Harve Bennett, producer of four Star Trek movies, has died at the age of 84. Bennett worked on many different television series and eventually worked with Leonard Nimoy (who died on February 27) on A Woman Called Golda. Following this, Bennett began work on the Star Trek franchise where he partnered with director Nicholas Meyer on Star Trek: The Wrath of Kahn. He watched every episode of the original Star Trek to prepare to write this movie.
“He was a remarkable man and he was unpretentious and self-effacing. I don’t think there would be a Star Trek franchise without him.
He rescued it. He’s endangered of being lost in the shuffle, but he’s the guy who figured it out,” said Star Trek director Nicholas Meyer, who worked with Bennett on Star Trek: The Wrath Of Khan and Star Trek: The Voyage Home.
“He watched all 79 of those original episodes and he was the one who plucked out Khan,” Meyer added.
Star Trek: The Wrath of Kahn’s success not only sealed the future of the Star Trek (left much in doubt after the flop that was Star Trek: The Motion Picture) franchise, but also sealed Bennet’s role as producer for Star Trek III, IV, and V. In Star Trek V, he also appeared briefly as an admiral who sent the Enterprise on her mission.
Harve Bennett began his career in entertainment at a young age. He appeared on the radio show Quiz Kids as a boy. He went to college at University California, Los Angeles where he graduated from film school. He went on to serve in Korea in the Army before returning to his Entertainment career. He would become one of CBS’ youngest executives before moving to ABC where he became a VP of Daytime Programming and then VP of Programming. He also worked at Universal and Columbia Pictures before being recruited to Paramount, where he worked on Star Trek.
Throughout his career, Bennett worked on shows like The Mod Squad, Gemeni Man, Million Dollar Man, Bionic Woman, Salvage 1, and the Jessie Owens Story. Following his work on Star Trek he continued to produce including the animated miniseries Invasion America, for which Leonard Nimoy lent his voice.
Harve Bennett may not have been as publicly prominent as Leonard Nimoy, but his contributions to the Star Trek franchise should not be forgotten.
Bennett died in Medford, Oregon.