Star Trek's Original Movie Plans Would Have Been Better Than The Motion Picture

Star Trek: The Motion Picture is widely considered to be one of the worst movies in the series, but the original ideas for the film sound much better.

Star Trek's Original Movie Plans Would Have Been Better Than The Motion Picture

Star Trek's first movie is one of the most disliked in the franchise, but was almost a whole lot better. Upon release, Star Trek: The Motion Picture was rejected by both casual viewers and the devoted Trek fan base, and in a particularly worrying sign, quickly became known as 'The Slow Motion Picture.' Production on the Enterprise's first big screen voyage was a decidedly rough ride. During the scripting process, many storied writers submitted scripts that were swiftly consigned to the nearest airlock, but with the power of hindsight, one has to wonder whether these rejected stories might've been better than the finished product.

In 1975, a Star Trek movie script was submitted by series creator, Gene Roddenberry, but failed to win approval from studio executives. Titled The God Thing, Roddenberry's story featured supreme beings getting too big for their boots and receiving a stern talking to from one James T. Kirk. Clearly, this high-concept plot was a step too far for Paramount, who immediately began looking for a fresh script not written by Roddenberry. Elements of Roddenberry's idea would find their way into Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, which proved Kirk meeting God probably wasn’t a good idea after all.

Related: Star Trek Generations: Why Only Some Uniforms Changed To DS9's

The rejection of The God Thing might've been justified, but other unused scripts for The Motion Picture hinted at far greater potential. After writing the classic Star Trek episode "City On The Edge of Forever," Harlan Ellison was invited to pitch a story, and although it never came to pass, his concept sounds intriguing. Strange events begin happening on Earth, with buildings vanishing and people morphing into reptilians. The source of the trouble is traced to a planet on the far side of the galaxy and, naturally, there's only one man for the job. A mysterious hooded figure soon begins kidnapping former Enterprise crew members (only the famous ones) and is revealed as James T. Kirk, rounding up the old gang. The tale then takes off with time travel, moral dilemmas and a new, villainous alien race.

According to Ellison, the studio exec he was pitching to had read Erich von Däniken’s Chariots of the Gods and was hooked on involving Mayans, even though the Enterprise traveled back to the time of dinosaurs. Ellison, after first pointing out the Mayans weren't around in prehistoric times, ended up walking out of the meeting. This is a great shame, as his plot sounds unique, interesting and a novel way to reunite the Enterprise crew in response to a massive threat to humanity. The story would've likely facilitated much more action than The Motion Picture, with Kirk drop-kicking Gorn lookalikes at will.

Although Ellison's idea never took off, another potentially great concept for the first Star Trek movie made better progress - Star Trek: Planet of the Titans. A script, originally written by Chris Bryant and Alan Scott, had been approved, pre-production was underway and a director had been found in Philip Kaufman. Set after the ship's five-year mission, Planet of the Titans involved Kirk and his crew facing off against the Klingons and Cygnans for possession of a planet formerly inhabited by a technologically advanced race, the titular Titans. Unfortunately for all involved, the planet is being sucked into a black hole and inevitably, the Enterprise finds itself pulled into the void. The cast emerge thousands of years in Earth's past and, clearly not concerned about stomping on any butterflies, show the natives how to make fire. The ultimate paradox is that Kirk and the gang, having now accelerated mankind’s evolution, turn out to be the actual Titans.

Ultimately, Planet of the Titans was killed by an abundance of creative hands. Kaufman had realized the popularity of a certain Vulcan science officer and built a very Spock-centric story, also throwing Stonehenge and Kirk’s son into the mix. The writers and Kaufman tried refining the script, but the end result bore little resemblance to the original and Paramount quickly backed out. With an intelligent but uncluttered core story and proper Star Trek villains, Planet of the Titans surely would've been truer to what fans loved about the original TV series than The Motion Picture proved to be.

More: Star Trek: Every Character With Their Own Signature Maneuver

Source : Screen Rant More   

What's Your Reaction?

like
0
dislike
0
love
0
funny
0
angry
0
sad
0
wow
0

Next Article

Doctor Who: Why Tom Baker Had A Second TARDIS Console Room

Modern Doctor Who fans are used to the TARDIS interior changing every few seasons, but the classic series had to be a little more inventive.

Doctor Who: Why Tom Baker Had A Second TARDIS Console Room

Doctor Who once spent an entire season in a completely different TARDIS console room. The story and history of the TARDIS is almost as storied as the Doctor herself, and just as Doctor Who fans can never completely get used to a certain actor playing the iconic Time Lord, modern fans also can't get too attached to a particular TARDIS interior. But this wasn't always the case. Since Doctor Who was revived in 2005, the TARDIS console room has undergone a radical transformation every few seasons, usually when The Doctor regenerates or when a new showrunner is drafted in.

The alterations were never so frequent or so drastic in the run between 1963 and 1989. Each of the main classic TARDIS design schemes were a riff on the original, with rounded alien-like panels covering the walls, a hexagonal console in the middle of the room, and the familiar 'up-and-down' pillar at the center. The console itself was rebuilt and modified several times through the years (and regenerations) and the room itself would also be freshened up, particularly during the Third Doctor's era. However, each of The Doctor's redecorations were based around the same white-walled, roundel-covered concept. In an attempt to make Doctor Who more grounded in the early 1970s, Jon Pertwee's Third Doctor spent much of his tenure just trying to make his TARDIS work, as the Time Lords had exiled him on Earth permanently. By the time Tom Baker had taken over, the TARDIS was back up and running but the interior was seldom shown. A remodel of the familiar white console room featured in a select few episodes, but then there was a drastic shake up.

Related: The Most Exciting Doctor Who Story This Year... Won't Be On TV

In the debut episode of Doctor Who's original season 14, The Doctor takes his then-companion, Sarah Jane Smith, to a different, unused console room, and then strongly suggests this place was actually the original hub of the TARDIS. This console room remained The Doctor's base for the remainder of the season and was a massive visual departure from what had come before, with wooden panel walls, stained glass windows, and a smaller, cabinet-like console. Unfortunately, the Victorian-style console room only lasted a single season before the white, pimply decor returned. Reports conflict as to whether the wood of the previous set was proving problematic to maintain, or whether incoming producer, Graham Williams, simply wasn't a fan.

In many ways, this redesign was massively ahead of its time. Where Doctor Who spent the 20th century in more or less the same TARDIS surroundings, the introduction of a second console room did something that modern Who does on a regular basis - a complete TARDIS overhaul. In the revived series, the TARDIS has the ability to remodel its interior as easily as it's exterior should change, similar to changing a desktop theme on a computer, and this accounts for each radical redesign. Since changing the background on your smartphone every few weeks wasn't a thing in the 1970s, it's hardly surprising Philip Hinchcliffe didn't come up with the same explanation back then. Instead, revealing a previously-unseen alternate console room was classic Doctor Who's way of introducing a completely new style to the TARDIS.

The TARDIS designs of recent Doctors are said to mirror the respective personalities of their pilots, and this is also true of the Fourth Doctor and his secondary console room. The Victorian influence gave a distinctly gothic vibe, fitting in nicely with the Sherlock Holmes-esque demeanor Tom Baker took in that period of his Doctor Who run. Stories such as "The Masque of Mandragora" and "The Talons of Weng-Chiang" boasted a strong Conan-Doyle aesthetic, and where a futuristic TARDIS set might've felt jarring against that tone, the church-like secondary console room enhanced it. Fans were quite taken with the wooden console room, and fortunately, a return can't be ruled out. "The Doctor's Wife" confirmed that past interior designs were "saved" in the TARDIS memory banks, so a throwback to this Tom Baker classic can't be ruled out in the Jodie Whittaker era and beyond.

More: Doctor Who: Why The Five Doctors Is The Best Multi-Doctor Story

Doctor Who returns with "Revolution Of The Daleks" this Christmas on BBC and BBC America.

Source : Screen Rant More   

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.