Veteran casting director Amanda Mackey, who worked on two “Star Trek” feature films, is dead at the age of 70, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The trade paper noted that Mackey died on Saturday, August 27, 2022, at a hospital in Brooklyn, New York, where she succumbed to myelodysplastic syndrome, a form of blood cancer.
Mackey’s dozens of credits, according to the Internet Movie Database, included such movies and television shows as “Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins” (1985, which featured Joel Grey), “The Hunt for Red October” (1990), “Funny About Love” (1990, which was directed by Leonard Nimoy), “Patriot Games” (1992), “A League of Their Own” (1993, which featured Lori Petty and Anne Ramsay), Best Picture Oscar nominee “The Fugitive” (1993), “When a Man Loves a Woman” (1994), “Murder at 1600” (1997), “Ronin” (1998), “A Perfect Murder” (1998), “Snow Dogs” (2002, which featured Nichelle Nichols), “The Cooler” (2003), “Holes” (2003), “United 93” (2006), “Smokin’ Aces” (2006, which featured Chris Pine and Joseph Ruskin), “27 Dresses” (2008), and “The Proposal” (2009).
Mackey’s First ‘Star Trek’ Casting Effort Was ‘The Voyage Home’ in 1986
Additional credits include “Hell on Wheels” (2011-2016, which starred Colm Meaney and Anson Mount), “Olympus Has Fallen” (2013), and “Bad Moms” (2016) and its 2017 sequel, as well as the acclaimed miniseries adaptation of Larry Kramer’s “The Normal Heart,” for which she shared an Emmy Award nomination with her longtime business partner, Cathy Sandrich Gelfond. Upcoming projects, which will be released posthumously, include “About My Father,” which co-stars Kim Cattrall, and “Starbright,” which features John Rhys-Davies.
Mackey’s two “Star Trek” credits were “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home” (1986) and “Star Trek Nemesis” (2002). Key additional casting for “The Voyage Home” included Catherine Hicks, Robert Ellenstein, Brock Peters, and John Schuck, while “Nemesis” featured Tom Hardy, Ron Perlman, and Dina Meyer. “Nemesis” was directed by Stuart Baird, with whom she’d previously worked on “Executive Decision” (1996).
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Mackey started out as an agent at J. Michael Bloom before switching to casting when she served as the assistant to casting icon Marion Dougherty, on “The World According to Garp” (1982). Gelfond, in a statement provided to The Hollywood Reporter, described Mackey as “an unwaveringly steadfast friend and champion in a time when women weren’t as supportive to other women as they are now. She believed in me, lifted me up and gave me a career. She was the sister I never had and changed my life in countless ways.”
Mackey’s Second ‘Trek’ Casting Job Was on ‘Nemesis’
Most recently, Mackey cast the shows “Sleepy Hollow” and “A Million Little Things.” “Sleepy Hollow” featured Alex Kurtzman (current head of all “Star Trek” television) and Roberto Orci among its co-creators and executive producers, and it co-starred John Noble, who currently voices The Diviner on “Star Trek: Prodigy.”
According to Deadline, the Casting Society honored Mackey with Artios Awards for “A League of Their Own” and “Smokin’ Aces (2006), among 15 career nominations. “We are heartbroken to hear about the passing of Casting Director Amanda Mackey,” the Casting Society said in a statement. “She was an inspiration to many in our field, and everyone at CSA sends our condolences to her family and friends.”
Mackey, The Hollywood Reporter noted, is survived by her daughters Nicola and Emma, who released the following statement to Deadline: “Those who knew her will agree, Amanda Mackey was one of a kind. Our mother was beautiful, powerful and always stood up for what she believed in. She was terrified of public speaking but could level you with her eyes. She was dynamic and so much fun to be around. She made us the women we are today. She taught us to be strong feminists and truth seekers. We will miss her every second of every day for the rest of our lives, but we will carry her wise voice and love in our hearts forever.