There are now more comments from the official Star Trek site’s interview with former Star Trek producer Rick Berman. The final part of the interview includes Berman opining on the Next Generation films and the 2009 Star Trek movie. Excerpts below.
Rick Berman reflects on TNG films + Star Trek 2009
Excerpts from official Star Trek site interview with Star Trek producer Berman on his four TNG movies and on the 2009 Star Trek movie:
Berman on Generations:
It was kind of naïve for myself and Brannon (Braga) and Ron (Moore) to jump into the movie business with really very little experience on how it worked…We got a lot of criticism for the way Kirk was handled, which I felt was unfortunate.
on First Contact…
Everything that perhaps went wrong on the first movie went right on the second movie…it just worked on a huge number of levels…and it made a sh-tload of money for the studio, so they were very happy.
The script ended up having input from Patrick Stewart, from the studio, from me, and slowly the story started changing. I think maybe it’s a little like that old story about a camel being a horse made by committee….it was a less-than-stellar follow-up to First Contact, which had been so up and so exciting.
The head of the studio had really tried to convince me to do a movie without the TNG cast. The feeling was “These guys have all gotten kind of older. It’s time to introduce some new, fresh blood.” … I felt strongly against that for two reasons. One reason was that when we were developing this movie, the Enterprise series was coming out. So the Star Trek audience was about to get introduced to a whole new cast of young characters on television..The other reason was I felt that after a four-year absence from the screen, the fans really wanted to see Patrick, Brent, Jonathan and company again.
…everyone from the studio to me thought we’d crafted a really good movie. And nobody came to see it. It wasn’t even a question of not getting good reviews. Any Star Trek movie opened and it’d have a huge opening weekend, but this one didn’t. Now, why? I understand and appreciate the criticisms of the production or script, but I, to this day, have some difficulty understanding why it met with such a poor reception.
On Star Trek (2009)…
I thought it was a wonderful movie. It was very, very big. You have to remember, I did four movies with incredibly restrictive budgets. The philosophy when I made movies was, “We know we can make X number of dollars off a Star Trek movie, so don’t spend more than Y number of dollars.” The lengths that (Abrams’) film went with its visual effects and production values were so astonishing to me. I thought the story was wonderful and a lot of the acting was terrific. I’ve just gotten to a point where these big action films filled with computer-generated stuff from beginning to end are starting to wear on me a little bit. To me, the movie, like Iron Man or any of these big, incredibly expensive films dealing with tens upon tens of millions of dollars worth of visual effects… it was a very, very exciting movie. In terms of it having the heart of Star Trek, I think it could have perhaps had a little bit more of that. But I liked it very much.
For much more read the full interview at StarTrek.com.