One of the fan productions I’m most looking forward to at the moment is MARK NACCARATO’s project focusing on the battles and strategies of THE ROMULAN WAR with Earth. Presented as a war documentary (similar to Prelude to Axanar), Mark’s stories will pick up where Star Trek: Enterprise frustratingly left off: just BEFORE the ware between the Coalition of Planets and the Romulan Star Empire began.
Leading up to the planned May 2019 premiere of the full fan film, Mark has released a series of short “enhanced” audio dramas called WAR STORIES. They typically present personal logs or subspace correspondence made by someone involved in the war, usually recorded by a trained voice actor reading the script. (I say “usually” because I am definitely not a trained actor, but I recorded one myself!) The releases, while available in audio format for listening only, are ALSO available on YouTube with added VFX and other graphics to look like Starfleet archival footage. They’re REALLY cool.
For anyone who hasn’t seen and heard these War Stories releases yet, you can view them all on this YouTube playlist. They are only 17 and a half minutes total, so it’s not even that much of a time investment. In fact, anyone who says you can’t tell a decent fan film story in 15 minutes or less NEEDS to watch these four productions, as they each do it in under five minutes! (Well, one is a two-parter.)
This is one of the few fan projects set in the NX-era. Another is the series of amazing and powerful short films produced by AARON VANDERKLEY in Australia. If you haven’t watched them yet, you should check them out.
Now Mark Naccarato and Aaron Vanderkley have joined forces for the latest War Stories production, “The Fighting Fourth.” So that’s America and Australia teaming up for the first time. BUT! Let’s also add in a third continent—Europe—as Britain’s own SAMUEL COCKINGS, the hardest-working Trekpert in geek fandom, has lent his talents with some amazing CGI animation. Just take a look at this trailer…
“The Fighting Fourth” will be released first to donors very soon. So if you’d like to see it early, contribute a buck or three to the still-active Indiegogo campaign (now funding post-production costs).
So far, the completed War Stories fan films have focused on…
- An admiral haunted by the actions of a lone surviving engineer from an ill-fated transport ship
- A MACO soldier forced to take command in the middle of a blood-bath battle with Romulan ground forces
- The inventor of the Warp 7 engine, desperately trying to turn the tide of war, who now has to test his new engine, an engine which has already resulted in the deaths of three brave Starfleet pilots
Each is a very powerful story conveying the personal struggles of war from vastly different perspectives. I asked Mark,, who wrote all of the War Stories films, what new perspective(s) would be featured in his upcoming release…
“The Fighting Fourth” chronicles the adventure of Evander Littlejohn, a civilian engineer serving on a freighter who suddenly finds himself at the center of a dangerous mission to protect Earth Cargo Service ships from Romulan attacks.
I’ve always been fascinated by the story of the “Q-ships” of World War II, where civilian sailors and merchant marines fought back against heavily armed Nazi warships with a surprising degree of success. Civilians are often in the trenches during wartime, and the Earth-Romulan War is no exception. One of the themes we address is how this crewman, who has had a relatively safe life running cargo, now has to deal with the existential threat that the Romulans pose to all humans—not just Earth’s military forces. You can see how the attitudes and experiences of people like Littlejohn will eventually lead to all of humanity buying into the idea of forming the United Federation of Planets after the war ends.
“The Fighting Fourth” stars Chewe Nkole and was filmed at director Aaron Vanderkley’s studio in Perth, Australia. Mark Payton contributed concept art and Trekyards’ Samuel Cockings designed a new CGI ship model and delivered some custom special effects shots.
Remember that DONORS GET THE FIRST LOOK at this new fan film…and also a sneak peek at the full The Romulan War film when it gets released. To become a donor, click the link below…