Long Beach City Staffers Invited To Watch Star Trek Filming

A week ago it was reported that the production crew for the new Star Trek movie was headed to Long Beach, California for some location shooting. The film makers wrapped up their work at the City Hall on Friday, but before they left they gave a few select people a treat.

According to the Long Beach Press Telegram the film makers allowed several city staffers including the City Manager Pat West to observe shooting in the City Council chamber. Of course all were required to sign non disclosures, but for a project this secret and high profile that was mighty nice of them.

Long Beach City Council chamber

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Now who will be the FIRST to ignore their non-disclosure statement? (I jsut had to…)

Aw, and just 6 months ago I used to live a 45 minute drive from Long Beach… I wish I could have snuck into that!

Hmmm… I wonder what the City Hall will represent? Anyone have any pictures of the interior?

I’m sure it shouldn’t be that hard to take a picture inside the City Council chamber there. Anybody live nearby?

Well, I can’t find any pictures, but I’ve found video.


The room certainly looks futuristic enough. My guess is the Federation Council chamber.

My guess is that they picked that room because of the giant viewscreen behind the tables.

$150 million and they go to shoot in a City Council chamber? Interesting….

$150 million, and they’re using existing locations… It means what we see on screen will be much better. Cheaper locations, could mean more money gets on the screen later on… I hope.

Or they could be using that location because while impressive, it also looks somewhat dated. That could be good news for people who want a retro-style movie.

just looking at the picture there ,hmm wonder what its going to be lol nah it has to be federation concil or starfleet or starfleet academy meeting thingy , something along those lines . but yea its better they use existing locations like @9 said .

8. cd


The Paramont virtual trek tax dodge keeps on giving, huh?

I wonder what the budget really is?
My bet is $20 mil.

I’m of the agreement that it’s the setting for the growing UFP chambers, or a ‘War Room’ of sorts using the screen for dramatic license of footage of the Romulan threat. We all remember the big screen video in TMP of the cloud in the Enterprise Rec Center. Or the UFP chamber footage in ST6.

Nothing like watching 108010801080pi digital on a massive screen. I wonder how many HDMI jacks it will have? :)

I’m guessing it’s the new Bridge.



Or an Academy board room for disciplinary hearings perhaps? Maybe for one James T. Kirk and a simulator security breach matter…..


Or an Academy board room for disciplinary hearings perhaps? Maybe for one James T. Kirk and a simulator security breach matter…..

I thought he got an “accomadation for original thinking.”

Commendation. Either way, They wouldnt “USE” the giant video screen, that would not probably film well, they would probably put up a blue or green screen and do that in post.

18 that…sorta looks like the big conference room that was seen in the Enterprise pilot where Archer etc watch the zefram cochrane speech on the viewer


Camera phones.

Need I say more?

#8: “$150 million and they go to shoot in a City Council chamber? Interesting….”

Location shooting is rarely cheaper than studio – that’s why most TV shows and movies do it relatively rarely. Say, like most of the previous Trek movies…

#14 – Doc, that wold be one helluva bridge. LOL How about doing a little CGI work on that puppy? ;-)

To follow Bailey’s thread…

Real places come across as “real” on camera and lead a reality for a film that still can’t be had in the studio and in front of a green screen. Yet.

Dennis… hate to disagree with you…

But Location shooting on a feature is usually always cheaper than building a large, complicated set… Especially if there is not much that needs to be done to change the location to suit the production’s needs. Nearly all lower budget films are shot using locations rather than sets. The only limitation of shooting on a location is the fact that the production can not control weather, if it’s an exterior, or the lighting needed is not available as is.

The reason that TV doesn’t use locations as much, is the fact that the cost of a standing set can be amortized over the run of the series, divvied up between the various episodes.

The previous trek movies used quite a few locations… the only one that didn’t was Trek II.

Trek I : yellowstone national park for Vulcan
Trek III: a local college campus for the vulcan temple scene (the procession, that is.)
Trek IV: San Francisco and environs. (The Aircraft Carrier that stood in for the Enterprise as well)
Trek V: Paradise City, El Capitan, Sha-Ka-Ri (though the stone temple at the end was re-created on set for control purposes)
Trek VI: The Klingon Prison was mostly all in a location at Bronson Caves, in Hollywood, plus of course the Chambers at the peace conference…

Should I go on?

“Lower budget films” don’t own studios that can charge themselves and their subsidiaries for soundstage space, equipment rental, construction and costume rental and all manner of other services. A great deal of the money that a studio like Paramount lists as expenses on a soundstage shoot goes from the righthand pocket into the lefthand pocket.

Or, as Roddenberry once said, “the best science fiction in Hollywood is written by the studio accountants.”

I will:

Generations – Death Valley…

first Contact – I dunno do I

insurection – I dunno

Nemesis – um…i dunno….all in the studio?..oh wait there was bit where they went down to the planet and shot those aliens up – gotta uphold the PD dont you know…oh yeah and the Alaska bit at the start – they went to Alaska to film that – Brent Spider got attacked by a bear who was didnt like his singing

UFP chambers, I agree with that 100%

The $150 mill will be for ILM FX work ;)

Well a huge chunk of it anyway…..

Another huge chuck had better be the ADVERTISEING budget dangnabbit !

Lord knows Paramount needs this film to be a smash hit….

I know that Insurrection used the Inyo National Park and the Dam north of Bishop, CA. I’ve been up to that dam before

Whether or not the studios charge themselves for soundstage space, etc… they STILL count it in the budget of the film… the subsidiaries and facilities are in fact MORE expensive because of this… so that they can report greater earnings. It is all a decision by the producers of an individual film whether or not the stages of a studio are a viable expense, since it counts against their budget whether they stay there or go somewhere else. Most films aren’t, in fact, even made by the studios in a legal sense… they are produced by independent producers having a deal with the studio to pay for agreed budgets. Any overages not handled by that deal are required to be paid for by the producers if a change in the deal is not made.

Anyway… my point was that if a location is viable, it is always cheaper for the production budget to use it rather than build a big set… and the generalizations made in your previous post weren’t exactly on the nose.

… Oh, and First Contact used that abandoned missle silo for the launch site, plus the location of the refugee camp… (don’t know what else to call it… the place where Cochrane and the gang worked and drank.)

Insurrection – Practically everything that wasn’t a spaceship or laboratory.

Nemesis – don’t know. Only saw it once. lol

The council chamber doesn’t seem any more spectacular than a classroom, but with all the redressing I’m sure it’ll look fantastic.

My guess is some sort of Federation Council or Starfleet Academy chambers. My first thought was “Signing of the Federation charter”, but that took place about 80-90 years before this movie :P

So much of this movie is goint to leak out- my morbid curiosity continually conlicts with my desire to be surprised. Ahh… that’s what makes it fun.

Dennis Bailey – “Or, as Roddenberry once said, ‘the best science fiction in Hollywood is written by the studio accountants.’ ”

damn straight

Trek II: scene with Spock’s coffin at end (shot on location, forgot where).

Yes, but that was arguably a second unit shot where there were no cast members involved. (And, actually, Nick Meyer wasn’t involved in that either…)

marbpl (#33) and DarenDoc (#34),

Actually, the scene at the end of TWOK was shot in the parking lot of the ILM studios, in miniature. It’s not a full, life size set. That is natural sunlight, but all the trees and plants are miniatures, some of which were re-used for “Return of the Jedi” just a year later. Maybe it’s splitting hairs, but I wouldn’t classify that as a “location.”

I agree with NZorak (#10) above. The room in the photo has a “dated futuristic” look to it, just like many of the original TOS sets. It would fit well into that era. Even the color scheme looks very TOS. Got a good feeling about that.

Dennis and Daren: You both make very good points, and your individual experiences with TV and film serve you both well. Studios tend to use studio sets more often because it affords them greater control which, in the long run, is cheaper and easier than location shooting. Lower budget and independent films use locations more because they can’t afford to built large set pieces. So, your both right. The catalyst in the equation for this particular film (which neither of you are taking into account) is JJ Abrams. He’s well-known for choosing locations over studio sets whenever possible. Throughout the TV series and movies he’s done, you’ll see a large amount of location shooting. He’s mentioned in interviews that it lends more realism to scenes than studio filming. So please don’t get into a battle over bean-counting here. I value both of your insights here to much to see you guys fight. I’d rather hear that you’re going to collaborate on a project sometime down the line. Now, that would be cool!

hmm… I didn’t think it was a fight. :)

Hey Dirty Daren’s here!!!!
Just in time to scrutinize my version of a rebooted Enterprise!!! My photography leaves a bit to be desired even though the salesmen told me this $900.00 digital SLR would practicaaly take it’s own perfect pictures. Although I hope to see our original E in all her glory I fear we will see lots of hard edges and deeply etches panels and surface detail.
For what it’s worth here is my Enterprise:


And here’s my idea for a comic book Star Wars Star Trek crossover


This could suggest a plot point here.

The Romulans travel back to 2007 to seriously screw with the timeline. Seems as though the Long Beach City Council was debating the merits of a lawn sprinkling ban. The measure originally failed. The Romulan agent, wearing a ski cap to hide his ears, succeeds in getting the measure passed — by giving an impassioned speech that run-off from the yards was going into the oceans and destroying marine species, in particular humpback whales.

But by passing the sprinkling ban, Kirk’s Great-Great-Great-Great-Great Grandfather was not outside watering his lawn when some hot chick walked by.

Alas, Kirk’s ancestor never got to use his ‘ole Kirk-family assets and knock up that lady — and hence, Jim Kirk is never born.

The rest is altered history. The Federation is destroyed. All because of those members on the Long Beach City Council trying to save humpback whales, in particular two named George and Gracie.

So by saving the whales, Kirk is never born, so he can’t go back in time to get George and Gracie to save the earth in Star Trek IV, etc.

All because of a lawn sprinking ban. Who would have thunk it? And who said local politics isn’t that important.

Heh heh heh.

Did anyone think that the use of Long Beach City Hall is simply for a city hall? I mean Kirk could be attending a townhall meeting and getting involved with government or something like that. Then we’ll see a Romulan infiltrator as a council member proposing to table the legislation that would allow the construction of the Kobayashi Maru simulator. Thus Kirk would never pass it and the future would be altered.

Daren (#36)

I wasn’t a fight…yet. I just didn’t want to see it turn into one. Across the myriad of forums on this site, you and Dennis are two of the strongest voices of reason and temperance. The enthusiasm for Trek and the vast experience you both have lends a great deal to these boards and I didn’t want to see you get into a war of words. It’d be like watching Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln get into a shouting match. How would I possibly be able to choose sides :-)

And now a note to Santa Claus: All I want for Christmas are some nice hi-res photos of the cast of this film in their uniforms and one shot of the Enterprise. I’ve been good all year, I promise! Please, Santa, please!

Of course it wouldn’t turn into a fight… I admire Dennis, and respect his opinions… that’s why we were having such a civilized and reasoned debate. :)

And merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone here!

Spock is Darth Vader

“The room in the photo has a “dated futuristic” look to it, just like many of the original TOS sets. It would fit well into that era. Even the color scheme looks very TOS. Got a good feeling about that.”

That looks way ahead of anything in TOS (the series, at least. Everything in the series looked pastel and plastic).

It looks more like something from the later TOS movies (Khitomer Conference, anyone?) and TNG.

Anyone else thinking Kobayshi Maru? :-)

I’m thinking Creative Thinking award. But that’s just me thinking.

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

If this is an Academy movie, maybe a lecture hall for Kirk to be sleeping in the last row and knock up space girls?

As long as Shatner isn’t in the movie all will be good. Just kidding Deforest.

Buckaroohawk — I just checked THE MAKING OF STAR TREK II. The final scene was shot in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco.

Also, in ST V!: Exterior shots of Rura Penthe at Knik Glacier, Chugach State Park, Anchorage, Alaska, USA .

Marbpl (#49),

Thanks for the clarification. Where did I read that the final shot in TWOK was a miniature? Maybe an issue of Starlog from back in the day. Or maybe I’m just getting too old to keep all of my facts straight. In any case I appreciate the correction.