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Richard Yuricich

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Richard Yuricich, ASC
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Richard Yuricich

Birth name: Richard M. Yuricich
Gender: Male
Date of birth: 23 December 1942
Place of birth: Lorain, Ohio, USA
Awards for Trek: 1 Academy Award nomination
1 Saturn Award
Roles: Visual Effects Producer

Richard "Dick" M. Yuricich (born 23 December 1942; age 72) from Ohio, was the visual effects (VFX) photographic producer/director of photography in the 1979 film Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

Yuricich was initially brought in on the movie in late July 1978 by Paramount Pictures CEO Michael Eisner, to serve as an unpaid liaison between the studio and visual effects company Robert Abel & Associates (RA&A), as RA&A's budget requests started to spiral out of control, and his primary responsibility was to appraise the situation for the studio, essentially to serve as a studio spy. (The Making of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, pp. 203-204) Due to contractual obligations, an unmotivated Yuricich was forced to do this. An insensitive Eisner had actually tried to shut down his own company, Future General Corporation (FGC), of which Yuricich was co-founder as well as co-CEO nearly two years earlier. [X]wbm

The VFX situation came to a head on 20 February 1979 when studio executives and producers came sizing up the visual effects situation at RA&A. The company reportedly had only a single completed effects shot to show for all the time and money spent, already four million dollars over budget at sixteen million dollars by December 1978. Two days later, in an acrimonious atmosphere, Abel was fired and his company released , effective immediately, starting a frantic search for a replacement, as the studio now unexpectedly found itself extremely pressured for time since the release date for the movie was a given. It was then that Yuricich's own company, FGC, was contracted for the visual effects and that his participation became formal. (The Special Effects of Trek, pp. 29, 31) together with FGC co-founder Douglas Trumbull, Yuricich used the problems the studio were in as leverage to secure a proviso that they would be released from their contractual studio obligations if they accepted. For the work, Trumbull and Yuricich, now paid, were able to partly reassemble the team they previously had on Close Encounters of the Third Kind, but was forced to let go by the studio over a year earlier. Both men left FGC upon completion of the project.

Years later, in 2001, Yuricich was interviewed on his contributions for the DVD release of Star Trek: The Motion Picture (The Director's Edition). Until then Yuricich had been loathe, understandably perhaps, to publicly divulge any information on his involvement in the production of the movie. As it turned out however, he had talked indepth – already occasionally venting his frustration with the studio in veiled wordings – about his work for the production in 1979, while he was still working on the movie, to Cinefantastique reporter Preston Neal Jones, but the latter's copy was only published 35 years later in the title listed below.

Matte painter Matthew Yuricich was Richard's older brother, having worked together with him on several projects, including The Motion Picture.

Career outside Star TrekEdit

He first served as a Rostrum animation cameraman for the 1968 sci-fi classic 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968, starring Gary Lockwood. It was on this occasion that he met Douglas Trumbull, forming a long association and friendship. In 1971, served as part of the special photographic effects team for Douglas Trumbull's film Silent Running (1972) which built upon a number of special effects techniques developed for 2001.

In 1975 both men founded FGC and served as effects photographic producer/director on that company's first full-blown theatrical movie for which the company provided the VFX, the acclaimed science fiction film Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1979, starring Teri Garr). Yuricich followed his friend after leaving FGC and worked, now employed at Trumbull's new company Entertainment Effects Group (EEG) on the equally acclaimed science fiction film Blade Runner (1982, starring Joanna Cassidy). During this period, he shared Academy Award nominations with the rest of their special effects team for all three films. His work on the Star Trek film helped win the team the Saturn Award for "Best Special Effects." Shortly thereafter, he later served as associate producer at EEG for the 1983 sci-fi thriller Brainstorm, which was also directed by Trumbull, and starred Star Trek: Deep Space Nine actress Louise Fletcher.

After Trumbull had sold EEG in 1984 to Richard Edlund, for it to become Boss Film Studios, Richard Yuricich became an independent contractor, consistently continuing to work in the motion picture industry as a VFX director of photography/supervisor throughout the subsequent decades.

Star Trek awards Edit

Yuricich has received the following awards and nominations in the various Special/Visual Effects categories:

Academy Awards Edit

Saturn Awards Edit

  • 1980 Saturn Award win for Star Trek: The Motion Picture, shared with John Dykstra, and Douglas Trumbull

Star Trek interviewsEdit

External linkEdit

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