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Rare Behind-the-Scenes Star Trek Photos

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Jan. 28 2015, Updated 6:42 p.m. ET

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Go where no fan has gone before—backstage of the greatest science-fiction saga of all time.

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1. The Purpose of Pointy Ears

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Star Trek: The Original Series, 1967

The man who played everyone’s favorite Vulcan first officer, Leonard Nimoy, has admitted that he had his doubts about Spock’s now iconic look. “I was not totally comfortable with the idea of pointed ears,” he said. “I thought, ‘If this doesn’t work, I’m a joke. I don’t want to be a punch line.’ Then I started discovering what some of the writing was going to be about and what some of the social impact of the show was going to be. People started responding intensely to the show and to this character, and I thought, ‘Oh, there’s something really interesting that’s going to develop out of this.’ ”

2. Ship Break - Star Trek

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Michael Dorn, Marina Sirtis and Jonathan Frakes take a break while filming Nemesis (2002).

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3. Shooting for the Stars

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Star Trek: The Motion Picture, 1979

After the success of 'Star Wars' in 1977, interest in science-fiction movies took off like…well, a rocket into space — and it wasn’t long before Paramount Pictures decided to give its 'Star Trek' property a shot at the big screen. Unfortunately, the first entry in the film series, 1979’s 'Star Trek: The Motion Picture', was a flop with critics as well as a disappointment at the box office. Nevertheless, the film has garnered a cult following over the years and includes among its fans J.J. Abrams, who stated in the DVD commentary to his 2009 'Star Trek' that the first shot of the USS Enterprise in his film was intended as an homage to the “amazing” sequence in which Kirk sees his refitted ship for the first time in 'The Motion Picture.'

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4. Clowning Around - Star Trek

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William Shatner jokes around on set during the filming of the original series episode “Wink of an Eye” (1968).

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5. Whale Tale

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Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, 1986

Directed by Nimoy, 'The Voyage Home' was the top-grossing 'Star Trek' movie in the U.S. for more than two decades, until Abrams’ 2009 film claimed the top spot. Nimoy recalls: “When I finished making 'Star Trek III', I got a call from Jeff Katzenberg at Paramount, and he said, ‘We want you to make another one.’ And I said, ‘This one that I just finished, you had a pretty tight choke chain on me.’ And he said, ‘The training wheels are off. We want you to make your 'Star Trek' movie.’ ”

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