iron Man really should have won more technical Oscars. If Brad Pitt was not Benjamin Button, it wouldn’t have been nominated. What will you remember more next year, Heath Ledger or Slumdog Millionaire.

Also, why all the musical numbers? Yeah, Wolverine is on Broadway, but really, The Oscars haven’t seen these many musical numbers since the 1940s.

Come on guy’s, this is stretching things. It’s only Trek.

“…Joel Grey (Caylem in VOY’s “Resistance”) did the same thing for Josh Brolin (Milk) in the Best Supporting Actor category, having won that Oscar himself back in 1973 for Cabaret.”

The only thing I recognized him from was “Remo Williams:The Adventure Begins” where he was the fake Asian Martial Arts teacher. For a sec there I thought he got an Oscar for that, lol.

#22: Slumdog Millionaire.

I like it when geek movies win, too, and I agree that the Oscars are cliquish and slanted and frequently overlook deserving genre pictures (the snub of The Iron Giant still stings, for one example). But I do think Slumdog deserved every win it got, and I feel kind of bad for some of the other actors edged out by Heath Ledger … I think Ledger’s performance was masterful, but I felt just as good about Josh Brolin’s “Milk” performance and Hoffman in “Doubt.”

I definitely agree that Iron Man was slighted a bit on the technical awards, though. I can’t even puzzle out the reasons for that.

And back to Dark Knight: it saddens me a bit that Gary Oldman doesn’t get more recognition for his performance as Gordon; he brings some extraordinary nuance to that part … it’s grounded, believable, sympathetic, and utterly distinct among Oldman’s work as well. So far I think the only award recognition he’s got for it is that Spike TV Scream award thing :(

I wonder what having Jackman host will do for ticket Sales of Wolverine, can’t hurt.

They showed a clip of Louis Fletcher winning her Oscar for One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

I’ll be space shuttle pilot before Trek wins an Oscar……..

Don’t worry about an Oscar. It will be the same as the last 40 yrs of Emmy awards. Of all the stories, guest stars, and fantastic performances we as fans have seen, Emmy’s have been won for Make up, Sound, Special Effects ect.

Even if they made a movie call, “12 angry Klingons” no awards for the actors!

I agree with Will-H. Trek is almost a punch line in some circles and I think it is shame that Majel was left out. Trek deserves better than this and I hope this new movie gives it just the right amount of energy to make it relevant again. I think the world deserves a good Trek movie, it has been a while.

i thought Rourke was a shoo in for best actor…maybe his rather expletive filled Bafta speech cost him?

i hope the same dosnt happen to Nimoy next year for best supporting actor!!

18 – wow they showed a WOK clip? what part? Montoban hould have been nominated for best supporting in 1982

30 – Trek films have already won oscars for FX, score, make up etc…i expect the new one will recIeve similar nominations and possible wins…itd be nice if it managed to break into the main ones though..but unlikely

If Star Trek gets anything at the Oscars, Best Visual Effects/Sound Mixing/Editing/Make Up are the only categories I could see it winning.


Tough crowd this year with Watchmen, Terminator, Transformers, Harry Potter, etc.

I am so sad that there was no tribute to Majel. Shocking. Hopefully JJ will dedicated the movie to her.

well to me the oscars is a joke. I have not watched the oscars since the Lord of the rings won. I think that the oscars pander to films that realy do not deserve it. Theres just no way that any movie in 2008 was better then the Dark Night. The only reason thet Ledger won is because the oscars could not justify any reason for him not to. there was realy on one film that deserved to win and Slumdog was it. Altjough Frost/nixen was good. But till the oscars satrt reconising films that truly deserve to win and untill that quit pandering to films that no one likes then i will not watch the oscars.

21: I agree. She can be the first female captain seen during the 2260s in the next movie… or I can hope. I’m a big fan.

24: And that’s a bad thing how? I guess I’m biased as a theatre student, but you have to use something tried and true to get people’s attention at present and, more importantly, make money. :)

Majel’s non-inclusion really hurt.

That WALL-E didn’t win for best sound is ridiculous. Probably too much sci-fi and kiddy for the academy snobs.

No Majel? Has the acadamy (lower case) gone so soft that we happily display a run of publisists (people who are already paid for their time and little known to the public) but give 0 time to The First Lady of Star Trek? (Something she was involved in for over 40 years in one form or another.) Shame. Shame Shame….Hey Queenie!! Thanks for your time and lovely voice!

#34 – Star Trek: TMP was nominated for best art direction, visual effects, and score (it should’ve won those last two!).

STIV was nominated for best cinematography, sound, sound editing, and score.

STVI was nominated for best sound editing and make-up.

ST: FC was nominated for best make-up.

No Trek movie has ever won an Oscar but I think the new one could pick up nominations for visual effects and the sound categories (especially with Lucasfilm/Pixar vet Ben Burtt doing sound design)

The “in memorium” montage was nice. They showed the clip from STII of Khan taking off his helmet/mask thing (and on one of the other screens, a clip of him on the Reliant’s bridge – “There she is!”). I didn’t notice any Star Trek IV clip when the showed Leonard Rosenman’s name.

I thought it was a shame that they didn’t acknowledge Majel, but I was perked up a bit when they showed Ricardo Montalban lifting off the mask. :)

Dont worry, I am sure the 2010 oscars will be filled with Trek, with tributes to Gene and his wife. If this movie hits huge you can bet 2010 will be the trek oscars.

#23 – “I’m glad Heath Ledger won the Oscar. I really am. But let’s face it, if Heath were still alive, the Academy wouldn’t have given two hoots about his performance. They would have considered him but, ultimately, they would have snubbed him. Ledger deserved the Oscar, but this was a sentimental award and nothing more.”

I agree with most of that. I’m not sure ledger deserved the Oscar over all the other performances that could have been nominated, but I definitely think that had he had lived, he wouldn’t have one and probably wouldb’t even have been nominated. His win was one part sentiment and one part making up for him not getting an oscar for “Brokeback Mountain”.

Also #23 – “Beyonce was hot.”

That, I agree with completely. Yowza.

Wow, my spelling was atrocious up there. My apologies.

“Dont worry, I am sure the 2010 oscars will be filled with Trek, with tributes to Gene and his wife. If this movie hits huge you can bet 2010 will be the trek oscars.”

With all due respect, I think that is delusional. “Star Trek” anything will never rise above the technical category Oscars. For the overwhelming part, the Academy does not respect science fiction. If neither “Star Wars” nor “2001” can be the best picture of their respective years, then I don’t think anybody’s “Star Trek” has a prayer.

A couple things you prolly wont read anyways…

1. Star Trek if good enough may be nominated for some technical awards. Winning is another story. Don’t in your life expect best pic or actors etc.

2. Slumdog for those of you who haven’t seen it deserves twice as many awards as it got. That was one of the best movies of all time.

3. As for someones comments about the memorial and Majel… Was she even a member of the Academy? I dont know… But I am pretty sure the Academy only honors members.

4. The Academy recognizes outstanding films with outstanding acting. This is why Star Trek will probably only ever come close to getting technical awards. All of the Trek movies put together don’t have half of what Slumdog has as far as character, story, and pure emotional excellence. No offense I am a Trekkie but all this huffing and puffing about what could only be classified as big budget popcorn flicks is ridiculous and a bit immature. The only time I have ever seen movies in the vein of Sci Fi or Fantasy take home gold Was Return of the King. And that movie I think one the way it did because of all three movies being like one long super movie that one being the culmination of years of hard work. And while I was thrilled about that I wasn’t even sure it was completely deserving.

@40 – Totally agree with you. I was in shock

I for one am really looking forward to hearing Mr. Giacchino’s score for the film. To this day I still hum (much to the chagrin of my co-workers) his “The Incredibles” theme at work…

Jerry Goldsmith’s score for TMP was, I thought (at the age of 12), the next best thing to sliced white bread. I wore out my first vinyl copy, as well as the cassette version. When it failed to win the Oscar in 1980, I was “very surprised”. I think I threw smiley face pillow at the TV…

If Giacchino’s score can capture that TOS feeling, I would not be surprised to see his name up there again…

“For Your Consideration: Main Theme to Star Trek” (2009)