Sign The Guestbook
View The Guestbook
Archived Guestbook
Submit An Article
Staff List
Privacy Policy



From the Field
By Larry Nemecek

With the summer blockbuster season upon us, you may well be toting that camera, stuck in that edit bay, or cooling your heels along the red carpet in pursuit of it all. But just think: like no time in recent memory, the really big "summer"-type genre flicks may not be out until the holidays. Come November, it will be time to do it all again.

No less than the likes of James Bond, Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings will feature new installments between Thanksgiving and Christmas, but the grandaddy of all franchises for sheer numbers and staying power is due back Dec. 13. That's right, there's a Star Trek on the way, and this one is an even-numbered film, to boot. (The folk wisdom, of course, holds that the odd-numbered Treks are always disappointments).

It doesn't hurt, too, that an Oscar-nominated screenwriter and avowed Trekkie is the name behind your script, as is Gladiator's John Logan with the new Star Trek: Nemesis. The director is outside the old Trek TV family as well, with editor-turned-action director Stuart Baird packing a wallop in an opening & what? vehicle chase. On Star Trek?

As usual, parent Paramount is playing info and images close to the vest, but the onset of the Internet and the steady yet lackluster reaction to 1998's Insurrection have loosened up the flow a bit. This past week, boosted by timing with E3, a mini-CD of wallpaper images went out to fans and websites to stir up buzz, long before much other art has been released for general media. Too, producer Rick Berman has been far more forthcoming about cameos and plot points than ever in the past. Part of that may be due to the longer gestation period and shelf life of this script: all told, Trek followers will have waited four years since the last premiere until this one'a Trek big-screen record. Many have long thought that a little rest is not a bad thign at all, and makes the fans as well as the general public all the hungrier for it.

Ricardo Montalban's scene-stealing Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan has always been the bar against which other Treks are measured, despite its turning 20 this year. Nemesis shares a lot with that classic: a very personal villain for the captain & his own clone (and no, it is NOT hokey); changes in the family (first officer Riker and Counselor Troi FINALLY get married, providing a return cameo for Whoopi Goldberg's Guinan); and a slam-bang last act with a space battle that's far from simply gratuitous. Logan's script is a page-turner and in the last third piles tension upon unrelenting tension, but FX veteran Digital Domain is up to the task after Titanic and Lord of the Rings, despite this being its rookie Trek run.

One wag has already dubbed this flick "Star Trek X: The Attack of the Clone," but no fears about plot overlap with George Lucas ?? or even FX overkill. Star Trek has always been about its family of characters as well as late creator Gene Roddenberry's optimistic take on humanity and the future, and that's one reason why they'll be standing in line, renting the tape, and scrutinizing every DVD frame long, long years after the rest of the rabble have since gathered dust. That, and the even-number, of course. So, if you've been writing, reporting, shooting, editing or in any way working on stories about all of the hype surrounding Spiderman, Star Wars and the rest of the biggies due out this summer brace yourselves -- it may just turn out to be a dress rehearsal for more of the same a half a year down the road!

About the Author
Larry Nemecek is Managing Editor of Star Trek Communicator magazine, author of the updated The Star Trek: The Next Generation Companion due next January, columnist for Titan Magazines/U.K., former print entertainment editor and AP award-winning reporter, the father of two, and a devotee of fellow native Oklahoman Will Rogers.

Star Trek Communicator:

Larry's Book: The Star Trek the Next Generation...