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Jonathan Frakes, Todd Masters and the Visual Effects Society Reunite Cast and Crew Members For Special 25th Anniversary Screening of "Star Trek: First Contact"
- Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2021
Screening Event Held November 21st in Hollywood
Acclaimed Director and “Star Trek” icon Jonathan Frakes, multi-Emmy® Award winner and FX artist Todd Masters, founder of MASTERSFX (MFX,) and the Visual Effects Society presented a special 25TH anniversary screening of “Star Trek: First Contact” at Hollywood’s Harmony Gold Theater on November 21st. The event was a private reunion for cast, crew and invited guests, along with members of the Visual Effects Society - with a print generously provided by Paramount Studios.
The event reunited a number of cast and crew members from “Star Trek: First Contact.” In addition to Frakes and Masters, the evening’s notables also included actors Alfre Woodard and LeVar Burton, along with the film’s producer Rick Berman, ILM Visual Effects Supervisor John Knoll, ILM Digital Effects Supervisor Habib Zargarpour, and Art Director/Production Designer Herman Zimmerman. VES Fellow Dan Curry was also in attendance – he is the winner of seven Emmy Awards for his work on various “Star Trek” projects and is specially credited on “Star Trek: First Contact.” Curry moderated a Q&A panel, comprised of Zimmerman, Berman, Frakes, Knoll and Masters, which followed the screening.
Frakes directed and starred in “Star Trek: First Contact,” the eighth feature of the “Star Trek” franchise; Masters was Borg Design Supervisor. Masters’ company MastersFX created the film’s legendary bio-mechanical foes - The Borg - along with Oscar-winning Make-up Designer Michael Westmore and Costume Designer Deborah Everton.
Released by Paramount Pictures on November 22, 1996 - “Star Trek: First Contact” grossed $217 Million - at the time, the second-highest-grossing “Trek” film ever. Roger Ebert considered it to be one of the best “Star Trek” films - and, two and a half decades later, it’s still a fan favorite.
There’s even a coffee-table book coming out, from Titan Books: “Star Trek: First Contact: The Official Story of the Film,” written by Joe Fordham - arriving in 2022.
The 1996 feature film “Star Trek: First Contact” tells the story of the Starship Enterprise, and its crew - as they follow a Borg ship through a time warp - to prevent the Borg from taking over the Earth. In a past era, Geordi La Forge (LeVar Burton) helps a pioneer of space travel, Zefram Cochrane (James Cromwell,) in his efforts to create the first warp-drive. Concurrently, Capt. Picard (Patrick Stewart) and Cmdr. Data (Brent Spiner) battle the Borg Queen (Alice Krige) as she tries to take over the Enterprise. And, Lilly (Alfre Woodard) gets a peak at what her future might hold.
Regarding “Star Trek: First Contact,” Jonathan Frakes says, “I’m eternally grateful to Sherry Lansing and Rick Berman for trusting me to navigate Brannan Braga’s and Ronald D Moore’s bullet-proof script.”
“I know I’m biased, but I truly think ‘First Contact’ is the strongest of all the ‘Star Trek’ films. It is a true classic!” Masters said. “This film has it all: Tense sci-fi action, ground-breaking visual effects, an amazing cast… and the Borg Queen - memorably played by Alice Krige.”
Frakes and Masters came together for this private 25th anniversary event, after decades of bumping into one another - on airplanes, and working on various television shows, like: “Falling Skies” and “Masters of Science Fiction.” Masters recalls, “We often chatted about our experiences with the Borg - and surviving that challenging film. Making it was fast, complex, sweaty and intense!”
“But it is also one of the better films on my resume. And since no one else had planned to mark the occasion of its 25th anniversary, Jonathan and I were going to do it,” Masters concludes.
About THE VISUAL EFFECTS SOCIETY
The Visual Effects Society (VES) is a global professional honorary society and the entertainment industry’s only organization representing the full breadth of visual effects practitioners. VES’ more than 4,200 members in over 40 countries worldwide contribute to all areas of entertainment – film, television, commercials, animation, special venue, games and new media.
For nearly 35 years, MASTERSFX's creative teams have produced a distinctive blend of practical and digital makeup FX, prosthetics and animatronics, through a process called “dMFX,” for hundreds of hit feature films, TV shows, and commercials.
Currently, MastersFX is in production on: “Monster High” for Nickelodeon; the monster feature “The Pishach;” the ABC series “The Good Doctor;” and the hit TV shows “DC’s Legends of Tomorrow,” “Nancy Drew” and “Charmed.”