Marc Okrand

Marc Okrand Saarbruecken 2019.jpg
Marc Okrand 2019
Dr. Marc Okrand (no middle name), born 3rd of July 1948 in Los Angeles (Age: 74), is the inventor of the Klingon language and author of The Klingon Dictionary. As such, his pronouncements are considered the standard of correctness ("canon") concerning the language.

The Klingon spelling for his name is marq 'oqranD.(1)

Contact to Klingonist community

Marc Okrand has always enjoyed being in close contact to the Klingonist community.

He first got in contact to a Klingon fan club named Mortas-Te-Kaase, to which he provided 19 new words, published in their journal named veS QonoS in 1990.

A few years later, after the foundation of the KLI in 1992, Okrand was contacted by its director Lawrence M. Schoen, who asked him for a telephone conference during the qep'a'. The third qep'a' of 1996 was Okrand's first qep'a' he ever attended. Since then, he has attended each qep'a' until 2019, and participated in the online qep'a' of 2020 and 2021.

Marc Okrand has visited the qepHom in Germany in 2011 for their tenth anniversary, and later went back to qepHom'a' 2015 - 2019.



Okrand worked with Native American languages. He earned a bachelor's degree from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 1972. His 1977 doctoral dissertation from the University of California, Berkeley, was on the grammar of Mutsun, a dialect of Ohlone (a.k.a. Southern Costanoan), which is an extinct Utian language formerly spoken in the north central Californian coastal areas from Northern Costanoan down to 30 miles south of Salinas. His dissertation was supervised by pioneering linguist Mary Haas.

His doctoral dissertation can be viewed in PDF format at the following link: Mutsun grammar by Marc Okrand

He taught undergraduate linguistics courses at the University of California, Santa Barbara, from 1975 to 1978, before taking a post doctoral fellowship at the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., in 1978.

After that, Okrand took a job at the National Captioning Institute, where he worked on the first closed-captioning system for hearing impaired television viewers. Until his retirement in 2013, Okrand served as one of the directors for Live Captioning at the National Captioning Institute and as President of the board of directors of the Washington Shakespeare Company in Arlington, Virginia. The WSC planned to stage "an evening of Shakespeare in Klingon" in 2010.

In 2001, Okrand created the Atlantean language for the Disney film Atlantis: The Lost Empire.

In 2018, he developed the language for the Kelpiens in the Short Treks episode "The brightest star".

Star Trek

While coordinating closed captioning for the Oscars award show in 1982, Okrand met the producer Harve Bennett for the movie Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. His first work was dubbing a Vulcan language dialogue for Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, since the actors had already been filmed talking in English. He was then hired by Paramount Pictures to develop the Klingon language and coach the actors using it in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, and Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. He was later hired for the 2009 Star Trek film (See Star Trek (2009)) in their use of the Romulan and Vulcan languages. He created a Klingon dialogue for the 2009 movie, but the scenes were cut from the movie. He was involved in Star Trek Into Darkness, but only during post-production. Okrand developed the language for the race seen in the opening scene of Into Darkness, but the spoken scenes did not make it into the movie(2).

Okrand is the author of three books about Klingon: The Klingon Dictionary (first published 1985), The Klingon Way (1996) and Klingon for the Galactic Traveler (1997). He has co-authored the libretto of an opera in the Klingon language: 'u', debuting at The Hague in September 2010. He speaks Klingon, but notes that others have attained greater fluency.

In 2014 he portrayed the main character "Scrooge" in a special edition of A Klingon Christmas Carol.

Okrand was the co-producer of a documentary movie about constructed languages called Conlanging.

See also

External Links


1 : As seen on his business card for Conlanging

2 : Marc Okand about Into Darkness, Interview of 10 october 2013

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Category: People    Latest edit: 08 Aug 2021, by KlingonTeacher    Created: 02 Mar 2014 by LieVen
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