Exactly 53 years ago today, the first episode of Star Trek: The Original Series debuted, following the crew of the Enterprise for an ordinary inspection on planet M-113. Who knew in 1966 that Gene Roddenberry’s TV show would go on to make legends out of stars like William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy, and launch a global franchise including 13 films, seven TV series, and a slew of upcoming projects.
Shatner was among stars in the Star Trek universe to tweet appreciation for #StarTrackDay. He wrote “Happy Anniversary Star Trek (1966-2019),” along with a photo of the Enterprise crew, with him as James T. Kirk, George Takei as Sulu, and James Doohan as Montgomery “Scotty” Scott. He also revealed that the first episode that aired was not the first to be filmed; in fact, the episode they shot first was shown as the “third or 4th episode.”
Takei, of course, tweeted in honor of Star Trek’s 53rd anniversary, along with his famous catchphrase, “Oh myyy.”
Chris Doohan, the son of the late James Doohan, posted a photo of his father and Shatner from the original series. “It all started today. 9/8/66. Happy #StarTrekDay to all. What a ride it’s been. #StarTrek,” he tweeted, along with an emoji of the iconic Vulcan salute. Thanks to fan petitions, he won a role in Star Trek Into Darkness and has starred as Scotty in a number of Star Trek projects.
“The world we live in has changed, but Star Trek remains a very steady starship in the media landscape, forever championing its core tenants of love, family, friendship, courage, sacrifice, and above all — grand, limitless optimism,” Kurtzman said.
Actors from spin-off projects also shared their love for the iconic franchise. Orange Is the New Black star Kate Mulgrew, who played Captain Kathryn Janeway on Star Trek: Voyager from 1995-2001, praised Star Trek for “continuing to defy age and redundancy. [Live long and prosper].” Actress Shohreh Aghdashloo also reminisced about her role in the 2016 film Star Trek Beyond as Commodore Paris.
Fans also spread the Star Trek love online, with many talking about the impersonal impact the franchise has had on their own lives. “Next Generation appeared in my life precisely when I needed it,” author Jen Williams said. “I was 13, it was my first real fandom, I was having a rough time at school (and it was going to get rougher). That family on the Enterprise D got me through my teenage years, bless them.”
Here are more tweets to celebrate #StarTrekDay:
There is a bevy of future Star Trek works to keep fans excited, such as CBS All Access’ Star Trek: Picard series with Patrick Stewart, a Michelle Yeoh-starring TV series in development, and Quentin Tarantino’s Star Trek feature that’s rumored to be his last film.