STAR TREK 10 Updates!!
Hey, everyone. "Moriarty" here with some Rumblings From The Lab.
Okay... I've read the TalkBacks, I've traded calls with friends in the know today, and I've picked up a few more STAR TREK: NEMESIS tidbits I thought I'd share with you.
First, let's clarify. Jonathan Frakes is not directing the film. It looks like Stuart Baird will be occupying the captain's chair on this particular TREK. I'd say this was Paramount's way of thanking Baird for his hard work on TOMB RAIDER, but knowing the pressure he's going to be under, I don't think it's much of a "thank you."
I've gotten word that Digital Domain will be handling all FX duties for this outing, and that's good news. I'm an unabashed fan of DD and all their efforts, and would love to see them bring their trademark zip to the visuals in the STAR TREK universe. Their work could be a lot of fun.
Of course, that's all dependent on the cast working out their salary issues. Bottom line... Paramount is trying to roll salaries back on the cast, and the cast isn't putting up with it. There's a lot of posturing going on from both sides right now, but everyone involved expects there to be some sort of deal made. These situations can blow up on you, but this is one of the most important franchises the studio has in active development, so I doubt they're going to muscle the entire NEXT GENERATION cast out of the film. Just wouldn't make sense.
Finally, I would like to respond to Robogeek and the now-infamous DARK HORIZONS script review. Obviously, you guys are Trekkies. Er, Trekkers. Um... fans of the franchise. I'm not. I read it not as a piece of meticulously researched STAR TREK lore, but as a sf/action film with familiar characters. To a non-fan, it's a pretty good read. If you're consumed with the details of the TREK universe, I have no idea how it reads. Evidently, not very well. I'd say to everyone freaking out in our Talk Backs that it all depends how rabid you are about the films. Take this e-mail I just got from a "Dr. Strangeluv," but be warned... there are spoilers:
I must admit, being a Trek fan, after reading several negative script reviews of this film, I was filled with dread when I opened this script I received (from a Paramount operative that shall remain anonymous). I had serious concern for the future of the movie franchise, though not so much for this fall’s Enterprise, after reading the excellent “Broken Bow”. As you can imagine I was ready for a letdown from the start.
I was pleasantly surprised. The draft I received of Nemesis was imaginative, well written, and will act as a proper (if necessary) send-off for the Next Generation cast. While it was not the best movie script I’ve ever read, with the proper tweaking, it could well become the best Trek film to date. I will not bother with overanalyzing and plot spoiling, but I will point out a few of the many points that I find make this film work well.
For one, the subplot between Picard and Shinzon was extremely interesting, to say the least. Sure, the fact that Shinzon is a clone is a bit hokey, but it served its purpose. I gave the two a convincing background story with which to work. Though Shinzon does not display the ruthlessness I would have liked, his intelligence as well as his cunning make him a worth opponent for Picard and crew.
Data’s attitude and feelings toward B-9, his android brother, seem to bring semi-closure to his ongoing quest to be human. It also serves to make his final demise all the more emotional ( it could’ve been a more noble sacrifice though). All in all, it served to tie the movie together as a cohesive unit when used in comparison with Picard/Shinzon.
My attitude has changed toward the Trek franchise. Now, if Trek XI is this original and inventive, we could have a bright new frontier to look forward to.
One thing I'm sure of is this: they're not going to scrap the NEMESIS script or concept, so you can all put that one out of your minds. The delays right now are not about creative issues... or at least, not primarily. For a group of people who are supposed fans of something, I've never seen a more dissatisfied fan base than Trekkiers (figured I'd just combine them to save time). Right now, I think they're on track to make a good tenth film, and I would urge TREK fans to realize that any script can be made to sound awful if that's the intent of the article writer. Berman may not be a genius, but John Logan's a good writer, and he's crafted something that's at least entertaining on the page so far. I'm sure they're continuing to work on the script, and once the cast signs on (if they sign on), I'm sure there will be further work to reflect their input. Until then...
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Aug. 17, 2001, 2:57 p.m. CST
Aug. 17, 2001, 2:57 p.m. CST
Nemesis is one of the worst ideas for a Star Trek plot I've ever read, because everything that's been done before has been done better previously. (Spoilers here, if you haven't read the review of it, so watch out.) They'll plod forward and do the franchise another injustice. If anyone could listen to me (as if), here's a breakdown on how I'd save Paramount from themselves: . . . 1) Remove Berman from immediate association with the franchise until Paramount's BOD can determine his full fitness. He's got Roddenberry-envy issues, and he just doesn't make a quality Star Trek product. "Enterprise" serves his interests-- not the fans-- and that's pitiful. . . . 2) Concentrate on what fans like. We like Star Trek 2, sure... but that ships has flown, so to speak. We like knowing things about the Star Trek universe and seeing those elements come into play. . . . 3) Use elements from Voyager, and resolve issues from Deep Space Nine. Prepare to work in the return of Sisko. we want to see these characters again, even if it's just brief. Plan around the budget, using the actors liberally. Do NOT center on any one actor-- including Picard-- for too long. It's an ensemble piece; treat it as such. . . . 4) Recreate the script, hiring Peter David as writer, or possibly a script consultant. Concentrate on the Romulans, using Sela as an adversary. Tie Sisko's return in with the subterfuge he did in getting the Romulans to side with the Federation in the Dominion War. . . . 5) Exclude Brent Spiner from the script-writing process. Consult about development with everyone in the cast, and offer him a good role with decent dialogue for Data, but don't put script-writing choices in the hands of an actor's vanity. Sorry, but the "Data clone" idea is one of the worst I've ever heard of. . . . 6) Begin building a website to launch the new movie during the filming, and concentrate on hyping the movie by its merits-- the entire Star Trek Universe (of the 24th century) coming to a conflict and different races choosing sides. Instead of yet another sci-fi action-packed third act resolution, let the characters use diplomacy, and Roddenberry's ideas, to win the day and save the universe (one more time).
Aug. 17, 2001, 3 p.m. CST
see the film. Its been long enough now with no new info from the NG characters, and I will be excited enough just to see them again.....even if the movie is nothing but a long episode and doesn't contribute to the ongoing world that is Star Trek.
Aug. 17, 2001, 3:47 p.m. CST
This man DID NOT WRITE GLADIATOR -- he participated, with many, in a re-write of that MARGINAL film! Let me tell you what he DID write: BATS!! He re-wrote portions of Gladiator and then was re-written himself! This supposed "fan" of Star Trek writes a script with clones (ugh) and comedy one-liners (yikes)! Look to Star Trek II as they claimed they've done, and you'll find an easy, unforced humor that doesn't involve a crew member singing. As written, it appears NEMESIS will serve as the second Trek film in a row to involve a lead character's singing!! Berman has stated he wants Star Trek X to be an action film with humor. Look at the best trek film to date: Star Trek II. This was not a light film, but it certainly had a few light moments (not comedic moments, mind you, and certainly no pimples). It's a shame that the best film in the series was made 19 years ago -- not unlike Star Wars where the best film of that series was made 21 years ago. What a shame, and no hope in sight of a return to a value based film that just so happens to be set in space and just so happens to have some astonishing (to this date) battle sequences. On yet another tangent, since when did these enormous starships start flipping around space like shuttles?? The Enterprise of Star Trek II (and III, for that matter) sailed through space majestically. Now it shoots, spins, crashes. Once again... ugh. I'm glad for the powers-that-be to shelve this franchise for another year or longer in the dimmest hope that maybe, just maybe, someone will step in and say, "hey, nice idea, let's take this from mediocre and make it something wonderful. And by the way, Berman... you're fired."
Aug. 17, 2001, 4:01 p.m. CST
I too have been dissatisfied with star trek from time to time, especially Voyager. I thought the characters were great, but the writers did some horrible things to them, and my anger (yes you could call it anger) stems from the belief that it could have been so much more. I mean there were so many interesting threads in the Voyager story that the writers flirted with, but then just ignored later. I always thought the Doctor and Seven of Nine would get together in the end, and they kind of allude to it briefly, but then Chakotay comes out from out of nowhere and that is her love interest. But wait... I thought Janeway and Chakotay had a thing going.. oh well. That kind of sloppy writing is absolutely infuriating. These are the reasons why I have been disappointed lately. How about you? The only thing I ever hear is how Berman sucks and this is a dying franchise, blah blah blah. If Berman came up with a good idea, you would hate it because it came from him. So when I read the script details of Trek X, I thought "this is pretty good", then I read how it was ripped apart by some geek named Kronos, and another guy at AICN who obviously has never seen an episode of TNG. Then the negative talkbacks just began to pour in. Funny, because when Moriarty reviewed the same plot details, you all kind of had a positive reaction to it. Are you all a bunch of sheep or something? Is it really just monkey see, monkey do with you guys? Try to form your own opinions for once.
Aug. 17, 2001, 4:13 p.m. CST
It's not too late.
Aug. 17, 2001, 4:28 p.m. CST
...that a fan base can be passionate about something and STILL be dissatisfied, if the object of their passion is being treated as a cash cow by producers, cast and studio, all at the expense of quality. The fact that so many fans are expressing disappoinmment and dismay with the direction TREK has taken in the last decade should only serve to show that there is something seriously wrong here. Perhaps as a non-fan you fail to see what is wrong, but it seems evident that Berman has been an impediment rather than a help to the franchise. I write this as a fan of the franchise who is saddened to see what has happened to a once-beloved universe under Berman's watch. I do not consider myself a Trekker or Trekkie or whatever phrase is currenly apt, I am simply a fan who has watched the show from its earliest ncarnation on NBC to the DS9 years (I could not watch Voyager, to me it was mostly unwatchable). Perhaps the fact that Moriarty, by his own admission, doesn't really care about the franchise prevents him from seeing valid flaws in the current script.
Aug. 17, 2001, 5:11 p.m. CST
Moriarity, in your last post you said they had ten days to straighten this mess out. I honestly hope that this movie is delayed for a while, or just isn't made at all. It's getting getting painful to watch. I have been a Trek fan for 20 years. I never thought I would see it brought to its knees as such. First Contact was a decent movie. Generations was when the trouble really started. Berman and his people have no respect and could care less what Trek is about. That's why they are making this new series to rewrite Trek historu the way they want it. I know some of the nits sound like fanboy stuff...but some of it is important to what Trek is. Insurrection was a waste of time. I have no confidence as long as Berman and his folks are in charge.
Aug. 17, 2001, 5:11 p.m. CST
Aug. 17, 2001, 5:12 p.m. CST
As a Star Trek fan from way back, I immediately saw a big problem with Nemesis: too many damn aliens and androids! Gene always said that ST should be about the HUMAN adventure, and he was right. Look at TOS where HUMANS (Spock might as well be human)were the emphasis. People outside supergeek fans (ie Data fans)could relate to the crew. (I have yet to meet a Brent Spiner fan that has actually touched a member of the opposite sex.) Star Trek under Berman reminds me of the puppet show that was the first half of Return of the Jedi. Even interesting (and humanoid)characters like the Klingons have been reduced from cold killers to opera singing morons. Even though I do like Voyager, I think if you relate really well to someone like Nelix you really need to get some help.
Aug. 17, 2001, 5:29 p.m. CST
by Monty Python
Yeah, that was awful, but so is that name. I think this script borrows too much from "Wrath of Khan". Christ, it's not that hard to come up with an original storyline, especially with the scope provided by the Trek universe. It never ceases to amaze me how a studio can invest 100mil in a movie without having a decent script. As for what Moriarty says about it being a decent story on it's own, that may well be, but within Trek, it sounds derivative. If they would make one which at least does something original within the trek universe, the people who've never seen trek would enjoy it. As for trekkers being jaded etc, Your damn right! A lot of the recent stuff has been total smeg. "Insurrection" was sub-par, even by Berman's standards. "First Contact" was a wasted opportunity, and "Generations" killed off Kirk -Of all people- in the most ignominious fashion. Then there's all the timeline liberties... I know, that last bit makes me sound a bit anal, but you don't have to be a rabid fan to spot when they screw stuff up. Not that I don't think they have the right to artistic license, it's just beyond me why they don't tweak stuff so it fits. And then there's "Enterprise", which is attempting to put a franchise spin on TOS, in the hopes of soaking up some reflected glory by virtue of it's 'period' concept. My expectitions are woefully low for "Nemesis". That's Berman's main achievement; lowering expectations.
Aug. 17, 2001, 5:52 p.m. CST
by Amy Chasing
I feel the main problem with all the TNG films (yes, including First Contact - which was a cool but flawed sci-fi film) is that while the characters are the ones we all know and love, they just seem to be "going through the motions" and not actually bringing the qualities they portrayed on TV to cinema. This has mainly to do with the stories of the TNG films. They (to paraphrase Dr Strangeluv) served their purpose, but each one was missing something; could have been done better; never achieved their full potential. To do a proper send-off for TNG it has to be a story that _matters_! Someone we all care about should make a huge sacrifice, with no way back - ya know, like it happens in life. The characters should all be given the chance to fully expand their performance to a 'silver-screen' standard. TV scripts just don't cut it in cinema. And finally, Q was _the_ recurring "baddie" in TNG. He should atleast get mention in a TNG film! As I wrote in a previous talkback, I know he's getting on in years, but so is Data. I'd like to see the Q-Continuum in trouble, or dying, or something where the TNG crew could make a difference both to the Continuum and themselves. Please write a movie for cinema.
Aug. 17, 2001, 7:05 p.m. CST
The Star Trek universe as grown to be too big. Everyone has there own idea of what they want. Some want exploration, some want aftermath of Dominion War, some want Q. Good scripts can be made around all of these. Berman thinks the movies should center of becoming more human (DATA) or around the captain. Nemesis is a good idea but we are getting tired of a familiar plot with a twist around a familiar character. Berman has alot to do but he needs new ideas. I like Star Trek but I am not defending Berman. All movies to me are great two hour episodes.
Aug. 17, 2001, 7:52 p.m. CST
Moriarty is absolutely right. Although the Clone thing is really lame (especially with <i>Episode 2</i> coming out), the guy who wrote that review obviously hates <i>Star Trek TNG</i>. He made it completely obvious that he hated the script even before he read it. He doesn
Aug. 17, 2001, 7:53 p.m. CST
There is no way Trek 10 could be as bad as Insurrection. Just no way. I can't see it happening. Hey, any script can be made to sound bad if the writer is biased (as he was in this case --- he HATES Berman). The whole Genesis concept, Spock's rebirth, the search for humpback whales (!!!) etc. sounds like shit. It's all in the directing and acting, as long as the script is serviceable. This one is. The script is only the beginning. I'm not a fan of Rick Berman and Brannon Braga. I HATE Voyager and detested Insurrection. On the other hand, the Enterprise promo kicks ass and Braga did write First Contact, the second best Trek film. One bad script review and trek fans are up in arms, stating the film is going to suck. The concept is good, the director is good, the writer is good ... hell, the music is even going to kick ass! (Hans Zimmer in talks). Shinzon's role is either going to be Connery (who has been offerred 10 plus million) or Alan Rickman. Digital Domain is doing the effects. People, all this news is on Trekweb and Trektoday. Relax a bit!! At this point during production of the last film, it was VERRRRYYY obvious the film would be bad. The concept sucked, the writing sucked ... it just didn't come together. This film is coming together nicely. Chill out people.
Aug. 17, 2001, 8:32 p.m. CST
The Trek movies are more like vintage b-serials than Star Wars claims to be. Anyway, the scifi film I realy want to see is an adaption of THE END OF ETERNITY, the Asimov novel. Short and sweet.
Aug. 17, 2001, 8:33 p.m. CST
...and I laughed my ass off. Plus I was so astounded that people were SO involved with Star Trek. Completely floored. And now we come to this. I have a feeling that this will be the final Trek movie. WHY oh WHY would another be made? I already have my "Wraith of Khan", "Undiscovered Country" and "First Contact". These will always be my favorites and I don't know how they can top 'em. Ever.
Aug. 17, 2001, 8:54 p.m. CST
The point of all this bitching appears to be that everyone besides the people actually associated with Trek could do it better. It ain't going to happen, folks. While I will agree that perhaps Berman has altered the premise of Trek, I will also say that Berman has had a done some good stuff, despite interference from the suits that run Paramount. You see, they believe they know what is good for Trek, plus they know -like Disney has discovered with The Hitchhikers Guide, Trek is a cult show with a devoted cult following. But it's a following that does not deserve an $80 million budget, because beyond the fans, there is not a huge demand for a Trek film that non sci-fi fans will see. It's all cause and effect. The fans think Trek deserves to cost a $80-100 million, so the effects will be cool, the story will be neat and all the actors will get their fair share. Paramount thinks this movie should cost no more than $50 to $60 -at the most, saying it will be lucky to gross back most of that, noting that Insurrection cost $80 million, the most expensive Trek film to date and it failed. What we have here is a failure to understand why we should not continue to trash the franchise. No is going to be happy, plain and simple. As the Penguin said once, what one man throws in his toilet, I put on my mantel. One fan gives his opinion on Trek X -a fan who makes it known that he hated everything that has come across the silver screen or TV since TNG began and we all rally around him. We should not pay attention to him. Garth at Dark Horizons, who can bea fair judge, desides his view is word ONE. Who the hell is he and what makes him the end all when it come to reading Trek X's script? Running your own website does make you the authority on all things, and if you actually believe it does, well then sister Garth, you need to stop reading your own press releases. AICN and other sites that offer the fans to make an opinions on their articles, it behooves us not to get caught in a circular argument that makes us look like the fucking geeks everyone thinks we are. Trek fans have become so bitter and hateful over the years; I'm beginning to see why Berman and Braga have chucked Trek around. They're doing it just to piss the fans off. And I'm one fan who knows just what they are up to, and refuse to get caught in this endless debate on what will make Trek better. It will go on, no matter what we say here, because the franchise is still making money for Paramount. And if that means putting out a crappy movie every three years and giving us a TV series that WILL run 7 years, even if has low ratings, well so be it. And starting an embargo of products associated with Trek may in the end cause some person at Paramount to rethink the policy, but we have to realize that Trek is still popular in the fringe areas of the world. It's a cult show will always make money, but in also being a cult series, its appeal is still limited to guys who dress as Klingons in 100
Aug. 17, 2001, 9:01 p.m. CST
I was reading the Star Trek Insider last night and they said they were about to start filming in like 3 weeks and that Patrick Stewart was going to be starting filming on X-Men 2 in January. What's up wif dat?
Aug. 18, 2001, 1:21 a.m. CST
by The Founder
hiring new actors for Trek. If they can't get everyone on board hire some popular actors to take over. It may not be the crew we're familar with, but new actors and a new adventure is what's going to pull in the mainstrean audience as well as breath new life into this franchise. Sure it's a gamble, but most non trek fans think that you have to be a watcher of the tv show to get it. sure some of the trekkies will protest, but they'll still see it. I like the NG crew as much as the next guy, but I honestly think it's time for new faces, and as someone has already posted, with this type of material lack of imagination is the only thing that can kill the movie. I like the step Paramount took by hiring a new director, getting Digital Domain to handle the fx, and hiring an outside writer, but hiring an outside writer is only good if you let them handle the scripting duties and not interfer, like telling him what's the concept you want. Even when I first heard that they've hired an outside writer, I went like ,oh so now they are going to tell this person what they want done instead of doing it themselves. The only thing this new writer should have gotten was the summary of each character if they were going with the NG cast, and the foundation and the principles of the Federation, so he doesn't write somthing that's out of charater for one of the crew or something that's out of the guidlines of Starfleet, and let him go to work from there. Paramount don't have the balls to do this, and this is why Trek will get lower and lower until it dies out.
Aug. 18, 2001, 4:17 a.m. CST
by Andy Dufresne
Well said Moriarty, I am a "rabid Star Trek" fan and I love the franchise. But I love film more than I love Star Trek and I want to see a goiod Star Trek film. Star Trek films have become to In-house and new blood is just what we needed. Character changes and developement are critical to the success of a film and I like the direction that Both Nemesis and Enterprise are taking, it eleviates many fears I had for the franchise.
Aug. 18, 2001, 4:43 a.m. CST
If Berman had any balls, he would have made Spock the villian! What track needs is some excitement...not reruns of the same stories!!!
Aug. 18, 2001, 10:07 a.m. CST
First of all, Moriarty, if anybody whines about the "Trekkie" label, tell Henchman Mongo to do it to them hard and unlubricated. "Trekker" is nothing more than an attempt to grab some minority chic, and this Trekkie ain't buying it. I've never met anyone who was miffed over the "Trekkie" label who didn't take it WAAAAY too seriously (yes, there is such a thing.) Second, I'm glad Stuart Baird's behind the wheel. Sure, good editing doesn't make good direction, I know that, but he understands story. More than you can say for Simon West. Third, your guy needs a little more familiarity with the Trek flicks. When it comes to just sheer structure and skill, "Wrath of Khan" just can't be beat.
Aug. 18, 2001, 11:33 a.m. CST
Does this mean that they've finally decided which script to go with? Just a few days ago, Harry said that it was all still up in the air.
Aug. 18, 2001, 1:10 p.m. CST
Hey. Star Trek related - A draft script to the first episode of Star Trek: Enterprise "Broken Bow" is available at simplyscripts.com - D$%m it's good.
Aug. 18, 2001, 2:44 p.m. CST
Check out http://starwreck.peliportti.net and find out what in fact is THE next must-see, er, Trek movie... oh wait you probably won't get the same kick out of it as I, because it's in Finnish. Too bad. ;) And we all know how much certain folks hate subtitles...
Aug. 18, 2001, 8:59 p.m. CST
I agree with WritersCramp. Especially about Spiner keeping his egomaniacal hands off the script. If Berman were smart, he'd put in some strong elements of DS9 to refamiliarize fans with the show and test the waters for a DS9 movie. Instead, he has bent over backwards to make sure there is a Voyager cameo. It seems Berman can't get over that DS9 is considered the better show, since he didn't work on it and concentrated on the lame Voyager. How can the people at Paramount see episodes of DS9 like "Call to Arms", "Rocks and Shoals", and "Sacrifice of Angels" and not see what a wonderful show they had? DS9 left the Trek universe in a very interesting place. There was still so much to explore.
Aug. 19, 2001, 6:16 a.m. CST
I choose to see it as the "Trekkers" who are all hardcore about the details, hate everything Rick Berman and Brandon Bragga do, complain about how there's no respect for continuity in things like "Enterprise" and Nemesis, and just generally freak out about stuff. As for me, I consider "Trekkie" the more casual cooler fan who just likes to watch Trek for entertainment. if this script is different and stirs the pot, good for it. continuity be damned
Aug. 26, 2001, 4:44 p.m. CST
Personally I thought Q wuz great in the next generation tv series... but for some reason Q wuzn't in a single ona the ST:TNG movies. How many here think putting Q in Star Trek 10 would be a smart move?
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