JUSTIN LEE does it again…STAR TREK: VOYAGER – The ANIMATED Series! (interview)

Well, THAT didn’t take long!

Two months after the release of the STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION – THE ANIMATED SERIES fan film (and less than a month after I featured the short vignette here on Fan Film Factor), Toronto-based animator and co-founder of GAZELLE AUTOMATIONS, JUSTIN LEE, has done it all over again!

Previously, Justin took a 2-minute sequence from the top-rated TNG episode “The Best of Both Worlds, Part 1” where Picard is kidnapped off the bridge by Borg drones, and adapted it to look and sound just like an episode of the Star Trek animated series from 1973. This creative and unique little video quickly went viral, and as I type this two months after its release, YouTube has it at nearly half a million views! WOW!!!

This time, it’s Voyager‘s turn (what about poor Deep Space Nine???). But while Justin chose one of TNG‘s generally-accepted BEST episodes to adapt, in the case of Voyager, he chose arguably one of the worst—the late-second season episode “Threshold” where Paris and Janeway slowly evolve into giant space-salamanders so they can mate and reproduce. Yeah, just writing that last sentence made me cringe! But watch until the very end because Justin concludes the vignette so perfectly that it almost makes up for the real “Threshold” (or at least acknowledges the ridiculous ending)…

This one seems to be going viral nearly as quickly as the TNG one, with nearly than 300K views in less than a week!

Justin already did a more elaborate interview me last time, but after watching the above video, I had a whole slew of NEW questions. Fortunately, being Canadian (in other words, being super-nice), Justin was more than happy to provide answers at infinite warp speed…!

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New ANIMATED Star Trek fan film THE QUINTAIN spotlights SCOTTY! (audio interview with CURT DANHAUSER)

With the new animated Star Trek series LOWER DECKS set to premiere next month, now is a great time for fan films to revisit the original animated Trek series from the 1970s.

For those of you young ‘uns who don’t remember the 70s or aren’t familiar with the animated Star Trek series, it ran on Saturday mornings between 1973 and 1974 and featured 22 half-hour episodes starring all of the members of the original cast except for WALTER KOENIG (there were budget limitations, although Koenig did write one of the episodes). Episodes featured return appearances by Sarek and Amanda, Cyrano Jones, Harry Mudd, Bob Wesley, and Koloth. The series actually won an Emmy for Outstanding Entertainment in a Children’s Series…the first Emmy win for any Star Trek.

As far as fandom and canon go, the animated series (TAS) is a peculiar life form. TAS was the first time we ever learned that the “T” in James T. Kirk stands for Tiberius (which became official canon in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country). Details of Vulcan from the animated episode “Yesteryear” made it into fourth season episodes of Star Trek: Enterprise. And many fans consider Robert April to be the first captain of the USS Enterprise NCC-1701 and Dr. McCoy’s daughter’s name to be Joanna…both revealed in TAS episodes.

Robert April from the TAS episode “The Counter-Clock Incident”

On the other hand, some aspects of TAS seem to defy canon—like Enterprise crew members carrying security ID cards, life support belts (never seen before or since), NCC-1701 being the first ship with warp drive, an early holodeck nearly a century before the Enterprise-D, and an Enterprise “decoy” that could be inflated to a size twice that of the starship itself AND would fool a Romulan crew! But the show was still fun, and some of the episodes were quite good (others…not so much). And for Trekkies in the 1970s who hadn’t seen new Star Trek episodes since 1969, just hearing those familiar voices again was magical.

So it was for fans like CURT DANHAUSER and KAIL TESCAR. Each of these gentleman has created their own website dedicated to the animated series. Kail created Star Trek Animated while Curt created his Guide to Animated Star Trek. Both websites have existed for decades (and look like it), and both are labors of love by their creators.

Now, one might think that the two websites would have a lot of overlap, but instead, they feature very complementary content. Take a look at the main sections of both sites (Kail’s is the first, Curt’s second)…

Kail’s has screen caps, fan artwork (including fan comics), sounds, games, and even calendars. Curt’s, on the other hand, has a ton of information about the characters, technology, timeline, and behind-the-scenes write-ups on the production itself. Both sites are veritable treasure troves! But the reason that Curt Danhauser is being featured in today’s blog is because he has just released a brand new, original animated Star Trek fan film—“The Quintain.”

Check it out…

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CURT DANHAUSER finally releases the last part of “PTOLEMY WEPT”!

Ptolemy WeptThere are few fans in the world (if any) who are more expert in and dedicated to the animated Star Trek series than Curt Danhauser.  For more than two decades, his website has been an amazing treasure trove of resources and background information for fans of that beloved 1970s series from Filmation.

Back in 2008, Curt went where no fan had gone before and released a brand new, 7-minute animated Star Trek episode short that he produced himself entitled “The Element of Surprise.”  Later that year, Curt released the first part of another, longer-length (28 minutes) animated episode, “And Let the Heavens Fall,” which he finished up early in 2009.

And then in 2011, Curt embarked on his most ambitious project yet, “Ptolemy Wept,” which would end up being 66 minutes long and take more than five years to finish!  You can watch the full episode (all nine parts) on this web page.

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