Gene Roddenberry's "Star Trek" concept — space travel to futuristic civilizations in an often-hostile universe — spawned several wildly popular TV series and 11 movies.
The most successful of his movies was 1986's "Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home," in which the crew of the starship Enterprise went back in time to San Francisco of the 1980s and rescued whales. The movie grossed more than $110 million domestically.
"Star Trek" has been a cherished and often-imitated icon of American culture since it was introduced to viewers on NBC on Sept. 8, 1966, with an episode called "The Man Trap."
The show lasted just three seasons on NBC, but the fierce loyalty the Trekkers pledged to it outlasted the NBC brass who thought Roddenberry's original pilot for the program was "too cerebral" for television viewers. Episodes of the original series are still broadcast on more than 200 TV stations in the United States. It has been translated into 47 languages.
In a fitting tribute to the science fiction legend, Roddenberry's remains were rocketed into space.