Preview Of 4K Remastered ‘Star Trek: The Motion Picture’ Director’s Edition Reveals A New Level Of Detail

The new 4K Director’s Edition of Star Trek: The Motion Picture made our Most Anticipated Of 2022 List, and this week the team behind the Paramount+ project released some new images that indicate just how much a visual upgrade it is going to be.

Going back to the archives to revive a classic

The first two images revealed by project producer David C. Fein at show the USS Enterprise leaving orbit and the orbital office complex. According to Fein, they have been “digitally recombined with little to no loss in quality from the original negative of the elements of each shot.”

A few years back, we interviewed one of the film’s effects supervisors, visual effects pioneer Douglas Trumbull, who speculated that the 65mm film elements he and his colleagues had shot in 1979 might be lurking in a Paramount vault somewhere. TrekMovie can confirm that the film reels were indeed found and are being utilized for the remastered Director’s Edition. The ability to use high-resolution elements (65mm is the equivalent of 8K+) is likely to yield some truly spectacular images.

Adding new elements

The team behind the project isn’t just recreating the 2001 DVD Director’s Edition for the HD era, they are also making a few additional tweaks. In the new high res image of the office complex, you can clearly see one of the new fixes that the Director’s Edition team made, one they intended to make in 2001 but they ran out of time and money to add. There’s now a travel pod docked to match where we later see Kirk and Scotty take off towards the Enterprise.

Using new color tech

The film is also getting a brand new color grade, which will utilize the HDR (High Dynamic Range) process that allows for a wider color palette and greater image fidelity. The tools being utilized did not exist during the first iteration of the DE 20+ years ago, and the ability to color correct scene-by-scene will allow all of the original elements to look far better than they ever have.

In the images below, you can see colorist Matt McFarland tweaking the film’s finale and Klingon attack sequences.

Coming to Paramount+… but when?

Star Trek: The Motion Picture – The Director’s Edition will premiere on Paramount+ sometime this year. Check back with TrekMovie for more updates about this very cool project.

The three carbon units whose passion is bringing this project to life: restoration supervisor Mike Matessino, producer David C. Fein, and visual effects supervisor Daren R. Dochterman.

Find more news about TMP:DE and other Star Trek home media and streaming at

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Sure, it’s coming to P+ (which is still woeful in Australia – e.g. for some reason Disco isn’t in HDR and is lacking surround sound on the amazon FireTV stick (and lacking Prodigy episode 6 onwards)), but is it coming to 4k blu-ray?
And if so, will they replace the current 4-disc set? I would imagine not? Another double dip?

I think Daren Dochterman has alluded to such, but he isn’t really willing to go on record with anything definitive, because.. things can change.

But if you think about it.. as good as the new stream will look. Blu will be better. When you hear the lengths they’re going to, you better believe they’re going to try to maximize their opportunity to get the money back.

I am betting it gets a standalone release, the way they did with the Trek II Director’s Cut. Which I’m fine with, I like having both versions. Can’t wait for the blu, don’t want the P+ service.

Hopefully they can edit out people’s crushed junk in those dreadful 70’s inspired uniforms ;)

What’s wrong with a little 23rd century moose knuckle? Some folks might enjoy that. IDIC, my friend, IDIC.

What’s wrong with these 2370’s uniforms? The 2360’s uniforms and skirts were/will be/will have beenn/will have had been out of fashion around 2371. ;-)

What’s wrong with these 2370’s uniforms?

That they’re 2270’s uniforms? 2370’s uniforms would place it in TNG.

AAAAA…. my mistake. 23th century… 2270 not 2370. But even the 2360s skirts will be out of fashion in 2371. We saw men wearing skirts in TNG season 1, but not later…hahahaha…


The best thing about those uniforms, and frankly “the look” of the entire movie is that it ages better than the other movies.

MUCH prefer the TMP uniforms to what came later! Simple and comfortable looking. The TWOK uniforms looked like dress uniforms, not daily work uniforms. And, frankly, they looked tacky.

I guess Kirk’s Captain’s T-Shirt didn’t really catch on as standard Starfleet duty wear. That Kirk was definitely a pioneer though!

Even HD can’t rescue those photo-flares. They were an eye roller even in the theater.

What worries me most is the predilection with the HD detailing of the non-beauty shot space stations, office complexes, and the such. I don’t see how those shots are going to match stylistically with the beauty shots of the Enterprise which were done in a highly chilled room with soft focus to produce a natural diffused beauty.

As in this post, fretting over the details of a missing travel pod on a clustery, overly-complex model in tight focus are unimportant unless your doing a jarring jump-cut to close-up of the travel pod.

The focus should be in matching the other models stylistically to the best that the Enterprise can look with this “remastering” and ensure that all the live action meets that look halfway. The rest of the fretting can’t do anything but ruin the entire transfer…

We’ve all seen half-a**ed HD transfers where the HD upgrades to the visual effects, and model shots from 65MM source make the rest of the film look like amateur hour 16MM garbage. The Kohlinar scene is especially prone to those eye-cancer provoking mismatching failures…

…if only I could believe in Paramount and the Star Trek post crew.
Maybe if I clap my hands and wish. : /

@ Bee Dee I’m acquainted with Daren Dochterman from the Star Trek Set Tour and I was his 1st AD on a Phase 2 episode. He’s an amazingly talented individual, with an eye for detail. He “gets” and loves Star Trek like we fans do. In fact, he’s just an uber Trek fan, who has worked, very hard, honing his talents, to actually work for the franchise on different productions. This film, with his other co-workers on the re-mastering team, is in good hands.
It took a bit of lobbying, behind the scenes, to get Paramount to agree to fund the project. (If I recall correctly)
I’m beyond excited to see the final product.

Yes. Out of everything and everyone that has been associated with Trek since Enterprise ended, there is no one better suited to be working on a Trek project than Daren. The one thing that makes me give this entire effort… all the way back to the edition produced in 2001.. the approach has always been about realizing the director’s original vision, and the travel pod is a great example of fixing consistency issues. But outside of that, Daren said nothing is being changed that doesn’t honor his intention. Love that.

I like Daren’s work but he was just plain toxic when it comes to the new TREK shows. I love TREK as much as he does but he has no place for those who love the new *and* the old.

Do you have a source for this? According to Memory Alpha he worked on both Beyond and Picard.

Even if that’s true, does that matter when it comes to the work someone does on what they ARE passionate about?

You’re thinking of Robert Meyer Burnett… and while I wouldn’t go so far as to call RMB toxic, he’s beyond forthright. If it comes across as toxic to anyone it’s because they like the new Trek, and I get that. As for Daren, He and Mark Altman both have said on numerous occasions on their podcast, that they prefer to talk about the things they love, and not spend time on the things they don’t. Daren and Mark have spun out a couple of times on their show and made some comments, and yes they are critical and don’t hide that they’re not fans of the Discovery era stuff, but they are not toxic.

Well, as with the Wise Director’s cut, it’s really about when Paramount bean-counters walk through the door and declare the project completed and send everyone home (as per the Original Series HD-DVD/Bluray upscaling and original model and VFX shot replacements). Paramount is notorioius for letting things go on until they don’t, rather than prioritizing finishing goals. It really doesn’t matter, at that point, about the reputation, genius gifts, or experience of the crew.

You seem fun.

Great contribution to the technical response to the mismatched stills and the lack of any actual footage…

Oh, is that what that was? I thought it was sh*tting all over the work that the current and original TMP DE artists have done by way of supercilious nitpicking from a keyboard. My mistake.

Mic drop!

geez, can’t you find a comment about watching Star Trek on computer screens and tablets to reply to??

No, I can’t see very well anymore; I rolled my eyes too hard because of the lens flares in TMP and then I saw the Kohlinar scene in the DE and all the eye cancer it gave me has really handicapped my winge game.

You are my favorite person right now.

I wonder if they are also gonna improve some minor imperfections (from todays (!) point of view) of composite shots like the travel pod with Kirk and Scotty inside. (Or the people moving inside the space station). The angle looked wrong and very flat like puting a 2D-foto on a 3D object.

I don’t need them to do that.

Yes, that travel pod shot was a rushed rear-screen projection, that can easily be fixed by a scan of the element and a skewing as the window changes angle with today’s post software.

The shots in the officer’s lounge (?) and others – especially with Spock’s blue-gray uniform across the blue-screen generated star field are painful. That can’t just be color corrected, the elements need to be scanned and re-composited. I noticed that was NOT done in the Wise Director’s cut nor were some of the restored V’Ger inner chamber shots..

Yeah I honestly hope this is the final, “definitive” version of TMP we ever see, with every possible tweak and element put in place to make it perfect. There shouldn’t be a single effects shot that looks like it was made in 1979; it should feel as flawless as a modern day production. I’m delighted that the elements all look so crisp and have no matte lines in the composite, and you’re right they should add depth to the travel pod shot. I would even argue they should make the deflector dish consistently blue versus changing color from one shot to another, especially since it was only ever blue after TMP. If they have 8K renders of some effects footage, keep them in 8K for the inevitable time when it will be the standard format. Don’t lock it into a 4K only resolution; just like some movies have IMAX sequences within them, this would be the same idea. Do all the work now.

It sounds like what you really want is for them to go back in time and have the original production shoot all the original footage differently from how it was shot then.

Hopefully this does well on Paramount+ and they decide to remaster DS9 for streaming and release a new episode week by week before dropping each season on disc

And Voyager as well.

I’d dearly love that. Of the two DS9 is my favorite, but I love Voyager as well, and if either show got the TNG treatment that would be wonderful, and most especially if it happened with both.

Even after over two decades since Enterprise began, the majority of this franchise is still stuff originally produced in the SD era for SD viewing, but TOS, TAS, and TNG all miraculously made the leap to HD, and I think both have had their viewership popularity prolonged considerably by it. Only two shows now remain locked in SD.

Yeah, these are both tough, which is why Paramount has thus far passed. All of those shots are VFX, not models. That means that all of those composition would have to be re-rendered – very different than up-scaled scans of camera original elements. Same problem for poor Babylon 5. : (

Actually, both DS9 and VOY started out using models. They only switched over to using mostly CGI later during their runs. Things like the wormhole on DS9 or some of the space backgrounds in the VOY title sequence are CGI from the start but they did use models for the ships for a few more years.

I read somewhere (Memory Alpha?) that in the whole series, the only CGI shot of DS9 (the station itself) was the very last one, the long pull-away from Kira and Jake at the Promenade window.

Are you sure? Including the scenes where DS9 is turned into a weapon with lots of turrets etc.? Or the big battle scenes happening around DS9 towards the end of the run? That’s rather impressive.

But still, many of the bigger battles were CGI, like what happened in Tears of the Prophets. The shots are clearly CGI… impressive for back then, but they can be improved upon. That will increase the cost of remastering the show, but I suppose it will still be financially viable.

Agreed. If Paramount+ comes standalone at a reasonable price to my country, I’ll subscribe. For Disco S4 (which so far is pretty good… far better than the barely watchable mess that was season 1), for Lower Decks S2 (most of all), Prodigy and perhaps even Picard S2. And, most of all I suppose, to watch the DC of TMP (which is a VASTLY superior film).

And hopefully, this will make them remaster DS9. They could air it on a weekly basis in weeks where there is no new Trek… that way, fans would have a reason to subscribe all year. And remastering DS9 episodes is going to cost very little compared to creating new DSC / Picard episodes. How much was TNG? 50k per episode? Lets quadruple that, and it’s still 1/40th of an DSC episode at 8 million USD… surely they can earn back the cost of remastering DS9 with added subscriptions.

Add a mid end credits scene: ilia/borg queen awakens.

And a post end credits scene: ceti alpha V goes boom as 1967 Montalban watches in horror and screams ‘KIIIRK!’

Yeah, it should add “James T. Kirk will return in the Wrath of Khan“. ;-) Sounds familiar.

By the way, they really could have added a flashback scene of Space Seed in ST II. Didn’t know that connection for a long time and when ST II was aired in german cinemas, the viewers had no clue because Speed Seed would be aired for the first time years later in Germany.

Regarding a flashback to Space Seed, I guessed they wanted to avoid the jarring visual difference between 1960’s TV and their movie. There was a reason they completely overhauled the look for TMP.

Of course. Back then it wasn’t possible but nowadays it would when it comes to the quality of the picture. But you can add flashback scenes and smooth out visual differences a bit. Using black/white, “dream-scenes” effect, blurred vision, overlapping, having a small, dark scene in the background and so on. At least they could have tried it.

There was a reason they completely overhauled the look for TMP.
But that is canon and was mentioned in TMP.

That’s not exactly, what transpired here. I’ve seen “Der schlafende Tiger” in 1972 – here in Good Ol’ Germany. It preceeded STII by far. ;-)
Even 1978 saw a repetition, when I recorded it with a cassette player back then.

Aaaa… I must have got it wrong. Then this maybe refers to the final scene when they decided to leave Khan and his crew (and his future wive) on ceti alpha VI. Or V :-P which was missing (?) in the german version.

I’m growing weary of these photos, beautiful as they may be — let us see some actual footage already!!!

While I feel the same, I’m cool if my first glimpse is when I pop the blu-ray in.

Thank you Brian Drew and Trekmovie for this update.

I had no idea the original effects were being recomposited digitally! No matte lines!

Well yeah how else would they do it? It’s beautiful!

Great news. It is great they found the original 65 mm elements. It appears as if the final restoration efforts and tweaks will yield a movie that will visually equal that, if not surpass that of Blade Runner :)

I suppose there’s no news on whether other scenes have been restored such as the other part of the Vger probe on the bridge and guard zap. Scotty’s line about showing Ilia and wish to throwing the probe inside a trash compactor. Spock’s last line about his presence on the Enterprise is a certainty as McCoy will also be on board for new missions. At least include them as the final word on lost/cut scenes. Who knows if the film elements will survive long enough for a further dig into the vaults for yet another edition.

When all is said and done, how about a re-release even if its a limited one. With Covid, maybe its not a good idea now, but when things approach a level of close to normal, give it the IMAX treatment. The first person aspects of the movie just demand a huge IMAX, if not also 70mm experience. A few prints for posterity for things like retrospectives and art house showings.. ala 2001. The 40th anniversary TMP release did a few hundred thousand showing in the smaller theaters at the multiplex with no national promotion.

So cool! Can’t wait to see the entire movie on any day between St. Patrick’s Day and Easter!

Looks like it’s missing patches of film grain overall, plus the addition of the travel pod is very, very poorly integrated. Are those two final shots? I hope not!

Yes – both the grain and the colour balance on the pod are off. Plus the rear end should be masked off so it appears behind the station from that angle. Must be a WIP. Odd that they shared it as such.

I agree, the addition of the travel pod looks pathetic, like it was done with MS Paint.

Yeah the pod looks not good, they better fix it up

I hope Paramount improves their picture quality on their streaming, its very subpar compared to Netflix and Disney+’s streaming IMO. (Then again, I get why this will be a streaming exclusive first, this project probably is only happening because of Paramount+ in the first place)

The transfers they used for DS9 are awful – they didn’t overscan them so there’s a little black and white line at the top of the picture that’s really obvious in dark scenes, of which DS9 has plenty.

I do hope remastered DS9 and Voyager as streaming exclusives are being floated as possibilities at P+.

It’s criminal that we don’t have DS9 and Voyager remasters yet.

i hope they do this for all the movies

Recompositing the original elements shows just how much money Paramount are throwing at this! I think the end results will be stunning & no doubt it will be on a 4K UHD Disc in fall 2022!!

I can’t wait to hear the remastered soundtrack in Atmos. Its going to be tremendous. I just wish Jerry Goldsmith was around to see it.

Will this be getting a 4k Blu Ray release? Or P+ only? I’ll buy the disc but I’m not getting P+ and I’d hate to have to pirate it.

I’d like a Blu-Ray release of this, I Haven’t got the Kit to watch 4K and don’t expect to have it any time soon. In the meantime I’ll stick to my DVD copy

I do and it’s glorious, You’ll be beside yourself when you upgrade :)

I’m interested in the HD upgrade from the standard DVD. So I will be happy if they have a BD of this. Not just the 4K version. Which doesn’t do me much good.

The Enterprise never looked better than it’s depiction in Star Trek: The Motion Picture. The detail, the depth of size and scope!
Even many years later, with all the advancements in CGI, the Enterprise in the Kelvin universe movies looks like a phoney computer graphic hack job.

The main vehicle was lovingly featured in the TOS and TNG movies and the TV shows – longer beauty passes and all the stock shots used out of necessity that still helped make ships and stations into characters in their own right.

Now the shots are fleeting, busy, murky and flashy. Bit of a shame.

I really miss such beauty shots in the newest shows.

Yup, me too. And sadly, I don’t find the ships in the new ones all that beautiful.

And it’s amazing how much effort they spend on those shots in the old tv shows although it wasn’t THAT visible on tv back then. TNG in HD reveales how much details they used.

32nd century Federation ships all look like concept cars now. The new ships in Picard were sadly anonymous too. Perhaps a victim of the rushed production schedule, but surely a 2399 Federation fleet would have still had some Sovereigns and Intrepids in it, and the Romulans could have at least had a few Valdore-classes if not the elegant older warbirds. Just seems like such an easy bone to throw fans.

Secret Hideout doesn’t care about Star Trek lol they’ll throw anything together and slap the title on it and know they’ll make money

Wanna reiterate everything you and others in this thread have said – the Kelvin movies look like hollow CGI nothings, they have no depth, they’re completely unreal. This is why I prefer the original TOS shots to the phony remasters – I don’t care how “grainy” or “cheap” the Enterprise model looks on screen, it still feels real, like an object. It’s not some fake computer simulation. Even with the biggest blockbuster budgets and today’s CGI, the only effects that look real are actual models.

As for Ian’s comment first, yeah it is too bad that new Trek just doesn’t treat its ships with the reverence of the old series and the beauty passes they had. It’s all just CGI murk. But as Danpaine said, the new ships are across the board ugly, literally thrown together at the last minute in the case of the Zheng He, so the real tragedy is that we’re given such sad designs to look at in the first place. Maybe it’s for the best that we don’t get to see much of them.

Seems like TMP is being remastered on the Enterprise itself!
That space station now looks amazing and very realistic, like it could REALLY happen in a not so distant future! It matches the IXS Enterprise NASA-design!!!

A cool bonus would be a “Phase II – In Thy Image” edit and recut to a version of how the planned pilot episode could have looked and aired in 1978. :-) Which would be either a “demaster”.

Hopefully DS9/VOY next for P+ *fingers crossed* I know the subscriptions numbers would rocket far higher & quicker if they did, more so than for the Kurtzman shows.

That seems unlikely. New shows would probably get more subscribers than new versions of old shows. Especially since you already need to subscribe to stream the old shows anyway.

‘stop competing with me, decker!’

‘absolutely i will not interfere!!!!’

Hmmm… my first comment still hasn’t been released due to a link.
That space station looks amazing and now veeery realistic like it could REALLY happen in a not so distant future! It matches the look of the NASA-designed, proposed IXS-Enterprise (just google it)!

Looking forward to this. I hope it gets a cinema release in the UK. The older I get the more I appreciate this film, particularly the much improved Directors Cut.

Um, I can see the rear door/hatch on that travel pod that is ‘docked’ at the station. Someone needs to practice their parking skills. :D

Wow, the love and attention to detail is unbelievable! would be a shame to lavish this level of care on TMP and not do something for Star Trek V The Final Frontier?

Yeah, it’d be nice to get V brought up to speed, but TMP is easily the biggest and most ‘cinematic’ of the films.. so it makes the most sense to focus on that. With V, I’ll be happy to get a remastered blu when it comes like we did of ST I-IV.

As soon as TMP DE is actually out I will flip the FB page from Release the Motion Picture DE 4K to Release The Shatner cut 4K, or something similar!
You never know

Love it!

I’m so excited for this. The revelation they’re recompositing the original elements is fantastic.

I know that even in its ideal state, Star Trek – The Motion Picture will forever remain a movie many fans deride, struggle through or skip altogether, but it’s absolutely a favorite of mine and I adore it in all its versions. Getting (a version of) the DE in HD (4K or otherwise) is honestly the single thing to which I’m most looking forward in all of live-action Star Trek for 2022 and beyond.

It’s not a favorite of mine, but I absolutely love the soundtrack, so it’s worth it to just relax and enjoy the visuals and music.

I am so looking forward to this. I haven’t watched TMP in a few years even though I have it on Blu-Ray. Once this hits P+, I may never watch that Blu-Ray again anyway lol.

I just hope the streaming quality is good.

So looking forward to this and thanks TrekMovie for the continuing coverage. Glad to see Matessino et al are working on this. They have a passion for the material and the technical skills to match.

I have to say that this film has a soft spot in my heart and always will. When it hit the theaters, I was ecstatic because TV came to the big screen. Since we had no other (Trek) film to compare it to, this was a big hit. Then came TWOK and things changed in most peoples opinions. Mine did and with the subsequent films, it really was all over the map. I have to take my hat off to Director Robert Wise who made outstanding films, TMP was among them. Jump ahead to 2022 and with current tech, we can have a visually better film. Looking forward to seeing it.
I got a chance to speak with John Povil who worked on TMP when he appeared at the CON in Vegas over 10 years ago. He was walking through SpaceQuest casino where I was playing the Trek slot machine. I stood up and asked if he had a moment to talk, he said yes and over an hour later, I came away with some great insights and facts from behind the scenes. The funniest was the bet he had with Walter Koenig regarding the film…

Second shot looks really cgi, hopefully the final version looks better.

And it is not CGI! Except for the pods, all the rest are the original elements, recomposed (without matte lines!).

Exactly! Much to my delight, they have found the original negatives and are assembling the original filmed effects elements using modern equipment. This was something I had been hoping they could do after the fantastic results remastering Star Trek: TNG. It’s amazing that Paramount funded the extra work, I’m honestly stunned they did it. Looking forward to seeing the original effects work without the matte lines.

The first DVD I bought was TMP-DE. This whole package may kead me to a 4k TV.

Same here. I bought a DVD burner for my PC and watched it on my 17″ lcd. Now I’m on a 50″ plasma. haha Can’t wait to own this on bluray.

Yeah I love the color upgrade and all but HOW MANY MORE MINUTES will it have?

Add an additional 15 to 20 or 30 minutes and I am there.

For me its subtract 30 minutes and I’m there.

That would be the planned Phase II pilot TV-Version of it. ;-)

“For me its subtract 30 minutes and I’m there”. I second that! Chop half of the ‘tour’, chop the transporter accident altogether, etc., etc.

The transporter accident was the most shocking and I would argue impactful part of the movie, that distorted scream just horrified younger me. And if you get rid of that, you need to get rid of Kirk’s arrival at Starfleet or come up with dubbing in some lame excuse why he wasn’t at the ship while launching.

Coolness… Coolness… Just need to know when it will be out on Blu Ray.

My favourite part of the whole film is when the Klingon commander puts up his hand, and says ‘Ishhh’, and then fires the torpedo at V’ger from the Klingon D7.

I wonder what ‘Ishhh’ means in Klingon?

Actually looking forward to seeing this (weird for me to say with reference to ST:I)
On the whole, I’m just glad we call it the Enterprise and not the Yorktown (yorktown just aint right for something as pretty as a refit connie).

The spacedock scene is great — I do see more detail.

For the Enterprise “earth sunrise” scene I think the original scene on my existing blu-ray looks better — the sun now looks kind of fake.

Waiting for news of the 4K/Blu-Ray/Digital copy combo. As well as the same for Treks V-Nemesis.

With you there, my friend!

The best Trek film. Weird, but true.

What I would like to know is when/if this will be released on 4K UHD Blu-ray disc. Not all of us are streamers nor wish to be. Physical media is our only source of tv and would be a shame, as much as I love TMP to miss out on this.