Star Trek: First Contact Day Features Virtual Panels, Marathons & More

April 5th is the date that's enshrined in Star Trek fans' minds since that's the day when Zefram Cochrane made his faithful trip with his invented warp drive to bring attention to the Vulcans, who made their first contact to planet earth. It also serves as the 25th anniversary of what many consider the best Next Generation film in Star Trek: First Contact (1996). Startrek.com is scheduling a full day full of panels featuring the current and past casts of the TV shows as well as a cast reunion of the 1996 film, and marathons to mark to occasion.

Star Trek Announces First Contact Day with Virtual Panels, Marathon
Courtesy of Startrek.com

The global panels will start on 12:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. PT/3 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. ET and hosted by Wil Wheaton and Mica Burton and feature cast members and creative minds from Star Trek as they discuss exploration, unity through diversity and new frontiers in the franchise while offering exclusive sneak peeks into what's next in the Star Trek Universe on Paramount+. The panels will serve as the global centerpiece of First Contact Day, and each will uniquely honor the legacy and importance of Star Trek's core values of acceptance and exploration while creating a memorable experience for fans. In addition, Star Trek updates, announcements, and footage will be showcased throughout.

First Contact Day will feature the following panels.

  • Star Trek: First Contact 25th Anniversary Panel: featuring cast members Patrick Stewart, Jonathan Frakes, Brent Spiner and Alice Krige as they discuss behind-the-scenes memories and the film's importance 25 years after its premiere.
  • Creating First Contacts Panel: Costume Designer Gersha Phillips (Star Trek: Discovery), Senior Concept Designer Neville Page, VFX Supervisor Jason Zimmerman and Make-up & Prosthetics Department Head James Mackinnon (Star Trek: Picard) come together in conversation about creating the incredible worlds of Star Trek, as seen in Star Trek: Discovery and Star Trek: Picard.
  • Women In Motion Panel: featuring Star Trek: Discovery's Sonequa Martin-Green, Star Trek: Picard's Michelle Hurd and Isa Briones, and Star Trek: Lower Decks' Dawnn Lewis as they look back at how Star Trek: The Original Series actress Nichelle Nichols helped pave the way for women of color on television and overall, her lasting impact on not only Star Trek, but science and culture.
  • Second Contact Panel: Mike McMahan, the creator of Star Trek: Lower Decks, Paul F. Tompkins, the co-host of Star Trek: The Pod Directive and Star Trek: The Next Generation's Brent Spiner and Jonathan Frakes discuss how some of the hilarious B-stories from past series like Star Trek: The Next Generation paved the way for new iterations of Star Trek, including Star Trek: Lower Decks, the Star Trek franchise's first animated comedy.
  • "Star Trek: Prodigy" Panel: series executive producers Kevin and Dan Hageman are joined by Star Trek: Voyager's Captain Kathryn Janeway herself, Kate Mulgrew, who is reprising her role in animated form in Prodigy, as they talk about the highly anticipated upcoming CG-animated kids series.

Fans will be able to stream the panels for free at startrek.com/firstcontact. For the US, they'll also be able to stream on PlutoTV and Paramount+'s Twitch page. After the initial stream, the content will be available on Paramount+'s YouTube page and Paramount+ itself. On April 5, for every person that tweets the hashtag StarTrekUnitedGives (#StarTrekUnitedGives), Paramount+ will donate $1 to organizations who do the real-world work of championing equality, social justice, and the pursuit of scientific advancements. For more information like the programming schedule on the Star Trek marathon and discounts on the site, you can head to startrek.com.

About Tom Chang

I'm a follower of pop culture from gaming, comics, sci-fi, fantasy, film, and TV for over 30 years. I grew up reading magazines like Starlog, Mad, and Fangoria. As a writer for over 10 years, Star Wars was the first sci-fi franchise I fell in love with. I'm a nerd-of-all-trades.