Robert Meyer Burnett Talks Free Enterprise 2 [UPDATED]

In 1998 Robert Meyer Burnett and Mark Altman created a cult classic with Free Enterprise, their comedy about two Star Trek fans (named Robert and Mark) who meet their hero, William Shatner. Their has been a lot of talk about a sequel over the last decade, but it seems the success of the new Star Trek movie could help it become reality. [UPDATE: More from Altman and Burnett]


Shatnerific Free Enterprise II?
The news comes in some comments given to SciFi Wire by Free Enterprise director and co-writer Robert Meyer Burnett, while promoting his new horror movie The Hills Run Red. According to Burnett, they have met Shatner as recently as a few months ago and he still on board to return, where he will be playing a rabbi:

There’s a plot element where he actually becomes a rabbi. That’s something that he’s constantly reminding [me]. He’s like, ‘That’s still in the plot?’ I’m like, ‘Yes, there’s actually a scene atop Masada with him.’

The plot for the sequel seems to be a ‘movie within a movie’, telling the story about the fictional filmmakers who made the original Free Enterprise. But the big change seems to be that the new Star Trek movie has made the deal more likely to happen, Burnett noted:

I think obviously the success of the new Star Trek movie [attracted financiers]. I think it’s time. It’s time.

Read the full story at SciFi Wire.

UPDATE: Comments from Mark and Rob
After posting the initial report,
TrekMovie contacted both Burnett and Altman, to get more details, but it seems there really aren’t any as of now. Rob’s email states:

Burnett: So far…there’s nothing to tell. I think, in light of the success of the new STAR TREK, now would be the perfect time for FE2, if we’re going to do it.

However, Rob did promise a full interview with TrekMovie, if there is something to report.

As for Mark, he also advises caution on getting excited about the sequel and also notes that he is currently not available to work on it anyway:

Altman: It is way premature to comment on a possible Free Enterprise 2 and any other comments to the contrary are sheer fiction. Speaking for myself, it is extremely unlikely that I’ll have the chance to work on this anytime in the foreseeable future given my other film and television obligations, but as Mr. Spock is fond of saying, there are always possibilities.


Here is the trailer for the original Free Enterprise.

…which is available on DVD.



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I absolutely LOVED Free Enterprise! Have watched it at least a dozen times! Bring on Free Enterprise 2!!


#1 – Harry, I’ve never seen it, but from the trailer, I’m gonna have to!


A sequel to a movie were everybody kissed Shaters ass from beginning to end? I doubt this will ever happen. Ther is no GOOD reason to make this happen…..

I loved the first one too, mostly because it reminded me so much of my friends and I. When my girlfriend saw the scene where the guys drive to Toys R Us, she turned to me in disbelief, because she never knew there were other men like me in the world!

10 years later seems a bit too late to me, but I’ll watch anything with The Shat in it!

yah its a cult classic-anybody especially trek n shat fans if they havent seen free enterprise its a must own-the filmakers said they get tons of letters from fans saying thats my life haha–there is also a good logans run spoof sequence in it not to mention shat looking at porno and doing musical shakespeare heheh

Can’t wait to see it!

and Eric Mccormack from will and grace has the time to make a movie since the show isnt on anymore cept for rerun heaven

I love Free Enterprise! One of the best Star Trek movies ever made! I hope they get to do a sequel. In the meantime, I think I’ll rewatch the original DVD. Again.


Wow, that turned out to be a whole lot of nothing then.
What a tease.

Can this one be actually funny?

Go for it. The original is priceless!

Looking forward to FE2, no matter when it will be realized…

#4, 11
Bad Shat Day? :)


This was made before Will & Grace
btw check out the green girl in the trailer, that’s Debra Messing

“Their has been a lot of talk about a sequel over the last decade, but it seems the success of the new Star Trek movie could help it become reality.” When spellcheck fails.

I don’t know if they can capture lightning in a bottle a second time, to borrow a cliche, but the first Free Enterprise belongs in every longtime Trek fan’s video collection. It’s brilliant and hilarious. IMHO, Free Enterprise and Galaxy Quest should be higher priority DVD buys than several of the actual Trek movies…

That movie IS A DISASTER™ if there ever was one. :)

One of my favorite films, it’s Mallrats for the sci-fi/movie loving/Trek crowd with some Swingers thrown in. And no, it’s not a Shatner-ass kiss-fest. He’s portrayed far from perfect. Just a fun, great movie.

Hey Robert,

If it does get made I know some guys who could act and sing the parts of a Trek band that covers all “The Way to Eden” songs. Recreating all the classics from that episode. “Stiff Man”, “Hey Out There”…all the classics. They sing. They play authentic instruments and they could have costumes. That’d be a great scene in a restaurant or bar. I could see that. We’re cheap and we’ve got our act down. Other than that…I hope it does get made.

An FE2 could have a whole reel dedicated to the budweiser engineering issue, and even tweak the abrams flick’s nose by having lens flares go off as a charactet gets punched in the face (knocking his ‘lights’ out or really ‘seeing stars.’)


Uh, no, that’s not Debra Messing.

I’m not a big fan of squeals to cult films, however, if they could fit in cameo’s from as many trek cast as possible it could be quite good.

They said something about a movie in a movie. Could you imagine a scene where the Shat is trying to give tips on performing Shakespeare to Patrick Stewart.

I have but two questions here:

1) Are they going to go with a younger, fresher cast to tell the story of FE2?
2) Are they going to redesign Shatner to make him sleeker?

Re: # 22 – Ha! Good one.

I rented this a couple of years ago, expecting to be disappointed. But I really enjoyed it a great deal. The opening sequence showing the one character handling the bullies at school is worth the price of admission alone. I thought Rafer Weigel gave a good performance; I’m surprised he hasn’t gone on to bigger things.

I think I recall reading a synopsis for the sequel that involved both Shatner and Nimoy, one having to convince the other, through Talmudic argument (?) to come out of retirement(?) If that’s the plot, it sounds inspired and potentially hysterical.

I hope the sequel is made.

Scott B. out.

Rafer Weigel was recently seen by yours truly doing sports for Robin Meade’s morning news show on Headline News. Eric McCormack did a “Law & Order – SVU” episode; I think it airs tonight.
About two years ago, Showtime was running the original “Free Enterprise” seemingly every half hour. Fun movie.

I quite liked Free Enterprise, but a 2 hour film all about those two guys proclaiming that JJ Abrams is a God… could get more than a little tiresome.

Wonderful news great movie. I had loads of fun watching it so did my grandkids keep it family fare and we will watch the sequil. It shows how trek has been an impact on our culture. Now all we need is culture to hear the message!

The original “Free Enterprise” was awesome, because it was a movie about TOS purists!! A sequel would be fantastic (and Shatner-tastic!).


Yeah, I was going to mention that. I noticed Rafer Weigel in the role of the good looking talking head, type guy on some Entertainment Tonight type of show recently. I think it was on CNN or something. It seemed like this was his new gig.


I think a more interesting slant for the sequel and, one more in keeping with what I thought the characters were all about, would be to rail against the new movie other than singing JJ’s praises.

Free Enterprise good. No Free Enterprise 2 bad.

Loved Free Enterprise

Great Soundtrack too

Even though Fanboys really really sucked they should write Burnett and Altman a check for trying to rip off their premise

Free Enterprise was the best fan send up ever IMHO and Robert is one of the coolest people Ive ever met in this town. Year before last I sent him a friend request on Myspace mentioning that Free Enterprise accompanied me to Iraq. His response was to invite me to his birthday party (My gift to him was a set of Loagans Run lifeclocks which seemed an appropriate birthday gift) and introduce me to all his friends. It was igreat fun hanging out with Robert and his friends and getting that Free Enterprise ‘vibe’. Unfortunately I didnt get to meet Mark Altman.
Anyway, thanks again Robert and Mark for one of my favorite all time movies and here’s to FE2 getting made.

A few years back, Robert and Mark made it known that they wanted Leonard in FE2!!! He can’t get away with the excuse that he’s retired now! He owes Bill this one for not appearing on Boston Legal.

This could be IT. The last rally for Bill and Leonard TOGETHER. Make it happen, guys!!!


Now that’s a cool story. I met him at ComicCon 07 and he was very nice to me. Even offering suggestions on how to break into the biz of writing music for movies.

Back in 2005, Burnett said that Nimoy might be in too. That was a Breaking News about FE2, in a Starbase972 interview:
And the TrekToday item about that:
And TrekWeb’s:

Free Enterprise was a great movie for TOS purists. It didn’t totally ignore the other casts, but you could tell where the passion was. I’m not sure what the point of a sequel would be — if they move away from the purist thing, it won’t be the same thing. On the other hand, there’s not much more ground to cover. I’m afraid this sounds like its going to be less about trek fans and more about shatner fans — which is a big difference. I, for one, am the former but not the latter.

Hey Angry Klingon where did you get Logans Run Lifeclocks to buy and give out?? Never heard of em….what else is available logans run wise heeheh

Actually Rafer has been a sports anchor for CNN/HLN for the past 2 years. He does an awesome job, maybe one day he’ll return to Hollywood, the guy is super talented. (and hot!)

Its about time…FE2 is WAY past due.

And it’s ten times better than that Fanboys attrocity ever thought about being.

That was the most un-funny piece of drek I’ve seen since…oh, I dunno…

Ghostbusters 2? Yeah…that’s gotta be it.

– I’m afraid this sounds like its going to be less about trek fans and more about shatner fans — which is a big difference. –

No, it isn’t.

Wow, Iowagirl. Guess I’m not a trek fan then. Thanks for setting me straight.

If you feel like applying that automatism – more power to you, wickedjacob! I simply disagreed with your statement which implied that being a Trek fan and being a Shatner Fan is a big difference. According to that, it’s people like me who aren’t real Trek fans.

Iowagirl and wickedjacob:

You can be both, or you can be one or the other. You can even be a fan of either or both with reservations.

For instance, I enjoy a great deal of Mr. Shatner’s work, which includes TOS and 5 of the 7 Star Trek films in which he participated. I also liked FE, his work on The Twilight Zone, and some other stuff to a lesser degree.

I enjoyed 2 of the 5 Star Trek series and 6 of the 7 films involving the original characters.

I don’t like all of Shatner’s work or everything that comes out of his mouth, and I don’t like everything given the label “Star Trek”…but I consider myself to be generally a fan of both…with some reservations. :)


As usual…with.some.reservations, I find myself in agreement with you…withsomereservations. :)

I hope they don’t actually call it Free Enterprise 2. Even though it’s a sequel, it should have a more original title.

#s 42 & 43 … I’ve made dinner reservations for the three of us. Don’t be late. :-)

Trekmovie needs to track down Eric McCormack and Rafer Weigel and ask them if they want to do it. I think that for any sequel to work you would have to have all three back, Eric, Rafer, and The Shat.

*sigh* I didn’t say you had to be one or the other. I just said they weren’t the same thing. whatever.

For crying out loud, if a new movie is going to make Trek fans look ridiculous, then I, for one, would never support it. Throughout the years, Trek has been made the subject of many a cheap shot. If — and I say IF — this new movie will simply amplify this trend, then count me out.

I loved FE and actually own Audie’s nightie and wedding dress from the movie-my wife even chipped in so I could win the auction-how KEWL is she?