Star Trek Finishes Theatrical Run With $385M – Full Box Office Analysis | TrekMovie.com
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Star Trek Finishes Theatrical Run With $385M – Full Box Office Analysis October 5, 2009

by Anthony Pascale , Filed under: CBS/Paramount,Marketing/Promotion,Star Trek (2009 film) , trackback

After a long life of 21 weeks in theaters, JJ Abrams new Star Trek movie has officially ended its run. The film is still in a handful of theaters (including some IMAX), but distributors will no longer be tracking performance. The final tally, as of last Thursday, brings the film a few thousand short of $385 Million world-wide, which is certainly a big success, especially for a franchise that was given up for dead by some just a few years ago. See below for more analysis

  

Star Trek is Back
According to Box Office Mojo, Star Trek’s domestic tally is $257.7 over the 147 day theatrical run. This includes $28.1 Million for IMAX (or around 11%). This makes it the highest grossing and highest attended film in the Trek franchise.

Star Trek’s performance makes it the 47th highest grossing film of all time (180th when adjusting for inflation). More importantly, Star Trek ended up beating expectations, by outperforming its two primary May 2009 competitors, X-Men Wolverine ($179.9M) and Terminator Salvation ($125.3). The film is currently the 5th ranked film for 2009 (Fall/Holiday releases like 2012, Sherlock Holmes, New Moon and Avatar could push it down the list). The film also met Paramount’s goals of of putting it into league with other recent tentpole films, like Iron Man, and ‘franchise reboots’ like Batman Begins and Casino Royale.

Star Trek has work to do internationally
Although Star Trek was a hit domestically (which covers US and Canada), internationally it was more of a mixed bag. According to the international distributor, Star Trek brought in $127.2M overseas. This is quite good for the franchise, and the best outing since Star Trek The Motion Picture.

(note: chart below adjusts inflation based on domestic release year, although much of international sales came later, so these are ‘best cases’)

With the strength of it’s domestic sales, Star Trek brought in around $385M total worldwide, which currently ranks it 8th for the year. But when you look just at its international sales, the film is ranked 13th. In the last two decades, Trek films have just not been a strong performer overseas. A number of films that Star Trek eclipsed at home, ended up beating it overseas.

As a percentage, Star Trek earned about 1/3 of its total money overseas, which is very low for modern big budget movies (except for comedies). Most films earn closer to 50%, with some films (like Ice Age 2, and Angels & Demons) earning up to 70%  or more overseas. When one looks closer at the numbers, you can see that Star Trek actually performed well in the English-speaking countries (UK, Ireland, Australia, & New Zealand), where its competitive position was not unlike the domestic ranking. However, everywhere else in the world, the film did not perform like a Hollywood tentpole, and more like a medium-sized Hollywood movie. For example, in the UK Star Trek is ranked 6th for the year with $35.2M, but in Korea it is ranked 27th with $5.7M, in Mexico it is ranked 30th with $3.4M, in France it ranked 42nd with $7.0M.

As for why Star Trek under-performed in the non-English speaking world, there is no obvious single answer. One factor is clearly that Star Trek has never been a strong brand outside the English speaking countries (with the exception of Germany). In the past Star Trek films have been short on action and long on dialog, which has not worked well vs. other summer tentpoles. Even though the new Star Trek tried to redress this balance, it is possible that many foreign film goers just didn’t give it a chance and didn’t get the message that this was a totally new kind of Star Trek film (hopefully those that did go can help the word of mouth for the next film). Another factor could be that the film had no big bankable stars in (like a Tom Cruise, Wil Smith, Christian Bale, Hugh Jackman, etc.). Even though studios make more money off their domestic sales (less middlemen, no currency issues, etc), international sales are no longer the ‘extra’ bit for a movie. For the Star Trek sequel to break into the $500M+ category of ‘super blockbusters’ it is going to need to find a way to increase its appeal to non-English speaking audiences.

Home Video coming November 17th
The next big milestone for the Star Trek movie is the highly anticipated release on home video. The movie is getting three core releases in North America (1 disk DVD, 2 disk DVD, 3 disk Blu-ray), plus some special gift sets. There are also special sets in the UK, Germany and Japan. Paramount executives have been talking up the sales of Star Trek home video to investors, so it seems that they expect to be a big factor in their 4th quarter returns. It is possible that the film can build some more goodwill for first time viewers who waited until he film was available to rent, especially overseas.

And you can reserve your copy now, see below for pre-orders, including the Amazon and Best-buy gift sets.

Title Blu-ray DVD
Star Trek 2009 3-disk set

3-disk set w/ replica

3-disk set w/ badges

2-disk

1-disk

 

 

 

Comments

1. Captain McColl - October 5, 2009

I am in Spain, a country that hasn´t ever had a big Star Trek following. But one thing I can say is that the few people that have seen it over here have loved it and none of the had seen anything to do with Trek before

2. Hetoreyn - October 5, 2009

See .. Star Trek TMP was also an excellent performer. Personally I thought that was the best film they did.

3. samrock83 - October 5, 2009

TMP gets a bad rap. It’s at least better than Insurrection, Nemesis and ST V.

4. Agentm31 - October 5, 2009

47th place!!!

-”A blessing! A blessing from the Lord!”

-”God be praised!”

5. screaming satellite - October 5, 2009

“Star Trek ended up beating expectations, by outperforming its two primary May 2009 competitors, X-Men Wolverine ($179.9M) and Terminator Salvation ($125.3). ”

dont forget Angels and Demons (133m) – so much so it nearly retained its no 1 spot for the 2nd wkend over A&D

its good to look at the imdb domestic BO charts and see how Trek beat some of this decades biggest films that just a short while ago you wouldnt think a Trek film wouldve been able to do in a million years

stuff like I Am Legend, Harry Potter 3, War of the Worlds (2005), King Kong (2005), The Da Vinci Code, all the X men films, Gladiator, Matrix 3, T3 etc

i mean who would think star trek could ever beat a Batman or Terminator movie?

6. Lore - October 5, 2009

Chris Pine needs a fairly high profile role to make him a more world famous name before the next ST film.

7. zanzibar - October 5, 2009

It’s nice to know we Trek fans are back in the saddle again. The way Star Trek refs and innuendos have popped up in so much popular culture is also muy gratifying. They did a great job on ST 2009, with no huge stars and a premise many thought had been depleted. I’m one of those grannies that watch TOS when it first ran and loved it ever since.

Now I have one question. I should know the answer, but I don’t. Why was there never a Voyager movie? I know why there was no DS9 or Enterprise movie (they sucked). But Voyager, even though they completed their journey home, seemed to have a lot of charisma left over.

8. screaming satellite - October 5, 2009

6 – Either that or cast Hanks, Cruise and Ford as a bunch of Captains and Admirals

seriously though its possible the sequel might get that Batman Begins, The Matrix, Austin Powers, Pirates Caribbean effect where the sequels went supernova and did about double what the previous one did (more in batmans case)….

people that missed what all the fuss was about took note of all the great WOM, caught it on dvd and were there for the sequel a couple of years later.

Star Trek certainly fits in with those so Trek ’2′ could be looking at $500m ww (300m domestic, 200 overseas) – maybe more….thats why it might be a good business idea to have Khan in the sequel as it will power up the recognition factor too (like the joker appearing in TDK)

9. SupremeDalekOnTheBridge - October 5, 2009

As an Irish fan, I have to ask, how well exactly in Ireland?

I went 2.95 times. The projector broke the first time, so I had the perfect excuse to go again!

So including the two times my Dad went, that’s about $45 from our house… I think I deserve a free DVD!

And is’nt 47 an important Star Trek number?

Ironic, is’nt it?!

10. Harry Ballz - October 5, 2009

With the goodwill generated by the first film, simply crank out a good story in the second one and watch it pull in $500 million!

p.s. cast Tom Hanks in a role (he loves Trek) and that will secure the deal!

11. MDSHiPMN - October 5, 2009

I’m very proud to be a Star Trek fan and based on the numbers above, Star Trek is “in”. Also I have to agree with #4. The first 54 minutes of TMP are pretty cool. I don’t know what in the hell they were thinking, but the rest is painful to watch. Not as bad as the CG in STV or the (near) franchise killers that were Insurrection and Nemesis. Man am I glad the new movie rocked.

12. Sybok's Secret Brother - October 5, 2009

I hope this spawns a few more projects like:
TV show
Animated Series
Direct to DVD Movies
or even a Mini-Series
and of course, XII

13. ElwoodJD - October 5, 2009

#7

I was with you for the first paragraph…but the notion that DS9 “sucked” but Voyager both had “charisma” and should have had a movie??? Yikes.

DS9 was fantastic, and easily holds its own with TOS and TNG. The complex philosophical, religious, and political allegories along with some fun story arcs really boosted its cred.

Voyager had about 3 seasons worth of good material, and while Enterprise did struggle with recycled scrips and continuity, there is no arguing that season 4 was probably better than anything Voyager put out there

14. Anthony Pascale - October 5, 2009

The simple reason for Paramount not doing a feature film based on VOY, DS9 or ENT is that the studio is in the business to make a profit, and those brands (and actors) were not enough to carry a tent pole feature film, which is what they want out of the franchise. Back in the 80s, and into the 90s, Star Trek was a big part of the Paramount bottom line. They want that back, and that is what they did by going back to the core: Kirk and Spock.

15. jas_montreal - October 5, 2009

@ 9. I think any fan who watches the film over 3 times should get some sort of recognition by paramount.

16. VOODOO - October 5, 2009

- $385 million for a franchise that was considered dead is great news. Well done to everyone involved.

- The return of Kirk and Spock was the key in bringing back the fans to ST. I have said for years that nobody, but the hardcore fans care about Star Trek unless they were involved. The many spinoffs were just copies of copies of copies. It seemed obvious that the way to save ST was to bring back it’s cultural icons.

- How much do you want to bet that we are going to see a big name in the sequel that will bring in more of an international audience?

- For all the talk about how “this isn’t your father’s Star Trek” I didn’t think the new film was very different than many of the others. It simply felt like an updated Kirk and Spock film with maybe a little more action thrown in. Just think how “slow” the orignal ‘Star Wars’ is compared the films like Transformers 2… Needless to say Star Wars is superior.

- With inflation taken into account “TMP” still has a slightly higher overall take than “Star Trek”

Worldwide adjusted box-office:

$388.7 million – Motion Picture
$384.5 million – Star Trek
$261.9 million – Voyage Home
$217.0 million – Wrath of Khan
$200.9 million – First Contact
$180.7 million – Search for Spock
$172.0 million – Generations
$151.3 million – Undiscovered Country
$147.5 million – Insurrection
$122.2 million – Final Frontier
$79.9 million – Nemesis

It’s amazing that “Star Trek” made nearly five times what “Nemesis” did.

- Why wasn’t “Star Trek” always treated with the kind of respect (and budget) that Paramont gave it this time out?

Take a look at the adjusted domestic box office returns… Star Trek, especially the Shatner/Nimoy films were blockbusters in their day. I would always laugh when people (on this board and others) would tell me that ST was never a big deal… They were wrong and the numbers prove it.

Domestic adjusted box-office:

$257.7 million – Star Trek
$230.0 million – Motion Picture
$216.1 million – Voyage Home
$176.5 million – Wrath of Khan
$158.9 million – Search for Spock
$126.6 million – First Contact
$116.9 million – Undiscovered Country
$110.2 million – Generations
$91.9 million – Insurrection
$90.9 million – Final Frontier
$51.2 million – Nemesis

- “Star Trek” is going to easily be the biggest ST project ever on dvd and Blu-ray. It has been at #1 (off and on) on Amazon since the first day you could pre-order it.

- All and all I don’t realistically think that Paramount could have asked for more this time out. Lets hope ST 2/12 takes the franchise to the next level the way “The Dark Knight” did for Batman.

- 2009 was the best year that the franchise has seen since it’s rebirth in 1979. A year ago the series was dead and buried to the general public. A year later “Star Trek” is back and as strong as ever and It has one of the most promising futures of any franchise I can think of.

- STAR TREK LIVES!!!

17. captain_neill - October 5, 2009

I saw the film 5 times, that means I enjoyed the film and found it great fun and captured the fun of TOS.

I am proud to be a Star Trek fan, always have been even when it seemed other fans had given up I had stayed with Trek all the way.

I have all the shows and enjoy all them all.

As much as I loved this film I still dont feel that its the best one, to me it is one of the better movies and gave it 8 out of 10.

yes they went back to the core but I would choose not to use the term prequel for this film as we are now in an alternate universe.

I just want people to not forget about what came before as a result of this movie

18. CmdrR - October 5, 2009

CmdrR – 3 viewings

1 LtR – 1 viewing

other LtR – 1 viewing

EnsR – 1 viewing

AdmrR – 1 viewing

———————————-
$70 to JJ’s Tiffany toilet seat polishing fund

19. Victor Hugo - October 5, 2009

Here in Brazil, Star Trek had non-stop re-runs altogether with “Batman”, “Bewitched” and “Knight Rider”. But the name was translated into brazilian portuguese “Jornada nas Estrelas”(Journey to the Stars).

If the new movie had received it´s translated title “Jornada nas Estrelas” when it opened in brazilian teathers, instead of the original english “Star Trek”, i´m sure it would have more ressonance with the brazilian public.

George Lucas started this somewhat disrespectful trend of not translating the movie titles of the latest Star Wars movies to other countries.

For example, Star Wars for us, was always “Guerra nas Estrelas”. It was aired on TV countless times with that title.

Paramount shouldn´t have copied that trend.

20. Steve - October 5, 2009

TMP, DS9, Voyager, and Enterprise all sucked. At # 7

“DS9 was fantastic, and easily holds its own with TOS and TNG. The complex philosophical, religious, and political allegories along with some fun story arcs really boosted its cred.”

These are the exact things that I don’t give a crap about seeing in a movie. I have my own philosophical, religious, and political views and the last thing I want is a Hollywood film telling me what they should be. The new movie for the most part lacked all of the above and was the most successful of them all. I don’t think that is coincidental. When I go to a movie I just want to be entertained and have a good time. I can go to church and watch cable news for the rest.

21. RD - October 5, 2009

#17. captain_neill wrote: ” I just want people to not forget about what came before as a result of this movie”

What difference does it make if it is forgotten? As a fan, the only thing that matters is that it continues … and it will. Like it or not Abrams has found a new audience and almost certainly exposed the franchise to a new fans. Which means for those of us who already loved it, it endures. Who cares if no one remembers Bill Shatner’s Kirk? For many, Chirs Pine not only represents the only Kirk they know, but a more accessible one in line with their other contemporary film heroes.

22. Gorandius - October 5, 2009

17. agreed, It is technically a sequel, since Future Spock comes back in time from the post-nemesis era. It’s more of a time travel movie where they never return to the future. (thanks to all of those damned theoretical physicists that can’t make their minds up about how time works) but I did like Spock’s slam on Back To The Future (which is another awesome series btw that needs a reboot.)

23. damienchance - October 5, 2009

The next film has to even more accessible to general audiences…more epic, larger scale, huge Kilngon war film, huge cinema shaking land / space battles and as much as some people are not into…Kahn.

He is ST’s Joker. The only ST bad guy the reaches beyond the fan base. He may only be in this new film a little bit, so he is set up as Kirk’s opponent for the 3rd and final film – yep, make it a trilogy and then end it.

24. CmdrR - October 5, 2009

20- (Best Bones voice) “Steve, you green-blooded hobgobblin…”

Actually, I see your point. As businessmen first, last, and in the middle Hollywood execs greenlit a movie that sold tickets. We can expect it to be the same with the sequel. Personally, I hope JJ sneaks in some social commentary or lofty ethical ideas, but I doubt he will. TOS Trek had a lot going on for 1960s TV. But now, movies that aspire to make us think tend to offer theatre owners the chance to air out the seat cushions. So, while I wish it would happen, I’m not holding my breath.

25. Victor Hugo - October 5, 2009

Still, it´s a pity that this new timeline is doomed anyway.

The romulan Hobus star will explode again in this newtimeline, as it´s its natural course, and this time there´s no more RedMatter to stop it since the planet Vulcan was the only source of it´s raw materials.

A real shame.

26. EMH22 - October 5, 2009

I’m very glad that a series that is usually cliqued as being for “nerds” got a good following with the general public. (Unfortunately I have to call myself a “nerd” for seeing it 10 times:)

27. zanzibar - October 5, 2009

#13
Well, regarding DS9, which I mischaracterized by saying sucked, actually was sucking squared, IMHO. Story arcs, I’ll give you, but the voodoo spirituality stuff, the flimsy political constructs and the infantile allegorical attempts were precisely what turned me into a hooting detractor. Not to mention a captain that was acting in his sleep, ugly-ass sets and the lack of that spirit of exploration that drove every other ST spinoff. They did come off with revisiting Tribbles, that was awesome, but the way it eclipsed the overwhelming majority other episodes was telling. Moreover: everything brightens up when a member of the TNG cast shows up. (1)

I never saw season 4 of ENT, so I probably should retract that one. The episodes I saw were half baked recycled stories funneled through a lackluster cast. However, everything brightens up when a member of the TNG cast shows up. (2)

Totally agree w/everyone that says the Kirk and Spock ST is the proven model for the future of the franchise.

Go figger.

28. John from Cincinnati - October 5, 2009

ST TMP prior to the director’s cut; completely horrid.

ST TMP Director’s cut; top 5 ST movies behind only STII, ST09, STIV, STFC.

IMO

29. RD - October 5, 2009

#16. VOODOO wrote: “Star Trek, especially the Shatner/Nimoy films were blockbusters in their day. I would always laugh when people (on this board and others) would tell me that ST was never a big deal… They were wrong and the numbers prove it.”

Thanks for pointing that out. ST:09 is merely back to what Star Trek could be. The last 4 films were not really Star Trek, they were TNG, and they split the audience and took the franchise in a direction that had little to do with what made the franchise great and the early films successful.

#16. VOODOO wrote: “Why wasn’t “Star Trek” always treated with the kind of respect (and budget) that Paramont gave it this time out?”

Greed? I’ve updated the chart below to include adjusted budget numbers (in italics), with domestic grosses in bold. The ROI is generally quite high on these films.

400
390 98
380 –– 84
370 –– ––
360 –– ––
350 –– ––
340 –– ––
330 –– ––
320 –– ––
310 –– ––
300 –– ––
290 –– ––
280 –– ––
270 –– ––
260 –– ––
250 –– 57 58
240 –– –– ––
230 35 –– ––
220 –– –– ––
210 –– –– 12 14
200 –– –– –– ––
190 –– –– –– 92 98
180 –– –– –– –– ––
170 –– –– –– –– –– 78 72
160 –– –– –– –– –– 63 ––
150 –– 50 –– –– –– –– –– 52 55
140 –– –– –– –– 49 –– –– –– ––
130 –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– ––
120 –– –– –– –– –– –– 29 27 ––
110 –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– ––
100 00 –– –– –– –– –– –– –– 07 08
090 –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– 94
080 –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– 80
070 –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– 76 –– 71
060 –– –– –– –– 61 –– –– –– –– –– ––
050 –– –– 52 –– –– –– 00 –– –– –– 53
040 –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– 46 ––
030 –– –– –– –– –– 34 –– –– –– –– ––
020 –– –– –– 24 –– –– –– 27 –– –– ––
010 –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– –– ––
000 01 11 04 02 08 03 07 06 09 05 10

30. captain_neill - October 5, 2009

21

I want those new fans to see Shatner as Kirk.

You want Trek as we know it to be forgotten?

31. captain_neill - October 5, 2009

22

God no, Back to the Future does not need a reboot

too many reboots these days

Stick with the originals, always better

32. captain_neill - October 5, 2009

RD

Wy do you insult TNG

TNG, DS9, VOY and ENT are as much Star Trek as TOS to me

33. captain_neill - October 5, 2009

I place the new Trek movie in 6th place

34. Thorny - October 5, 2009

14… “The simple reason for Paramount not doing a feature film based on VOY, DS9 or ENT is that the studio is in the business to make a profit, and those brands (and actors) were not enough to carry a tent pole feature film, which is what they want out of the franchise”

Anthony, I really think something else was going on. Sure DS9, VOY and ENT were not big hits. But neither were “The X Files” and “Firefly”. David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, and Nathan Fillion are hardly big names that can carry a movie, but for some reason we got X Files and Firefly feature films. We even got a second “X Files” movie long, long after anyone gave a darn. “Nemesis” did twice the box office of both “Serenty” and “I Want To Believe”. The Stargate franchise got lower ratings even than “Enterprise”, but we have two Direct-to-DVD movies for SG1 and one coming for Atlantis. DS9, VOY and ENT never got lower ratings than BSG, but BSG has “The Plan” coming out on DVD later this year while the modern Treks are treated like pariahs.

There is a reason Paramount/CBS are sitting on the modern Treks and refusing even Direct-to-DVD reunions, but it isn’t a bottom dollar reason, that simply doesn’t add up.

35. Douglas - October 5, 2009

star trek voyager tv series has a much better version in one of its plots than the stupid Abrams movie for alot less money than all the nonsense above. Seams like the movie just about copied the whole idea from the show.

36. Check the Circuit! - October 5, 2009

As an eternal optimist, I thinking the video release will help prime the rest of the world for the sequel. Maybe they didn’t want to risk $10 (or international equivalent) or a property they thought was dialog-heavy. Once they see it, it’ll catch on….and they’ll be ready for the sequel.

(It might be helpful to put someone like Tom Hanks into a key role. Great actor. Trek fan. International superstar. Win/Win.)

37. Dom - October 5, 2009

TNG should never have been put in the cinema. It was an extremely strong TV brand. Just because a show works well on TV doesn’t mean it will translate comfortably to the cinema. In the case of TNG, they sucked the show’s brains out.

TOS was comfortable blending action and philosophy. TNG was very talky and, long term, just didn’t work retooled as an action movie franchise.

They’d have been better off keeping TNG running on TV for a few more years, gradually introducing new characters (Riker replacing Picard as Captain, Worf leaving and joining DS9 and so on) redesigned sets and maybe even the Enterprise-E.

To this day the destruction of the Enterprise-D being down to no one on the ship having the brains to check Geordi’s Visor after he’s been imprisoned and tortured by major enemies of both the Federation and the Klingon Empire sticks in the craw!

All this talk that goes on about parallel universes . . . well, I choose to see the TNG movies as a parallel universe separate from the TV show’s universe: one where everyone is infinitely more stupid!

Would the same people who created rotating shield frequencies and managed to defeat a Borg invasion really let their chief engineer walk around with a lipstick camera strapped to his head?

I’m thrilled the new film did well. It had its weaknesses, but was made with enough brio to get away with it. I look forward to adding it to my Blu-ray collection in a month or so!

38. Lord Garth, Formerly of Izar - October 5, 2009

Ha Ha Ha Ha ,……. Nemisis???,…. Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha

I have watches worth more money!!!

39. rocky - October 5, 2009

I am from Germany and i Can Say here was almost no promotion..Not in the beiggest newspaper “BILD-Zeitung” a little bit in tv and almost no trailer sin the cinemas…thats fact. So you can’t bring people in the cinemas, when the hole promotion-budget is spend to the US-market.

40. big momma - October 5, 2009

trek was definitely missing its fun factor, jj brought it back which is why this movie did so well.
trek was being crushed under its own heavy handedness.

41. RD - October 5, 2009

#30. captain_neill wrote: “You want Trek as we know it to be forgotten?”

Not at all. But it will happen. And in the end it doesn’t matter if anyone remembers it or not as long as the franchise goes on … right?

#32. captain_neill wrote: ” RD Wy do you insult TNG”
I don’t mean to. I liked a lot of TNG. But the fact is, Star Trek was and will always be TOS to me. Kirk, Spock & McCoy. Anything else, for better or worse, is not the same thing. TNG is NOT TOS, anymore than DS9 is TNG. Very different animals. I’m sure that is a reason the ST:09 title went back to the two words by themselves: “Star Trek”. While these shows all exist in the same “Star Trek” universe, they are far from the same. In much the same way all of the CSI’s are NOT the same. Vegas, Miami and New York all have similarities, but for my money they could all be produced by different creators and studios. It’s the stories and characters that define a show and sticking a label on something does not necessarily make it so.

Also, TNG split the fanbase, the film numbers demonstrate that – on average TNG generated half the numbers of TOS films. If they were the same thing, the numbers should not have fallen. Paramount tried to simply replace one with the other, keeping the same film title format (“Star Trek: fill in the blank”), but ultimately audiences didn’t buy it. With the return of young Kirk and Spock, the numbers are back where they were before TNG came along, ultimately suggesting a provable difference.

42. S. John Ross - October 5, 2009

It really did look possible for a while that it might cross the big 300 barrier for domestic, but heck, it busted those blocks anyway, so everyone involved should be proud of its success as a product. A job well done producing a product well-sold.

43. Thor - October 5, 2009

I’m from Denmark, and I know why Star trek doesn’t do well here. It’s because no one knew that there even was a new movie out. I didn’t see a single trailer or commercial for ST09 on TV or anywhere else in this country.

44. CmdrR - October 5, 2009

Trek should do better overseas. But, it could stand to add some (good) international actors and locales. Certainly, the sheer beauty of China’s countryside should be worth a look — even if JJ has to call it Ceti Alpha V. (Or was that VI?)
Both the new Batman movies made a point of including Asia, with no loss to the quality of the films and perhaps a great boost to the bottom lines.

45. 1701fav - October 5, 2009

From the INTERNATIONAL adjusted gross of all Star Trek movies, the discrepancy between TMP and TWOK is mind boggling. My interpretation is that lots of folks were curious about Star Trek and went to see TMP, but didn’t connect/like and therefore didn’t even bother to go see TWOK.

46. Stef* - October 5, 2009

agreed @ rocky and thor

I’m from Germany – a country where we have FedCons and are very Trekkish since the early seventies …

There was nearly NO promotion here, very, very few trailers in TV but you really had to watch out for them and thats it. Some movies didn’t even show the trailers – but the fans knew and spread the word, took others with them into the movie …

…. then there was the problem of a very bad dubbing (in my opinion)

…. there are only 4 IMAX in Germany and none of them showed Trek :(

…. there are several more Digital 3D Movietheaters in Germany, but none of them showed Trek

… maybe there is an financial or lobbiysh problem

The Trek-Fans are there … a lot of them ….

47. Losira - October 5, 2009

1st. Of all trek never was dead! Dvd sales have always been syrong. Trek has always oulled good ratings TOS TNG in reeuns SYFI made a bad error in no longer running TNG. Ent. Is doing well. Saving Syfis butt the junk & they are trying to show now! Ugh! We fans still hold cons, around the world. Trek speaks a great message! That needs to be heard! My familyu 4 gens. Strong. The movie awakened othres. They now are watching the reruns new to newcomers. Trek willalways have a solid place in scufi as jules Verne, gGG Wells and Gene roddenberry. Rek is classic scifi it can only get better like any vintage wine or romulan ale!

48. zanzibar - October 5, 2009

I saw it twice in theaters, once in Bangkok and again in NY on my way back home fm Asia. Saw it many more times on the scuzzy Russian DVD I picked up in Shanghai. Looking fwd to the DVD release. Wonder if I should get a Blu-Ray machine. They’re at like $169 now or less.

Glad to hear the DVD release is going to be a blowout. Didn’t know that.

49. Colonel West - October 5, 2009

@ 9:

I can’t seem to find the exact number Trek did over here as on a lot of sites such as box office mojo we get lumped in with the UK figures but I remember reading that Trek did roughly around a 1m – 1.5m euro in Ireland, finished up 12th overall this year so far at the Irish box office.

On the bankability issue I’d love to see Tom Hanks in the sequel or at some stage anyway in the future in Trek. The guy is a bona fide Trekkie and a great actor. It would be fantastic to see him cast as the villain maybe as he’s always been the good guy in anything he’s done so it would be a complete change of pace for him and of course his name on the credits couldn’t harm the box office! I’d take him over Cruise or that who would be phoning it in to collect a paycheck or slumming it in their eyes.

Actually lets start the Hanks for Commodore Decker campaign! He’d make a great absolutely driven insane starship commander!

50. Third Remata'Klan - October 5, 2009

47th highest-grossing film of all time after 147 days in the theaters.

That’s just weird, in a really cool way.

51. Lord Ravenwood - October 5, 2009

All of this simply proves the point that a movie doesn’t have to be particularly good to make big box office.

“Star Trek XI” was far from a good film. “Star Trek” or otherwise.

52. Dr. Image - October 5, 2009

#2 Thank you- TMP just gets better with age. Despite it being derivative, etc., it really does capture the essence of Trek.
Now let’s see it in HD, please! (Director’s Edition, that is..)

#27 So DS9 sucks THAT bad? Really…?
Exactly what type of bad drugs did YOU take?? Sheesh!

53. Trekluver - October 5, 2009

@#10

Hi I’m Gump, Captian Gump!

I can see the credits now:

Tom Hanks- Captian Gump. LOL!

54. Thorny - October 5, 2009

37… “To this day the destruction of the Enterprise-D being down to no one on the ship having the brains to check Geordi’s Visor after he’s been imprisoned and tortured by major enemies of both the Federation and the Klingon Empire sticks in the craw!”

Especially since it wasn’t even the first time Geordi’s Visor had been hacked!

38… “Ha Ha Ha Ha ,……. Nemisis???,…. Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha I have watches worth more money!!!”

Nemesis isn’t a bad movie, it just isn’t a particularly good movie, either. It is defiantly, steadfastly mediocre. For really bad movies, just take a look at the “Transformers” stinkfests. At least “Nemesis” had a coherent plot and wasn’t just an overlong toy commercial.

55. VOODOO - October 5, 2009

Thorny #34

Actually the first X-Files film made well over $100 million domestic (when adjusted for inflation) and about $270 million if adjusted for inflation worldwide. The X-Files was very popular at the time.

Quite frankly DS9, Voy and Ent are not popular enough to continue on. They watered down the brand name to the point of extinction. You can’t compare the cultural icon that is Star Trek to a little known niche sci-fi program like Firefly.

The spinoffs nearly killed Star Trek.

56. Jason - October 5, 2009

Is Tom Hanks still a box office draw? I would enjoy if new Starfleet characters (main and extras) weren’t all wasp Americans (and I say this as a wasp American), a la TNG etc. (with a few exceptions, a LOT of white guys with names like Riker, Archer, Paris).

I’ve always thought Denzel Washington, Bruce Willis, Matt Damon and George Clooney would fit in nicely in the Trek universe…

57. DS9 IN PRIME TIME - October 5, 2009

Wonderful article full of information. Great job to Paramount and JJ for finally getting star trek back to where it should be. I think a special guest star who is big over seas should be in the next movie to help the franchise get to the over seas viewers.

58. Canon Schmanon - October 5, 2009

Anybody thinking a DS9, Voyager, Enterprise or even TNG movie would be profitable are, well, delusional. Well-meaning, but delusional. If there was any profit to wring from those vehicles, they would have done it. Hell, they had the cast, the sets, the costumes.

But there wasn’t enough following to support theatrical releases. And if you ask me, direct-to-DVD offerings are usually pretty pathetic. Maybe that will improve.

That’s about all I have to say. Just killing time while I wait for a Photoshop filter to finish rendering.

59. Blake Powers - October 5, 2009

Im personally very excited about what the Release on DVD will do for Star Trek. I’ve always been a little skeptical that the Box Office numbers are diluted a little by people like me who went and saw the movie 7 times. I’m still shocked by the people that actually have not seen the movie. I’m hoping the DVD release will change that. Not to mention when Star Trek gets on HBO or one of the Premium networks how can you not stop and see what all the action is about.

Really excited.

60. The Original Spock's Brain - October 5, 2009

# 7. zanzibar – “Now I have one question. I should know the answer, but I don’t. Why was there never a Voyager movie? I know why there was no DS9 or Enterprise movie (they sucked). But Voyager, even though they completed their journey home, seemed to have a lot of charisma left over.”

What? Because Voyager sucked and DS9 was arguably the best Trek series.

61. SChaos1701 - October 5, 2009

Funny to remember all the haters here talking smack and now…where are they? :-D

62. GarySeven - October 5, 2009

#20 Steve wrote:
” I have my own philosophical, religious, and political views and the last thing I want is a Hollywood film telling me what they should be. The new movie for the most part lacked all of the above and was the most successful of them all. I don’t think that is coincidental. When I go to a movie I just want to be entertained and have a good time. I can go to church and watch cable news for the rest.”
Such statements test my faith in IDIC. Whoops, IDIC is a philosphical and political statement.. Ever hear of Gene Roddenberry? He created Star Trek as a vehicle for the expression of philosophical, political, and religious (anti-religious/secular humanism) views. Perhaps you thought this was the “Transformers 2″ site.

63. Charles Trotter - October 5, 2009

Star Trek is still playing overseas; it earned $53 from foreign markets over the weekend. This will probably be its last week, though.

64. sean - October 5, 2009

#27

DS9′s set design was one of the strongest aspects of the show. The upgrade from the TNG sets was astounding. Hell, I’d offer them praise just for moving away from the bland hotel carpeting!

Hey, you didn’t like it, to each their own. But to then praise VOY as having ‘charisma’ leaves me totally baffled as to how you personally define the word charisma.

65. RD - October 5, 2009

#59. Blake Powers wrote: “I’ve always been a little skeptical that the Box Office numbers are diluted a little by people like me who went and saw the movie 7 times. I’m still shocked by the people that actually have not seen the movie.”

My thoughts exactly. In fact using Trekmovie’s own polls, I’ve come up with an interesting little breakdown of numbers. Out of the 1118 polled on June 3, slightly less than half saw the movie only once. A later Sept. 9 poll of 434 (to date) maintains those ratios, and actually tend to increase the percentage of multiple viewings. Therefore, if those numbers can be applied to the total amount made on Trek worldwide, the film would have only earned $184.4M out of the $384M total (or 25.6M unique tickets out of 53.4M sold). If that number holds true across all audiences, then ST:09 was hardly the blockbuster it was made out to be as it drew in far fewer new bodies than repeat business. The reality is, the multiple viewings (past 2 or 3) likely only apply to hard-core Star Trek fans, thus increasing the general audience participation in first time viewings. There is also the IMAX numbers which dilute the box office to unique viewing, but despite Trek’s record setting IMAX numbers, it is likely only a marginal difference if not accounted for by the average ticket price.

66. Lord Ravenwood - October 5, 2009

I would have preferred a film combining TNG, DS9, and Voyager cast over the crap that JJ Abrams “cranked out!”

“Star Trek XI” was an unwatchable mess!

67. Syn4Ever - October 5, 2009

My mom is an original ST fan and I admit I used to make fun of her when she bought the series DVDs, the movies, and made me watch the show. Sadly, it took this movie to get me excited about the series that I used to mock. But Im older now so that’s probably a factor as well. I love the series now and watch it frequently. Call me one of The Converted!
I originally planned to NOT see this movie but me and a group of friends went (none were ST fans) and we all walked out thrilled at the movie (and ended up going and seeing it again at another time)! We definitly told everyone how great it was which caused more people to go see it! I believe that the DVD sales will be huge and the second movie will becoming a super-blockbuster!
As for me, Im getting the 3-disc blu-ray :)

68. AJ - October 5, 2009

63:

Charles: $53 overseas?

Really?

That’s like 5 guys in one theater….

69. NX-2000 - October 5, 2009

#25 – Not quite. There are spoilers from “Countdown” coming up, so if you haven’t read the comic or don’t know what happens and don’t want to see them, please ignore the rest of this comment. I humbly apologize, but I don’t know if/how to make text invisible here unless you highlight it.

If you read the movie prequel, “Star Trek: Countdown,” the red matter is supposed to be made from a rare mineral called Decathelium. Nero and the Narada crew, in the beginning of the comic, find some on a planet relatively close to Hobus. Later, they’re attacked by Reman ships carrying more Decathelium and the captain of the Enterprise-E suggests taking it since it was contraband anyway.

What the Vulcans had was the technology to create the red matter – and Spock Prime knows the technique. I know the two writers said (perhaps offhandedly) that Spock Prime wasn’t going to talk, but in the older versions of the script, versions that survived in the form of the ST09 novelization, Spock Prime tells Spock that he is going to commit everything he knows for posterity. I’m sure he wouldn’t want the mess that was the plot of ‘Countdown’ to happen again.

70. AJ - October 5, 2009

66:

Something like that will eventually come, probably with a new cast. Just not now!

71. capnjake - October 5, 2009

#8 i think out of all of those Tom Hanks would be the easiest one to get since he is a life long fan of star trek, if i remember correctly he was originally the person tapped to play zephram cochrane in star trek first contact but his schedule didnt work out for him to keep the role

72. GarySeven - October 5, 2009

#65 RD-
Yes, but I think it is misguided to use Trekmovie’s poll results and then apply them to the general population. Of course, when polling the sample of people that follow a Star Trek website you are going to get a much, much higher percentage of hard core fans that see the movie repeatedly than you would in the regular audience. So I would imagine most of the general population saw it once.

73. space trucker - October 5, 2009

I took my wife and daugher to see the movie. They had never really cared for star trek before. After the movie was over they understood why I loved S.T. so much. Now they’re waiting for the next movie. So if this is a sign that even non fans want to see S.T. then we’ll have a bright future for S.T.

74. Devon - October 5, 2009

#66 – Yet, most others have no problem watching it, which means the problem is just with you maybe?

75. Spockish - October 5, 2009

The Theatrical tally closing at $385 million, looks like DVD sales (that includes BluRay) can bring it close to $400 million.

I can tell you thats more than a few Nerds that live in their mothers basements. either the total count is totally wrong in the population figures, they are much richer than ever thought of, or the third possibility is that more than Nerds liked the movie. But the media has aways pictured Trekkie’s as Nerds. Could it be that the media has been wrong about the way they perceive things.Money totals have expressed the real truth about Star Trek and it’s fans.

Now if only it would start seeing the truth about other things.

76. captain_neill - October 5, 2009

Its great that the new movie is making Star Trek big again, I am glad that the fans are going back to watching the originals series and its spin offs.

So I hope that the orignals are not forgotten, I am sorry for not thinking this movie is the best one but its not, its a great film but there are several Trek movies that I still find better than this one.

I want the new fans to see Shatner as Kirk and se the guy who made the role.

77. Chris M - October 5, 2009

Star Trek performed above and beyond all my wildest dreams and there is evey reason to believe the next film will do just as well if not better! However no matter what happens in the future Star Trek (2009) will live in all the hearts of Star Trek fans as the film that gave new life to the franchise. Over the past few years all of us that have been coming to Trekmovie on a regular basis have witnessed the revival of Star Trek from a franchise that was on the brink of death to a franchise that is now as popular if not more popular than ever!!

#15 I agree, I saw Star Trek 10 times at the movies!

And not to rub it in but Star Trek comes out on DVD and Blu Ray here in Australia on 29th October which is 2 1/2 weeks earlier than the US, and i’ve already decided which 2 Disc DVD set I’ll be getting!
http://www.ezydvd.com.au/item.zml/808447

78. 790 - October 6, 2009

The film fell short by $115 million,,,
200 budget
300 marketing
^i
Let’s hope they make some of that up in dvds and licensing fees…
(Yeah right,,,,,,,)

79. Jim Smith - October 6, 2009

47?

All numbers in Star Trek add up to 47.

80. Iowagirl - October 6, 2009

#41, (30)
- Not at all. But it will happen. -

No, it won’t. Original Trek has survived more than 40 years, it has survived being cancelled, it has survived being called dead, it has survived modern films and shows with far better special effects, and it has resulted in being used as a starting basis for a new blockbuster. Bond films with Connery won’t be forgotten just because there have been and there will be other Bond actors, the original Terminator films won’t be forgotten just because of the SCC, Laurence Olivier’s performance of Hamlet won’t be forgotten just because there are a lot of modern Hamlet productions, and the Beatles won’t be forgotten just because they’re quite a few groups doing “Britpop”. Sure, there are people who tend to forget the base as soon as there’s a rooftop, but if something old has proven it deserves to be remembered and cherished, it will. Original Trek certainly has.

81. Sci-Fi Bri - October 6, 2009

get some frenchie and an indian in the next movie and you’ll make another 299B international…

82. captain_neill - October 6, 2009

80
Agreed

the new fans will check out TOS and TNG along with DS9, VOY and ENT and the popularity will grow even further. the new fans will see how rich the Star Trek (prime) universe is and I am glad they are going beyond the new movie to check it out.

I see the new movie as an introduction for those new fans, to see what they have been missing.

I love watching TOS and I love watching it over and over, and seeing it on blu ray takes my love to a new level and I can re watch again with sharper picture.

83. captain_neill - October 6, 2009

RD

Of course TNG is not TOS, I did not say that. They are tow diff shows but they both have the same ideals.

I said that TNG, DS9, VOY, and ENT I consider still have the Trek vision. DS9

84. pah wraith - October 6, 2009

I’m from Poland, and frankly the biggest problem with “Star Trek” box office numbers in our country was extremally poor promotion. Sure, there were some ads on the Net, but no posters, no billboards, poor media coverage, no theater trailers… On the other hand Terminator and Heroes and Demons were promoted on almost every corner of our streets (I live in the 3rd largest city of Poland).

Polish fans had to specifically bother the distributor for details about the release. There were no contests for fans, we were not informed of the polish premiere,.

If anyone at Paramount is reading this – please, influence UIP – Polish Paramount distributor… You are loosing money because of them.

85. Hat Rick - October 6, 2009

Trek Lives.

86. Paul - October 6, 2009

How about having Starfleet in other parts of the world. Like an Arab country, Russia or Africa, or even in an Asian counrty.

87. Paul - October 6, 2009

correction; other parts of the world as well

88. greenapple7 - October 6, 2009

So much love and hate all in one forum. It’s mesmerizing that the fans of something so often hate what they love. Whoah!

89. TrekDude - October 6, 2009

@88:

Passion does something to you like that and passion comes naturally with things you love.

On top of things there are people’s ideals. They know how things should be and if they aren’t like what some people imagine they should be then they’re getting frustrated and react with anger and sometimes even fear of change, because they’ve been disturbed in their comfort zone.

Me, I’ve experienced the same things with the new movie… I don’t utterly dislike it, but I’ve been wondering why it’s not even been tried to add stories to the exsisting Star Trek universe than to come up with an alternate timeline. I’m still sad about that, because I feel like we do and at the same time we don’t abandon Trek history. For me it’s like we started reading a new chapter of a story, but it’s written in a new novel. The same but still different.

I do understand though that Paramount is in this business for the money, I do understand that they felt they needed to make this change in order to make Star Trek big again… and it doesn’t matter if I personally like it or not, but the numbers prove them right that they’ve been making the right decisions.

Star Trek has never been bigger than after this movie. More people went to go see it, Star Trek has finally drawn in a bigger audience, one that is more diverse and that doesn’t really fit just to just the so called group of Trekkies/Trekkers.

That said, some Trekkies/Trekkers maybe do feel like they lost something exclusive to them as well. They don’t feel as special as they did before and with that I’m closing the circle of my argument, because ultimately this is what can also lead to anger against what you love.

Peace.

90. Johnny Ice - October 6, 2009

Star Trek overall did good in the box office. I always knew when i heard they were doing TOS based movie with the original crew was the right why.
General audience are just more interesting with TOS crew then other trek crews.
Personally i thought Star Trek was okey movie. I thought the story and the plot was weak. Nero was basically Shinzon clone. Also Abrams using to much lens flares and close ups shots wasn’t a good idea. Overall i was disappointed with Star Trek. I was hoping for better. The best part was the first 15 min with Kirk father.
Regarding box office numbers. Star Trek comes overall close second to ST:TMP who still is overall the highest grossing and highest attended Trek film ever with approx: $408 million worldwide gross.

91. ST-Fan - October 6, 2009

Greeetings from Germany.

I have to agree with my previous speakers, we had almost no promotion in germany. But I think everyone who is interested in Star Trek here, did know there was a new movie coming along.
So if you compare the numbers (aproximate moviegoers) for the last for Star Trek movies in Germany (source: http://www.insidekino.com/Y/DuellSTChronikB.htm) :

ST:FC 2.415.000
ST:I 2.430.000
ST:NEM 1.274.000
ST XI 1.272.000
you can see the franchise mottled its audience.

So even if there was no promotion, ST XI should reach around 2 Mio. visitors. But it hasn’t.
I can only guess, that NEM frightens off a lot of moviegoers. Perhaps there was a (german?) star missing. I don’t know.
Paramount has to run surveys to get information of the current german interest in Star Trek.
But lets not forget, that angel & demons was quiet more popular in germany than in the us, so so competition was different.

92. TrekDude - October 6, 2009

Being a German myself I think that here in Germany people do fall easier for the “nerd” or “geek” argument. People who like Star Trek are some weird dudes who hang out in weird costumes in their little fantasy world. I guess that people here don’t want to be identified as such as it would seem like they have no sense of reality and normality. At least this has been my observation so far and it is also how Star Trek gets treated in the media.

93. Captain Rickover - October 6, 2009

If you take a look on Illuminati, it’s clear, that it can’t be all the talking that kept us (continental!) Europeans away from Star Trek.

And íf you’ll check the rankings from First Contact or Insurrection over here in Germany, you’ll see that they had twice the audience the new Trek had. ST09 just matched Nemesis (crazy Germans…) I conclude: Star Trek failed in Germany, perhaps stronger than in any other country, where it never was strong on the Big Screen. Despite everything, the officials say, Paramount can’t be pleased with that.

I won’t repeat my issues I had with the new movie, but I suggest a compelete analysis is necessary to ensure the sucess for the next time.

94. Daoud - October 6, 2009

We’re very pleased. [tm]

95. BaronByng - October 6, 2009

Well then, it seems like the formula for STXII to gain even more traction in the international market is simple. A lot of the upfront costs of development (sets, VFX digital models etc) are now reusable assets that can be amortized. Assuming a kick-ass script / story, then we need:

1) One or more internationally known, bankable stars for the love interest and/or villain
2) International locations (possibly)
3) MUCH bigger international promotion budget and on-the-ground staff, ‘seeding’ the markets with the biggest growth potential months or years in advance.

Thanks. Paramount, you can send my check over anytime.

96. AJ - October 6, 2009

84:

In Poland, I hear Star Trek was not in “Cinema City” which essentially means no one saw it, and it was difficult to find.

I’ve heard much about the lack of promotion in Europe, and it shows that JJ’s tour was a failure. The money would have been better spent on consumer contact rather than press, as the message obviously did not get out.

The foreign number is, without question, a result of an inadequate promotional budget. Perhaps it was on purpose and Paramount was simply spending wisely. Hopefully, DVD sales will spark some interest over Christmas. It’s definitely an “opportunity.”

97. Eli - October 6, 2009

“77. Chris M – October 5, 2009

Star Trek performed above and beyond all my wildest dreams and there is evey reason to believe the next film will do just as well if not better! However no matter what happens in the future Star Trek (2009) will live in all the hearts of Star Trek fans as the film that gave new life to the franchise. Over the past few years all of us that have been coming to Trekmovie on a regular basis have witnessed the revival of Star Trek from a franchise that was on the brink of death to a franchise that is now as popular if not more popular than ever!!

#15 I agree, I saw Star Trek 10 times at the movies!

And not to rub it in but Star Trek comes out on DVD and Blu Ray here in Australia on 29th October which is 2 1/2 weeks earlier than the US, and i’ve already decided which 2 Disc DVD set I’ll be getting!
http://www.ezydvd.com.au/item.zml/808447

Gah!!! Where is this for Region 1!!! This is exactly what I want for a 2 disc dvd set! Not a 70 dollar pewter lightning-rod, not a blu-ray with a set of pins! I want that plastic Enterprise with the 2 dvds in the saucer! Why has this not been announced for North America yet?!?

98. Lord Ravenwood - October 6, 2009

I will close out this thread by saying this: I’m happy that I didn’t have to pay to see this poor excuse for a movie. If I had, I would be demanding a refund from Paramount Pictures.

Heck! I should sue Paramount simply for wasting my time!

99. Spockish - October 6, 2009

Baron that seems like the correct formula, a little more detailed than my plans.

My are based on the fact that Americans are more media biased, so to get them what you mostly need is media hype. The English are slowly starting to follow the American Media hype. But it is a slow conversion because they still have a real not media generated world.

The rest of the world it almost needs to be like a popular book made into a movie, It needs a great plot in the paper book story, then every one wants to see how it looks and the movie gets made. The visual framing kind of needs to match how they vision it.

In the good old USA if you got media hype you got sales, but if they really on non TV type entertainment you have to promote things via the way they are entertained.

In plain English promote via their main methods of entertainment, and I’m not saying the American way since the 70′s, Sex/Drugs/Rock n’ Roll.

The only weakness in my views are that I’ve never really every left the US. I’ve stepped into Canada and Mexico when I lived in the Twin Cities and San Diego and read media hype on other places but never had them as my daily life so I may never know how they live each and every day. But I do understand why they have other views, mostly European centric since I’m of German heritage.

And it is a very positive thing that this web site attracts non American point’s of view. Kind of incorporates Gene’s World view of international peace and harmony.

100. Spockish - October 6, 2009

OPPs, that every left the US was to be never left, guess auto correct the spelling missed on that. And my poor typing abilities did not help.

101. Victor Hugo - October 6, 2009

69.

NX-2000 , thanks for the clarification. I still have to read the novelization and the comic book adaptation.

102. Charles Trotter - October 6, 2009

#78. 790:

I believe it was TrekMovie.com who reported that Trek had broken even near the end of its third week of release. That probably includes the $30 million it made from the FX Network for the TV rights. So, no, the movie did not “fall short” of anything.

103. Check the Circuit! - October 6, 2009

Hey Lord Ravenwood…good luck with that lawsuit. Bwha! Watch out Anthony, if he does like what he reads here…your next.

104. VOODOO - October 6, 2009

#78

You have no concept as to what you are talking about.

105. malformed - October 6, 2009

I don’t see why Khan = Big Box Office.

If we follow that logic we should have whales in the next one too.

“Wrath of Khan took a character from what was a mediocre episode of TOS and turned that idea of “what happened to…” into a compelling story by leveraging a character with a strong point of view ( ” I am a superior being and therefor entitled”) added motive ( death of his wife) and multiplied it by years of bitterness.

Divide that by Kirk going soft after years at a desk job and you have a very compelling story.

The idea that Khan is to Kirk is what the Joker is to Batman is absurd.

If you really think about it, and a big part of what makes Captain Kirk such a compelling character is that is greatest “enemy” is himself. When Kirk gets into situations where his instinct conflicts with his heart and intellect – those are memorable moments (“Obsession” and STVI come to mind).

Anyway – I need to get back to work.

106. William Kirk - October 6, 2009

If I count well: ST V – The Final Frontier – cost 27 mil USD, earned 94 mil USD, ST – 09 (Abrams Trek) cost 150 mil USD and earned 258 mil USD. So which of them is worse? St 09 didn´t earn even twice the costs, TFF more then three times more…

107. gumtuu - October 6, 2009

@ Third Remata’Klan

“47th highest-grossing film of all time after 147 days in the theaters.

That’s just weird, in a really cool way.”

Isn’t 47 an important recurring number in ABRAHMS productions?

If that’s true, it’s kinda freaky. And very cool. :)

108. RD - October 6, 2009

#80. Iowagirl wrote: “No, it won’t [be forgotten]. Original Trek has survived more than 40 years”

It’s a nice dream, but chances are TOS will be forgotten at some point. I fear you overestimate pop culture. Historically, TOS is nearing the end of its expiration date.

We live in a culture where everything gets remade now, over and over. How can they do that? One reason is nostalgia by the original audience, but the bigger reason is that the original was forgotten, or lost relevance, and a new generation sees it as fresh – it worked once, it’ll work again and keep making money.

Ask any 10 year old kid who George Reeves is. Ask them who Superman is. WIll they even remember Christopher Reeve? Do any of you remember Kirk Alyn? I’ll bet you any 10 year old kid who grew up during the 40s and early 50s will. And that’s but one example. It’s inevitable that the original will eventually be forgotten, just as Lucille Ball will, despite the ubiquitous-ness of the series in syndication, if for no other reason than it’s in black & white. A new generation loses touch with the entertainment of the past. History demonstrates it is about two-three generations.

How many movies stars from the 30s can any of you name? However many it is, I bet you’ll remember more from the 40s, 50’s, etc. This despite the fact the 30’s was the Golden Age of film in Hollywood. New generations embrace their own and seek a more modern style, and lets face it, CBS Digital’s efforts aside, TOS only continues to look more and more dated as time goes by. Eventually there will be a new generation who could care less. I once asked a 22 year old “actress” at a party about Doris Day (one of the most BELOVED actresses of the 20th century) and she was clueless, never even HEARD of her. And this was 10 years ago!! While I might expect any-old 22 year old business major not to know Doris Day, I would expect an actress of any age to know her, even to day.

50 years from now, the kids of the day will be embracing the latest actor to play James T. Kirk, debating his merits against the old Kirk: Chris Pine, and Star Trek will go on producing an ever new installment, TOS will for all practical purposes be forgotten. Will it be completely forgotten? Of course not – at a bare minimum some scholar will remember 100 years from now and probably teach it like Shakespeare in a pop media class. Mainstream audiences will not likely know about it in any event in the way you and captain_neill suggest you want it not to be forgotten. But ultimately what difference will it make if anyone remembers TOS as long as the franchise lives on?

Your comparison to Shakespeare is apt, for that is at the core of what I was getting at. We don’t remember Shakespeare for his ensemble of actors, but rather the depth of characters and resulting dialogue embedded with intricately woven stories evocative of rich tapestries in which one sees ever new and fresh patterns emerging which somehow manage to suit anyone’s contemporary decor.

My point in a nutshell is that the roots of Trek are what is important here. There is a rich cache of precious gems in the original characters and backgrounds created for TOS. The most important thing is that they can be brought out, polished and made relevant to a new generation of kids who have rejected the past in favor of an ever growing self-absorbed and materialistic society.

Yet like Shakespeare, the characters and stories endure finding new life with new production companies. When we think of Shakespeare some think of Laurence Olivier, Richard Burton, or Kenneth Branagh, and yes even Keanu Reeves and Leonardo DiCaprio. But does anyone remember John Barrymore? Ask any 30 year old to name even 4 Shakespearean actors. And just like Shakespeare, it is the content of the material that is important, not the actors who portray it, or the production in which they were a part.

So, in the long run, it will not matter whether anyone remembers William Shatner’s Captain Kirk, so long as Captain Kirk continues to live in our imaginations through someone else. And just like Shakespeare’s general audiences of the time got over the fact someone else played those parts written just for the revered Richard Burbage, and eventually forgot him altogether, so will it be in our future. In the end it is the material that lives on to inform new generations by the idols of their age. As it always has been and likely always will be. It is simply a fact of life, no matter how hard we resist it or wish it were not so.

109. Anthony Pascale - October 6, 2009

using Trekmovie’s own polls, I’ve come up with an interesting little breakdown of numbers. Out of the 1118 polled on June 3, slightly less than half saw the movie only once. A later Sept. 9 poll of 434 (to date) maintains those ratios, and actually tend to increase the percentage of multiple viewings. Therefore, if those numbers can be applied to the total amount made on Trek worldwide, the film would have only earned $184.4M out of the $384M total (or 25.6M unique tickets out of 53.4M sold). If that number holds true across all audiences, then ST:09 was hardly the blockbuster it was made out to be

wtf? Firstly applying the polling results at a Star Trek site to the entire population is ludicrous. Not only do only a tiny fraction of visitors even take the poll, but this site is by definition the hardcores. Secondly, all summer movies have fanbases with multiple viewings, there is no data showing that Star Trek fans are more or less likely to see multiple viewings than X-Men, Transformers or even Night at the Museum fans. Thirdly, the definition of a ‘blockbuster’ does not depend on total viewers, but tickets and gross.

I am not sure why it is so important for some people to redefine the success of the new movie, the facts are the facts. It did better than expected in the US, and it underperformed in the non English speaking countries. In the end the studio thinks it is a hit and is ready for more.

110. InfiniteMonkey - October 6, 2009

I want a free DVD too.

111. James Rye - October 6, 2009

#78 writes that:
The film fell short by $115 million,,,
200 budget
300 marketing

I think and hope that you are wrong, my figures are;
150 budget
150 promotional work

bearing in mind FX paid 25million for the TV rights….

ROARING SUCCESS

112. Brett Campbell - October 6, 2009

108 – I do not believe that Shatner’s Kirk and the TOS crew will be forgotten by long-term fans of Trek (or any potential future Trek scholars or historians) any more than long-term fans of Bond films (not that I am one) will forget Connery’s interpretation of the character.

I believe that people have more memory and reverence for original and iconic interpretations of enduring characters than that which you seem to give them credit.

113. S. John Ross - October 6, 2009

#108: “Ask any 10 year old kid who George Reeves is.

Heck, ask any 10-year old kid who Toby Maguire is, and you’ll see just how much you’ve proven with 10-year old kids.

114. SupremeDalekOnTheBridge - October 6, 2009

#49

Thanks Colonel! At least someone answered, we Irish do indeed seem to be thrown in with the English fans. I’ve squat against the English, but we Irish do deserve some recognition!

Hell, the Shat was on with Ryan Tubridy a few months ago!

(and yes, I know he was on with Wossie on the BBC before us!)

115. Zebonka - October 6, 2009

“The new movie for the most part lacked all of the above and was the most successful of them all. I don’t think that is coincidental. When I go to a movie I just want to be entertained and have a good time.”

Make stupid movie – watch money roll in.
Simple huh!

116. VZX - October 6, 2009

I teach at an inner-city high school. I routinely ask the kids about pop culture and Star Trek in general. With the new movie, most are now more aware of Star Trek and the characters of Kirk, Spock, etc. Some have mentioned they have seen the re-runs of the old show late at night.

It will never go away.

117. boJJ - October 6, 2009

The problem was with ACTUAL promotion internationally (and the staged premieres that no-one went to).

Hardly anyone knew it was even released internationally. It was promoted big time in the USA but no-where else.

I am in Australia and the ACTUAL promotion was pathetic –

no posters anywhere,
nothing on buses,
nothing on billboards,
no street signage anywhere,
hardly anything at the cinema
and only limited TV spots.

And this WAS an english speaking country!!

Compared to Wolverine/Angels & Demons/TS/Harry Potter the promo was really, really BAD and small scale.

Paramount can only blame themselves, they can not count holding a premiere as “promotion’ then doing nothing else to promote the film.

PARAMOUNT BETTER PULL IT’S FINGER OUT NEXT TIME regarding promotion or the next movie will make the same amount this one did internationally.

People can on go and see it if they know (via promo) it has been (or is going to be) released.

118. pah wraith - October 6, 2009

96. AJ

The “Cinema City” is another problem, since it was due to some kind of disagreement between them and UIP. However you’re absolutely right – budget for more direct promotion should be bigger. Press conferences will not do the trick.

And as the 117. boJJ says – similarly in Australia. I think Paramount did a very lousy job. I’m astounded by their incompetence since their (in)action translates to their own profit (or lack thereof).

119. Enterprise - October 6, 2009

117. Didn’t the movie have it’s premiere in Australia? How the hell did you miss all that?

120. Falvoant - October 6, 2009

Noone asked the realy Important question here…
What did the movie cost?
With all the marketing and Burger king and ceral and whatver was marketed
Did Paramount actually make any money ?
Does anybody know what the FINAL budget was?
and no it was not the orignal 150 milllion posted budget
This film was 2 or 3 times OVER Budget ….
Does anybody have an actual number with sited source?

121. BK613 - October 6, 2009

45 1701fav

One must remember that TWOK was in theaters the same summer as ET. Also Blade Runner and Tron came out that summer.

122. ajd - October 6, 2009

To: 7. zanzibar

With all due respect, Deep Space Nine did not “suck”. It was, however, not the norm for Trek in that it was a bit dark compared to the other shows.

And while it may not have generated the interest to make it to the big screen anyway, the final episode kind of tied up most of the charactors – making further stories difficult.

But I agree with your comments otherwise.

- Grandpa

123. Spike47 - October 6, 2009

11:

STV wasn’t CG.

124. ajd - October 6, 2009

To: 27. zanzibar

As for your inference regarding the acting by it’s lead, ok….but then Shatner got the same rap.

As for infantile, etc…it’s like comparing TS Eliot to Yeats….maybe it wasn’t your cup of tea, but give a fan some slack here. I’d take a DS9 episode over most of the Sci-Fi crap out there any day.

‘nuf said

125. GarySeven - October 6, 2009

Anthony, re: your post # #109,
I posted above (#72):
#65 RD”-
… I think it is misguided to use Trekmovie’s poll results and then apply them to the general population. Of course, when polling the sample of people that follow a Star Trek website you are going to get a much, much higher percentage of hard core fans that see the movie repeatedly than you would in the regular audience. So I would imagine most of the general population saw it once.”
Anthony, since you and I are in agreement, don’t you think I should get to write an entry or article for this site, my favorite website. A bold request, I know.

126. Jack - October 6, 2009

120 – this film was 2 or 3 times OVER budget

I haven’t read anything about that anywhere — what’s the source for that?

127. captain_neill - October 6, 2009

Bah humbug to the person who said DS9 sucks

DS9 was a well written show with excellent characters. I think it allowed for the universe to be viewed from the perspective of non human.

The humans were still the Roddenberry humans, mixing them up with alien and non starfleet characters made for more conflict and drama. A strength of the show.

128. captain_neill - October 6, 2009

RD

You make a fair point but I wil be annoyed if people forget that William Shatner is Captain Kirk.

129. captain_neill - October 6, 2009

RD

If people forget TOS then will the franchise that follows have any bearing on Roddenberry’s philopsphy and show.

Shatner is the best and always will be Kirk

130. Enterprise - October 6, 2009

There’s been many actors playing James Bond over the years. I’m sure people still remember Sean Connery.

131. captain_neill - October 6, 2009

130

They do remember Connery.

RD is so wrong, the Original and the spin offs will not be forgotten. And if it survives with people forgetting the originals, then it will be continuing but wil it be surviving because it seems like at this rate the original ideals of what Roddenberry created will be forgotten.

TOS needs to be remembered to remind people what the ideals of Trek were, if they don’t then i think it will survive in name only.

I am with Iowagirl, TOS will never be forgotten

I am glad the new movie ensures a future for Trek but as a hard core fan I want to make sure that the shows we grew up loving are not forgotten.

If your kids like the new movie, let them watch the other shows, they will love it.

132. Data-476 - October 7, 2009

It is very good to see Star Trek has been such a success, especially when you see nemesis on the bottom of the list; a film just released 7 years ago.

I am looking forward to what J.J. Abrams and his team have to offer in the future because of the success of this film. However I hope paramount at least give the budget some meat and not give ‘trek’ second class like they have done before. Obviously they probably won’t splash between 100-150million dollars at it this time. I say give Abrams what he says he needs and I think we should have another blockbuster in two or three years time. Only time will tell and I’m going to hold my breath and not get overly cautious.

Its like a football match in a certain context. Its as if Abrams has scored a star trek hat trick and made it 2-1. Will paramount score an own goal on its golden sequel – re-boot and give itself a shot in the foot.

Lets all wait and see and hope.

133. Data-476 - October 7, 2009

edit: Abrams has scored a star trek brace and made it 2-1.

lol

134. Closettrekker - October 7, 2009

#16—”Star Trek, especially the Shatner/Nimoy films were blockbusters in their day. ”

I disagree.

Of the “Shatner/Nimoy films”, only TMP and TVH made enough money to qualify as “blockbusters”, IMO.

Even the beloved TWOK failed to even the $80 million mark domestically in 1982, while films like “E.T.”, “Rocky III”, “Tootsie”, and “An Officer And A Gentleman” produced well over $100 million in domestic sales in that same year.

But if your point was simply that Star Trek (at least with the focus on the original characters) was always “capable” of churning out a blockbuster, then I would have to agree…that just wasn’t often the result…only twice in six attempts with the original cast, and three times overall in seven films featuring (primarily) the original characters.

135. Son of a Maui Portagee - October 7, 2009

#108. RD

I’m glad to see that touchdown brings us around to see that we are, indeed, from the same planet.

Thank you for clarifying your position.

I still think you give short shrift to the phenomenon of rediscovery. It may come to pass, as you suggest, that for some future generation ToS cast will be a cipher, but I think there is an essential art in the best of their productions that will cause them to be continually rediscovered in the generations after that – just as mine rediscovered the Marx Brothers and generation after that rediscovered The Monkees.

Perhaps your prediction of a ToS cast Dark Ages will come to pass, but I still feel confident that their Renaissance is just as certain after that day comes.

136. RD - October 7, 2009

#135. Son of a Maui Portagee wrote: “Perhaps your prediction of a ToS cast Dark Ages will come to pass, but I still feel confident that their Renaissance is just as certain after that day comes.”

Of that I have no doubt. But I also have no doubt it will be forgotten too. Rediscovery is as much a part of the cycle as forgetting the knowledge. History also shows us that pattern over-and-over, sometimes to our detriment.

I am reminded of a constant theme during Star Trek of the Berman years – Voyager and Enterprise were the worst offenders. There was a particular fascination with mid-twentieth century films. Enterprise and Voyager both had “movie night”, yet neither ever ventured out of the old Hollywood B&W movie era. Ignoring whatever penchant the writer’s and producer’s had for old movies, it is certainly likely that 150, and again 350 years from now the human culture will develop a fascination with films of the 1940s & 50s, so I can suspend my disbelief and give it a pass. But such a resurrection will be fleeting at best, nor will it affect every generation, in much the same way these recent revivals do not. What is much more realistic is Kirk and Bone’s confused reaction to Edith Keeler’s mention of a “Clark Gable movie”. Heck ask a 20 or 30 year-old who Clark Gable is today …

As long as the TOS characters persist within the franchise, there is definitely always the possibility for someone to learn and embrace everything about the history of the original. But those people are going to be in the minority. Unless the nature of the human race changes, the vast majority of folks are always going to be more interested in the here and now and less so with the old and dated. In much the same way as we tend to reject the great actors of the 30s for their antiquated technique, and the low-budget-looking sci-fi of the 50s, future audiences are likely to see Shatner’s on-screen hystrionics and TOS’s low-budget visuals similarly.

Using the Shakespeare analogy once again, only a small minority of the population remember Richard Burbage as the great originator of many of Shakespeare’s leading roles – typically scholars, serious actors, and hard-core aficionados. If one could actually see Burbage’s performances, he might actually be even less remembered as the acting style of the Elizabethan period may have been so unrealistic compared to what we expect today, and moreover what we want to do today. It could have all of the popular appeal of a Greek tragedy staged in the authentic manner complete with masks and chorus.

But captain_neill makes an interesting point. I only intended to ever address why it was so important TOS not be forgotten. A possible answer is: because TOS posses the heart and vision of Star Trek. But this assumes that future productions will have missed the point. That future producers won’t dig up the originals and learn from them, whether the general population does or not. And like Shakespeare, there is no guarantee modern audiences will give a damn. Or that even watching Shatner and Nimoy chew scenery will impart the same messages to a future generation who will most certainly view those films the way we view films from the 20s and 30s and miss the point, or dismiss them entirely as inapplicable to then current social and political mores. However, the Shakespeare analogy holds the most hope for Trek. We have no idea whether we have Shakespeare’s message right or not. But the depth of the characters and weight of the stories gives contemporary audiences the ability to interpret them in any manner they see fit. The same is true for Trek. So what’s more important? That the antics of Shatner & Co. are remembered, however irrelevant they may be to future society, or that the popular characters survive to teach new lessons to new generations?

137. Enterprise - October 7, 2009

Star Wars fans won’t even bother looking at the prequel movies cause they’re so die hard. What makes you think TOS fans don’t do the same thing?

138. boJJ - October 7, 2009

#119.

Yep Australia had the premiere and no-one turned up.

That was the only real promo the film had…no posters, no billboards, no ad on buses..nada.

you can’t take the USA promo as an example, cause there was hardly any promo outside of the states.

139. Closettrekker - October 8, 2009

#66—“Star Trek XI was an unwatchable mess!”

To the tune of $385 million…..(insert sarcasm here) yeah, “unwatchable mess”.

I watched it 4 times, and didn’t find it “messy” at all.

Haven’t ordered it yet, but looking forward to purchasing it on BR.

140. Closettrekker - October 8, 2009

#137—”Star Wars fans won’t even bother looking at the prequel movies cause they’re so die hard. What makes you think TOS fans don’t do the same thing?”

I’m sure you could find a few of us who treat it that way, but alot more of us who do not….and even if there were significant numbers of those who ignored ST09 (even though it is hardly a prequel), who cares?

The film grossed $385 million worldwide anyway!!

141. Page 2 | /Film - October 8, 2009

[...] JJ Abrams’ Star Trek has finally become the highest attended Star Trek film in history. [trekmovie] [...]

142. Star Trek 2009, il successo più grande | CINEMAMIO.it - October 8, 2009

[...] Pubblicato il 09.10.2009 – Notizie Cinema L’ultimo film di Star Trek, uscito nel 2009 per la regia di J.J. Abrams, è stato quello di maggior successo di tutta la saga. Il risultato è stato calcolato in modo molto accurato dal fansite TrekMovie.com, tenendo anche conto dell’inflazione. Dal suo esordio a oggi la pellicola ha incassato 385 milioni di dollari in tutto il mondo, e tra Home Video, diritti TV e franchise relativo si appresta ad aumentare il suo bottino; intanto, anche tenendo conto di questi risultati positivi, si sta già lavorando al sequel. Fonte: TrekMovie.com. [...]

143. Son of a Maui Portagee - October 9, 2009

#136. RD

FWIW even the “captain” of this new incarnation had the same experience that I had with children in the same age range:

“I saw most of the original episodes. I watched a lot of them with my kids and they loved it so much more than I every (sic) thought they would and were scared to death! It was so cool to see these episodes through the eyes of a seven or eight year old.” – JJ Abrams (from this site’s coverage.)

So I doubt that the first cast’s eventual obscurity will happen as fast or at the hands of the current production as many prognosticate.

Once you win the hearts of the Onlies, you are almost guaranteed a resurgence 25 years hence (In the event of genetic manipulation gone haywire, maybe a millennium.)

144. Brian Kirsch - October 10, 2009

#65 & #109

Thank you Anthony for putting this debate to rest.

Some people love to profess their admiration of the new film, but look to cut it down at every opportunity. Why?

Multiple viewings are the definition of a blockbuster. Ask fans of Harry Potter, Transformers, Up, The Hangover, etc. how many times they saw each film. Show me a blockbuster movie that everyone saw only once!

Another really lame excuse to knock a very good and very successful film.

145. Son of a Maui Portagee - October 11, 2009

144. Brian,

I hope you have a good sense of humor as the primary definition for blockbuster is “a large bomb used to demolish extensive areas”. ;-)

The other definition encompasses “widespread popularity” which some of us have difficulty seeing in a production that opened worldwide but appears to have isolated the requisite huge popularity solely to North America.

146. Johnny Ice - October 19, 2009

Wise/Roddenberry TMP alone made more money overseas then all Harve/Nimoy/Meyer Trek movies compined..(adjusted for inflation) WTF.

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