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J.J. Abrams Headed To Iceland August 10, 2007

by Hallbjörn Guðjónsson , Filed under: Abrams,STXI Status , trackback

According to sources in today’s Frettabladid, there are very good chances that the new Star Trek movie will be (in part) filmed in Iceland. Two production companies, Pegasus & Saga Film are still batting over the film, and now Paramount Pictures have sent over plans for the budget and the two companies are looking it over. Both parties are optimistic that a deal will be made and the new Star Trek will be coming to the small island nation.The article also states that director J.J. Abrams is coming to Iceland to look at the locations Paramount scouts looked over in June. (previous story).

The latest news seems to confirm the previous report that the Iceland shoot will indeed be a ‘big’ part of the film. A source close the production told TrekMovie.com editor Anthony Pascale that production designer Scott Chambliss has already traveled to Iceland. The Iceland location shooting will make the new Star Trek the first Trek production to film outside the USA. Of course what Iceland is standing in for is still anyone’s guess.

Weather permitting? breaking up the shoot?
The Frettabladid source states that shooting is expected in the Spring, after things warm up. The film starts production at Paramount studios in November and it would be unusual for filming to last long enough to take them through to Spring, but perhaps they will have a shooting hiatus between the studio portion and the location shooting.

Hallbjörn Guðjónsson will continue to report on events as the new TrekMovie.com Iceland Bureau Chief 


1. PD18 - August 10, 2007

Nice! Iceland… an Alien landscape, perhaps…

… and FIRST

2. The Dark Knight - August 10, 2007


Sounds interesting to me. Any thoughts what they could shoot there? Kirk’s vacation?

3. The Dark Knight - August 10, 2007

Okay, alien landscape! Andorians?

4. Sebi - August 10, 2007

Think “Ruora Penthe”

5. cheer - August 10, 2007

Rura Penthe was the first thought I had as well.

6. The Dark Knight - August 10, 2007

Well…, Kirk gets kidnapped again… Or for the first time?^^

7. DavidJ - August 10, 2007

Cool. Maybe we’ll get to see those cool landing party jackets from The Cage again.

8. Adam Cohen - August 10, 2007

Welcome to Trekmovie.com, Hallbjörn!

9. Anthony Pascale - August 10, 2007

Iceland is not all ice

10. The Dark Knight - August 10, 2007

Of course it isn’t. But I’m curious… I still hope, it’s something Andorian.. I dunno!

11. Andy Patterson - August 10, 2007

Maybe it’ll mirror Captain America’s rebirth since I always felt Kirk tailored one of his fight scenes in the time travel episode on the air force base after something Jack Kirby would’ve had Captain America do. Throwing one’s whole body against a group of people.

12. The Dark Knight - August 10, 2007

I’d like to know what kind of villain we’ll see in ‘Star Trek’… A Klingon would be great!

13. Andy Patterson - August 10, 2007

Andorians would be cool. The original ones. Not the out of work, just graduated from Julliard, overly articulate people, antennae miraculously in front of their head thespians, who’ve been playing them these days. Bring back a French/Hungarian like Reggie Nalder to act in the role. That was genius casting watching a person who’s not comfortable with the English wrapping their mouths around those lines. Certainly added an air of legitimacy to their not of this world alien status.

14. The Dark Knight - August 10, 2007

Andorians? Yeah, why not?

Something I definitely wanna see is something new: Something thrilling connected with the original philosophy of Trek. And some suspense…
Something kickass!

15. DavidJ - August 10, 2007

I know this isn’t really the place for it, but if anyone’s interested here’s a sculpt I’m working on of Quinto as Spock. Obviously it’s still early so I’m just kind of guessing what he’ll look like (and what he’ll be wearing).

Ok back to the Iceland talk. : P

16. DavidJ - August 10, 2007


Agreed! The one thing ENT actually got right was the Andorians. I loved their ice planet and seeing their culture developed, and think they’d be great villains for the movie.

Certainly better than yet another Khan retread.

17. Andy Patterson - August 10, 2007

I didn’t think they did get them right. The whole time I saw them on Enterprise I would think, “yeah,…something finally to like about this show.” Just my opinion, but I cringed every time I saw their new incarnation of that show.

18. Andy Patterson - August 10, 2007

Wow! David J, good work. What medium are you using? Good stuff.

19. Andy Patterson - August 10, 2007

Again,…..I’m looking at that again David J…….Nice work. Good eye for detail.

20. The Dark Knight - August 10, 2007

But the Andorians are much better developed than the f**k Xindi. I mean, there were some great episodes during the 3rd season, but it wasn’t earl gray, you know…^^

21. Jackson Roykirk - August 10, 2007

As I posted once before on this board, my wife and I vacationed in Iceland, and it has many varied and alien landscapes — not just ice.

It is not as cold as you would think — the gulf-stream runs right into the SW of the island, so we enjoyed 40+ degree days in mid-October. We visited an 800-year old lava field that was nothing but lava rock from horizon to horizon. We also saw are steaming hot springs and bubbling geysers, tall thin waterfalls and big fat waterfalls. There are of course glaciers (we ate a picnic lunch on one). The movie ‘Flags of our Fathers’ was filmed there because Iceland’s black stone beaches were similar to Iwo-Jima’s.

From what I saw, they could probably get two or three planets out of that one island. More ‘bang for your buck’.

22. Dave - August 10, 2007

EPIC! Its nice to see the locations are going “Global”, makes this picture feel and seem epic. Can we say “Blockbuster”?

23. Andy Patterson - August 10, 2007

Well I hate the Xindi too.

24. Jackson Roykirk - August 10, 2007

oh…and to add to my above description: There are almost no trees out in the Icelandic countryside. We were told that the Vikings cut them all down for building materials and fuel. Damned Vikings.

25. The Dark Knight - August 10, 2007

Yeah! I hope there won’t be any cameo of a Xindi! No! This won’t happen!
I want to see more of Andoria… and perhaps a descendant of Shran… played by Combs! Meh, just a fanboy dream!
Btw: This girl from ‘Death Proof’ would be a sexy love interest for Kirk.

‘I. Want. That. Girl. Now!’

26. Jay - August 10, 2007

yea Iceland isnt just ice, its like a huge lava place too

27. DavidJ - August 10, 2007


Thanks. It’s just Sculpey clay. I’ll probably wait until some official pics come out (December hopefully?) before finalizing it and painting it.

28. Andy Patterson - August 10, 2007

really good work, man. They should buy your work.

29. LK - August 10, 2007

DavidJ –

Great sculpt! I’ve been hoping we might find a place for this sort of stuff here on the site.

What say you, Anthony? Can we hope to see a “professional fan art” section at some point?

30. JC - August 10, 2007

I hope they’ll be landing on a planet of blond supermodels (as extras).Well at least JJ will.

31. NCC-73515 - August 10, 2007

i liked the aquatic xindi. couldn’t they have built the probe from st4?

32. Allister Gourlay - August 10, 2007

federation snowball fight?

33. Sleeper Agent X - August 10, 2007

I’m hoping for all new planets to explore, as opposed to going back to Rura Penthe or re-visiting the Andorians.

It’d be great for Kirk and crew to “boldly go where no man has gone before” again!

34. Hallbjorn Gudjonsson - August 10, 2007

Well, if the movie comes here it will be filmed in the spring, when all the snow is gone.

35. Charley W - August 10, 2007

Surprisingly, Iceland is one of the most volcanicly active places on Earth, and has just about the only fissure-type eruptions in modern history.

Before you curse the Vikings to Eternal Damnation for cutting down all of the trees, you should also include the Chinese, most of the European nations, the Indians (both Asian and Native American), ALL of the Mid-Eastern cultures, Haiti and many other Carribean islands, Madagascar, Easter Island, the original 13 colonies, etc, etc and of course etc.

36. Trekgeezer - August 10, 2007

Star Trek has always screamed to be made into a epic motion picture. Maybe we’ll get some of that this time instead of a high production value TV episode.

37. Lao3D - August 10, 2007

A quick Google image search of Iceland shows some pretty mythic-looking landscapes. Seems like a good choice to me…

and nice sculpture David J! Really looks like Quinto and a good representation of a young Spock.

38. roberto orci - August 10, 2007

# 36.


39. Xai - August 10, 2007

At least it’s a location and not a “alien planet set” at desilu. I hated them.

Now we need a crew in Iowa to film the opening teaser.
Ask Orbitalic, he has a good one written up

40. Xai - August 10, 2007

This is Orbitalic’s opener, pardon the slight sidestep from Iceland. (which I agree has some great ‘scapes to use in the film.)

“Baaa-paa-ba, ba, bum-bum-pa-pa! is heard faintly…
Imagine a tree-lined creek bed in the middle of an Iowa summer. Birds chirp, the water gurgles around a couple of rocks. Our point of view sees a stone being thrown to skip across the water, frightening the deer on the far bank. We see a close up of a black-booted foot using a rock as a stepping stone moving in and out of the frame. The scene steps back to see a gold-shirted man from the back, now standing on the high bank, looking at the water and trees. He now looks to the sky, sighs and opens a communicator. He speaks calmly.
“One to beam aboard”.
We hear the transporter sizzle and the point of view accends as the man disappears… The image of the creek bed moves back now, fields of corn rapidly give way to a patchwork of fields, a nearby town. We start seeing the curvature of the horizon. The POV rotates as we elevate… more Earth, the glow of atmosphere, the glare of the sun and now …space. The starscape fills the screen… and we begin to move forward… faster and faster…
Cue the theme… the music swells.
Introduction. “

41. Sleeper Agent X - August 10, 2007

My sources tell me they’re shooting in Iceland to stand in for Vancouver!

42. Flake - August 10, 2007

Yes, big location shoot, no more dodgy studios. Thank you Paramount for opening the purse strings on a Star Trek movie, something that hasn’t been done since 1978!

I have spent a lot of money on Trek over the last 15 years so its nice to see Paramount doing the same ;)

43. Flake - August 10, 2007

Oh and I love that trekmovie.com has an icelandic correspondant. All the bases are covered here :)

44. Viking - August 10, 2007

#4 & 5: Anthony is right. Iceland isn’t icy, nor is Greenland green, generally speaking. :D

45. mctrekkie - August 10, 2007

Pardon the pun, I like the idea of the Iowa inclusion by Orbalic’s-

But as long as it’s not too “Corny”

I remember the scene in enterprise where Bakula remember playing the with the remote control Warp Ship with his Dad.

Felt a bit forced.

And the spinning Champagne bottle of Generations seemed too “Precious”.

Iceland, Volcanoes, odd shapes, yeah… Epic!
take a look at these



Man, a little color correction would make either seem even more Alien.

Given the exotic locale, I hope they go easy on the Green screen (unless it’s ILM) and I hope for a great budget and lots of practical sets/effects-

JJ, Please keep that second unit busy!

ps: Excellent sculpy work, David J. – Is that collar from TMP?

Without color, it reminds me of the laser modeled heads from TVH

46. Plum - August 10, 2007

It would be really coolio if Iceland has a sexy alien girl played by Bjork!

Heck, she’s not from Earth anyway (assuming she was just raised in Iceland).

47. Captain Pike - August 10, 2007

“My sources tell me they’re shooting in Iceland to stand in for Vancouver!”

Yeah you couldn’t possibly use any location in Vancouver for an alien planet. No wait, Stargate only did that over 100 times. I won’t mention Andromeda or Battlestar Galactica….

Seriously Iceland doesn’t look like an “alien planet” – it looks like Iceland. But this is space opera so you have the Ice Planet®, the Swamp Planet®, etc. In that context Iceland has many varied and scenic landscape all devoid of those pesky identifiable evergreen trees. Great unless you want the Desert Planet® – for that you go to Tunisia or better yet Namibia.

48. Kirk's Girdle - August 10, 2007

Re: David J

You’re really quite talented. You’ve captured a great look in your sculpture, possibly better than Quinto himself will manage.

My main worry about Quinto is his voice – he sounds more like HAL9000 than Leonard Nimoy.

Once again, excellent work David.

49. Tim Handrahan - August 10, 2007

Vulcan, perhaps?

50. Kirk's Girdle - August 10, 2007

Knew we’d get the Bjork joke eventually.

Looking at the first pic of David’s sculpture, I’ve noticed something … ahem… fascinating. With your eyes wide open, it looks like Quinto, but if you squint, it DOES look like Nimoy. HOLY CRAP!!

Also regarding the green screen. If you watch the special features for MI:3, there are numerous green screen shots that weren’t even detectable on the screen. The pan-in before the base jump scene in Shanghai was a spectacular combination of a live helicopter shot, a boom-cam 360 shot of Cruise, and a bit cg to fill in the transition from long shot to close-up. If it’s done right, you’ll never even suspect it.

51. Sean4000 - August 10, 2007

David, you’re real name is Michelangelo! Excellent work.

52. JC - August 10, 2007

36 .I doubt it.They’re still using the TV stars.Ties it to the tube.

53. mctrekkie - August 10, 2007

Ok, then #50, I’ll be fine with Any green screen as long as it’s not a Virual Movie like Sky Captain.


Huh. Given the message of Star Trek 4, should we really praising paramount them for filming in Iceland, after all?

I just discovered this while searching for more neat Iceland Shots.


If Spielberg can pressure China to help with Darfor- What can the Trek Production team /Paramount say to the The Icelandic Film Centre about the above link?

I wonder if the Picture is of George or Gracie?

No offense, Hallbjörn- you have a beautufal country, but this makes me sad,- and cast a pallor on my enthusiasm for this location.

54. Sean4000 - August 10, 2007

#53 “I wonder if the Picture is of George or Gracie?”

That put a very sad image in my head. :(


55. CanuckLou - August 10, 2007

Just adding my note of appreciation for David’s sculpture! Wow! Very nice.

You gave him a ST:TMP collar.

Who would have thunk it? A Star Trek movie actually shooting on location!

Sucks the original cast never got this kind of treatment.

56. JC - August 10, 2007

I’m looking forward to seeing Iceland on the screen

57. Jason Lee - August 10, 2007

Maybe I’m just jumping on the bandwagon, but if we’re posting interpretations of Quinto-as-Spock, here’s my contribution:


Personally, I think he really looks the part, and that the pilot-version shorter haircut looks better on him than the later version would.

58. Jason Lee - August 10, 2007

And more on-topic, let me second the idea of a more epic look and feel to this next Trek film as opposed to just another expanded TV episode. I don’t think Star Trek has ever quite managed to convey a true sense of an advanced, 23rd century, interstellar civilization, “a hundred planets and spreading out,” in the way that Star Wars managed to do, for example. I wouldn’t advocate flashy location shooting and gratuitous special effects as a substitute for a good story, but I see no reason you can’t have both and really capitalize on what a major motion picture with a worthy budget can do.

59. mctrekkie - August 10, 2007

Wow Jason Lee, nice work!

I hope Anthony creates a spot or all these efforts on the site.

Oh, and since I went on a rant in post 53, perhaps I could have come across as bit more erudite.

I meant :”cast a pall” over

My kingdom for a preview mode.

60. Hallbjorn Gudjonsson - August 10, 2007


Well, this matter has been a source of a great debate in Iceland, and I for one didn’t support this action made by the Icelandic goverment. I feared that it may have hurt the travel industry, since I’m working with it this summer at the Keflavik International Airport.

61. JC - August 10, 2007

#60 Maybe you could send some links of Iceland.It must be visually amazing if they’re using it as a background for the new Trek.

62. Hallbjorn Gudjonsson - August 10, 2007


good place to start ;)

63. DavidJ - August 10, 2007


Well I wouldn’t want something like SW where space was almost OVERCROWDED with ships and aliens constantly swarming around. I think the relative emptiness of the Trek universe feels a bit more right and a bit more believable. But I agree that epic scope needs to be there.

And thanks for the compliments on my sculpture everybody! I didn’t think it looked THAT much like a TMP collar (especially after I put the TOS colors on there). But I might have to rethink that. LOL

64. DavidJ - August 10, 2007


Agreed. I hung out at an SR site last year, and people just went crazy with Superman manips and drawings and sculptures. It would be cool to have the same thing here (we still have a year to kill, after all).

65. JACKIEBOY - August 10, 2007

Think Letters from Iwo Jima, rather

66. trektacular - August 11, 2007

I think you’re talking of the prequels, no Star Wars fan considers those real Star Wars. Think Norway, Tunisia, Northern California, Yuma. AZ

67. Lithgo Finni - August 11, 2007

its the genesis planet

68. Woulfe - August 11, 2007

Is it me or are some folks mixxing up Iceland and Greenland ?

Iceland = Green
Greenland = Ice

I thought everyone knew that ?

– W –
* School has taught me well, yup *

69. Kirk's Girdle - August 11, 2007

#63. Oh yeah. it’s a TMP collar. Was gonna mention it yesterday, but I didn’t want to post three times back to back.

Lord, Iceland is an outdoorsy sort of place, isn’t it? Very nice. And not only are there a multitude of natural outdoor environments, but there is also quite a bit of modern and even futuristic architecture.

70. Capt. James B. (Trek Model Sculpting *Replica* Guy) Quirk. - August 11, 2007

How does a “Star Trek” report turn into an “Enterprise” discussion. Hated that show. Worst acting ever!

Nice sculpture. Perhaps I should show my Enterprise 1701 scratch build, no bloody A, B, C, or D….J. :)

71. JC - August 11, 2007

Thanks Hallbjorn.That aurora borialis is amazing.Beautiful country.

72. JC - August 11, 2007

Um.I think that’s what it’s called(aurora borialis)Or is it Northern lights? But ,anyway,it’s those waves of multiclored light that swirl in the atmosphere in the north.Way cool.

73. Charley W - August 11, 2007

‘Aurora Borealis’ MEANS “Northern Lights’ (Lord, this what happens when they stop teaching Latin or Greek!), just as “Aurora Australis’ is the southern hemisphere version.

I live about 48 degrees North Latitude, so we don’t get to see them very often, but back in 1983, there was a spectactular display in our area. Best I can describe it is think of neon red, yellow, and green transluscent shower curtains blowing in the wind. That’s just a description of how they appear, but it doesn’t BEGIN to give them justice!

74. fascinoma - August 14, 2007

Wow, Hallbjorn… BEAUTIFUL country you come from… you’re lucky to live there. Hm, could Iceland use another nurse?

75. Cervantes - August 17, 2007

#39 Xai

C,mon, those ‘alien planet sets’ were great, and play a really vital part in the overall ‘look’ and ‘feel’ of 60’s TOS-era Star Trek…although I would like to see some additional background enhancements done to them on the Remastering of the series… ;)

76. RRLyrae - August 19, 2007

47 Pike | For desert, gotta go northern Chihuahua due west of El Paso; served ‘Blue Harvest’ in fine form for dune-sea Sarlacc digs, and you gotta figure the labor n Tecate’d be both cheap and bountiful.
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
17 Andy | Abso-lutely the esteemed, lisping representatives from the right honorable empire of, ahem, Andor (and not ‘Doria’ as you screwy secgens wanna get all up in the canon on) were given the shortest of shrift from them unenterprising Bragan bastidizations. Antennae outta the forehead, not the back quarter, limp as blue asparagus? Cmon. They look like their heads are saying ‘touchdown!’

T’hel with alla that.

(And, hey, 27: you can shove ex-Weyoun wuss Coombs up a Jeffries tube with the lematya he rode in on, stuffed full of kevas AND trillium.)

I’d even dust off the animated’s Elysian councilmember or, for that matter, the would-be first officer Thelin from Yesteryear — grey skin and all — before I’d give friggin Shran his shrill, veiny due.

Except for the ships, Enterprise boned this race; so I can only hope JJ’ll shoehorn in some Reykjavik, and some Bjork to boot, to set ol’ Andor to rights.

77. Jason Ahlquist - December 17, 2007

Okay, add me to the young Spock art bandwagon…

78. Karen Björg - February 14, 2008

I live in Iceland, and I know that Iceland will take you open arms!!!!

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