Roberto Orci: Star Trek Sequel To Be “More Daring” + Trekkies Are “Consultants” + more [UPDATED]

[UPDATED] Today Roberto Orci joined director Jon Favreau on the Cowboys and Aliens Panel at Wondercon in San Francisco. While there he talked a little Star Trek, saying that he has been listening to fan feedback, and also feels they will be more ‘daring’ with the Star Trek sequel. More details below plus a new poll.


Orci listening to fan feedback on young Kirk, Character, and Brewery

As regular readers know, Star Trek producer/co-writer Roberto Orci often visits the comments section here at TrekMovie, both to engage with his fellow fans and to keep track of feedback. Today at Wondercon the writer told BoxOffice Magazine he considered Star Trek fans "consultants", noting "I enjoy seeing what people say, even if it’s super nasty." Bob also gave some examples on how feedback is being heard…

Orci on Kirk being too young to be captain:

Well, some people thought Kirk, did he become Captain too fast? It’s easy to think of, well, we’ll look through a place in the story – without giving anything in the story away – where someone can look at him sideways and go, "you sure became Captain fast!" And for anyone to say that, whether we do or not, that’s just an example, I’m not saying if for sure we’ll do that, you can do those kinds of things and suddenly your criticism is part of the movie, and it’s kind of fun if you’re a fan to see that incorporated.

On more character moments (via  ComingSoon):

[Fans] wanted more character time with everybody," he adds, "and, because that was an origin story for ‘Star Trek,’ everyone had to come in at a certain point. Now everyone is going to be there from the beginning, so they’re going to get that.

…finally Orci on ‘Budgineering’

Everyone sure hated engineering. They thought it looked like a brewery, which it was. I’ll pass that on to J.J. [Abrams] and see what he says.

Orci listening to fan feedback – including the negative reaction to the use of a Budweiser brewery to stand in for engineering on the USS Enterprise

UPDATE: Still scripting + expects fall release + ‘dares’ JJ to direct

The ComingSoon erroneously states the first draft is complete, but the writer did say he felt like they had "all the time in the world" compared to the first film when they had complete the script ahead of the WGA strike. And in another interview at the same event, Orci tells Collider "We’re in the middle of writing it and hopefully we’ll be shooting in a few months." He also noted that if (as has been recently reported) Paramount wants to shoot the film in the fall the team will "be ready". Orci also had this to say on if JJ Abrams will be directing the sequel:

I dare J.J. to come back. I dare you J.J. You hear me? Star Trek!

UPDATE 2: Orci: Sequel to be more ‘daring’

Orci also talked to BoxOffice Magazine about how the sequel will be different than the first Trek:

I think we get to be a little bit more daring with the theme. The first one… was kind of Star Trek Zero – how did it all start? Now, they’re all together from the beginning, and so now they’re all going to face I think a theme that is different and potentially more challenging than just they met and they’re kind of facing this force of nature in Nero. So the theme of their family is going to be something great to explore that you don’t get in the first movie.

POLL: What’s your biggest issue?

As it appears Bob is listening, I thought it would be interesting to poll on some of the most commonly heard issues, gripes, complaints, etc. regarding the 2009 Star Trek movie. Even if you love the film, there probably is something that didn’t sit right with you. If so, vote for your biggest issue, or you can vote for “perfect” if you like. Also add your voice below in the comments section, even if you have never done it before. Who knows, maybe the team behind the sequel will listen.



Sources: ComingSoon, BoxOffice Magazine, Collider

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We talked, Orci listened! Suh-weet!

To Engineering! The cause of… and solution to… all of life’s problems.

Good to hear about the interior… but what about the ship’s exterior? :)

Orci feels they have “all the time in the world”?

Funny, isn’t that exactly what star-crossed lovers say to each other just before one of them dies?

I didn’t mind the engineering set too much. Now the bridge, on the other hand… ;-)

Kudos to Bob Orci for listening to the fandom where applicable. Still rooting for you guys to make a great, character-driven and meaningful Star Trek film…


I wonder how many people here would know that you’re quoting Homer Simpson?

Well, paraphrasing really……alcohol/brewery/engineering…… likey!

If they tweak just a couple of things about the JJprise design, exterior and interior, I will be happy. I know that’s a horrible fanboy thing to say, but even after this long, it just doesn’t sit well with me. It’s 90% awesome, but that last 10% they got wrong with the design just kills it.

The one thing – only thing – that bugged me in the movie was engineering. It was pretty distracting having it in a brewery. I hope they fix that in the next movie. Just grab another stage on the lot and build a proper set.

Yes, please blow a large part of the budget on engineering. The giant-ass intermix chamber from the sketches that appeared on the blu-ray extras will be fine, thanks. :)


Thanks, Harry! But keep the alcohol talk on the QT. Rex Banner may be listening….

The Enterprise is too big. It was ok to make her a little bigger than the original but making her larger than a Galaxy Class starship? That was a little much. It’s an easy ignore though since the Bridge and its window/view screen make her more inline with the Refit Constitution.

JJ. Get you some extra cash from the Paramount coffers….find a soundstage….buy a crap-load of paint and wood….get some grips and carpenters….draw up some plans, and make us THE MOST AWESOME ENGINEERING ROOM WE’VE EVER SEEN!!!!

Love ya!


Ya, engineering was sad. You have a brand new movie. Special effects that makes it look like Spock goes from engineering, into a turbo lift, to the bridge. But was just green screened on the bridge the whole time *SICK*. A great story line, and a Motorcycle to kill for. And then you get into the best part of the ship, engineering. First second I saw it, I thought they were joking. The worst set ever. Worst choice ever. Sad Sad Sad. At least the ship has ample necells.

Don’t get me started on the Phasers. Cheap plastic crap designs. The rest of movie was awesome, the rest of the ship was awesome and made me look past it all. I miss NCC-1701 Refit/A/D engine room.

If you are upset they filmed it in a brewery I suggest you don’t listen to, or read any technical details of how they made it, because if you go into it without knowing that, it looks brillaint on screen.

I remember the magic joy I felt seeing Kirk run into Engineering to get Uhura and wondering what the giant radar dishes were, and when he found Uhura, thinking they must be used to monitor subspace communications or something.

When I later found out they were filmed in the Bud plant, I thought that was an impressive set and trick. I felt the magic of cinema in my 40 year old bones that I have not felt since a child. GOOD ON THEM!!

I think about this a lot.

It’s funny that Uhura was assigned to the Farragut at first and was reassigned to the Enterprise. Why? Because Farragut took command of his ship at the age of 11 during the Battle Of 1812! He served on that ship as Captain after his Captain was killed. He continued to serve in the Navy until the Civil War when his actions as an Admiral for the Union led to the defeat of the Confederacy.

The point being; some men are born to be leaders. I served in the Marines, sometimes you can see it in people. Some leaders are just born. Kirk has that. kirk knows what’s right. kirk is a genius level something or other as Pike described him. Kirk has that innate ability to make that command decision and I found that accurately portrayed in the new movie.

I like that some characters may question it in the next movie. I like that Kirk may have a chance to show them why he is who he is. plus, with Spock prime telling Starfleet Command that his Jim Kirk is a natural leader and his mind-meld showed him the moxie of new Kirk how could Starfleet not trust his opinion?

What, no option for the lens flares? lol (I actually loved the lens flares, for what it’s worth.) I didn’t really have a problem with engineering either. *shrug*

About Engineering…I understand J.J.’s idea, where the lower levels of the ship are dirty and gritty while the command levels are clean and shiny (inspired by “Titanic”)…but Starfleet vessels aren’t supposed to be cruise ships. I would expect much more continuity in the look, like real aircraft carriers or destroyers have, if you’ve toured them.

Also, when I first watched the movie, I was actually confused for a moment because it’s obvious that some of the lower-deck stuff isn’t on a ship – it’s not cramped. It’s equipment set up on a flat cement floor with a high ceiling, so I thought for a second that these people running around were on a planet. Take a tour on any navy ship, there’s never a lot of room.

I think everything on that list in the poll with the exception of the Spock/Uhura romance, is what was wrong with that movie. I mean, I enjoyed it, it’s fun to watch, but all my friends felt like they were watching Star Wars and not Star Trek. And they don’t even watch Star Trek. lol

Advice for the new Trek gang, fix the crap you screwed up in the first one.

~Peace and chicken grease.


There’s something to be said for having the natural lens flares (usually you have to use polarizing lenses, adjust the intensity of the lights, or just move the camera to avoid them in shooting a traditional movie.)

What I think I and the vast majority of people object to is *purposefully pointing mirrors at the camera to create more lens flares than has ever been seen in real life or in twelve movies.* It’s not aiding the “real” aspect then, it’s just making things hard to see.

Star Trek 2009 split me in two. Half of me felt like Trek finally got the big budget treatment it always deserved. It absolutely needed a sense of humor, and a shot of adrenaline. Unfortunately that shot seemed to come with some unwanted side effects. “Numb tongue”, swollen hands the size of grape fruits, and an over sensitivity to light I have not experienced since the last time my optometrist wanted to dilate my pupils for an eye exam. Yes there is such a thing as too much lens flare.

And while I appreciate the desire the make Trek new and exciting, I do not believe a reboot was necessary. Alternate timelines, changing the back story of the main characters, redesigning the ship, destroying a planet and killing Amanda, were all things that seemed unnecessary to me. I honestly believe this film could have been every bit as successful without any of that. I know that stuff didn’t matter to a lot of people, but it just never seemed to sit right with me. I may be too much of a purist, but I always hoped for a TOS “origin story” which we never really had before. What we got was a TOS “origin story” after a reboot. I know a lot of people are okay with that, but I think it means we will never see a “non-reboot” origin on the big screen and that’s a little disappointing to me.

My main nitpicks about the previous movie:

Looked too low tech, and “brewery” designed, much because it was actually filmed in a brewery. Perhaps a scene involving a somewhat refitted Enterprise (internally), involving Scotty entering the redesigned/modernised Engineering room ?

Too many lens flare generators. Can we please cut back on these in any and ALL scenes in the next movie?

From certain reports, the Enterprise is larger than even the Galaxy and Sovereign Classes from 100 years in the future (2258 vs ~2370). Maybe have the visual effects be a little more consistent with how big the ship itself is supposed to be, as well as other locales on the ship, such as the giant shuttlebay? Or do you really expect us all to believe, that this Enterprise is so much larger than the TMP-era movie Enterprise, which shares virtually identical saucer design (right down to the 2-deck window layout on the rim) ?

Now as for positives:
Battle with the Narada, crewmembers being sucked into space… silence. PERFECT. Space is a very silent place, there should be very little if any sounds. I realize some audio is required since it’s a movie, and would get boring otherwise. But the way the sound faded out was perfectly done.

Yeah to be honest I didnt realize they were in engineering until they were like “hey btw this is engineering”, in even the original motion picture they had that super long warp core and you were like okay thats engineering.

My biggest problem was the design of the new Enterprise. It looked lopsided to me. JJ’s team should study the classic TOS and Movie Enterprises some more and notice how the proportions balanced each other on the original ship. It followed the Golden Ratio, and that was a big reason why it was so appealling.

But yes, revising the brewery Engineering Section would be a HUGE step in the right direction.

BTW, Robert — Thanks SO much for coming here and listening to our opinions like this! I know you’ve got 10,000 different factors that determine what goes into the movie, but it’s nice that our voices are being heard.

when they (Kirk and Scotty) appeared, was it main engineering or Impulse Engineering?

While I wasn’t thrilled with Engineering, I can’t say I’d say it was an issue with me. It was a fun movie and I loved it.

The rapid promotion kind of bothered me. He was literally still a student.

I would really love a scene where another Starfleet captain / enemy won’t take him seriously (and promptly is proved wrong / gets their butts’ kicked of course).

I guess the design problems never really bothered me because this was pretty much my first foray into Star Trek.

I respect that Mr. Orci loves Star Trek and listens to the fandom and takes his job as a writer very seriously, but I am a little weary of his propensity to paint shortcomings/ poor decisions about character and/or plot as “opportunities” to explore in future stories.

The Spock Uhura romance was one of the biggest sore spots for me. I remember JJ saying that Spock needed someone to hug an comfort him after the death of his mother and the destruction of Vulcan but it was just too out of charter for him reboot or not. There is no way in hell he would have made out with Uhura on the transporter pad in front of other people even if it might have been the last time they saw each other, maybe a Vulcan kiss would have been much more appropriate. Also, the relationship itself was simply not believable on any level, it seemed like it was an idea thrown in at the last minute like you guys had no idea what to do with Uhura other than to make her someone’s girlfriend and picking Spock as her lover because hey no would one see that coming. It was a cheap twist that didn’t do anything for either character. Please get rid of it, pass it off as friends kissing in the heat of the moment or something since you can’t take it back completely. Seriously you did Uhura a huge disservice by making her just Spock’s girlfriend because when we saw her she was someone pretty to look at or she was adding to Spock’s story and didn’t stand out on her own like she deserves.

Engineering (and other parts of the ship) for sure. It should have been kept simple and more loyal to some of the source material.

I thought Vulcan being destroyed was a clever twist, and i’m totally fine with it. But i would like to see some fallout of that in the next movie. Wouldn’t a founding world getting obliterated one day and starfleet being helpless to save it send shockwaves though the federation? I could see some planets pulling out.

Small problem I had was the new Enterprise. Not the look of it, I liked it quite a bit, it was just the seemingly pointless decision to make it huge. I know we’ll never seen the new Enterprise next to the Enterprise D, but but making this ship larger than that just seemed a pointless change. It served no purpose as one of those (smart) changes made to give Trek a bit more mass-market appeal. The only people who would notice would be the Trekkies, so why change it?

*since someone of importance is reading*

I feel the need to comment on the reboot. I grew up watching every bit of Star Trek I could, over and over. I understand the reboot. No one is going to flock to the movies to watch what’s already been done. I think it was smart. But it leaves questions. At least it did for me.

So now that we have old Spock, who knows everything about the old timeline, new technologies and occurrences which happened. What exactly does he share with this new timeline, due to not having to worry about disrupting the timeline? Since nothing changes for Enterprise…

Currently we now have:

Kahn floating around out there. Obvious question, what to do about him? If we do nothing, what if someone else finds him, and exploits his intellect? He’s not angry at Kirk yet. Boy the things you could do with him.

Voyager 6 is hurling towards earth still. What to do about that? With no Ilea or Decker, will the probe tantrum out of control? Knowing the transmit codes is only the first step, who does it join with now?

What about the whale probe? Unless they slingshot around the sun as they did in the first series, no whales.

Do they still slingshot around the sun the first time around and help that Nasa launch?

Is Data still made? Does he go back through time and leave his head in SF? One would think that if he doesn’t and never meets Guinan, and she doesn’t meet Picard, that wouldn’t that change things before even Enterprise.

How will this all affect the mirror universe? I won’t go into that.

Since we changed the timeline, does that affect Q? Won’t he be miffed that his favorite human’s timeline has been changed? I’d think he’d be unaffected, and pissed about the waste of time he’s endured.

I mean I could go on and on, because I’m a huge Trek nerd. But I think my point is made.

*back to what this article is really about*

Voted Spock/Uhura.

I get that Spock isn’t the same as the one from the Prime verse, but it is the epitome of illogical for a professor to sleep with a student, doubly so when the professor is also relatively high up the chain of command given that he’s the XO of the fleet’s flagship.

So yeah. I just can’t buy it.

(Engineering annoyed me too, but this was a much bigger gripe.)

What do I win for picking the Top Scoring Nitpick?
Yep, its that whole Spock/Uhura thing for me.
Shame we can’t multi-choice though- Engineering was very nasty. But not quite so nasty as seeing Uhura chasing some Vulcan tail just as he was at his most vulnerable! Or using her womanly wiles to get herself assigned to the Enterprise! Cynical woman!
I still would though, obviously!

lol and there we see a difference of perspective from a man and a woman- proving the Spock/Uhura romance worked on no level! It does prove that, doesn’t it? lol

You missed, “Scotty was mis-cast.”

Really. I loved 09′, but we need Scotty more like he was…a badass.

Ya, Jealousy is watching Neytiri get her some Vulcan loving. But Trip got him some too. It’s not unheard of.

Thanks Bob for listening. It is really exciting that our feedback may be helping with the new movie!!!!!

I’ll be honest, I had very few problems with the new movie. In fact, when it comes to the design, my nit has nothing to do with the interior sets at all, but with the hull design – I couldn’t stand (and still can’t, really) the new nacelles. My biggest problem was the whole Spock/Uhura thing. To me, it just seems like they’re trying to beat the idea into our heads with a sledgehammer. And I’m not really sure I buy the whole idea anyway – there really didn’t seem to me to be a valid reason why any of that was taking place. It just seems too forced. Also, on a *very* minor side note, as someone who has actually read the novel as well, I feel that they rather limited Kirk’s character. They make a big deal about his intelligence when Pike’s trying to recruit him, but several of the scenes (most notably the confrontation with Spock over the cheating) really undermined any attempt to show his intelligence. Things made a great deal more sense in the book…

Oh. Voted the Kirk Rapid-Promotion thing.

Scotty. More Serious.

Don’t get me wrong. I love the movie. But if we are nitpicking, the transporting of Kirk and Scotty from the planet or moon (where young Spock had dumped Kirk and Nero had dumped Spock Prime) onto the Enterprise, which had been traveling at Warp 6 or something like that (maybe faster) away from there for quite some time, was pretty ridiculous.

Engineering made me think of the MST3k riffing of Space Mutiny. Very much a bad thing. I’ve seen the concept sketches they had planned originally but Paramount wouldn’t give them the money for.

Build it for the sequel, guys.

32: A lot of those things bother me as well, but I don’t think Spock Prime will worry too much about changing the timeline now.

@ orci and kurtzman my only gripe was the bottom side of the enterprise saucer felt rather naked without the NCC-1701 decaling being on the bottom of the saucer, it honestly looks weird directly under the deflector. but thats my only gripe, other then that, i wish she we were real, kid love to take’er for a spin around the block (aka our solar system)

Spock Prime will be busy running the top casino on Risa in the sequel.

It’ll be like Casablanca, except in this case, everybody comes to Spock’s!

So cool he considers us an Integral part of the Process, Bob and Team you rock!

I would say Engineering, Like to see Nurse Chapel on Screen. More Character Moments, More Easter Eggs in the film for Trek Fans.

Good point Trip, forgot about that. Even the Enterprise-D Had a limit on transporters of like 40,000K. All of a sudden the time line changes and we can transport people millions of miles away with just a formula? Shoot, that should have been the first point I made. Bravo Trip!

For the most part ’09 was great. But engineering shouldn’t be bigger than the entire ship! Come on! And we need to see the actual warp engine, not just a ton of pipes.Other than that, just cut down on the lens flares, and you have a good movie.