EXCLUSIVE: The teaser trailer for the new Star Trek starts off with the face of a rugged welder…and as it turns out he wasn’t just acting! TrekMovie.com spoke to the ‘welder’ actor and got the lowdown on what it was like to shoot the new Trek teaser.
EXCLUSIVE: The first teaser trailer for Star Trek (showing now with Clovefield) may be the biggest thing to hit Trek in years and has sparked quite a bit of interest and even some controversy. TrekMovie.com has conducted a ‘post game interview’ with Star Trek co-writer and executive producer Roberto Orci to help sort it all out. Orci talks about JFK, Nimoy, Earth vs. space construction, the new Trek ‘Supreme Court,’ and more….read below.
“Star Trek The Tour” kicked off Thursday with a press conference and gala party…and TrekMovie.com was there.
EXCLUSIVE: It has been almost seven years since Star Trek Voyager returned home and went off the air, but just recently Tim Russ (Tuvok) is having a bit of a Trek renaissance. He directed (and appears in) the new independent mini-series Of Gods and Men. Plus he has a starring role as Tuvok in the centerpiece multimedia experience for Star Trek The Tour. Russ talked to TrekMovie.com about his latest Trek work as well as some other projects going on for the busy actor/director.
Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens first started writing Star Trek books back in 1988 with "Memory Prime" and after that went on to write the two epics "Prime Directive" and "Federation." In 1995 they collaborated with William Shatner on his first Trek novel "The Ashes of Eden" and the trio went on to complete three trilogies – creating the so called "Shatnerverse" of Trek fiction. This month their latest opus, "Star Trek: The Academy–Collision Course" hits books stores. The novel chronicles the lives of young Kirk and Spock as they head to Starfleet Academy. In a new exclusive interview the Reeves-Stevens talk to TrekMovie.com about their Trek writing career and their latest collaboration with the original Captain Kirk.
In the first part of the TrekMovie.com exclusive interview with Star Trek co-writer and executive producer Roberto Orci we learned the scribe is a true Trek fan right down to his USS Enterprise phone and phaser collection. In the second part presented below Orci talks in more detail about the 2008 feature film including a status report on casting, more detail on their approach to canon, discussing what characters we may see in this film (and the next), how the film will appeal Trekkies and non Trekkies….oh and a little bit on that Shatner guy too.
Regular visitors to this site know that Star Trek co-writer and executive producer Roberto Orci isn’t just another A-List Hollywood writer, but is also a geeky sci-fi fan like rest of us. To find out just how big a geek he is Bob was kind enough to take some time out and talk Trek in an exclusive interview with TrekMovie.com. In the first part (of two) of our interview the screenwriter talks about his history as a Trek fan, his views of all the Trek series as well as his favorite books and episodes. He also discusses his insights into what has made the franchise endure and how that is influencing the approach to re-invigorating the franchise.
Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens have been writing science fiction books and TV for decades. They have written a number of Trek novels on their own and in collaboration with William Shatner (including "Star Trek: The Academy–Collision Course" coming out next month). They were also brought in for Star Trek Enterprise’s final (and most consider best) season. But the couple are also aficionados of science fact (see picture of pair on an actual Space Shuttle). They have written a number of non fiction books including one about real missions to Mars. Their most recent television project (the Race to Mars mini-series airing on the Discovery Channel in Canada this Sunday) brings fact and fiction together. Judy and Gar spoke to TrekMovie.com about their Mars project and also about their time on board Enterprise.
D.C. Fontana gives us her thoughts on canon, M’Ress, Ira Steven Behr, and so much more.
Billy Blackburn spent three years as a background player on Star Trek, playing Lt. Hadley (pictured right) along with a number of other characters. Blackburn appeared in 61 episodes of the series and while he was there he shot some 8mm and Super 8 home movies. Blackburn ended up with a little over an hour of behind the scenes footage which has kept in a box for forty years. Some clips were used in a BBC documentary a few years back and it was the YouTube version of those that got the Trek Remastered producers interested. It turns out that Ryan Adams who works on the Trek Remastered project is Billy Blackburn’s neighbor. After watching the clips on YouTube he went to over to Billy’s house and asked if they could take a look at the stash…and now they are on the new HD-DVDs. I had a chance to chat with Mr. Blackburn at Comic Con.
In the second part of the TrekMovie.com exclusive interview with Leonard Nimoy, the actor talks about his thoughts on the new Spock (Zachary Quinto), William Shatner not being in the film (as of now) and J.J. Abrams abilities as a director…and ‘technobabble.’ full interview below
In a TrekMovie.com exclusive, Leonard Nimoy talks for the first time about returning as Spock in the J.J. Abrams new Star Trek film. In this first of two parts the original Spock talks about the script and new team, why he didn’t appear in Generations and why he decided to come out of retirement for this film. click more for the full interview
At Comic Con I had moment to chat with Zacharay Quinto, the new Spock for the 2008 Star Trek film. Quinto provides some clues to the film and also discusses working with Leonard Nimoy and his thoughts on the Trek franchise and fans (and Shatner). click more for the interview…
I ran into three different Trek writer and producing vets today at Comic Con and had quick moments to get reactions on the news Zachary Quinto is the new Spock and Leonard Nimoy will be joining him in the new Star Trek movie. Here is what they had to say. Ron Moore (TNG, DS9, ST: GEN) [Quinto] is a great choice…sure why not? I am curious who they pick for Kirk. I think they should go with an unknown…somebody we have never hears of.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. The film is considered by many (including J.J. Abrams) to be the best of the 10 film series and the benchmark by which other films are compared. The film was directed (and written) by Nicholas Meyer, who went on to co-write Star Trek IV and VI (which he also directed. Meyer recently appeared at the screening of the film (part of Geek Magazine’s ‘1982 Geekiest Year Ever’ Series). I had a moment to talk to Mr. Meyer at the event about his views on the film so many years later, if he would make any CGI changes, why he isn’t credited as a writer and his views of the franchise going forward. (Interview below)
There was a Battlestar Galactica special screening in Hollywood on Wednesday and TrekMovie.com was there. BSG co-creator and executive producer Ron Moore had a quick moment to chat about the next season of BSG and Star Trek. On the subject of the new Trek film Moore tells TrekMovie.com that he is a fan of JJ Abrams. "He is tremendously talented and I think he is going to do a really good job," said the veteran Star Trek: The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine writer/producer. I also had a chance to ask the man who killed James T. Kirk (Moore co-wrote Generations) about the the the plans to bring Kirk back in the new film.
At the Saturn Awards this week Bryan Singer picked up awards for Best Director and Best Fantasy Film for Superman Returns. After the show I had a chance to talk Trek with him about his love for Star Trek. Singer said that he is looking forward to Trek XI and thinks JJ Abrams is ‘brilliant’. He said that even though he had ‘bandied about’ some ideas for Trek himself, he never had the time to commit to it. Famous for spending over $200 million on Superman Returns, Singer did note concerns over Paramount giving Abrams enough money ‘to do it right’ and felt that he would ‘go north of $100 Million’ if it were his. The director also revealed how he ended up getting a cameo in Star Trek Nemesis and what it was like to meet some of Trek’s biggest stars, including a surprise guest at Patrick Stewart’s house.
If you don’t know Herman Zimmerman’s name, you certainly know his work. Mr. Zimmerman has been the production designer on almost every Star Trek project for the last two decades, helping define the look of almost every Trek era. Star Trek XI will be the first film to without Mr. Zimmerman since the 80s, but the veteran designer tells TrekMovie.com he is just fine with that. I have enjoyed being the keeper of the flame as far as the look of the franchise since 1987. I knew Gene Roddenberry personally and was always a fan of the show,never dreaming I would work on it when I was a young art director at NBC in the 60s. I have had a hell of a good time. It is more fun than work, but I am officially retired.
Robert Justman was there at the beginning as a producer for both Star Trek and Star Trek: The Next Generation. In the second part of our interview with Justman, he talks about his views on Abrams new Trek movie and how some of todays debates reminds him of Trek’s days past … [warning note: Mr Justman uses some ‘colorful metaphors’]
Robert Justman is one of the true founding fathers of Star Trek. He was a producer during on Star Trek The Original Series as well as the early years of Star Trek: The Next Generation. TrekMovie.com visited with Mr. Justman to talk about Trek’s beginning (as well as its current remastering). Justman’s journey with Trek began as the associate producer for the 2nd Trek pilot “Where No Man Had Gone Before," and apparently that almost became the end of his tenure with Star Trek…
The massive multiplayer Star Trek game ‘Star Trek Online’ is still a year and a half away, but Perpetual Entertainment is already building buzz about the project. Last week they showed off some of their work at the Game Developers Conference and today they put some of that artwork (below) on the official site. Now that things are starting to happen TrekMovie.com decided it was time to make first contact with Perpetual. Executive Producer Daron Stinnett made it clear that the game (like Star Trek XI) is just in pre production, but there are already 35 people working on it full time. Stinnett is a long-time fan of the franchise and apparently when the word went out that Perpetual were giving Trek the MMORPG treatment, the Trekkie game designers came calling. "A lot of great talent was attracted by it…people really excited to be part of a new vision of Star Trek," says Stinnett.
Norman Spinrad, the writer of "The Doomsday Machine" has now seen the new remastered version and gave some of his reactions to TrekMovie.com. TrekMovie.com: What did you think of it?Norman Spinrad: I haven’t watched it at all for a while and it is a strange experience. My first take is that everything looked cleaner – not just the effects but the whole episode looked cleaned up. For the new special effects it seems the biggest change is that they seem to be able to do motion a lot better. Things are moving in a more complicated way. The doomsday machine isn’t that different. The way I conceived it, it was something else. It should look both alive and robotic..and neither the new or the old looked either.
The folks at CBS Digital were kind enough to let TrekMovie.com visit CBS Television City to get a behind-the-scenes peek at how they are breathing new life into Star Trek. Getting chosen as the effects house to create the new CGI effects for the remastered Star Trek was quite the coup for CBS Digital. As Craig Weiss, Director of CBS Digital says "it is huge deal – the biggest thing we have done so far.” Every single one of their twenty artists does at least some work on Trek, with over half of them dedicated full time. CBS had to bring on about 8 new people in order to meet the rigorous work schedule. Most of the new people are crowded into a single dimly lit (to avoid glare) room that used to be called ‘the morgue’. It is quite a thrill to look around the workstations and see the various bits and pieces of recognizable Star Trek elements being worked on. It is clear from just a quick visit that each member of the team is dedicated to their craft and to digitally recreating the magic of Star Trek.
JJ Abrams was in Beverly Hills Wednesday to present an Atrios Award to his longtime casting director April Webster. TrekMovie.com was there and got a moment to talk a little Trek XI. Abrams confirmed our earlier story on the film’s current status and Spring 2007 production start. He also explained why he hasn’t yet committed to direct and talked a bit about why he thinks Kirk and Spock continue to endure…see the (shaky) video. video removed full transcript for the TrekMovie.com Abrams ‘mini interview’ below…
According David La Fountaine, exec-producer on Trek Remastered and Exec VP at CBS Paramount, there there is more than meets the eye when it comes to the Star Trek Remastered project. As everyone knows, each week the CBS digital team send out a new digitally remastered CGI-enhanced version of the Star Trek: Original Series for broadcast syndication. La Fountaine tells TrekMovie.com that what we are seeing is only one of the many different versions of each episode that the team is making. The first version they make an unedited or ‘network’ version without any CGI enhancements but with all the digital remastering from the original source. Then they make the CGI enhanced version of the full length version, and then edit it down for syndication. This means that some of the new CGI effects being done are not being seen in the syndicated versions. Plus all 3 versions are being done in both High Definition and Standard Definition. In addition all the new CGI space shots and matte paintings are being done in 16:9 wide-screen, so every time you see a new shot in Trek Remastered there is a bigger HD version waiting in the wings.
TrekMovie got some time with Trek Remastered Producer David Rossi to talk about how the project is going and where they are going next. Like any Trek endeavor, the CGI-enhanced Trek Remastered project has spawned much discussion. In general the show has been well received. The re-recorded theme and the digital transfers get a lot of praise. Much of the CGI work like the new matte paintings and planets have gone over quite well, and some of the live action touches have been pleasant surprises. However, much discussion has focused on how CBS have been digitally recreating Kirk’s classic Enterprise. Many seem to feel that the team have not got it quite right yet, but what may surprise the critics is that the producers at CBS agree. "It is not that we are unhappy with the work, but it is not yet the Enterprise as we want to see it" says Dave Rossi, going on "we want it to be there as much as everybody else does." And this is not just talk; the team has a plan…and a new model.
Grace Lee Whitney (Janice Rand) only appeared in 8 episodes in the first season of Star Trek before being let go amid some controversy. But fans remembered Yeoman Rand and she came back (as Lt. JG Rand) for Star Trek: The Motion Picture. She went on to appear in three more Trek films (III, IV & VI) and even an episode of Star Trek Voyager (‘Flashback’). She is again reprising her role for the new independent Trek film ‘Of Gods And Men’. TrekMovie chatted with the actress about playing Rand again as well as her thoughts on a new Rand for Star Trek XI.
Although the new CGI effects get most of the attention for Trek Remastered, CBS also gave the show’s opening music new life. The classic theme written by Alexander Courage was re-recorded in digital stereo and most agree that it is pitch perfect. That is thanks to the people involved, starting with the man tasked with the job Greg Smith. Smith is a Trek music veteran who began working on Trek back in the early 90s . He worked on DS9, VOY and ENT as an orchestrator for composer Jay Chattaway and even composed a few episodes himself. "I tried to remember how many Trek music sessions I worked on and I lost count," Smith tells TrekMovie. Star Trek up until Enterprise was one of the few shows that still used full orchestral scores. "For music, Trek always had the highest production values," says Smith, and Trek Remastered wasn’t going to be the exception.
TrekMovie visits with Of Gods and MenThe crew for the independent Trek web mini-series ‘Of Gods and Men’ (henceforth referred to as OGaM) did some location shooting in L.A. last weekend and TrekMovie.com was there. The first thing you notice when pulling up to the location is that this does not look like the proverbial ‘bunch of fans in a barn’ scenario. The scene looked like a typical L.A. filming location complete with honey wagons, equipment trucks, trailers, P.A.’s running around screaming into their headsets and extras milling about. What was different about this is that most of the extras had pointy ears. OGaM has turned a little corner of the San Fernando Valley into the planet Vulcan.
When word of Star Trek Remastered hit the web last week, very often discussion mented the name Daren Dochterman. It was a reasonable to speculate that Dochterman was inovled in the new project since he was the digital effects supervisor for ‘Director’s Edition’ of Star Trek: The Motion Picture and had recently launced TrekEnhanced a site dedicated to the notion of adding CGI effects to the original series. The speculation of his involvement was so rampant that after the official announcement from CBS, Dochterman issued an official statement to tell fans that although he had pitched, he wasn’t involved. TrekMovie.com decided to give Daren a ring and talk to him about his history with Trek and the new Trek Remastered project.