STAR TREK CONTINUES plans to make FOUR more full episodes…hopefully

Cover 3When the new fan film guidelines were announced by CBS and Paramount, one of the biggest concerns was what would happen to Star Trek Continues.  This celebrated fan series now violated most of the guidelines, including a run time of more than 15 minutes per episode, the fact it was a continuing series in the first place, their recent $200,000 crowd-funding campaign (the new limit is $50,000), the distribution of perks, their use of professional actors and crew (including some who have previously worked on Star Trek films and/or licensed products), and of course, the words “Star Trek” in the title.

Of course, fans didn’t mind any of this.  In fact, Star Trek Continues remains one of the most popular and successful of all the fan series…with a passionate and devoted following (including myself, a proud donor).  And that’s why we were so concerned that these new guidelines would spell the end of Star Trek Continues (as they had already claimed another beloved fan series, Star Trek: New Voyages).

It had already been announced that STC‘s seventh full-length episode, “Embracing the Winds,” would be premiering on September 2 at Salt Lake City Comic Con and then the following day at the Toronto Fan Expo.  And the assumption of a number of fan series has been that any film already in post production would be allowed to be released, even if it didn’t follow all the new guidelines.

But what about future episodes of STC?  Show-runner Vic Mignogna had gone on record many times saying that he always planned for the series to run about 13 episodes, with the final 2 or 3 containing story arcs that would evolve into the character situations at the beginning of Star Trek: The Motion Picture.  Seven released episodes is more than halfway there, but would fans once again be cheated of seeing the USS Enterprise complete its original 5-year mission?

STC fans like me were a somewhat reassured when Vic said this in their most recent newsletter :

Vic Mignogna
Vic Mignogna as Captain James T. Kirk in Star Trek Continues

I want to assuage any concerns that our fans may have about the current climate. We fully intend that the kind donations from our supporters will be used for the exact purpose for which they were donated. 
STAR TREK CONTINUES is the only official 501(c)3 non-profit Trek fan production company out there dedicated solely to TREK.  We are awaiting further clarification, but I am optimistic about completing our planned series and I would like to ask all of our fans to remain optimistic with us.  We have a plan to bring STAR TREK CONTINUES to a close with an outstanding final episode arc.
We are working at warp speed to complete STAR TREK CONTINUES.

While I certainly appreciated the update, it left my head spinning with questions!  Would STC still be making 13 total episodes?  Would the episodes now all be 15 minutes long instead of 60?  How can STC go on as a continuing series if the very concept of a continuing series now violates the very first guideline?

With these questions and more on my mind, I approached Vic Mignogna on Saturday evening at the Las Vegas CREATION convention right after The Roddenberries had finished their amazing 90-minute concert.  I introduced myself as an STC donor and fan and also as the writer of Fan Film Factor.  And that’s when I asked Vic: “Are you going to be able to finish your series?”

“We’re sure going to try to!” he replied.

“But what about the new guidelines?” I followed up.  “Will you still be able to make all 13 episodes you had planned?”

James Kerwin
James Kerwin, writer/director/co-producer on Star Trek Continues

As I was asking these questions, STC writer/director/co-producer James Kerwin wandered into the conversation, and I introduced myself.  As more people were surrounding Vic to talk about various things, Vic turned to James and asked him to address my questions.  I explained to James that I was a blogger for Fan Film Factor and asked if I could quote his answers on the record.  James happily agreed and had this to say…

JAMES: We’re planning to complete four more full-length episodes.

JONATHAN: Are you planning any more crowd-funding campaigns?

JAMES: No more crowd-funding.

JONATHAN: So can you make four full episodes with the $200,000 you have have from your last campaign?

JAMES: We actually have closer to $400,000.

JONATHAN: Did I miss an Indiegogo campaign???

JAMES: No, but we had some private investors come through for us.  I think we’re somewhere between having $350,000 and $400,000 to work with…and that should be enough for four more episodes.

JONATHAN: Do those four include the one coming out next month?

JAMES: No, we’re planning for another four episodes after that.

JONATHAN: So you’ll wind up with eleven episodes total.

JAMES: That’s our intention.

JONATHAN: And they’re all going to be full-length, one-hour episodes…not 15 minutes each?

JAMES: Again, that’s our intention.  We want to finish up the series, and we’re going to try to make these last four episodes as quickly as we can.

JONATHAN: So the obvious question is: what about the fan film guidelines?  You guys violate nearly every one of them.

JAMES: Here’s the thing that a lot of people aren’t understanding about the guidelines.  What CBS and Paramount have said is: If you follow all of these guidelines, then we will not sue you.  But it doesn’t say: if you don’t follow these guidelines, then we will sue you.  There is a big distinction there.

JONATHAN: So you’re going to make these four episodes and hope you don’t get sued by the studios?

JAMES: Over the years, we’ve had a very good relationship with CBS.  We’ve been very respectful of them, which is something that isn’t true of all fan films.  Additionally, we’re a 501(c)3 non-profit entity.

JONATHAN: And you think that’ll keep you off their radar?

JAMES: We’re not planning to hide anything that we’re doing.  But we want to finish our series…if the studios will allow us to.  We want to maintain our good relationship with them no matter what.  So be sure to tell the readers on your blog that this is only what we want to do and what we’re planning to do.  It’s not a guarantee that we will do it.  We are going to try to do it because that’s what our donors have supported us doing.  But in the end, and most of all, we want to be respectful of CBS and Paramount, who own the rights to Star Trek.

As a fan of STC, I’m cautiously excited as all heck right now.  As the writer of Fan Film Factor, though, I’m really curious to see how this ends up playing out.  James did mention that STC is going to proceed with producing these remaining episodes as quickly as possible.  And I sure wish them luck, as I definitely want to see as much of STC as the fates (and the studios) will allow.

Later in the weekend, I was chatting with a couple of other fan series producers about James and Vic’s comments, and one of the other fan filmmakers had an interesting take.  Asking not to be identified by name, this person still allowed me to quote them:

“The studios saw what happened when they sued Axanar, and it wasn’t pretty.  It’s still a real mess for them.  Now, Continues has fans who are just as dedicated to their series as the Axanar fans are to their project…but they aren’t all the same fans.  So if CBS and Paramount move against Continues, they’re going to piss off a whole NEW set of fans and come off looking like a huge bully.  It’ll be really ugly.  So if the studios are smart, they’ll let STC finish up, go away, and just concentrate on suing Axanar.”

It’s about to get really interesting around here…

Please visit the Star Trek Continues Facebook page for more news and fun photos from this groundbreaking series.

49 thoughts on “STAR TREK CONTINUES plans to make FOUR more full episodes…hopefully”

  1. Well…that *is* an interesting take on the whole fan film “guidelines” kerfuffle. Vic has often said they work very closely with CBS, and do as they ask. He’s also said they wanted to go to 13 episodes. But, given that they release two episodes a year (and they’re up to 7 now), it’ll take them another two to three years to close out the series…and hopefully, by then, CBS/Paramount will have finally pulled their head out of their ass, and will start working *with* the fans.

    /yes, I know…fat chance of that happeneing…


    1. A LOT revolves around the Axanar case. As much as some fans are rooting for Alec Peters to lose, the one hope that fan films have in all this is if CBS/Paramount either lose outright or drop the case. Both outcomes might be hard for some anti-Axanar fans to swallow, but it could be the only thing that gives other fan series a chance. As I said…it’s about to get VERY interesting.

      1. I’m not sure I understand your logic on that one. I think the only way other fan series will be able to continue is if Axanar loses and gets crushed hard. With a decisive win CBS/P will show what happens if you don’t work with them or don’t follow the guidelines or create a commercial enterprise on their IP. I suspect after a decisive win, especially if Ares Studios is shut down and Alec is blacklisted as part of the conditions, then you will see a relaxation of the guidelines as they were clearly tilted to prevent Axanar from being made.

          1. You guys are genuinely starting to worry me over this. Is it going to become phasers at twenty paces?

          2. Not on my end. There’s a lot going on that many fans aren’t aware of. I chatted extensively with a number of people during the past week and learned a lot about the Axanar case that I didn’t previously know. Unfortunately, I wasn’t given permission to publicly share anything I was told. But this really will be a very interesting next five months.

            John Smythe is correct that Axanar could lose the case. There is no possible outcome that would result in Ares Studios being shut down, however, as that is not part of the legal remedy being requested by the studios. As for Alec Peters being blacklisted, well, that’s also not a legal remedy a judge could impose (it violates California Business and Professions code 16600). So the worst that happens if Axanar loses outright in court is there is a financial judgement against Alec Peters…in which case, I’d expect Alec to just declare bankruptcy if it’s more than something in the 4 or 5-figure range. No other sanctions could be imposed.

            Of course, there are many OTHER outcomes possible besides Axanar losing outright. And if ANY of those happen, well, as I said, it could get VERY interesting around here. 🙂

          3. Both Alec and the production company are being sued so yes, the studio could certainly need to be liquidated. I’m sure Alec is prepared to declare bankruptcy to avoid his debts and court judgements, he’s already done that at least once.

            As far as the blacklisting goes, I know the court can’t impose that but CBS and Paramount certainly can. If he loses I doubt anyone in Hollywood would risk working with him.

          4. The studio can’t be liquidated because there is nothing to liquidate. Ares Studios leases the facility. Besides some furniture and the amazing sets, nothing is liquidatible, John. And as much as any fan would love to get their hands on those sets, I doubt they’d sell for much. As for people in Hollywood working with Alec, he actually has a lot of friends, and CBS and Paramount are only two studios. Look, I’m not telling you you’re living in a fantasy world where you imagine the worst outcomes for the people you’re rooting against…well, okay, I am telling you that. 🙂

            Phasers at 20 paces it is!

        1. John, your logic is terribly flawed, and you are being naive. Have you ever heard of any corporation who has ever relax anything after they win? Why would they sue at all? So they could then allow everyone to do what they want? Where is your logic to explain that STC will be breaking every rule in the guidelines, which is not”working” with the studios yet should not be sued? Where is your logic to explain why it’s ok for STC to break the guildelines and not Axanar? You don’t make any sense. Maybe you should cheer for all fan films instead of hating on Axanar for no apparent reason.

          1. Mr Citters has said each production will be looked at on a case by case basis Chuckie. STC has a good and long standing relationship with CBS with several of the cast appearing in official productions and featuring prominently at STLV. Peters has done nothing but piss them off then throw fuel on the fire after being told to stop what he was doing. I’m sure Vic knows exactly what he’s doing. He’s not the one being sued after all.

          2. Paramount has a track record of loosening up on their policies in regards to Star Trek once they have achieved what they set out to do. In 1993 the stopped allowing fan made prop replicas (kit or finished) from being sold at conventions. They did this because they were promoting their new Star Trek role playing toys (the TNG Tricorder, Phaser and the like). They continued the policy for about two years and then they slowly let conventions sell prop replicas again. So by that example in a few years, yes in fact the guidelines for fan films will be revised. You may not like how they do things but that’s just how they are.

  2. It will certainly be interesting how things play out. Honestly, I enjoy all of the various fan productions for what they are – fans inspired by their love of Star Trek creating stories for everyone to enjoy. It doesn’t matter which is your favourite, which you like, which you don’t like, but scapegoating any of them is not only childish, short sighted, and wrong, it goes against everything that Gene’s vision stood for – Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations. IDIC has been central to Star Trek since its inception in the 1960s and 50 years later it is probably even more relevant now than it ever was before. I want to see ALL of the fan productions move forward with their projects as they originally envisioned them, to their full completion (non-profit of course). Axanar, Star Trek Continues, Faragut, Discovery, and others have merely proved that awesome films and series can be made without the big production companies and on a very limited budget.

    The way CBS/Paramount are treating their fans is very short sighted and wrong. This particular sandbox was not built or even filled by them, yet they are claiming it for themselves and only themselves, which is beyond childish. Yes, they are the big playground bully, the 800 pound gorilla throwing its weight around and full of bluff and bluster trying to intimidate everyone around them. While some would fear calling that bluff, Viacom was forced to back down from their litigation against fan clubs around the world because of fan backlash. It’s the fans who truly have the power to make or break a property and the company that owns it. We kept Star Trek going when the companies wanted to shut it down, we are the ones who have kept it going for 50 years, and it will be all of us together who will carry Star Trek forward for another 50 years and leave the dinosaur companies behind.

  3. So far CBS/Paramount haven’t done ANYTHING smart in regards to the fans and fan films. Can’t see them breaking the trend or their lawyers breaking character. If they allow Continues to finish with $400,000 then I think they’d have a difficult time in court distinguishing between Axanar and Continues.

  4. Hi Jonathan. First of all, thank you very much for your support of (and donations to) “Star Trek Continues.”

    I know it was several days ago and we just saw each other in passing, but I don’t recall this exact phrasing in the chat we had at STLV. In any case, I’ll refer your readers now — as I did when you and I talked — to our public statements on Facebook and our Blog/Newsletter. I want to stress my position that CBS has the absolute right to enforce their IP any way they see fit — and STC being a 501c3 doesn’t change that. Per the public statements STC has made, we intend to use our donors’ money for the purpose for which it was donated, and we’re optimistic about completing our planned series with a final arc of episodes. Ultimately, and most importantly, STC will respect CBS’ wishes just as we always have.

    1. There’s a lot of fan support for STC, James, and well-earned. I do hope you can get the rest of your episodes made. And of course, I invite my readers to visit your Facebook page. In fact, I’ll add a link to it at the end of the article.

  5. Very interesting. I would guess if CBS lets STC continue that would severly weaken their case against Axanar (I know, they can choose who to sue and who not, but still…).

    It´s funny how James says they will respect CBS wishes – which would be to not continue, as they have made very clear by the guidelines. Nevertheless I hope they´re going to try and that way provide an exemplary case for other fan films.

    My god -400K for 4 episodes. Wow, that is a LOT of money. But if nobody gets paid, what are they doing with the money? Hopefully not their usual bottle shows. I want to see them explore strange new planets for a change…

    I am wondering if they will continue to use former Trek crew people for their show – that could put those into trouble.

    1. I’d say you’ve got a lot of good questions for STC! Feel free to click that link to their Facebook page and ask, as I’m curious to hear their answers.

      1. Jonathan, it’s going to be interesting to see what’s found out in discovery phase. I have a feeling that some stuff that will be brought to light might be embarassing to certain people and vindication for others. It’s definitely going to be an interesting five months after what’s already happened.

    2. So Northstar, you think 400k is s lot of money for 4 hours of content? What do you think about Axanar that raised 1.3 million to make a two hour movie?

      1. Axanar raised 600K for the movie so far, the rest was for Prelude and outfitting the studio. Axanars goals were much higher – they have professional actors/staff that need to be paid, probably a lot more people then STC or NV. They have elaborated makeup (e.g. as I´ve heard a “simple” klingon mask can cost up to 5000$), severly more heavy VFX. Pretty much everything is bigger – and in LA, which I assume is extra costly. So I guess that all adds up to much higher needs. But I have no insight into the finances of
        both shows – and sadly it looks like we will never get a chance to see what Axanar would have looked like.

        1. And I would gladly trade ALL of Axanar to have back Star Trek: New Voyages, and Star Trek Continues. I’m sorry, but those two were doing some great stuff, and their storylines were top-notch. Axanar looked good, and was professional, but it seems to the price for Axanar was far more expensive than any fan is really willing to pay.

          1. If it hadn’t been Axanar to step on the land-mine, it would have been Renegades (now close to a million dollars in total crowd-funding!) or Horizon/Federation Rising or even STC or NV or the next fan film that got to a million dollars. But we’re now in a fascinating place because this lawsuit could backfire in a big way against the studios (I’m not at liberty to say how, but if it happens–if the suit is suddenly and inexplicably dropped before January–just remember that you read it here first!). If that happens, it’ll make it that much harder to successfully sue any fan series…opening the door to many, many more of ever-increasing quality. Or the studios could win their case and feel safe in suing any other fan series if they feel a line has been crossed. Two possible outcomes…so you can understand why I’m still rooting for Axanar. 🙂

          2. If you mean Tom Paris, as far as I’m concerned, you can overload the warp core on Voyager and blow the entire crew into their component atoms.

  6. This is very interesting. You have pretty extensive quotes here. Yet, not a single person who was supposedly in this conversation recall you using a recording device or taking notes.

    Now, maybe you have some type of super-photographic memory. But as a “journalist” as you claim, you would still want to have notes of some sort, in case say someone accused you of misquoting them. Which, especially if you attribute something to someone that is not what they said (and it affects them in a negative way), could be the basis of a lawsuit.

    So tell us, Jonathan. How did you record these very extensive quotes with James Kerwin?

    1. Hey there, Mikey. As soon as I was done with James, I immediately wandered out into the hallway to a quiet spot and recorded my notes on the conversation into a voice memo on my phone. I’m assuming my memory is still good enough to recall a conversation I had 45 seconds earlier. I did ask James twice during our conversation if this was on the record and if I could post it on FAN FILM FACTOR (which I explained was my blog). Both times, James agreed it was okay. If there’s anything in the quotes that was incorrect, I’m fine if James writes up an additional comment to correct me. I’ll post it just as I posted his previous one.

      Oh, and I never claimed to be a journalist, Mikey. I’m just a blogger who loves Star Trek fan films and likes to write about them. As we both well know, there’s a big difference between being an actual journalist and just being a blogger with a website. And at least in my case, I don’t ever try claim to be something I’m not. 🙂

      1. First of all, you can call me “Michael,” unless you were someone I grew up with that, for whatever reasons, still get my OK to call me “Mikey.”

        Even if you went outside and immediately jotted down your notes, there is no way that accuracy can be proven. Especially since you didn’t paraphrase what you claim James Kerwin stated, but actually quoted him.

        You actually can’t do that. No matter how short the time after you had a conversation with someone, unless you are jotting notes AT THE TIME of the conversation, you cannot quote the way you did here.

        If you had talked to me, and then “quoted” me the way you did here, let’s just say James Kerwin is a much nicer person than I. And he is a nice person, which is probably why he gave you the time of day to begin with (I hope he learned from that mistake).

        So you basically misled your readers by “quoting” someone you didn’t actually record notes of at the time he said it. In the thousands of interviews I have conducted in my career (and I’m not being facetious, it really is literally thousands), I can tell you I have never quoted someone without taking notes of some kind, whether it be recording them, or handwriting them into a notebook, or my favorite way, transcribing what they are saying as fast as they are talking (that way I get not just what they said, but all the context).

        If someone tells me something, and I am not taking notes at the moment for whatever reason, I would never quote them. I would paraphrase the conversation, but only if I was certain what I remembered was true (which might mean communicating with the source again).

        1. Well, then, my apologies to James Kerwin for quoting and not paraphrasing his comments. I’ll know better for next time. Again, if there are any corrections James would like to make, I ill happily post his comments as soon as I see them. And if there’s anything major I got wrong, I’m also fine with printing a correction on its own blog post on the main page.

          Please understand that it was never my intention to do anything other than my stated purpose on this website: write about fan films. I love STC passionately and have enjoyed everything they’ve produced (even their Kickstarter commercials!). And yes, both Vic and James were very friendly to me, and I to them. Back in March, I gave their Indiegogo campaign a $100 donation, and both James and Vic were truly appreciative of that (James even mentioned it in his posted comment). I also featured the STC Indiegogo campaign updates prominently here on FAN FILM FACTOR and wrote this 3-part history of STC that was very complimentary.

          In short, my love and respect for STC is sincere, and I hope James and Vic know that. Also, I don’t believe that my blog will create any trouble that wouldn’t already have been created anyway were episode #8 to be released (let alone #9-11). Right now, as James himself said, they are only planning to do something. They haven’t actually done anything yet.

          And finally, Michael, there’s the matter of calling people names they don’t want to be called. I think if you and I both agreed to conduct ourselves in such a professional manner, neither of us would be considered hypocritical.

          1. I appreciate that, Northstar. The thing I strive for here on FAN FILM FACTOR is to present information fairly. I don’t try to tear down any particular fan film or series because I love them all–from STC to NV to Potemkin to Farragut to Intrepid to Axanar. I’ve got no “ax” to grind (get it?). I present facts simply as facts, and when I’ve got an opinion, I try to clearly state it as an opinion (I even have a category section called “editorials”).

            There’s a funny joke that’s been circulating recently about Michael Hinman and Alec Peters that I think demonstrates why Roddenberry Entertainment severed their relationship with The joke goes like this:

            Michael Hinman is sitting on the beach in some tropical island nation when he notices Alec Peters out on the water in a boat. Suddenly, Michael sees the boat start to sink. And as it does, Alec calmly gets up, steps onto the water, and walks casually back over the water’s surface to dry land. Alec’s feet barely get damp. Other people on the beach are gasping in amazement at this miraculous event. Michael Hinman immediately whips out his laptop, brings up his blog page, and types in the headine: “ALEC PETERS DOESN’T KNOW HOW TO SWIM!”

        2. Mr. Hinman, (Don’t want to get into trouble here)
          Just wanted to drop you a quick note. You are holding Mister Lane (there making sure I treat both sides fairly) to a standard of journalism that took to its deathbed in the sixties and died a slow death marked by fits of paroxysms about eight or nine years ago. Journalists no longer report the news, they twist it, change it, spin it, and generally mutate it something they want it to say, no matter what the facts are. Nobody trusts journalists/reporters anymore, so it doesn’t really matter how Mister Lane got his talking points. That’s why newspapers, and news outlets are dying faster than a tribble in a herd of glommers.
          Just thought I’d let you know.

          1. With all due respect Cobalt, not ALL journalists twist the truth. So, please get that idea out of your head – quick! Some journalists are still respected in my book because they do their jobs – they report the news the best way they can. I can truly speak on my behalf of my entertainment news outlet that we have never twist, changed, spun or mutated any review, news or interview I or any member of my team has done since its inception in 2009. I hold a high regard for my staff as the EIC to put their best foot forward and never deliver a story based on a falsehood. If all you say about nobody trusts journalists/reporters is true, then riddle me this – where do you get your daily information on the 2016 election. How do you know that a movie is a good or bad? Where do you hear about latest in sports? I can tell straight up that you don’t hear it from just the average citizen. To me, when someone says that it doesn’t matter how some get their talking points, its a insult. If you’re going to write an opinion piece, a story, a blogpost or what have you – you better have the information to back it up because you never know when the person you interview – will either retract their statements or a deny their story. The news media won’t die because without it, you will never know what happened in your world – let alone your own neighborhood. So, listen now and comprehend later, the next time you want to get the latest update on a story you’re following – how will you get the information. Will you be the one to travel some great distance, come up with questions, track down the leads and get the story yourself or are you going to the be the person who is thankful that there are some journalists who actual gives a care of informing the public. Don’t paint all journalists as none trustworthy. If we don’t report, you don’t get informed. End of lesson.

          2. I have to agree with Tom. Painting any profession with a broad brush of negativity is too easy and takes too little thought. Journalists, attorneys, police officers, even politicians are not “all” something or other. There are individuals in every occupation who take their responsibilities seriously and are good role models, and there are others who give their professions a bad name. I still trust most journalists, although I read each article carefully and try to confirm elsewhere whenever I suspect there might be a little “spin” going on. It is possible to believe what you see in the news media! 🙂

        3. You, sir, are exactly the kind of internet troll that threatens to destroy the entire Star Trek fan universe, and would be happy when it happens.

          In other words, get a life, MIKEY.

          1. Then Jonathan maybe ypu shouldnt have “shared” that “joke”.

            Lead by example if ypu do not want this to turn into a bas Hinman then maybe you should have been a little more mature about it and kept that to yourself.

          2. I had to trim something out of Michael’s most recent comment before approving it for positing because it used crass language that I choose not to display on this website. Since you didn’t see it, I can understand why you’d see my sharing of that joke to be setting a bad example.

      2. Now Jonathan, you know that’s not the way a so called professional interviewer actually does a story … There are reasons that you see all these recorders pushed into the interviewers face during a story, it’s to have complete accurate information to report.. It’s never one on one reporting and then the reporter runs off to record his interpretation of what just transpired … It sounds like the interviewing party was kinda caught off guard by you in a deceptive way, so regardless of whatever took place in your conversation, there is absolutely nothing concrete enough to stand up.. Let’s hope your next interview is more professionally presented and documented before released as fact ..

        1. Nearly all of my interviews are either recorded via phone call or answered typed by the interviewee and e-mailed back to me. This was an unusual situation in that I did not have the opportunity to record in the moment. But I did identify myself as a blogger from Fan Film Factor and asked James twice if this was on the record. Both times he said yes. James wasn’t caught off guard, as far as I can tell. He and Vic were both talking to donors and fans after the concert and answering a lot of questions. James was warm and friendly the entire time we chatted (maybe three or four minutes), and as I said, I did ask him twice if I could put his answers onto my blog.

          My mistake, of course, was in presenting his answers in quoted form rather than paraphrasing, and for that, I apologize to James Kervwin. But the result would have been the same information being included on this blog. And as I’ve said multiple times, James is welcome to correct any misinformation that might have been presented. So far, that hasn’t happened. He added a comment reiterating STC’s respect for Star Trek as a CBS property and his production’s intention to comply with any directive given to them by the studio (and that was actually in the original blog post, as well). But none of the information presented was contradicted or retracted by James in any way.

  7. Have you learned nothing from the Axanar situation? At least Alec Peters can claim that there were no fan film guidelines when he began his production, but Mr. Mignogna can make no such claim. The rights holders have made their position on fan films very clear, providing a legal bright line which every fan producer can easily see. Cross it and you place yourself in the cross-hairs of a lawsuit that would most likely end up costing you hundreds of thousands of dollars if not more. I’m sure that Vic is an intelligent fellow so I hope he at least seeks out legal counsel before he willingly crosses that line. Peters poked the bear and will probably wind up in personal bankruptcy as a result. Do you really think it’s worth the personal risk to poke it again so soon?!?

    1. The problem with the bear is that if it keeps being a problem, then the fans will move on to another fandom and will abandon it. The bear will destroy its own food source. They are walking as tight a line as fan film producers.

      1. I’ve heard people make that claim before but it’s really not a serious threat. Die hard Trekkers will always come home, and both CBS and Paramount know it. But let’s say that you’re correct and that the really serious Trek fans abandon the franchise. That would leave only… oh, I dunno… about 318.8 million people to watch the show. The hard core Trekkies always overestimate their importance to the franchise. Sure, CBS and Paramount love you guys but they’re not going to cater specifically to you. You’re vastly outnumbered by general sci-fi fans and younger fans who have don’t yet have an investment in Trek.

        1. True. But think of it think way. The hardcore fans can either be with the studios or against them. If the fans are with Star Trek, they produce a nice tailwind to reinforce enthusiasm for the franchise and accelerate adoption by new fans. In other words, it’s like jumping on an already popular bandwagon. If the fans are against the studios and not supporting the new series, that’s a headwind. It won’t kill the franchise, but neither will it help to draw in those new and younger fans. In this day and age, where there are ten thousand things a minute to distract young people (and each is screaming for their attention), a science fiction property with a loyal, dedicated fan base to build on has a huge advantage in the marketplace. Without the loyal, dedicated fan base, you’re almost starting from scratch. Sure, Star Trek might be able to strike gold again, but now those reliable tailwinds have turned into doldrums or, possibly worse, headwinds.

  8. Tom and Johnathon,
    After the fifteen years or so the vast majority of the media becoming nothing but the propaganda arm of one of the major parties in the US, I trust NO US journalists, and check my facts with foreign journalist one off another. Journalism is dead and at least half the country has no respect whatsoever for reporters and journalists. The myth of Karl Kolchak, Lois Lane, and every other intrepid reporter has become “useful idiot”. Nobody with a right mind trusts anything a reporter or a so-called journalist says. Journalistic Ethics had already died when Candy Crowley threw herself in front of a question on national television to protect the media’s choice for president. It began it’s death with Walter Cronkite shaping American opinion in the sixties and seventies and finally showed itself to be a mindless zombie in this current election. Sorry, but I and at least half the country have NO RESPECT for American reporters. We automatically assume that they are lying. The term “most trusted name” has become a joke to us. We trust nobody and verify everything.

    1. Fair enough. Only one question, though. If you trust nobody, how do you verify everything? I’m assuming you can’t travel to Aleppo or Mosul, and you probably aren’t reading through all the pages of Hillary Clinton’s tax returns (are you?) or attending every Trump rally. So without trusting at least some journalists, how are you verifying?

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