Star Trek fan films get made all over the world—from coast to coast in America, across Europe, in Japan, and even Australia. In fact, the Land Down Under has given our community five of the best NX-era fan films out there (STAR TREK: HORIZON from TOMMY KRAFT remains probably THE best NX-era fan film, in my opinion)…all from the same fellow, AARON VANDERKLEY.
A professional freelance filmmaker, Aaron began his fan film “trek” back in January of 2016 with the amazingly powerful 6-minute fan film called NEEDS OF THE MANY. Strong acting, impressive sets, and spot-on uniforms marked his debut. In mid 2017, Aaron released the 12-minute THE DERELICT, an intensely dark and haunting horror/thriller (very unique for a Star Trek fan film). Again, the acting was top-notch, the uniforms amazing, and now there was even action, suspense, and a few stunts thrown in. It really felt like part of an episode of Star Trek: Enterprise.
By the beginning of 2018, Aaron treated fans to a third superbly-crafted NX-era film, GOOD MEN, this one only 9 minutes long. Six months later, Aaron release his most ambitious release so far, the 14-minute THE FALL OF STARBASE ONE. And finally, in the summer of 2019, Aaron completed what turned out to be a 5-film story arc with the 20-minute LINE OF DUTY, blowing away fans with a touching and emotional story marked yet again by a top-notch level of acting, production quality, lighting, make-up, sets, costumes, props, sound…the works.
And then he was done. Aaron told me in a 2-part interview that he had only ever intended to make five NX-era fan films, and he had no plans to produce anything further in the genre. One of our community’s most impressive fan filmmakers was moving on…the bittersweet end of a short but truly impressive run.
Then, smack dab in the middle of May 2021, without fanfare, Aaron reemerged with a brand new fan film titled BEYOND THE SUN. Once again, the production quality was stunningly excellent, with practical sets, quality costumes and props, and high-end VFX from British animator emiritus SAMUEL COCKINGS. But Aaron had decided to jump forward a couple of centuries to the Voyager-era and set his newest fan production on board a Nova-class science vessel. And indeed, the powerful story felt remarkably like it could easily have been an episode of Voyager. Take a look…
Pretty awesome, right? Well, the clock on the wall says it’s time for another interview with Mr. Vanderkley, and this one is really worth a read, folks…Continue reading “Australian fan filmmaker AARON VANDERKLEY returns for BEYOND THE SUN! (interview)”