Dale Sams wrote:
Have we ever determined why they used stunt doubles in some of the simplest scenes, (Most of the Court Martial fight, and Space Seed), but didn't for something like Kirk's wall jump in Journey to Babel?
There are a number of reasons that determine whether a given stunt will use a double or not. As mentioned above, the visibility of the actor's face is one factor. Another is whether the stunt is fairly basic or something more involved that's potentially dangerous for the actor. Or maybe the actor may be trained in some stunts or fight moves but not in others. Or it could be that one director is more reluctant to let actors do their own stunts than another.
It's pretty ridiculous in Space Seed, they don't even try to hide it or anything. Shatner just... regenerates in to somebody else.
We can see that now, because we have big-screen TVs and HD-quality home video. Audiences in the 1960s were watching on smaller sets, often in black and white, often with much less image clarity, often through fuzz and distortion due to poor signal reception or mis-adjusted knobs. (There were so many things that had to be synchronized or tuned just right to get a good picture, and they all depended on manual adjustment. You often had to work
to get a decent picture, and sometimes "decent" was the best you could hope for.) So the substitution of the stuntman for the actor wouldn't have been nearly as obvious at the time -- which was why they were okay with doing it that way.