Fans of “Star Trek” might recognize the name, Mark A. Altman. Perhaps they might know him as the person who co-wrote the “Star Trek, The Fifty-Year Mission” books or as half of the creative force behind the cult classic “Free Enterprise.” Some might remember his name from his podcast, “Inglorious Treksperts,” which he co-hosts with Daren Dochterman.
Either way, Altman has the geek-cred and creative firepower to make fans happy. This includes his sci-fi show “Pandora,” which appears on The CW and Amazon Prime.
Mark A. Altman’s Serious ‘Geek Cred’
Altman’s latest project is one that fans can get behind and get involved with. He and some of his close allies in the entertainment industry are coming together to make a film that honors 1982. That year, according to Altman, might just be the most significant year for movies of all time. If it’s not “the” greatest year in general, then Altman says that it certainly was for “geeks.”
In a recent interview with Trek Report, Altman spoke at length on this new project. Trek fans know well that 1982 is the year that “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan” was released. That significance is one of the primary motivators for Altman.
Altman’s Quest to Honor 1982
“With 2022 being the 40th anniversary [of Wrath of Khan], I realized it was time to do something while many of the key creators were still with us,” Altman told Trek Report. “Together with Roger Lay, Jr., who produced and edited most of the incredible ‘Star Trek’ bonus features over the years and film critic Scott Mantz along with my ‘Pandora’ producing partner Tom Vitale, we decided, to quote Nanculus, ‘there’s never been a better time.’”
“And we realized that while we could help pay for production, we’d need to raise more money to cover a lot of the expenses in terms of clip licenses, insurance, legal, travel, and it was Tom who strongly encouraged us to pursue Kickstarter,” Altman said in the interview.
The film, “1982: The Greatest Geek Year Ever” will encompass many of the well-known films which debuted that year, including “TRON,” “Poltergeist,” “Dark Crystal,” “Conan the Barbarian,” “The Road Warrior,” “Blade Runner,” and “The Thing.” But Altman promises that other movies, many of which are lesser-known, will be featured as well.
“You also had the first film Paul Newman won an Oscar for, “The Verdict,” and “Costa-Garvas Missing,” which are two personal favorites as well,” said Altman in the interview. “Any way you cut it, [it was] pretty spectacular.
1982: A Movie Year That Is Hard to Top
Expect to learn about the impact of films like “Tootsie,” “Diner,” “48 Hours,” “Rocky 3,” “First Blood,” and even “Firefox” in the documentary.
Unlikely to get lost in the list of hits in 1982 is one of the highest-grossing motion pictures of all time — “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.” Steven Spielberg’s entry into the early 80s space race certainly is remembered, and Altman and his team will put the legacy of “E.T.” into perspective.
But, as an official “Trekspert,” one can imagine that “The Wrath of Khan” will receive the high praise it deserves from Altman in his film.
“‘Star Trek II’ was considered a big success that year, particularly relative to its cost,” Altman said in the interview. “The whole reason Paramount produced ‘Star Trek II’ through the TV division was to keep cost overruns to a minimum, unlike with the first film. As such, it was much more profitable for the studio than ‘The Motion Picture.’”
Altman said that the Kickstarter campaign will officially begin this Friday. He said that fans who contribute to ‘1982’ will be eligible for special perks, including “autographed copies of [his] books.”