The Star Trek fan film guidelines are seldom, if ever, enforced by ViacomCBS, but were they ever to be, I often wonder how guideline #5 would be interpreted. That’s the guideline which specifies, in part, “creators, actors and all other participants must be amateurs.” Amateur what, exactly? The show-runner of THE BUNNY INCIDENT, KEVIN CROXTON, is an Emmy Award winning composer…surely a professional. SAMUEL COCKINGS, the Wolfgang Puck of CGI, makes his own fan films like TEMPORAL ANOMALY and the upcoming CONVERGENCE, and yet he creates VFX professionally for a number of different clients. JOSH IRWIN and VICTORIA FOX produce the Avalon Universe fan series (and are also directing my fan film INTERLUDE), and they each work in the film production industry professionally. And the list goes on and on.
The latest addition to this growing list is BOBBY NASH, a professional author who has written novels, comic books, short fiction, and screenplays. And a few weeks ago, he added a new Star Trek fan film to his achievements with the release of “Under Fire,” the third offering from POTEMKIN PICTURES’ HOSPITAL SHIP MARIE CURIE creative group. And this isn’t the only Star Trek fan film Bobby has written. Back in 2014, the fan series STARSHIP FARRAGUT released “Conspiracy of Innocence,” which Bobby also wrote.
Six years is a rather long gap between writing Star Trek fan films, and I was curious to learn a little more about this fellow. But before I present my interview with him, take a look at his latest work, “Under Fire”…
And now, let’s meet Bobby Nash…
JONATHAN – Welcome to Fan Film Factor, Bobby. How did you get your start as a professional writer?
BOBBY – I began writing and drawing comic books when I was a teenager. They were crude, as you might expect, but they were great practice and taught me to be a better writer. Sadly, I’m not sure I ever became a better artist, though. Eventually, I focused on writing and was hired by a publisher. I’ve been writing ever since. I write novels, short stories, comic books, and a few screenplays. I have been fortunate to be nominated for some awards and even won a few for my writing. I love what I do.
JONATHAN – So how does one go about making his or her living (or part of it) from writing?
BOBBY – In my case, I work for publishers and also have my own indie publishing company. I don’t make a decent living at it, exactly, but I do work regularly. There’s still a little way to go to get to where I want to be.
JONATHAN – You wrote “Conspiracy of Innocence” for Starship Farragut back in 2013. What first got you interested in writing a Star Trek fan film?
BOBBY – I was a guest at the ConCarolinas convention in Charlotte, NC back in 2010 or 2011 (they all start to run together for me). Across the hall from my table was the table for Starship Farragut. At that point, they had 3 episodes and a couple of animated episodes playing on continuous loop all three days. I talked with MICHAEL DAY, Farragut’s producer, and got to know him, and I heard the Farragut characters speak all weekend. By Sunday afternoon, I told Michael that I had an idea for an episode. He told me to write it up, and they would take a look at it. “Conspiracy of Innocence” was the result of the idea that sprang to life while listening to their episodes at the convention.
After it was in production, I got an email asking if I would like to do another script. There was a new show starting called Star Trek Continues, and they were looking for someone to tweak the script for their first episode, “Pilgrim of Eternity.” So I served as a script doctor on that one.
JONATHAN – And what was that experience like for you working on two Star Trek fan films?
BOBBY – Both experiences were a lot of fun. As a long-time Star Trek fan (I grew up on TOS reruns in the 1970’s), writing that era fulfilled a childhood dream. Then, getting to write dialogue for Kirk, Spock, and McCoy was a thrill. I had a blast. Seeing the finished films was great as well. These were the first screenplays of mine that were filmed. Plus, touring those amazing sets down in Kingsland, GA was an experience unlike any other. It was like traveling to the past and future at the same time. Truly amazing. I was happy with both projects and figured that was the end of my fan film scripting days.
Then I met RANDY LANDERS…
JONATHAN – That you did! So after a six-year gap, you returned to Star Trek fan film writing with the latest release from Potemkin Pictures. Why the long absence, and what convinced you to return to Trek fan films?
BOBBY – It’s all Randy Landers’ fault.
After the first two scripts, plus one for Starship Farragut that went unused, I wasn’t planning to do any more scripts, mainly due to my work schedule. The fan films were fun, but I had to weigh the fun against my paying gigs. Then, a couple of years later, at another convention in Hoover, Alabama, I met Randy Landers. He gave me a tour of the Potemkin sets and talked about their plans or their short films. The sets looked great, and Randy’s enthusiasm was contagious. Before I left, I told him that I had an idea for a story. That idea became the Hospital Ship Marie Curie “Under Fire” episode. I love how it came together. I probably broke their VFX budget with my script. Ha! Ha!
JONATHAN – What was the experience like working with Randy and his cast members?
RANDY – I primarily worked with Randy Landers and Michael Day, both of whom are great. I wish I had been able to make it down for the shooting day, but I couldn’t get away.
I think the cast and crew did an amazing job bringing the story to life, and I was smiling as I watched it. Like me, they are fans and love Star Trek. That’s the one constant in all of these filming experiences—the people involved love Star Trek and the universe it encapsulates. I think that love comes through in the finished films.
JONATHAN – Have you watched any other Star Trek fan films? If so, do you enjoy them, and do you have any favorites?
BOBBY – Over the years, I’ve watched and enjoyed a number of Star Trek fan films. There are some really great creators out there making these films. Star Trek Continues was quite amazing. I’ve also enjoyed Starship Farragut, Starship Exeter, Phase II, Of Gods and Men, and others. There’s a lot of fun Star Trek fan films out there.
JONATHAN – Do you feel you’ll want to write more Trek fan films in the near—or far—future? (Potemkin Pictures has seven creative teams…and Randy is ALWAYS editing footage and building sets.) If so, what kinds of stories might you have in mind?
BOBBY – Well… never say never, right? Actually, here’s a scoop for you because I haven’t even told Randy yet, but I had an idea for another Hospital Ship Marie Curie story just this week. I have to get it written and sent to him. Hopefully, he’ll like it. We’ll see what happens.
JONATHAN – Cool! Thanks for the scoop, and good luck. And finally, to shift away from fan films for a moment, what literary projects do you have coming up? And where can people find your work online if they want to read more of your stuff?
BOBBY – I write a series of modern-day action/thrillers called SNOW that follows the adventures of Abraham Snow. Book 5, SNOW STAR, was released on April 2, 2020 from BEN Books. Upcoming projects include a 4-book comedy/horror series for Falstaff Books called Hunter Houston: Horror Hunter. That’s been a fun experiment. I also do a serialized crime novel on my Patreon page. Plus, there’s always a list of projects ready to begin.
You can check out my work at: www.bobbynash.com
You can learn more about my indie publishing imprint, BEN Books at: www.ben-books.com
I also have a dedicated Snow site at: www.abrahamsnow.com
And you can always find me all over social media:
Please stop by and say hello. Thanks for the interview. This was fun.
Click here to see all of Potemkin Pictures dozens and dozen of completed fan films.