Star Trek Pin-up FRAMED #28 Wrath of Kahn Ricardo Montalban Movie II


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Ricardo Montalbán portrays Khan Noonien Singh, a genetically enhanced superhuman who used his strength and intellect to briefly rule much of Earth in the 1990s. Montalbán said that he believed all good villains do villainous things, but think that they are acting for the “right” reasons; in this way, Khan uses his anger at the death of his wife to justify his pursuit of Kirk. The film was close to production approval when it occurred to the producers that no one had asked Montalbán whether he was interested in appearing in the film despite his character having been in the scripts for more than a year. Montalbán was unsure whether he could plausibly play Khan again after many years, especially given his current role of Mr. Roarke on Fantasy Island. Contrary to speculation that Montalbán used a prosthetic chest, no artificial devices were added to emphasize Montalbán’s muscular physique, since even in his 60s and despite an increasingly painful back injury, stemming from being thrown off a horse in the 1950s, Montalbán had a vigorous workout routine. Montalbán enjoyed making the film, and counted the role as a career highlight. His major complaint was that he was never face-to-face with Shatner for a scene. “I had to do my lines with the script girl, who, as you might imagine, sounded nothing like Bill Shatner,” he explained. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan is a 1982 American science fiction action adventure thriller film released by Paramount Pictures. The film is the second feature based on the Star Trek science fiction franchise. The plot features James T. Kirk (William Shatner) and the crew of the starship USS Enterprise facing off against the genetically-engineered tyrant Khan Noonien Singh (Ricardo Montalbán), a character who first appeared in the 1967 Star Trek television series episode “Space Seed”. When Khan escapes from a 15-year exile to exact revenge on Kirk, the crew of the Enterprise must stop him from acquiring a powerful terraforming device named Genesis. The film concludes with the death of Enterprise first officer Spock (Leonard Nimoy), beginning a story arc that continues with the 1984 film Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and concludes with 1986’s Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home. Khan Noonian Singh (Ricardo Montalban), whom Kirk thwarted in his attempt to seize control of the Enterprise fifteen years earlier (“Space Seed”), seeks his revenge and lays a cunning and sinister trap. Both the first and second films have television versions with additional footage and alternate takes that affect the storyline. (Subsequent Trek films tended to have shorter television versions.) Especially notable in The Wrath of Khan is the footage establishing that a young crewmember who acts courageously and dies during an attack on the Enterprise is Scotty’s nephew.

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