Monthly Archives: June 2016

Have You Seen This Incredible Trek Auction? (On Now!)

Browsing the net yesterday and came across this fantastic auction of Star Trek items! There are props, scripts and costumes from all the Trek series, but I’m focusing on TOS here ūüôā

The Auction is being held by the site invaluble.com,¬† and you can see the entire list of Trek items here.¬†¬† Note: This auction started yesterday (6/29) and ends tomorrow (7/1) — the bidding is going on as I write this, (on unpublished photo negatives, scripts, etc>)¬† and they’re saving the real iconic stuff for the last day!¬† Costumes!!!¬† (Spock’s Shirt! Carolyn Palamas’ pink toga!!!)

I’m amazed to see how so many of these survived 50+ years in remarkable shape!¬† Of course,¬† if I had money to burn, you know I’d bid heavily on the Spock Tunic!¬† The story of the tunic is incredible — this original screen-worn tunic of Nimoy’s was won in a movie magazine contest in 1968, and the owner has kept it quietly in her dark closet all these years; preventing fading and damage (thank goodness there wasn’t a fire in all those years!) Seeing the condition of some of these gives an insight to how backstage work went; there’s an insignia missing 0n a couple, probably re-used) And the Klingon pants were see-through??? (worn with black pants underneath!) ¬† You gotta hand it to the auction company Profiles in History to find all the coolest stuff!

It’s a TOS fans dream! Get a load of these! (No drooling on your device!)

New “Guidelines” for Fan-Based Star Trek Fan Films

Greed and Jealousy.

These are the only two words I can think of to describe the new restrictions¬† guidelines that have been set forth by CBS and Paramount last week in regards to any new Fan Films based on Star Trek.¬† Here’s the link: http://www.startrek.com/fan-films?ecid=PCID-2617611&pa=affcj

Paramount and CBS included this statement along with their new rules:

Throughout the years, many of you have expressed your love for the franchise through creative endeavors such as fan films. So today, we want to show our appreciation by bringing fan films back to their roots. The heart of these fan films has always been about expressing one’s love and passion for Star Trek. They have been about fan creativity and sharing unique stories with other fans to show admiration for the TV shows and movies. These films are a labor of love for any fan with desire, imagination and a camera.  We want to support this innovation and encourage celebrations of this beloved cultural phenomenon. It is with this perspective in mind that we are introducing a set of guidelines at Star Trek Fan Films.

Well, I’m sorry Paramount and CBS, but this statement in light of your your rules is total BALONEY.¬† More importantly, for a company that wants “…to support this innovation and encourage celebrations of this beloved cultural phenomenon” it’s a slap in the face for anyone who has dreams of creating their own Trek stories.

This all started over the magnificent production of Axanar, a fan film many of us are anxiously awaiting.¬† Axanar is a prequel to TOS, recalling the war fought by Captain Garth in the years before he went mad (perhaps this will explain his later affliction).¬† It appears to be a compelling story, and from what I’ve seen of its trailer, it’s truly a labor of love.¬† For as it is created by fans and NOT corporations, it is the one of the¬† purest form of GOOD Star Trek I’ve ever seen:

Paramount and CBS¬† are livid over this and other fan films. The Axanar and other fan film productions (Star Trek Continues, Star Trek The New Voyages) wanted official guidelines for a long time, but I’m pretty sure they never expected anything this Draconian.

Some highlights include:

  • The fan production must be less than 15 minutes for a single self-contained story, or no more than 2 segments, episodes or parts, not to exceed 30 minutes total, with no additional seasons, episodes, parts, sequels or remakes. ¬†

Well, that pretty much prevents any new hour long episodes of the fan series.

  • The fan production must be a real ‚Äúfan‚ÄĚ production, i.e., creators, actors and all other participants must be amateurs, cannot be compensated for their services, and cannot be currently or previously employed on any¬†Star Trek¬†series, films, production of DVDs or with any of CBS or Paramount Pictures‚Äô¬†licensees.

But several professional actors have already gladly appeared in these Trek films (Lou Ferrigno, George Takei, Walter Koenig, etc)

 

  • CBS and Paramount Pictures do not object to limited fundraising for the creation of a fan production, whether 1 or 2 segments and consistent with these guidelines, so long as the total amount does not exceed $50,000, including all platform fees, and when the $50,000 goal is reached, all fundraising must cease.

 

Do they know how expensive it is to make a production? This financial limit would have been fine –about 10 years ago!

Now I know that not everyone likes all of the different fan films out there, and that’s fine– but this is not a matter who’s is best, but of the very RIGHT to CREATE them in the first place!¬† This creativity, born out of great love for Gene Roddenberry’s creation, must not bow to¬† being squashed by a corporate machine, who only wants to make money on their version.¬† What’s next, a ban on fan fiction and artworks?

I can only hope that these fan-funded films, (that their creators have made NO money on) will note that these are only guidelines, not rules, and that the creators of the many fan films out there will continue their loving, artistic recreations of our Star Trek universe, and not let these greedy, narrow-minded corporate armies throw them down.¬† Fan Films have the support of Trek fans world wide, if they get sued, I’m sure we fans will protest.

Shall we let CBS/Paramount  know we DO NOT APPROVE?  I urge you to write or e-mail these bozos and remind them of this little exchange between Spock, Kirk, and Landru in The Return of the Archons: 

Kirk: Without freedom of choice, there is no creativity. Without creativity, there is no life. The body dies. The fault is yours.

Spock: Are you aiding the body,or are you destroying it?

Kirk: Answer the question.

Landru: Peace, order, and tranquillity are maintained.The body lives, but I reserve creativity to ME.

Spock: Then the body dies. Creativity is necessary for the health of the body.

I can only hope that these fan-funded films, (that their creators have made NO money on*) will note that these are only guidelines, not rules, and that the creators of the many fan films out there will continue their loving, artistic recreations of our Star Trek universe, and not let these greedy, narrow-minded corporate armies throw them down.

*UPDATE:¬† A reader has informed me that Axanar HAS made money on it’s production. (This is what started the whole lawsuit in the first place)¬† I was not aware of all of the aspects involving Axanar.¬† I do agree with CBS on this point.¬† I do hope Axanar will go through, but yeah, they shouldn’t be making money on it. (Thanks Andrew Saxon)

As Captain Kirk proclaimed in Return to Tomorrow: “Risk is Our Business!”¬†¬†Let’s hope the fan film makers will continue to take risks.¬† LLAP.

thereturnofthearchonshd586

(Belated) My Weekly Spock -Tennis Sweater and Incredible Hands

Here’s some old magazine pics I came across on FB.¬† Nice tennis sweater, and those remarkable hands!¬† Looks like he’s making the Vulcan peace sign kiss!

13418791_10209737839224925_143440000528007394_n 13432165_10209737838904917_7016571781626298402_n 13450928_10209737839024920_87122987375475678_n 13466024_10209737838704912_216615690766576220_n

Anton Yelchin 1989-2016

AntonIt is with great sadness and  heartbreak that I have to report this latest passing.  Anton Yelchin, the talented young actor who played Chekov in the rebooted Star Trek movies, died as a result of a freak accident at his home on Sunday, June 19th.  He was only 27.

Mr. Yelchin was rolled over by his own car and pinned between it, a brick mailbox pillar and a security fence.  This is so tragic and must be devastating for his his parents, as he was their only child.  We were just getting to know this fine young actor who gave such bubbly energy to the Chekov character. (He was one of my favorite characters in the reboot).  I know he was just beginning his path to assured stardom in his acting career.  Gone too soon, and so terribly tragic.   My heart and prayers to out to his family, friends, fellow actors and all of his admirers.

Seeing him in the upcoming Star Trek Beyond movie will be bittersweet, but I’m thankful we had him there.¬† For a relatively young actor, he has a long career in movies and television and had made several other critically acclaimed movies, including Charlie Bartlett, (2008) Like Crazy (2011),¬† The Beaver (2011) , and Green Room (2015)

Rest in Peace dear Anton. You will be missed.

 

My Weekly Spock: Paris Turned Up!

Funny thing, I was going through my old photo files and came across these pictures I took of my old TV back in 2008 — apparently when I was watching a rerun of Mission: Impossible!¬†There’s Paris in his Magician garb! Had to share! (I wonder what channel this was? That looks like a daisy logo) .¬† Ah the last days of analog…

IMG_0052IMG_0054

Battle of the Star Trek Dolls!

Okay, so it isn’t really a battle, but it’s definitely a siren call to the hearts of Trekkies everywhere; lifelike Star Trek dolls that celebrate the series’ 50th anniversary. From Mattel to Matchbox, every toy dealer wants a piece of the anniversary cake!

e908388243dafb75e521fe7d7b43054060b56fbf

Mattel’s 50th Anniversary Star Trek Set

Just this week it Mattel released pictures of its new line of commemorative Star Trek Barbies dolls: A trio featuring Kirk, Spock, and Uhura. I’m happy to see Uhura in the mix, but the first question popping up all over is “Where’s McCoy and Scotty?” And I agree, but I’d amend that to “Where’s Everyone Else?”91XPmarjAzL._SL1500_.0

canvas index

Now I confess, for a while there, I was a Barbie collector (I still have a dozen or so unboxed, sleeping peacefully in a storage bin). But I’ve seen other movie and TV-based Barbie collections over the years; Twilight, Mad Men, Hunger Games,¬† and often the company has created more than 3 characters from each franchise.¬† I just hope they’ll consider adding McCoy, Scotty, Sulu, Chekov, Chapel and Rand too!

At $35 each, these Mattel ones are not top-of-the-line, but they do have beautiful facial recreations of Bill, Leonard, and Nichelle.¬†¬† I love that they included Uhura’s classic green hoop earrings and her distinct eye makeup. ¬† I only wish they gave her seamless bendable knees, as they do in regular Barbie dolls.¬† I think she would have looked more realistic with the wonderful curvy body mold of the new dolls coming out. The Kirk doll has Bill’s intense stare, and Spock is a handsome recreation of young Nimoy (right down to his eye- shadow)

Of course this isn’t the first time Mattel has aimed itself at Trek fans — back in 1996, they produced a cute Star Trek Barbie and Ken.¬† Barbie’s high ponytail with a braid¬† was a direct rip-off of Yeoman Martha Landon from The Apple,¬† (unfortunately, Celeste Yarnall didn’t receive a cent). Ken was the standard Ken, but with a ready Kirk grin. The box featured a backdrop still of K& S on the bridge, making it perfect for display.

Matt-Kirk-2

Therese’s son Matt as a toddler playing with his Star Trek Ken. (2002)

Mattel gambled (and lost) a bundle in overproducing the Anniversary set; they must have presumed that they’d make a fortune off of rabid fans, but it didn’t come to pass, and you can still find quite a few on secondary markets.¬† It’s a cute set, I actually had one, and let my boys play with them when they were youngsters.

ORION

The Mattel Vina Barbie, exclusively sold at the San Diego Comic Con.

Not to be outdone– the San Diego Comic Con has two retro Trek dolls to die for.¬† The first is another from Mattel, but only exclusive to Comic Con attendees.¬† ūüė¶¬† It’s a fully articulated Vina from The Cage! ($50) It’s more a green Orion than Susan Oliver, but it’s a joy to see; especially the recreation of the lizard dress.

 

 

Then from (Mattel’s) Hot Wheels, there’s a diorama of Nimoy dressed as Spock, leaning against his beloved ’64 Buick Rivera. It’s the 3D version of this iconic photograph.¬† These are both fabulous!

SCDD spockbuick

Spock Wheels Hot Wheels! Another Exclusive from SDCC

jl1wl9u5sapm1xezj473

 

 

For even higher-end merchandise, there’s two companies with dazzling, and remarkably realistic figures.¬† There are figures of Kirk and¬† Spock from Quantum Mechanix.¬† These beauties will set you back @ $180 each, but if you’re die-hard enough for incredible likenesses, this is for you. The figures are thoroughly articulated with all the accoutrements of phaser, communicator, and tricorder. One surprising aspect of the costuming is that includes the rarely seen light brown phaser belt that hung under the uniforms in season 1!¬† Truly remarkable, heck, they even have 5 0’clock shadow!

QMX-Star-Trek-Captain-Kirk-and-Spock-2

It even appears that the insignias are sewn on!

Star-Trek-TOS-Spock-and-Captain-Kirk-Sixth-Scale-Figures-6

 

 

Not to be outdone, but the next set is my favorite of all– from the Mezco One: Twelve Collective comes the ultimate and truly most astonishing Trek figures I’ve ever seen!¬† There are three figures so far, Kirk, Spock, and Sulu, and I do believe there are more to come. They each have great accessories and a stand with the Trek delta patch on them, and Sulu even gets a sword!¬† But the best part is that they have interchangeable hands and heads! (two facial expressions each). ¬† The likenesses are so lovingly rendered it’s like they’ve walked right off the screen!¬† Kirk’s face has both serious and gentle Kirk-smirk expressions, Sulu has a serious helm expression and a true Sulu smile, and Spock’s has a cool demeanor or his ultimate arched eyebrow! Spock also has mind-meld hands, communicator/phaser hands, and of course the Vulcan Salute)¬† Can’t wait to see what they’d do with McCoy, Uhura, and the rest…¬† (Spock and Sulu are out now, Kirk in July) Mezco One 12 Collective Star Trek Spock action figure 2 Mezco One 12 Collective Star Trek Spock action figure 6 Mezco One 12 Collective Star Trek Sulu action figureMZ76161lg

Mezco has also made a masterful limited edition replica of Spock as he appeared in The Cage. The details are meticulous as always, right down to the shorter haircut, away-team jacket, and vintage phaser.  Just gorgeous.

Mezco-Variant-Spock-4 Mezco-Variant-Spock-3 Mezco-Variant-Spock-2 Mezco-Variant-Spock-Featured

 

All I can say after seeing these is that one is never too old to play with dolls!

toy collage

Crazy Busy End of School Year…

Hey Kids,

Sorry I haven’t posted in a while, but between end-of-year school events including 5 kids in my immediate family graduating from High School it’s a crazy time! (There’s my son, my niece, my two great-nieces, and my nephew!)¬† Thanks for your patience and I’ll be back soon!

graduate Spock