"Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home" : Behind the Scenes

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William Shatner did not want a time travel movie.
When the film's story was being developed, Leonard Nimory and Harve Bennett weren't sure what organisms the probe should be contacting (they toyed with the idea of plants at one point). Leonard finally got the idea of using whales from a conversation he had with a friend about whale songs.
The sound that the probe makes in the movie as it flies by was recorded directly from Leonard Nimoy.
The sound of the "banging" on the hull during the time warp was made from hitting a bat against a large dumpster that contained a microphone.
The water scenes were primarily filmed in a tank that was rediscovered by the crew under a parking lot in Paramount Studios.
All the scenes on Vulcan were shot in the Paramount lot because they could not find a suitable location. The scene where the Bird of Prey takes off from Vulcan was filmed on the Paramount lot. Robin Curtis (Saavik) and Jane Wyatt (Amanda) were standing on a wooden platform for the shot, everything else is special effects.
DeForrest Kelley was a very private man. He never invited any of the other actors to his home.
The scene where the Bird of Prey lands on Earth was shot at Will Roger's Park in Los Angeles. It was originally going to be filmed in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, but heavy rains prior to shooting meant the garbage truck would get stuck, so they couldn't get it.
When McCoy, Scotty and Sulu are standing in front of the building with Yellow Pages ad, a door opens and an oriental woman appears. The scene in the movie ends at this point but originally this woman was to begin shouting for a young boy named Hikaru, who would run into Sulu. Sulu would realize that this boy was his great-great-(etc.) grandfather. The young boy hired for this scene began to cry on the set before the shot and they were unable to get him to do the scene. With no one to replace him, the scene was never shot.
The Punk guy on the bus was Kirk Thatcher; he also wrote the music playing.
The scene where Spock was swimming with the whales was shot at the NASA training pool.
The 'USS Enterprise CVN-65' was actually The USS Ranger CV-61. The Enterprise was out to sea during filming.
The set for the Italian restaurant was built in a Paramount soundstage.
The Commander on the Navy Enterprise who reports intruders was an actual Navy officer.
The shots of the helicopter carrying the transparent aluminum to the Bird of Prey were shot from Alcatraz Island. The helicopter was actually a remote controlled miniature.
When Chekov is asking where the nuclear "wessels" are, the lady who responded to him wasn't an extra (extras weren't supposed to talk, or else they would have to be paid). She just happened to be walking by... Leornard liked the scene, so they caught up to her and signed her a contract.
The whales in the movie were animatronic, not real.
The film was originally supposed to have 'Murphy, Eddie' instead of Catherine Hicks. Murphy was supposed to be a professor concerned with UFO's who spots the de-cloaking Klingon ship at the Super Bowl. Apparently, all others are convinced the ship is a half-time special effect while Murphy believes it is real. Paramount declined this script for two reasons: Paramount didn't want to combine their two most profitable franchises (Star Trek and Beverly Hills Cop), and Murphy had signed on to do Golden Child, The (1986) instead.
When Kirk, McCoy, and Gillian first enter the hospital and are walking around trying to locate Chekov, a voice on a loudspeaker in the background says "Paging Dr. Zober... Dr. Sandy Zober." Sandra Zober was director/star Leonard Nimoy's wife at the time.
A scene written for but cut from the film explained why Saavik stays on Vulcan: she is pregnant with Spock's child, stemming from an event in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock (1984). This was the character's final appearance in a Star Trek film.
The captain of the USS Saratoga, seen at the start of the film, was the first female captain ever seen in Star Trek.
One early draft script was subtitled "The Trial of James T Kirk". This script involved Kirk being court-martialed at the request of the Klingons, who were indignant about the events in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock (1984). One particularly interesting facet of this script is that it included the character of Harry Mudd as a character witness. When the time-travel script was approved instead, the trial was included as a minor sequence. The trial-by-Klingons idea (and portions of the dialogue) was later re-used in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991).
The Voyage Home is the only Star Trek movie in which no one is killed.