Michael Dorn Looking To Fans To Fund Romantic Comedy With Star Trek Actors

In May TrekMovie broke the news that Michael Dorn, Star Trek’s Worf, was planning to launch a production company and Kickstarter campaign to help fund a romantic comedy starring other Trek actors including his TNG co-star Marina Sirtis. Now Dorn has launched the campaign and announced his cast. You can watch his intro video and get more details blow.        



Michael Dorn Looking To Fans To Fund Romantic Comedy With Star Trek Actors

Michael Dorn has written a romantic comedy titled Through The Fire, which is described thusly:

Through The Fire" is a romantic comedy about a couple of dazzling New York urbanites who are set-up on the worst blind date ever, only to find out they have more in common than they realize. Despite their professional differences (she is an acclaimed Broadway actress and he is the theater critic who gave her a horrible review) they cannot get each other out of their minds. "Through The Fire" shows what happens in the ultimate battle between the head and the heart.

The former TNG and DS9 star hopes to produce, star and direct the film. His romantic lead will be played by Anne-Marie Johnson. Dorn has also brought on Star Trek series main cast actors Marina Sirtis, Nana Visitor, and Armin Sherman, along with Shimerman’s wife Kitty Swink (who has guest starred on Trek).   He also hopes to include Chris Pine’s father Robert Pine (who has also previously guest starred in an episode of Voyager). 

It’s Dorn’s belief that Star Trek fans will want to see the film due to the connection with the Trek actors. He has taken to Kickstarter to "show the the people who run Hollywood that "sci-fi" fans are not only interested in science fiction." Here is a video with Dorn describing the project.

Dorn’s objective is to bring in $750,000 in the next two months. Kickstarter seems to be catching on with people looking to go around the system to fund all sorts of projects, including independent films. Recently Marc Scott Zicree and Doug Drexler successfully funded their independent sci-fi film Space Command, which also includes Shimerman in the cast. In that case they sought $75,000 in seed financing and endeed up with over $220,000 in pledges.

If you want to support Dorn’s project, you can pledge as little as $1. Anyone who pledges $10 or more gets a digital copy of the film and for $35 you can also get an autographed photo Mr. Dorn. There are higher levels with more goodies including apparel, tickets to the premiere of the film, a phone call with Mr. Dorn, and more. If you get up to $10,000 you can even have a producer credit along with more stuff.

To pledge, visit kickstarter.com.

You can also learn more by reading TrekMovie’s Phoenix Comic Con Interview With Michael Dorn.

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I’m in. Dorn, Sirtis and the rest are true class acts and deserve my support

If i was a billionaire i would pledge $150 million and order M Dorn to direct Star Trek Countdown starring Eric Bana, Leonard Nimoy, Patrick Stewart, Brent Spiner, Levar Burton and himself (with ILM doing the FX)

I love this idea! Setting a reminder to pledge Friday when I get paid.

Already pledged!! Looking forward to having a (very short) discussion on writing with Mr Dorn! Come On, Trekkers!!! Don’t tell me you don’t have one “dinner night out” worth of dollars for this project. Make it so! (with apologies, lol)

Made my pledge, for 100.00, If it looks like i can give more by the date it closes, I will up it higher as well.
More than happy to help contribute to a production being created by people who have given so much entertainment over the years.

Kickstarter is great, I also have a feeling we will start seeing some great talent emerge(both in front of and behind the camera) that might otherwise never have been given the chance due to the mindset of the executives of entertainment industry today.

3) you dont have to wait till Friday to pledge. You wont be charged till the date the project closes. And only if it meets its goal.
So pledge today and then your contribution wont be charged till October 5th at 8:10pm. (pretty sure this will reach its goal)

Anne-Marie Johnson?

I need a little Trekkie help!

@2 Indeed! When I become a billionaire, I will match your funding for that project!

7) Most notably known for her role as Althea Tibbs on the Heat of the Night (the series) but she also has appeared as a regular or recurring actress on Hill Street Blues, Melrose Place, JAG and a number of other shows and movies over the years.
IMDB is your friend by the way lol

*In The Heat of the Night (the series)

Sheesh, aren’t nearly all of these folks a bit old in tooth for this? I mean the last Sex and the City was a groaner due to the menopausal age of the cast.

Count me out.

I’ll pledge if this is a Trek romantic comedy and it takes place in the Trek prime universe.

If I can come up w/ some $$ I’m in, sounds like fun.

11. You’re such a romantic, MJ.

So, if this thing makes a profit — how does that work? Do fans get their money back? What if it doesn’t get made? I guess you’re basically pre-ordering DVDs of the thing — so i it gets made you get a copy. I need to do me some kickstarter research.

PS. I know kickstarter’s been around for a while — but it seems a little, troubling, to me to turn to fans for financing something like this — all I see in this pitch is “hey, I was Worf and I don’t just do sci fi…” — “we’re pigeonholed and we want to show we can do something other than Trek/SciFi… so we need Star Trek/SciFi fans to help us do it.”

Why not a demo scene/short trailer or even just a table reading of a single scene from the script? SAG rules? Hell, youtube people can put professional-looking stuff together with a cameraphone and iMovie…

I’d rather find out more about the story itself, without spoilers, and the characters — and not just hey-I-was-Worf-I-wanted-to-be-a-director-and-this-is-a-Star-Trek-cast-project.

Don’t get me wrong — I like Dorn (and, at risk of sounding like our resident Pine fan, the guy looks damned attractive at 60), and I’d love to see him in something, anything, other than old Trek reruns. I’d love to see the guy on Fringe or any HBO genre (or, yes, not-genre) show, without the makeup.

And, heck, the age thing doesn’t mater — even a Trek-cast Golden Girls remake (Dorn, Sirtis, Visitor and Shimerman talking about sex and eating cheesecake) would be fine. I just want to know more about the actual project.

Not to be a dick, but why haven’t these guys been cast in more stuff? Is it acting ability? Other 80s stalwarts (Ted Danson, Tom Selleck, Mark Harmon) are doing okay. I know, that’s probably not a fair comparison. Stewart certainly survived typecasting.

I would like to see something good with these guys… I think I’ve just talked myself into donating to this.

Did they try shopping the script around to IFC, perhaps? They’ve funded student movies for their channel; you’d think they’d put up a buck or two for one with a bit of ST clout. I wonder if the script is any good…

But I am also of the opinion that none of these cast members are ‘too old’ to make a romantic comedy; why should romance and love only be domain of twenty-to-thirtysomethings? That’s bulls**t. People fall in love at ALL ages. If I had the deep pockets? I would finance it just to make that point. In fact, I think I’ll put up a few bucks anyway. Now I’ve got myself curious…

That’s an awful lot of money to try to crowdsource like this. Space Command, which was heavily publicized and marketed towards sci-fi fans, only managed over 200 thousand…I have my doubts if Dorn is going to come anywhere near his goal for what is, essentially, a romantic comedy trying to sell itself to science fiction fans.

Still, good luck to them. I would certainly be happy to see these guys acting and directing, and there’s no reason why they can’t get at least a decent amount of money this way. Godspeed!

I like Dorn, but asking fans to fund your film projects stinks of once successful actors trying to find a way to work because their careers are otherwise pretty slow.

“Directing this movie means “Freedom” for me. All I’ve ever wanted from the beginning is to have the artistic freedom to choose the projects that speak to me and this is my chance.”

Still hung up on the idea of showing Hollywood you’re not limited by Trek and paying for it by getting donations from Trek fans…

Again, all he talks about on the site is Worf, Trek fans and typecasting. What about the project itself? Or is this just a big favour to Dorn and other purportedly hard-on-their-luck former trek stars? Say, along the lines of, “I know those suckers, they’ll spring for anything even tangentially related to Trek?”

wow some very mean spirited people on here.
Jack no need to trash talk him, if you dont want to contribute to his project thats fine dont, but to trash talk him and put words into his mouth. Aot of people from all walk s of life have been using kickstarter to launch their projects now, from beginers, to proffesional talent.
I mean your entitled to your opinon, i just think there is no need to trash talk someone who has brought you quite a few hours of entertainment over the years, because he is trying a different approach for his next production.

I wonder if the person who pledged 5,000 dollars was a trekmovie.com reader

Is there any nudity?

Well, I can’t be the only one thinking of that line…

I’m all for actors doing their own projects. But asking fans to fund the thing when the actors could just as easily pay for it themselves out of their own pocket just reeks of cheapness/entitlement. And when they ask us to buy their dvds for exhorbitant prices, well, that’s just greedy.

And if you’re asking us to chip in financially, do we get something in return? Like a say in the script? Or a portion of the profits? NOPE!

Of course not.


You really think Michael Dorn has $750,000 for this project? I think you might be overestimating his worth.

That aside, Kickstarter donations are voluntary so no one is forcing anyone to do anything here.

Also, RE: what do fans get for their money…it’s right in the article.

“Anyone who pledges $10 or more gets a digital copy of the film and for $35 you can also get an autographed photo Mr. Dorn. There are higher levels with more goodies including apparel, tickets to the premiere of the film, a phone call with Mr. Dorn, and more. If you get up to $10,000 you can even have a producer credit along with more stuff.”

9. Daniel Craig Is My Wookie Bitch

“Most notably known for her role as Althea Tibbs on the Heat of the Night (the series)”


I saw that too, #9 of 9.
Obviously. LOL indeed,


I was speaking of a Trek reference. She needs one to be “In the Club.”

#24, 25.

Okay, you make some good points. I stand corrected! :-)

I kind of agree with Red Dead Ryan and Jack. This smells like a cash grab from fans for a product that isn’t even science fiction.

Still though, it is up to each individual whether they want to support this or not. Dorn is a good guy, and I could see myself in his position, with few acting assignments coming his way anymore, as doing something like this. We’ve all got to pay the mortgage and many of us have families to support.

A movie with all star trek actors would be a big hit.

So much cynicism here! I like Micheal Dorn. He has always seemed like a sincere fellow, and he turned his role as Worf from comic relief into a very serious and complex story arc. I would gladly support his efforts if I could. This is no cash grab. Geezus.

Michael, I just bought some lottery tickets and if I win, you can have some. Otherwise, I’m so broke I can barely afford toilet paper, so I’ll only be able to support you in spirit.

@30. Well I also said Dorn was a good guy and I could myself doing what he is doing were I in his position.

And for the record when I selected my 100 dollar controbution, i clicked the I just want to contribute button, not accepting any reward.
Seeing the finished project will be reward enough.

31. MJ – Don’t feel singled out, my friend. I’ve been here long enough to recognize you as an ardent supporter and loyal fan of Star Trek.

20. I don’t think I was trash talking him. I said I liked the guy. But the pitch seemed a bit troubling to me.

30. How’s it not a cash grab? He’s asking for cash from fans to make a film to show Hollywood that he can direct and that sci fi actors can do comedy. Fair enough. You’re right, he’s not using it just to buy more cool pairs of glasses — it’s for a project (designed to help his and his former costar’s careers, based on his pitch)

Yes, there are ‘gifts’ for donating — for $10 you can watch the movie online (well, have a digital copy, anyway) when it comes out; you get a digital copy and a special thanks for $20; for $35 you get an autographed photo; and with increasing donations you get added swag — a friends of worf t-shirt, a friends of worf hoodie, a walk on role (not including air fare or accomodation), dinner with Michael and Marina (again, no airfare or accomodation).

Feel free to donate. But I’d like to know more about the project.

@35. Jack, I don’t think your questions and comments here are the slightest bit unreasonable to bring up.

Seems pretty half-baked. He waits 30 years to get back to his ‘passion’ of directing and then decides to take the plunge with a cliche romantic comedy about actors dating drama critics in New York? Sounds like a movie I’d be stuck watching on a plane with somebody annoying like Katherine Heigl or Jennifer Anniston. Only for some reason people actually want to see those actors, no one (outside of rabid Trek fandom) really wants to see these actors. If we did they’d be in movies that didn’t have to lean so hard on fandom audiences to crowd fund.

Dorn misses the point with his whole approach. Does he truly want to prove to Hollywood that he can make middlebrow comedies just as feebly as they can? Dorn’s already proven he can act just fine and meanwhile there are 10’s of thousands of actors waiting tables in L.A. right now who will never get even the good luck most Trek actors have already enjoyed.

At least make something interesting, rather than ape every mainstream comedy ever made. Make something challenging. And also geez- $750K is a *lot* of money for an indie movie in 2012. With this level of actors, likely to work for free or next to nothing and the hyper cheap availability of high quality digital cameras these days it’s way too much money to ask for.

And if you don’t think so- ask yourselves why no producer or studio would back his supposedly great script and gameplan? $750K is pocket change to Hollywood. So how does he plan to distribute this film and make a profit? YouTube? Four wall it in theaters in L.A./NYC?

This scale of movie could be done easily by any young/aspiring/entrepreneurial filmmaker for $35K- if that. So if the script is as amazing as he thinks- then why spend so much of other people’s money to mount it? Make something scrappy and fun that might actually make its money back with a minimal theatrical run. Good luck ever even breaking even for $750K on pure Star Trek actor fan appeal, let alone turning enough of a profit to make any money back for the ‘investors.’ This is the very essence of a vanity project and at that, Dorn should be pooling his own dough instead of trawling off the fans.

I’ll wager his Kickstarter project will flame out at maybe $100k- probably much less and be the better for it. Kudos to Michael Dorn for having a dream (same as every other filmmaker who ever landed in Hollywood albeit) and trying to leverage the one asset he feels he has. But he should really take a closer look at the world of indie filmmaking these days. Folks are doing far more interesting work with newcomers (and veteran actors) for a *lot* less dough.

@37. Well put. I mean if Dorn “came here” with a sci-fi production, I’d donate money — no problem. But a post-50’s romantic comedy with former Trek actors…that just sounds half-baked.

Romantic comedies set in old folks homes will always be a bit, well, ewww. If you know what I mean.
I’ll chip a couple of quid in if they promise not to do it.

Jack – “Don’t get me wrong — I like Dorn (and, at risk of sounding like our resident Pine fan, the guy looks damned attractive at 60)”

Why is it suddenly somehow wrong to acknowledge that you might like the way an actor looks; that it is not OK to call a person “attractive” or similar?
With all the negativity around, it feels like a welcome change for someone to actually acknowledge another person’s appeal to them.

I feel sad and sorry…

Doug Drexler used that process to make a movie as well? wow

hmm should be interesting to see how this Kickstarter things plays out, it may become something quite revolutionary. and pull some of the powerhouse out from underneath the MPAA and the studios and could be used to fund and create something great. instead of this constant slew of remakes and redos of stories everyone already knows

and I’m not bashing the films that do that for the record I’m just saying that no one seems to be taking risks with 100% new IPs anymore and it seems like the creative pool is stagnating because of it.

after all if theres anything time has provent competition is a good thing and usually everyone profits from it in the end, even if the big boys get a little flustered by it at first.

They all have millions: why don’t they pay for it themselves!? Trek fans have already paid through the nose for Trek stuff. The cheek of this amazes me. Also, I don’t understand the fascination some fans have for all these old ‘stars’. TNG was good; but it finished on TV about 18 years ago! Time to move on. Embrace the new. JJ’s stuff should be the fans’ focus…

24. sean – August 7, 2012

Well, I do think he could afford that out of his own pocket. He had 281 appearances in Trek, including the 4 films and the TV shows. He will be a multi-millionaire. He just doesn’t want to put his own money into his own projects.

This shows two things, given his wealth. One, he doesn’t have much confidence in his project (by extension, why should we). Two, no-one else has the confidence to fund the project, no company or organisation, because Dorn et al are aging actors who never really were that talented to begin with and the film would be rubbish frankly.

It’s quite sad, really, for these guys to need to beg/bribe from fans who supported them for decades.

Fans, the majority of whom, will be struggling in this massive global recession! Let them eat cake, hey!?

Even with their modicum of fame and considerable individual and combined wealth (why can’t they fund it between them?) they can’t get a film made….

I’ll be more than happy to throw a few dollars at this. These guys have entertained me for years.

43- assume much? Sheesh what a jerk. Wish Dorn could sue you for libel, or… just being a jerk. Then he truly would be a multi-millionaire.


What I said isn’t libel. But calling me a ‘jerk’ is! You then repeated it!

But let’s leave that be. As fans, I would hope we could express our opinions, on a fan site, without resorting to name-calling or indeed civil wrongs. We can have different opinions but should respect each other. If you want to give these guys more of your money, that’s your choice. I was merely expressing my opinion on actors trying to finance projects through their fans. I know how many Trek DVDs, books, blu-ray and cinema tickets I’ve ‘given’ these guys. I just hope the fans here are sensible and don’t throw their money away. But each of us has to decide what to do.

What happened to the idea of the Captain Worf movie?

Yeah, I gotta agree with MJ on the story. If it was a sci-fi idea set in space, then maybe. But then again, that would be a retread in a way as Michael Dorn had done two Trek series and five Trek movies.

The story seems to be a poor man’s butt-baked version of “Sex And The City”. Only with old actors no one outside of die hard Trek fandom knows or cares about.

Anne-Marie Johnson? Kitty Swink? Really? Who are they?

..think I would rather (and do) donate to disabled american veterans than this.

Actually, there’s about 40 things I would donate to rather than this.

Perhaps there is a government grant available for this project. That way everyone can have some skin in the game.