Preview Images of “Cloud Minders” Remastered

This weekend the remastered Star Trek episode "Cloud Minders" airs and CBS has sent over a couple of shots, including a matte of the new Stratos City and an exclusive shot of a very bad day for one of the Troglytes.

see images below


The highlights of the remastered version of "The Cloud Minders" are all-new visual effects of the cloud city, Stratos, created by CBS Digital. The new matte painting of Stratos by Max Gabl is based on a digital model by visual effects supervisor Niel Wray, which in turn is based on the original design of the cloud city by series art director Walter M. Jefferies. The original episode had a number of establishing shots of the city, which were all pretty much the same. For the Remastered version we are going to see multiple angles of Stratos. CBS has been kind enough to send over one of these new shots.

Image 1: “Stratos 2"
If you look REALLY closely, you might notice a tiny light blue smudge, above and to the left of the center of the image. That’s the beautiful Droxine, standing on her balcony. She’s just a couple of pixels high in this photo.

Remastered (click to enlarge)


Exclusive Image: “Falling"
The second image (of the ‘unfortunate’ Troglyte who didn’t have the right paperwork) gives a closer look at the planetscape below Stratos City, which is based on the same photograph used by Cinema Research Corp in creating the episode’s original visual effects in 1969. That photograph was taken by astronauts on the Gemini IV orbital mission in 1965 and shows the Hadramawt Plateau dry river basin in southern Saudi Arabia. For the remastered effect, Dwayne A. Day of the National Research Council and John Hargenreder of the NASA History Office combed through NASA archives at NASA Headquarters in Washington D.C. to find the original photograph for the remastered visual effects team. (The distant mountains on the horizon are based on a different photo, taken by astronauts on the International Space Station.)

Remastered (click to enlarge)


The Remastered "The Cloud Minders" airs this weekend in syndication, check local listings. See for a list of stations

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Stratos looks amazing!

WOW, nice! I would like to think that the beauty of that “city in the sky” would have been the same image – or VERY close to it – used by sfx creators for that proposed 5th Season episode of ST:ENT where the NX-01 crew was slated to visit that world, and where we were to see how the class division was starting (as seen in this story, with those Stratos City dwellers vs. the Troglites living in the caves on the planet below). Nice work, CBS Digital! Nice work!

Like the remastered Stratos.

Always was a fan of “The Cloud Minders” – the new images look fantastic!!

I am the first to claim to be the first.

Kiiiiiiick Azzzzzzzzzzhhhhhhh! Nice work indeedy.

Great work. The city looks a little unreal, still — but in an appropriate and appealing way. I like it. And combing through those NASA photos — that’s dedication!

Hi, Anthony–

Does CBS-D not like you? Ain’t-it-Cool-News always scoops you on preview images, from several hours to even days, when your site is the one giving much better coverage of the remastered effort.

Just wondering why that is. Although you did receive an additional image that AICN did not.

About the new version of Stratos… I like it a lot. Can’t wait to see the angle of the city in the sky from the perspective of the ground.

So this is what we would have seen on the 5th season of Enterprise.

I love that they kept the design of the city the same even though it was so tiny in the original.

I wonder how they handle the ground angle of the city. Sitting on a cloud is kind of goofy.

Looks absolutely amazing! I’m actually looking forward to this one, if only for the visuals.

I’ve been waiting for this episode all season to see the new visual effects. This matte shows that this episode was worth the wait.

The shots look incredable and i like it a lot. This was a great show all around. Seeing kirk act crazy due to the gas and of corse being with the hot alien babe. Anthony you are the best and no matter if a site gets a pic earlier this is the one ill always come to. Thank you.

I was looking forward to this remaster, and I’m blown away. The new Stratos is fantastic.

If you examine the original Stratos model you can see they reproduced its shape very closely in the remastered version. That’s amazing dedication.

Very Cool!

Does Lando live there?

Nice job all around.
Bungee jumping would be fun from Stratos.

Now THAT’S what I’m talkin’ ’bout! Despite the fact that I’ve been less than thrilled with the work CBS-D has been doing overall lately, I’ve been holding out hope that “The Cloud Minders” would not disappoint. These images bear out that hope. It’s wonderful to see Stratos so beautifully realized.

I’ve got my fingers crossed that the sky-diving troglyte flails his arms and legs a bit as he plummets. The original FX are just so Wyle E. Coyote.

Thanks for posting these images, Anthony. They made my day.

The mattes in these Remastered eps have been stunning. Amazing. Stellar.

The project was worth it, if only for the new mattes — and I was always a big fan of the original matte paintings in Trek (still am).

Scott B. out.

Thanks, Anthony, for your response, and all the good work you do with this site. Just don’t want to see TM get the short end of the stick. :-)

beautiful, beautiful, beautiful….thanx for sharing and wetting my appetite

Ever since I saw this episode as a kid, I always wanted to live in that cloud city. With this new matte, I *really* want to live there now.

Probably like living inside the Marin County Civic Center.

Now THAT is how you do a remaster!

Ah…that from which Bespin was stolen. George.

Nicely done. Mattes and moving citiscapes are a real strength for CBS-D.
Now, if they could just remaster Droxine’s vaccuous personality. She’s the Cloud Mind in The Cloud Minders.

looks great- one of the episodes long waited for.

Cool! I’ve been waiting for this one. The concept of the floating city in the sky was always very intriguing to me. That was scifi at it’s best.

Interesting that the pic of falling down guy is of Saudi Arabia. Talk about a divided society!

Nice work TOS-R team!

Love that Droxine too. I dig skinny, afluent, erudite, snobbish, hippie chicks.

That is a beautiful matte! Can’t wait to see this.

Max Gabl to the MAX!!!!!!!!!!!!

Best one yet. Sad it is at the end.

“”Nicely done. Mattes and moving cityscape are a real strength for CBS-D.””

They are THE strength for TOS-R.

Max told me he is in charge of all of the mattes and cityscapes and his work is beautiful. He’s on a loaded-to-the-hilt Macintosh system for his work.


I’ll take vacuous anyday, if it looks like Droxine.

Her name kind of sounds like a prescription drug:

“Droxine does have reported side-effects, including explosive diarrhea, unexpected and violent flatulence, dry skin, nausea, vomiting, Turret’s Syndrome and spontaneous combustion. Please ask your doctor if you are healthy enough to have sex when you have an erection lasting more than four days.”

The city looks extremely cool.

Wow, that city actually looks like a beautiful place to live.

Nice new shots. Well done, CBS-D !!!


That episode has the hottest Trek babe.

40, LOL. That’s funny.

This is the type of work that I look forward to. The mattes have never disappointed me ever. It’s funny how we could have such awesome and complex mattes yet we still have James R. Kirk tombstones, and Earth spinning backwards.

Wow! I’m blown away. This really makes me wish that Manny Coto had gotten to do a 5th season of ENT. I wonder if he gave Rossi/Okuda any input on this one?

Where is the blue smudge (Droxine)? I can’t see her. Help!

I couldn’t find that either.


27. “Now, if they could just remaster Droxine’s vaccuous personality. She’s the Cloud Mind in The Cloud Minders.”

Now that’s laugh-out-loud funny fer shure!

This is the one where Spock’s voice is so low he sounds like he’s purring. Acting stupid, but purring. I think he got a whiff of that Xenite gas or Droxine’s perfume and started spouting pon farr secrets willy nilly. I this this ep is an example of where the story takes a back seat to the visual. A gorgeous ep, but lousy dialogue, IMHO.

18, 26
Funny, I never made the connection between the Cloud City in Star Trek and the one in Star Wars. The architecture of Stratos looks a bit Art Deco like the architecture created for Bespin as well. Cheers

Isn’t there another one of those awkward reversed shots of Kirk near the beginning of this ep? At the top of the first segment, while he’s still in Vanna’s whip.

Wait. That’s just fun to say. Vanna’s whip. Yeaaaahhh.

OK, I’m back.

My other thought on this one is that it’s the episode that has Jeff Corey, as Plasus. When, I was a kid, I couldn’t remember either name if you put a phaser to my head. But, whenever I saw True Grit, I recognized Kim “Miri” Darbey and Jeff Corey. I could never remember his name in True Grit either (it’s Tom Cheney) mostly because the names they seem to repeat the most is Ned Pepper (Robert “How many great movies do I have to be in before that jerk CmdrR remembers my name?’ Duvall.) Anyway, True Grit has two prominent Trek alums.

Another movie with two prominent Trek alums is “Cool Hand Luke.”
I’m sure the geeks out there can name one right off…

Is that one of Gumby’s friends falling to his death? It’s been awhile since I’ve seen this episode, barely recall it, except that it did inspire the imagination beyond planet of the week. Just out of curiousity though, didn’t Flash Gordon have floating cloud city’s first? And where the hell are our floating cities today? ;-) Just kidding.

“””Is that one of Gumby’s friends falling to his death?”””

LMAO! good one.