They say what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, but this year what happens there will last to the 23rd Century and beyond.
At least that’s the plan according to Gary Berman, co-founder and co-CEO of Creation Entertainment, the company which runs (among other things) the annual Star Trek convention in Las Vegas. In the convention business since the 1970s, he’s excited to help fans celebrate the 50th anniversary.
“It’s really a once in a life time event, honestly. I know a lot of people have been waiting for this and saving up,” Berman said. “And hopefully we won’t disappoint.”
While some schedules are still in flux, Berman predicts there will be more than 100 Trek celebrities in attendance, including William Shatner, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols, and Walter Koenig (who are all confirmed). So far, Creation has “really good representation” for each of the series.
“If we haven’t gotten some people before, this is the year we’re gonna get them,” Berman said. (The list of guests is available here.)
It’s a particular thrill for Creation to be able to showcase someone who made an appearance on Star Trek, but is famous in their own right, such as Joan Collins and Ben Vereen. And continuing that trend, this year will feature events with Whoopi Goldberg and Kirstie Alley.
“We’re over the moon about that!” Berman said.
Creation is also trying to get people from the new movies (none attended in 2015) and, as they become announced, the new TV show as well.
“That’s gonna be up to the new studio,” Berman said. “Clearly we would love to have them, but it would probably be up to the studio if they appear. We would love to present them if we should get so lucky.”
Bryan Fuller, the announced showrunner of the new series, was a guest last year and Nicholas Meyer has attended in years past as well. Berman fondly recalled that once in the 90s, Meyer had Creation make Navy-style blankets (as seen in Star Trek VI) for his appearance. They presented him a blanket as a gift and sold some to lucky fan-goers. (Good luck finding one on eBay!)
Beyond on-screen celebrities, the con will feature a variety of events, including 50 Years: 50 Artists (featuring art from around the world), Quark’s Bar, Garak’s Tailor Shop, and plenty of attention to cosplay. Make-up guru Michael Westmore will demonstrate his talents by recreating a Borg on stage – “hopefully someone who’d been Borged before,” Berman noted.
Will Berman beam in?
There has been some speculation about whether or not Rick Berman (no relation to Gary) – Gene’s handpicked successor to the Trek kingdom but a controversial figure who has long been absent from the convention circuit – might attend the 50th con in Vegas. This speculation has been fueled by Berman himself saying he was going to attend.
The 50th is pretty important. A lot of folks have asked me to appear in Vegas. I think I’m going to end my 20 year absence, and attend.
— Rick Berman (@berman_rick) September 27, 2015
But he’s not on the docket and, “As far as I know, we have not been in touch with him,” Gary Berman said. However, Ronald D. Moore and Brannon Braga will be there and “Rick’s influence is felt through those guys.”
Tickets still available?
Creation is expecting more attendance at STLV than in previous years. The event is “pretty much sold out,” with approximately 6,000 people planning on coming every day. On peak days in Creation’s history, STLV has hit that many, but rarely.
“This time it’s every day,” Berman said.
Learn more about the Las Vegas Creation convention (and, incidentally, buy tickets) at its official website here.