Orci Talks Star Trek Sequel Script “Polish” + Reveals Bit On Time Passed Between Films

Earlier this week we reported how Star Trek’s new Spock (Zachary Quinto) had made a comment about how the script for the Star Trek sequel currently in production is still going through changes. Now here at TrekMovie, co-writer/producer Roberto Orci has detailed the nature of these new "polishes." Orci also revealed something about the time setting between the two films. See below for more details.


Orci explains

As noted in the article earlier this week, it is not uncommon for scripts to go through changes during the production of a film, although it is different than the 2009 Star Trek film, which was mostly shot during a writer’s strike. However, Quinto’s commenting about the sequel script changing created concerns with some fans. Responding to one particularly pessimistic commenter here at TrekMovie, Orci tried to explain how the process for writing the Star Trek sequel has progressed. In so doing, he also revealed that the sequel time setting will not be the same as the four year gap between the 2009 film and the 2013 sequel. Here is his comment:

boborci: First, this movie is by no means written by committee. It has been written by ONE team. Me, Alex [Kurtzman], and Damon [Lindelof]. Thanks to the protective umbrella of the success of our first movie and JJ Abrams, we get less studio interference than almost any other production around. This process is the OPPOSITE of script by committee.

As for a full time trek staff, you should know that we have been working on the video game, the comics, and the story for the last two years. Trek has never been far from our minds. And we were doing all of that without even having a deal with the studio to do so (and our deal is only for script. all other stuff is pro bono to make the universes consistent). We were acting in good faith.

The reason the script wasn’t finished until recently is mostly for strategic philosophical reasons. We were not willing to turn anything in until we knew for sure that we had a start date, based on JJ’s availability. If we had written the script a year ago and it sat on the shelf, it would not have been current. Nothing messes up a script like it sitting on the shelf, because then everyone does get time to second guess and wonder, and then movies fall apart.

Finally, you should know the story hasn’t change, the structure hasn’t changed, and the action sequences haven’t changed. Most changes are minor. The changes I suspect Quinto is referring to are the character interactions as we fine tune the level of their various friendships. How well they all know each other and what they’ve all been through off screen is a nuanced yet essential part of the actors understanding where they are coming from with each other. While discussing the exact same plot elements, what they’ve been through colors their attitude toward each other. And given that the time past in real life is different than the amount of time passed in the movie world, it takes a polish to get it just right. That’s what polishes (a legal contractual word in our contract) are for.

Does any of this mean the movie will be any good? No. But if it’s no good, it will be because we were wrong to execute exactly what we wanted. Not because we changed our minds or someone changed our minds for us.

The Star Trek 2009 crew (except Spock) – Orci says nuances of character interactions are part of the changes being made to script 

Orci then followed up with more info, explaining how JJ Abrams embracing of new technology can call for edits in the script:

boborci: as an interesting addendum, the weirdest kind of changes comes from how JJ wants to move the camera. Thanks to advances in film making, we can move the camera around the ship in ways you couldn’t before — so sometimes lines will change or even who says them may change based on their position on the set relative to the coolest choreography of the camera moves. Keeps you on your toes as a writer for sure, but is is fun and worth it.

JJ Abrams directing "Star Trek" – Orci says some changes to sequel script are based on choices being made on set by the director and where he puts the camera

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