Star Trek: The Motion Picture is setting a return course for the big screen. To celebrate its 40th anniversary. The Motion Picture’s re-release will take place through Fathom Events, which has announced only two dates: Sept. 15 and Sept. 18. The film, which will be screened in more than 500 theaters, will be accompanied by a behind-the-scenes documentary and shown in its original widescreen aspect ratio.
“Celebrate the 40th anniversary of Star Trek: The Motion Picture on the big screen with the original 1979 theatrical cut, featuring Jerry Goldsmith’s rousing overture,” Fathom said of the re-release. “When an unidentified alien destroys three powerful Klingon cruisers, Captain James T. Kirk returns to a newly transformed U.S.S. Enterprise to take command. The legendary cast of the original Star Trek television series… mobilize at warp speed to stop the alien intruder from its relentless flight toward Earth.”
The film — directed by Robert Wise, from a screenplay by Harold Livingston based on a story by Alan Dean Foster — went through a complicated production process. It was heavy on special effects for its era, many of which were not finished to Wise’s satisfaction by the time the film debuted in theaters on December 7, 1979. The film received mixed reviews and grossed $139 million worldwide on a $46 million budget. It wasn’t the success Paramount hoped for, but it did well enough for Paramount to greenlight a sequel with a slimmer budget. The Star Trek film series now includes 13 movies in total, the first six of which starred the cast of The Original Series.
The Motion Picture has since been succeeded by five additional films featuring the Enterprise’s original crew, four Next Generation-era films and three reboot films.