(written from a Production point of view)
Rolland "Bud" M. Brooks (17 December 1907 – 24 September 1998; age 90), his first name often misspelled as "Roland", worked as art director in Star Trek: The Original Series, beginning with the second pilot, "Where No Man Has Gone Before". He shared duties with his subordinate Matt Jefferies during the first and early second season, however he left the series after "Amok Time", leaving Jefferies alone in the position.
In 1964, Brooks was the senior art department staffer at Desilu Studios when the recently commissioned pilot episode "The Cage" for a new science fiction series was dumped in his lap. "I was sitting there thinking, "My god, we gotta come up with a lot of stuff here"...and I thought of Matt.", Brooks recalled. This Brooks did in a mischievous way as his then subordinate, Set Designer Jefferies, reiterated, still somewhat horrified, "At that point, [my wife and I] took a month off and went to the East Coast to visit the family. [We] came back and I couldn't find my equipment. My little cubicle was empty. So I went to Bud Brooks' office and said, "Where's the next [Ben] Casey script?" and he said, "You're not on the show anymore." It served me right for taking a month's vacation." Having had his chuckles, an amused Brooks then set the record straight for the shocked Jefferies, "Your stuff is in the big drafting room...and there's a man coming in this morning by the name of Roddenberry to do a space show." Aside from Jefferies, Brooks assigned Pato Guzman to the production as Jefferies' superior, but who was replaced by outside contractor Franz Bachelin when Guzman decided to leave the studio prematurely. (These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One, 1st ed, pp. 35, 44) Brooks himself had too much on his plate with other productions on the studio lot at that time to become engaged with "The Cage" himself, but stepped in the next year when the second pilot went into production as successor of Bachelin.
His most recognizable Star Trek contribution was his design for the Guardian of Forever, featured in "The City on the Edge of Forever". Normally, set design was the purview of his colleague Jefferies, but due to illness, Brooks took over his chores for the Guardian. When Jefferies returned to his duties and saw the donut-shaped set piece for the first time, he reportedly exclaimed, "What the hell is this?!", according to Story Editor DC Fontana. (These Are the Voyages: TOS Season One, 1st ed, p. 517)
Career outside Star Trek Edit
During his twelve-year career as art director, Brooks mostly worked on television projects, including series such as The Andy Griffith Show, The Untouchables, The Lucy Show, Ben Casey, Mission: Impossible and Hogan's Heroes, all of which produced at Desilu. When Lucille Ball sold her company to Gulf+Western in July 1967, Brooks opted to leave Desilu (and Star Trek) and to continue his career as a free agent, among others on The Bill Cosby Show. The last project he worked on was the 1973 TV movie The Bait, featuring Don Keefer.
Star Trek interviews Edit
- "Star Trek", Ben Herndon, Cinefantastique, Vol 17 #2, 1987, pp. 24-30, 32-39, 55
- "Star Trek The 30th Anniversary", Sue Uram, Cinefantastique, Vol 27 #11, 1996, pp. 24, 26-27, 104-111