VIDEO: JJ Abrams Talks Klingons In Star Trek 2009 (and Sequel)

On Monday JJ Abrams appeared on  G4 TV’s Attack of the Show to promote the arrival of Star Trek on home video. He mostly went over old ground, but did have some interesting things to say about Klingons that were cut from his first film, but may be showing up in his second Trek. See below for video


JJ and G4 talking Klingons


  • On Klingon designs Abrams notes they ‘sort of cheated’ between the original and ridged forehead Klingons
  • Abrams says he ‘hated’ having to cut the Klingon scenes
  • On Klingons in the sequel Abrams says ‘sure…it would be hard not to’, but there are no decisions


Here is more from the deleted Klingon scenes on the Star Trek DVD and Blu-ray.


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Bring on the Klingons in the next STAR TREK I say! :)

The release of this movie on Blu-Ray is enough for me to impulsively buy a player for it (thanks to working uber-overtime at work I can do that, gotta love working in the health insurance industry). Sadly it won’t be until this Saturday I can do that. Can’t wait to see the whole deleted Rura Penthe scene.

Klingons as an ally, maybe? Against a new threat to the galaxy – anything but the Borg, of course.

I don’t know why this idiot felt the need to “cheat” with the foreheads in the first place. It’s the TOS Era. Klingons have smooth foreheads. It’s not open to discussion.

Not necesarily all the Klingons have smooth foreheads.

Too bad the plot was not included in the DVD release;)

#4 – “TOS purist” is a contradiction in terms. Putting aside that Star Trek is just entertainment, didn’t “Enterprise” put that whole smooth/ridged Klingon thing to bed? And, putting aside that, isn’t it a little racist to think that every being in a certain race looks exactly the same?

And, putting aside EVERYTHING, you actually think Abrams is an idiot? Sheesh, takes one to know one, I guess.

IDIC, what a concept.

i already have the for a week been out in the netherlands for a while now O.o got the enterprise miniature :)

That movie was so good that I can’t even understand the joke…it’s like saying “I don’t like Krabby Patties!”
“The only people that don’t like like Krabby Patties are people who have n’t tried (or accepted in this case) them, Squidward!”

I say something must must must happen with the Vulcan because they set it up and it would be a plot hole not to deal with that.

Thanks to Ron Moore and a terrible decision to make the ridges part of the story, Klingons need to have smooth heads in the Abramsverse. Roddenberry had the right idea when he said that Klingons always looked that way, and it was only the makeup. It was a good off camera excuse that I think as fans, we could buy.

Then Ron Moore decided to make it canon that the ridges were a legit change, and Enterprise made it worse by trying to explain it.

I hate the notion that “some Klingons have ridges and some don’t.” That’s dumb. Worse is that Kor, Koloth and Kang had ridges on DS9, which was never explained.

The way Abrams dealt with it in the cut scene worked though. The helmets were a smart idea.

I don’t think there would be much controversy if Abrams uses smooth headed Klingons, but there WOULD be controversy if he uses the ridges.

Thank Ron Moore for that one.

I think they should have space vampires and zombies just to throw everyone off! LOL!



Shut up.

man, if chris pine is actually dating olivia munn from attack of the show, he’s one lucky guy. or for some, she’s one very luck chick.

Paging Dr. Okrand!

I bought a blu ray plalyer a couple of weeks ago in anticipation of the release of this movie on disc! Now my wife wants me to wait for Christmas!!!!!!!!!!!! AAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRGGGHH!!
It’s unfortunate that some people take Star Trek so seriously and get so easily upset that not everything stayed the same as the old Star Trek that most people aren’t interested in seeing. Smooth foreheads, ridged….not important.
By the way….what’s a Krabby Patty?

We’ve Got to have the Klingons in 2. I just want a more civilized Klingon society that seemed like it could attain space flight yet in line with TOS Klingons. It seems the route they are going. Not the Neanderthal Klingons from TNG.

I want to add the Bumps are what Roddenberry wanted in TMP. To give the Klingons a more distinct look. Thats the way they should be from now on. There really shouldn’t be any further debate on that.

Enterprise never did exactly make it clear if the virus was just some of them or not. For all we know the smooth heads were always on the front lines (the ones going after the enterprise) in order to prove that their hearts were still klingon. If thats the case, it might be awsome to see a mix between smooth and bumpy klingons in the next movie.

#4—“I don’t know why this idiot felt the need to “cheat” with the foreheads in the first place.”

There is certainly no cause for flaming. Making the creative decision to compromise between the physical appearances of TOS-era and movie-era Klingons hardly warrants being called an ‘idiot’, whether you would have made a different choice or not.

“It’s the TOS Era. Klingons have smooth foreheads. It’s not open to discussion.”

Canonically speaking, it most certainly is ‘open to discussion’.

While Gene Roddenberry preferred to see it as though Klingons had always looked as they did in TMP, later incarnations of Star Trek drew attention to the fact that Klingons from this era seemed to be missing the forehead ridges seen in that species a mere two and a half years after the end of the five-year mission and from that point forward.

While the writers on DS9 made light of it and left the question unresolved, ENT tackled it head on—-providing a once-and-for-all canon solution for those who had to have one.

Simply put, some Klingons would still be afflicted during the five-year mission, while others might not…and given that Kor, Kang, and Koloth (who were obviously ridgeless before) are all depicted in the 24th Century as having developed ridges—-it is clear that the “affliction” had been fully eradicated by that time.

I have some mild concern myself as to how Bad Robot will depict the Klingons, but it has nothing at all to do with their physical appearance.

I want the more colorful, cunning, well-spoken, and diverse villains of TOS—-not the grunting, growling, and howling cavemen in space portrayed in the spinoff series. Whether the Klingons depicted in the 23rd Century have ridges or not makes no difference to me.

7- “didn’t “Enterprise” put that whole smooth/ridged Klingon thing to bed?”

Judging from the rest of these posts, it got up for a drink of water.

PLEASE, only do Klingons if they have actual character. NO MORE ST:III Klingbots.

If they present the Klingons like the namby pampy ones in the cut scene, I am not interested. Kill three Klingons and you have a successful prison break? C’mon. Also, if you didn’t actually know that they were Klingons, you wouldn’t get the connection to this masked “300” reject. Back to the drawing board, guys. It was good to be cut from the film. It should have never been shot.

I agree with #17. The Klingons of TOS were more like a fascist regime out to conquer the galaxy through military might. They were even willing to use torture (i.e. Kor’s Mind Sifter from “Errand of Mercy”) as a means to achieve their aims. They were eloquent yet menacing. The TNG era Klingons came across as mindless neanderthal brutes, and it was hard to believe that they ever even invented the wheel, let alone space travel.

It’s NOT a reboot!



EXACTLY! The bumpy forehead was a very early thing (the first movie!) AND it was what Roddenberry himself (peace be upon him) wanted them to look like.

I do not understand the mentality that says “a lack of budget in the TV Show MUST dictate what all future Trek projects are allowed to do!” If Roddenberry himself didn’t think that way, and made things better as soon as he had the money and freedom, who do we think we are??

Woo. Just because Old Spock knows that the two races can get along doesn’t mean everyone else will catch on so fast.

#19—Just what exactly does “namby pampy” mean?

The TOS-era Klingons were diverse. The only things that Kor, Kras, Koloth, Arne Darvin, and Kang had in common was that they all served the Klingon Empire. Klingons (nor any other species, for that matter) should not be (and in TOS, certainly were not) drawn from a cookie-cutter.

Kor was as charming, unpretentious, and eloquent as he was ruthless, cunning, and brutal.

Koloth was somewhat sniveling, but equally well-spoken, and I got the feeling that he could be both vicious (even if only in delegation to Korax) and cunning if needed.

Kras and Darvin were both conniving cowards, with the latter being about as menacing as Mickey Mouse.

Kang, like Kor, was every bit the match for Captain Kirk—both as a tactician and as a leader of men in conflict.

It IS a reeboot! :)

Honestly, does anyone REALLY think that the success of this film or its sequels is going to make anyone at Paramount think that they should return to any of the original shows? Or set a new show/movie in the 24th century where TNG/VOY left off and leave everything exactly the same as it was after Nemesis, as if these new movies never happened?? Holding to delusions like these is not healthy. It’s better for everyone if we all just accept the fact that there is now an Abrams-verse and all Trek projects in the near future will be taking place there! :)

I picked up my copy at midnight, and before I went to bed, I watched the deleted scenes in full.

What I liked about the Klingon scene was the depiction of the Klingon interrogator as being calm and even offering of accomodations in return for compliance when he felt it was needed. He did not howl, get drunk and eat any live food, sing any goofy songs, or threaten anyone with some ridiculously archaic ritual sword. With that said, without any realistic expectations for cooperation from Nero, he was fully prepared to make him suffer…and most callously.

I hope that is an indication that Bad Robot Klingons will not be as cartoonishly portrayed as their Berman-era predecessors.

Guys….I beg of you….no singing.

I also like the beard—–definitely an homage to TOS.

I thought I saw the Duras sisters in the trailer for Bitch Slap. Anyway, got my Blu with the replica, who-ho!

I’m wondering why they changed the name of Jim’s older brother to Johnny. Everybody knows it was Sam. That really threw us when we read the novelization.

The cut Klingon scenes had a real “Lord of the Rings” feel. It would be cool to see someone make a Star Trek epic with several three-four hour movies.

(#25) nicely put! now all i have to do is get through the day and pass room inspection & then its off base so i can pick up my 3 disk set and the art book if i can find it at barnes & noble.

23–the unfortunate part is that it’s not the TOS TV show that created the ridge problem–it was DS9 and Enterprise.

Gene Roddenberry had it right when he basically said, “just pretend they had the ridges in the first place, because that’s what I would have done had we had the budget.”

That was good enough, and something even the biggest fan of canon would have trouble disputing. After all, nothing in the show contradicted that.

Until Ron Moore decided to make a joke about it and create a problem where none existed. And Enterprise made it worse by even attempting to deal with it–unless of course JJ abides by that, and we see smooth ridged Klingons in this movie.

I could even accept that some have ridges and some don’t–if not for another Ron Moore mistake–having Kor, Koloth and Kang appear.

Ultimately, is this the worst thing they can do? No. Is this as big of a deal as Shatner not being in the movie? No.

But at the same time, what would be the big deal if they USED the smooth heads?

Funny I like the Klingon’s from next Gen they don’t at all seem like Neanderthals and they have Honor and are more like Knights from the Dark Ages on Earth, with power, I think we should have a mix of both. I like the Reboot and I for one look forward to the next movie!

#24—-I don’t think the fact that this film (quite canonically) establishes an alternate timeline going forward qualifies it as a reboot. A traditional reboot involves disregarding previously established continuity—–whereas the story in ST09 not only chooses not to disregard it, but actually depends upon it in order to tell its own story.

Without everything established previously in 5 live action tv series and 10 films—-events in the Star Trek Universe would not unfold in the manner which ultimately produces the very alternate timeline to which we refer. Therefore, each (good or bad) episode and/or film set in the Prime timeline is crucial to setting the stage for ST09—–which is precisely what qualifies it as a sequel, and disqualifies it as a traditional reboot. Mislabeling it as such, IMO, places it in the same category of ‘Batman Begins’—-in which all previously established continuity is indeed disregarded. The audience is basically asked to pretend that nothing they saw before in the franchise ever happened. Audience members in ST09 are not asked to do this—-although they are not required to be familiar with it in order to understand it either.

I can live with the term “functional reboot” to a certain degree—-as it has *some* of the properties of a reboot, in allowing the storyline to begin anew without the hinderance of established continuity, but without pretending that what we have seen in the past never happened in this fictional universe. Even the characters themselves acknowledge within the dialogue of the film that they are existing in what they describe on the bridge as an “alternate reality”, and that other versions of themselves have lived their lives under different circumstances.

My best description (and the one I believe to be most accurate) of ST09 is as an unconventional sequel, and I actually think that this move was quite clever in establishing a way to tell stories about younger versions of Star Trek’s most popular characters, but without lacking the element of dramatic jeopardy or being potentially limited by some rather obscure 45-year old line of dialogue from a television series.

Continuity is preserved (as all of it is required to set up the story in ST09), and yet the writers can go in any direction with these characters they so choose. The writers have used canon (as the notion that interference with the past can result in an alternate timeline is itself canon, and has been since the first season of TOS) to circumvent its own boundaries an tell a series of original tales featuring Trek’s most dynamic characters…all without violating the sanctity of continuity by suggesting to millions of fans that they should pretend that none of it ever happened.

Brilliant….yet everyday I see them called viciously referred to as “lazy”, “uninspired”, or the like by some fans of the very franchise they quite frankly help rescue from near death after what was, IMO, about two decades of downhill storytelling….What a shame.

Reboot? What was “rebooted” in this fan was genuine interest and hope for where Star Trek will go from here—–enough to prompt me to pay to see a Star Trek movie in theaters (4 times at that) for the first time since 1991, and rush to my local Best Buy store at midnight to grab the 3-disc Bluray set. Like in the months leading up to its release, I felt like a kid again last night setting my cell phone alarm in order to wake up and be the first in my neighborhood to get a new toy.

#28—“now all i have to do is get through the day and pass room inspection & then its off base so i can pick up my 3 disk set and the art book if i can find it at barnes & noble.”

Lol. I remember days like that! Where are you stationed?


Closet your point is well made that ST09 is not a classic reboot and therefore certain “elements” need to remain true to TOS. It is an alternate universe, not a new universe. There is still Kirk, Spock, McCoy and the Enterprise so why wouldn’t there be Talosians, Tholians, Tellarites, Gorn, Khan, Squire of Gothos, Miri, etc etc.?


I know why there wouldn’t be Vulcans..

While I have always been a Star Trek purist to the core, those Klingons in that cut scene were a bit weak…
I remember the first time I saw “Day Of The Dove” on TV, I was just a kid, Kang scared the crap out of me in his first scene, just the tone of his voice was enough to scare me!

I agree re: old school Klingons being the way forward.

I’m sure the boys can write both old and new-school, but it would be nice to flesh the Klingons out either way.

The Bermanverse Klingons started their descent into bozoland in that ep. where Riker serves aboard a BoP as First Officer. Let’s pretend those Klingons never happened. Give us Klingons with diverse personalities and talents, ruthlessness and the ability to emote (fear, sadness) without being soused on alcohol.

#30 “Reboot? What was ‘rebooted’ in this fan was genuine interest and hope for where Star Trek will go from here—–enough to prompt me to pay to see a Star Trek movie in theaters (4 times at that) for the first time since 1991, and rush to my local Best Buy store at midnight to grab the 3-disc Bluray set. Like in the months leading up to its release, I felt like a kid again last night setting my cell phone alarm in order to wake up and be the first in my neighborhood to get a new toy.”

Well said, my friend. You’re right. The people who argue that JJ killed Star Trek amaze me. Quite the opposite!

Forgive my ignorance, but I don’t own a blu-ray player. Will these same extras be on the standard DVD?

#30 – You sir, are absolutely right. I’m absolutely onboard with JJ Abrams’ reincarnation of Star Trek.

Most of the Star Trek fans I know personally LOVE the film, and I saw it 10 times on the big screen, 5 of which were in IMAX (the way to see it).

And people who are NOT Star Trek fans liked or loved it.

Initial reviews are stupendous. Digital Bits gave it an ‘A’ for content and an ‘A’ for A/V quality. Other sites concur.

Forget BluRay, it’s available in HD on iTunes. That’s what I would get.

#24. “Honestly, does anyone REALLY think that the success of this film or its sequels is going to make anyone at Paramount think that they should return to any of the original shows?”

I MUST SAY I AGREE WITH THIS. Paramount says the old universe is still there, but I doubt we’ll officially be visiting it any time soon, if ever. I prefer to look at this as though the “alternate” universe has simply wiped over the old one as a result of time travel, just like in “City On The Edge of Forever”. It’s just easier than trying to understand why this new “parallel” universe is so different than the original one from the start.

#32—-“There is still Kirk, Spock, McCoy and the Enterprise so why wouldn’t there be Talosians, Tholians, Tellarites, Gorn, Khan, Squire of Gothos, Miri, etc etc.?”

Oh, there absolutely would be, although their fates (in some cases) would not be immune to the effects of the timeline incursion.

For example, although Talos IV would no doubt still be there—–as would Vina—-it is unlikely that the new timeline would allow there to have been a visit to that planet by the Enterprise under Christopher Pike’s command and with a young science officer named Spock. After all, according to the alternate timeline, Spock is programming and helping to administer the KM test at Star Fleet Academy during the time he would otherwise have travelled to Rigel VII and Talos IV, respectively. It seems that the events of 2233 set another chain of events in motion which precluded that from happening as it did before in the Prime Timeline.

As for the Gorn, while surely they still exist in this timeline, the circumstances under which they come into contact with the Federation may be drastically altered. Who is to say that the UFP will ever establish that outpost in what the Gorn consider their sovereign space, and if they do, who is to say that the Metrons will just so happen to be there monitoring and interfering with what transpires as a result?

Likewise with the planet whose distress signal led the Enterprise to Miri… Presumably, that distress signal had been running for sometime before the Enterprise just happened to pick it up in what Kirk described as “the far reaches of the Galaxy”. It could be received much sooner in this timeline, or never at all for that matter.

Still, other events would no doubt be unchanged to a certain point.

The SS Botany Bay would still be adrift in space with its genetically enhanced company aboard in cryogenic freeze—–but the notion that (or the manner in which) it will be discovered is completely up in the air.

It was a brilliant idea in the film for the Klingons to be masked. TOS clearly established that the forehead ridges were absent during the early Kirk days and ENT established the reason for this, and DS9 also implied that the lack of ridges was an embarassing episode in Klingon history. Therefore, it makes sense that masks with forehead ridges might actually be a standard clothing “accessory” for ridgeless Klingons.

That’s my interpretation of the masks :)

Dear Mr Abrams,

Please NO Klingons for the next movie. We need something new and exciting. Im bored with them.


Bring in Klingons!

I am going to get my Blu-ray Star Trek DVD for my birthday which is TODAY.

What a perfect gift! :D