Reminder: Star Trek Summer Screening Series Starts Tonight With ST: The Motion Picture in Santa Monica

Just a reminder that tonight the Summer STAR TREK Spectacular-Spectacular Saturdays kicks off in Santa Monica, with a big screen (35MM) showing of Star Trek: The Motion Picture. And over subsequent Saturdays in June and July the remaining original cast Star Trek movies will show, each including a Q&A sessions with Star Trek celebrities, including Nicholas Meyer, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols,Walter Koenig and more. Get all the details below.


TMP in 35MM tonight with Martel + Rest of TOS Films in 70MM with Meyer, Winter, Hicks,Takei, Koenig, and Nichols

This summer Laemmle Theaters (in conjunction with Ledjer Film & Theater services and is running all six of the original crew Star Trek features in a series of midnight movies at the cavernous Royal Theatre in West L.A. The Simply 70(mm) STAR TREK Spectacular-Spectacular Saturdays will present each film in 70mm and 6-channel Stereo. Each film will also have a Q&A session with a Star Trek celebrity. The talks will be moderated by TrekMovie’s Anthony Pascale (hey, that’s me!).

NOTE: Unfortunately for tonight’s screening, it was not possible to find 70MM print in good enough condition, so it will be shown in 35MM, all other showings will be using 70MM prints.

Here is the schedule:

Date Film Guest
(TOS: T’Pring)
June 19 STAR TREK II: THE WRATH OF KHAN Nicholas Meyer
(assoc. Producer)
Nichelle Nichols*
July 10 STAR TREK IV: THE VOYAGE HOME Catherine Hicks
(Dr. Gillian Taylor)
(Pavel Chekov)
(Hikaru Sulu)

 * pending professional commitments.

Tickets for each film cost $10 for general admission and $45 for a six-film ticket package. You can buy tickets at the box office or online at Laemmle’s Royal Theatre is located at 11523 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90025, (310) 478-3836

here is the promo trailer for the series


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Wish I lived in California. Any thoughts about taking this on tour?

Well. Im in Austin but for this knight I wish I was in L.A

I wish I could see those movies on the big screen ! The first Trek movie I saw on the big screen was ST: Generations.

What exactly is the difference between 35 and 70mm film? …. :-/

About 35 mm

I’ve heard that 35mm is equivalent to 4000p (HD is 1080p) so 70 would be even better than that. I didn’t even know there was anything bigger than 35. I would love to see the movies for real. I never got to see any until generations. ST 1 my not be my favorite, but it has some of my favorite moments in the entire franchise. I’ve seen the reveal of the enterprise 100’s of times and it still gives me goose bumps each time. I can’t even begin to imagine what it would be like to see it that big.

kinda telling no 70mm copies of tmp in good enuf shape to show-sad too–yup for a while 70mm was incredible in the theatres—i drove for an hour n a half to seattle to see close encounters in 70mm when it came out-star wars too–more recently got to see 2001 in 70mm in seattle a few years ago-incredible–the trek exp simulator only used 35mm–image woulda been much clearer in 70mm-

Are the talks before or after the movie? Do the movies start at midnight?

Oh and TMP was never released in 70mm. They didn’t have time to make the prints.

Not originally john but i eoulda thought that they did release 70mm copies after the premiere for those theatres that had em,or maybe not—raiders was also great in 70mm on a curved screen-


Jim, exactly:,1702996

TMP was a blind-bid movie which means it had a two phase release. Only theaters that made advanced blind bids (which reportedly amounted to a total of $50 million for Paramount.) were permitted to exhibit it in its premier week. It was released to non-bidding theaters later. Hollywood at the time also had a long practice of not simultaneously releasing their films to all regions including those within the U.S.

It’s just anachronistic wonky logic to draw the conclusion that because 70mm prints couldn’t be made in time to meet the blind-bid deadline that therefore it is impossible for 70mm prints to have been released at a later time.

The trades reported that Paramount made their blind-bid deadline and thus kept their $50 million. If 70mm print bids were part of the blind-bid they had to have been made or else Paramount would have had to return those 70mm bids and it would have been all over the trades which were already anticipating a Paramount fail and refund on a grander scale than that. If 70mm prints weren’t on the bid block then they wouldn’t have been released at the time of the blind-bid theaters’ deadline anyway and thus there would have been time to make some 70mm prints for the U.S. and even more for the international markets..

The “They didn’t have time to make prints.” reasoning leaks all over the place.

Also, blind-bids were held long before there were indications of production problems.

70mm film is a much larger film format, requiring special projectors and larger bulbs. Not only did it provide an incredibly high-definition quality in images, it also included a six-track audio soundtrack.

70mm generally fell out of vogue in the early 1990s with the advent of digital sound, and the fact that most theatre chains had fired all of their licensed projectionists. They were no longer needed since most theatres had fully automated systems that required little more than simply threading the projectors and pushing a button.

With the dawn of the IMAX format, 70mm had its crushing blow. While a 70mm film had about a three square inch frame, the IMAX has nearly a nine square inch frame, leading to an unprecedented level of definition.

70mm was indeed a popular format, but most films that were eventually released in 70mm were filmed in 35mm, meaning they had to be converted upwards, and not gaining much visual benefit as a result.

Trek in 70mm? That’d be cool. Now if they put it in IMAX — no. Wait… they DID. And I missed it. Argh.

:: treknerdsulk ::

6. Allen Williams – June 12, 2010

“ST 1 my not be my favorite, but it has some of my favorite moments in the entire franchise. I’ve seen the reveal of the enterprise 100’s of times and it still gives me goose bumps each time. I can’t even begin to imagine what it would be like to see it that big.”

Allen, I was at the first day showing of TMP when it came out. I waited in line for hours and then ended up standing in the aisle during that over-sold showing. The anticipation was high and no one knew what to expect. When the Enterprise was reveled on the big screen, with the awesome John Williams, score the audience let out a collective gasp before breaking into thunderous applause! Never before have we seen the Enterprise so big and looking like a massive starship before! It was an electric moment to be in the company of fellow fans for that shot. You really would have loved it!

13. “John Williams ..score” You mean Jerry Goldsmith ;0

How did the screening go? How about a report and some video?

Which print was shown? The original one or the extended version? Was there an overture with the curtains closed played as in the ORIGINAL release???

#13 why do you think i wanna see it. Too bad i wasn’t alive at the time. Which means i also missed the moon landings as well. Thanks obama for canceling the new lunar missions. =(

TMP – my favorite! Have watched it more than 20 times.

It’d be nice to have similar events on the East Coast.

Did you set this up, Anthony, or are you the invited emcee? Just wondering what it takes to get something like this organized. A old-style one-screen movie theater for one, I would imagine, or renting a screen at a multiplex after midnight…

14. There is no 70mm TMP print :) :( – June 13, 2010

” 13. “John Williams ..score” You mean Jerry Goldsmith ;0

How did the screening go? How about a report and some video?

Which print was shown? The original one or the extended version? Was there an overture with the curtains closed played as in the ORIGINAL release???”


You’re right of course. My mistake. That’s what I get for posting from work when I’m in a hurry.

I think you misunderstood me regarding the movie showing. I was referring to being at the original opening in 1979. It was the theatrical version which had the star field and overture playing while the theater was filling up prior to the opening credits. That served to ratchet up the excitement and anticipation. When the lights went down and the movie started some people were visually shaking! People were about to finally see some new Star Trek on the big screen for the first time! Those were fun times!

I love the music in this movie. It may not have been the best movie but it had the best soundtrack.

I’d love it if a theater nearby here would show these.

When I was in college in the mid-90s I got to see ST2: TWOK on the big screen at one of our local theaters here (in Norman, OK). That was really cool.

I would be very interested to hear Bob Orci’s thoughts on TMP. Any chance of that, Bob?

Why don’t they ever have events like this in the New York City region? :::Sigh:::

Everything is in California, I swear.

18. *sigh* In the ORIGINAL theatrical release there was NO starfield playing during the overture. The starfield was added for the Director’s Edition in 2001. Post-1979 presentations usually just play the overture, open screen, with nothing but a blank screen with scratches to show for it.

I saw the video link with the Q&A with Arlene Martel. While it is nice to have a guest visit, she really had nothing to do with the movie and the Q&A just had to do with her and her career.

Perhaps the reason why they could not get more production folk to come was the midnight showing. Isn’t that a little late? I’d think maybe 8pm and a post show Q&A but midnight? You wouldn’t be leaving for home until 3am in downtown LA.

If they do the series again and I hope they do, I hope they find this 70mm print, or at least strike a new 35mm one, or show a digital projection version of the Director’s Edition and book a guest who was part of the movie.

If any of the Trek movies needed 70mm it was TMP. It was the only one of the films that had a real epic, big budget feel until the Abrams film.

For all it’s flaws, I still enjoy TMP. It brought Trek back and for all of it’s pacing issues it still was a movie with something meaningful to say.

Now if we could only get Paramount to bring back the DE team and give us that cut in HD then it’d be all good…

I was at the screening last night, and I’m very interested in the history of the print used. I don’t think anyone’s mentioned it yet, but it was essentially the TV version (in full 35mm anamorphic of course) minus the McCoy “We’re discussing command fitness” shot and the incomplete scene of Kirk exiting the ship after Spock.

I was not even aware that a complete film print existed of the TV version; I always figured they just edited the version shown on ABC and home video together on video with the deleted bits. The edits between theatrical and TV footage were quite noticable in this print, so I wonder if this print was constructed later from a theatrical print and the TV trims.

Anyone have any ideas?


Sounds likely, or perhaps this was the ‘airline’ version? I know GR wanted to recut the pic for a 1980 reissue but Paramount didn’t want to bother.

As for the 70mm/35mm thing, we’re still taking about a finished film in 35mm that got BLOWN UP to 70mm … and that only helps the sound because you’ve got more space for a fancier track … you’re still just creating a contrastier and grainier result when you go from 35mm to 70mm, you’re not gaining anything visually (and since 70 is about 2:05-1 instead of 2.35:1 ratio, you’re actually losing info on the sides of the frame.)

And you’ve got double-duped stuff in the original of TMP, where you have vistavision and 65mm fx elements (and 35 flat in the case of some highspeed stuff) reduced and comped with 35mm anamorphic.

I remember seeing TMP twice in 79 when I was nine years old. Honestly some parts I found boring as all get out, but visually the entire movie was stunning as was the score and that kept my interest. In fact none of the other Star Trek movies approached the overall epic feel of TMP, and that includes any of the Next Gen ones IMO. Now that I look back at it I see what they were trying to do with the movie, and in theory it sounds good, but I just dont think a re-written TV pilot should have been used for the script. I can only imagine what they could have produced with Wise directing with TWOK script instead, or Planet of Titans even.

OK, so I am a bit older. Saw TMP on opening night in 1979 as a 15 year old. I have a soft spot for TMP, and really think that they should screen a proper Director’s Edition in theaters. If you really think about it, the questions that TMP addresses about the meaning of life are among the most profound, and best handled ever filmed. That doesn’t make them exciting, mind you, but they are very good.

I have said before that the Enterprise has never looked better than in TMP. Even the same model didn’t look as good when re-used in subsequent films. It was lit perfectly, and I think it was Trumbull or Dykstra who said that the Enterprise needed to provide her own illumination in the black of space. So they lit her to look like an ocean liner at sea at night.

This has always been my favorite movie. Unfortunately I was only 4 when it came out, so I have never seen it on the big screen. I loved the director’s cut on DVD, which did help some of the pacing.

As an aside–My OCD may be coming out, but it drives me nuts that the packaging for Star Trek (2009) is different from the other 10 movies. I have the Special Editions of the 10 previous movies and the 2009 movie is obviously different. Does anyone know if Star Trek (2009) will be released in a special edition format like the others? Can Paramount help my OCD?

Saw it opening night too. Huge…ribbon lights and local dignitaries. They don’t do this anymore. It ran for over a year here in Portland because of an agreement the theater had with Paramount. I saw the film mant times and its still one of my favorites. Jerry Goldsmith’s score stands the test of time and is still the one of the best. This film is not cut in seven frame cuts…its not a blur…it allows the viewer to linger and be awed, something that is missing from modern cinema.

#26. kmart

You are mistaken. Only the principle photography that didn’t require special or optical effects used 35mm. Anywhere else in TMP including shots with live actors that need an effect was filmed in 65mm. The 70mm master wasn’t blown up from 35mm when it didn’t require it. I clearly recall Wise discussing the arduous task of shrinking down the 65mm footage for the 35mm print.

The team had worked on 2001 and knew how to make a proper 70mm TMP.print.


You’re way off, friend. I’ve interviewed more TMP alums than I can count, from Apogee and EEG, and documented hell out of it, including contributing to a FILMFAX article a few years back.

There are Apogee Vista shots that had to be comped with EEG 65 shots, so a special optical printer was built to accomodate those, in addition to the all-vista and all-65 comps … the whole point of shooting in the larger format is to accomodate the extra generation when duping, so that the fx won’t look grainy by comparison to the liveaction. But then you’ve got live-action that went through hell, like the bridge probe, where the quality is down to drive-in movie at 5:15pm levels, and quality control disappears altogether.

Apogee didn’t even have a 65mm setup, they ONLY shot vistavision (which is 35mm on its side, double-frame style.) Part of the Vista image is lost when cropping, so you don’t get the full benefit like you do with 65mm.

Wise discusses a lot of things about TMP, during production, right after, and then 20 years later. Not a whole lot of those comments remain in sync with one another, and I find ALL of his DE-era comments very suspect, as in, he’s reading copy written for him by Sharpline. Kind of sad, but then again, maybe his part in the history books needs some revising, since even though you have the great THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL, we’re still talking about the guy who scissored MAGNFICENT AMBERSONS and didn’t bother to preserve a copy of Welles’ cut, an act that may just outweigh all the good of Wise’s career all on its own.

Oh, and according to Trumbull, Abel’s group, which was supposed to shoot all the fx plates in 65mm, weren’t able to get those cameras rolling properly at all (the very cameras Trumbull used for CLOSE ENCOUNTERS, and then reacquired form TMP after Abel was ousted.)


If you’ve done the research I’ll bow to it.

But you do seem to be indicating a larger format with some trade-offs indeed was used in addition to the 35mm? Do you have any numbers on how many feet of what was used for what? And obviously for the point of this discussion how many feet in a larger format versus (Super Panavision?) 35mm was used in transferring to the final master print?

As for Wise, I have to accede that even though I love his work, he has indeed said and done contradictory things. He’s long maintained that his works are designed to be seen in a theater on a large screen, and are best experienced there. But his director’s cut of TMP that he did much later seems to be aimed more specifically at the DVD than the theater exhibition he advocated?

As for variable quality in Wise’s original mastering, we still have issues with that even with Blu-ray xfers of modern films today. The real question is how much of the final product was 16mm drive-in quality versus how much of it wasn’t? And to return to BD, yet again, how much of that poor image is permanently and irrevocably ensconced on the original footage shot versus degradation in the integration?

If I recall, wasn’t Wise enamored of a type of lens called a diopter(?)? If I remember that lens’ split properties correctly, I would think using two separated 35mm frames simultaneously side by side (a type of 60mm in effect?) would have been right up his alley with the way that lens crops out the center to some degree?

We know from CHEKOV’S ENTERPRISE and other sources that the 65mm cameras were there to record several sequences that would require later fx enhancement, like the transporter room and the wormhole … just how much of that was actually used, it is hard to say. The only sequence that Abel completed was the wormhole, and that was really Bob Swarthe, a Trumbull regular, who made that happen all the way through. Dykstra mentions in CINEFEX 2 that Abel or others shot 35 flat, some vistavision and even some 16mm (this is the klingon models getting blown up imagery you see on some youtube ‘making of TMP’ vids — they did pyro blowups instead of the digitizing effect Apogee went with in the final film.)

Apogee was a strictly VistaVision house, which dates back to when their members made up half of the core team for the original STAR WARS, which revitalized that long-dead format. So whatever percentage of TMP was done by Apogee (probably in the one quarter-to-one third range) was shot with VV cams, while Trumbull’s team did their usual 65mm superquality stuff.

The Wise diopter stuff works on a single lens and single frame … basically part of the frame is clear glass, while the other part is the other focal range — trouble is, when you have a lot of soft light and medium tones, the blurred seam between the sharp areas and the out of focus ones is very discernable. If you compare it with his use of the same in HINDENBERG, you’ll see the diopter use is almost invisible, and it even works well in ANDROMEDA STRAIN, which has more snap to its color approach, even though it does jive with Wise’s uniforms-blend-with-background-so-faces-draw-more-attention notion — the lighting is sharper and more dramatic and it lets the diopter use be hidden, whereas the lighting approach to TMP wouldn’t let them hide anything, except in areas of murk, which aren’t visually appealing.

A really good transfer of TMP — one that featured serious cleanup to the film, not the dustbuster treatment on the DE — will just further enhance the problematic diopter shots, and point up the duped/duped/duped quality of the bridge probe, but it would also let modern audiences know what TMP looked like — something that is not always clear from the ld and dvd transfers that have come about thus far. I’ve only seen screen grabs of the TMP bluray, but while they hint at some of the nicer visual parts of the film, the digital noise reduction that has been applied is appalling, practically making the actors look like wax.

And the other aspect mitigating against a TMP ever emerging like BLADE RUNNER THE FINAL CUT is that the visual effects ELEMENTS are long gone. Scott paid to keep every element properly stored, and then was able to have them recomped … as best I can tell, the TMP elements were kept at Apogee and EEG for a couple years and then when Paramount still didn’t want them, they were just trashed. So you can’t rebuild something from its elements if the elements aren’t around, all you can do is spritz something on the old comps and hope for the best (which ain’t all that good.)

I gotta go finish writing a piece about the Nolan movie, but I’ll check back in here late Tuesday or on Wednesday to see if there is anything else active on this topic … thanx for the good feedback! Kevin

It would be a shame if the only good 70mm print of TMP was used to make those collectible film frames that appear often on Ebay.

#35. kmart – “thanx for the good feedback! Kevin”

You are welcome and likewise I’m sure.

I doubt you could know how tickled I was to have my diopter recall refreshed. BTW I would imagine computer diopter seam removal would be no more difficult than scratch removal that is now commonly done?

As for the archiving, I recently lamented that Paramount of old was not noted for being particularly good at it (Few studios are.). Nevertheless it is disheartening to find that the 70mm circulating prints are in such disrepair as well.

I suppose our only hope of restoration may lie in some fan – not knowing exactly what it was but recognizing it as Trek – having rescued the lost bits from the trash. Not much to hang our hats on, but not without precedent, either.


I’d have to concur. But I’d also note that that might not be so bad if Kevin’s lost visual effects elements were ever found in decent shape in some garage in Burbank.


I’d also note that far too often DNR is applied liberally in broad strokes where a little finesse would more than do.

As TNG used stock shots of the TMP Klingon ship a few times, (with new space backdrops) at least some of the raw footage must have been around in the late 80’s?

25. It sounds like the print they used was the one I saw at Landmark last year. Did they play the overture? If they didn’t and went straight to the movie, then it was the same one. I had emailed Landmark about not using a worse print in circulation that had extensive color fading and drop outs. Fortunately, they CHECKED and got the one that was the extended edition.

Re: 70mm, perhaps we need to start a campaign to have Paramount restore the film to its original elements. To be honest, the sound mix in the Director’s Edition is dumbed down and sounds more like a tv episode. They should not have tweaked with sound fx of Vger’s plasma energy weapons or the warp drive. The ambient sounds on the bridge are okay, but still not what they should be, imho.

If there was an “incomplete 70mm print” I’m wondering if they could have shown that and the rest in 35mm, at least one could have experienced and seen the difference.

Re: Production crew dead or unavailable. Trumbull was in Hollywood recently for a 2001 retrospective. If there is a next time (and I hope there is) for the Trek movie 70mm series, hopefully he can be booked. Richard Kline the DoP and Todd Ramsay are still around, surely they might know what happened the 70mm elements. How about emailing them??? Someone has to be in the know about these things.

Re: TNG movies. To be honest, since these movies were never in 70mm, they aren’t that technically special. We never got a digital version of Nemesis, that may be worth seeing for clarity.

“…but it would also let modern audiences know what TMP looked like…”

Which was very nice, in its own way. I had dinner with Harold Michaelson once. Fascinating guy.

“…And the other aspect mitigating against a TMP ever emerging like BLADE RUNNER THE FINAL CUT is that the visual effects ELEMENTS are long gone. Scott paid to keep every element properly stored, and then was able to have them recomped … as best I can tell, the TMP elements were kept at Apogee and EEG for a couple years and then when Paramount still didn’t want them, they were just trashed. So you can’t rebuild something from its elements if the elements aren’t around, all you can do is spritz something on the old comps and hope for the best (which ain’t all that good.)…”

Excellent points. So, here’s a dumb question: Suppose TMP was the focus of a Robert A. Harris restoration job, but employing Daren Dochterman to “fill in the blanks” for the lost effects? Couldn’t he recreate some of the effects digitally? I would think he could extend the work he did for the DE, and I am pretty sure he mentioned this not being too difficult.

The trick would be getting the interest of a Harris for a film that isn’t exactly Lawrence of Arabia, or a Godfather.

Nothing dumb about a question from somebody with that username.

I wouldn’t figure Harris could be interested unless they did the restoration in the original way, with miniatures and matte paintings, to preserve the look, but that’s just a guess on my part. With Wise gone, I can’t think of any hook to get him interested, either.

I think Dochterman does really funny movie spoof posters, and his original CG model of the refit was surprisingly good, but I’m not thrilled with much of anything that happened on the DE designwise, so I wouldn’t go in that direction either.

If you look at how little ship motion there is in the few new refit cuts in the DE, they could have achieved the same effect (at higher resolution) by just cutting up some high quality large format stills of the model and animating them on a stand, a la many of 2001’s and SILENT RUNNING’s distant shots. And it would have probably been just as cheap or cheaper (a huge factor with the DE was the lack of money.)

It may just be me, but even cleaned up to a BR level, TMP is still not going to look that great in the live-action. The diopter stuff is always going to be distracting, and the color scheme on a lot of the sets just doesn’t snap, and worst of all, the lighting on the actors is often very unflattering.

The DE proved there was interest in revisiting TMP, so maybe the folks reluctant to double-dip now will bite again when Par throws some more money at it.

#40, I don’t know if Trumbull would be interested in talking about TMP all that much. It may have been twisting his arm to even get what’ s on the DE … I used to write for CINEFEX, and the publisher there knew Trumbull pretty well. I asked him back in 1992 about Trumbull’s interest in TREK when I was doing a book proposal for THE ART OF STAR TREK (NO resemblance whatsoever to what Pocket wound up semi-doing a few years later), because I figured he’d be ideal for a forward to the book. The publisher told me Trumbull had nothing good to say about the trek experience (back then, anyway.)

#16: “TMP – my favorite! Have watched it more than 20 times.”

I watched TMP on videotape so many times that I wore out the videotape. I still think the first movie is the most epic of ALL of the TREK movies, 2009 included.

I enjoyed the Director’s Edition greatly and applaud many of the updates, but I think I still prefer the original edition.

For those that doubt 70mm print masters exist how did they have film cels in 70mm from willets designs for the motion picture. And as far as i know Trumbell did the effects in 65mm. But the motion picture did not get the same treatment afforded to Blade Runner.

41 Harris was interested in restoring the theatrical star wars trilogy, but Lucas declined. If Star Wars is considered or Godfather, popular films not art films. Then Why not Star Trek.