View Single Post
Old September 11 2013, 04:27 AM   #91
Vice Admiral
Maurice's Avatar
Location: Maurice in San Francisco
View Maurice's Twitter Profile
Re: Was Roddenberry a Terrible Writer?

Professor Moriarty wrote: View Post
FWIW, I'm halfway through volume I of These Are the Voyages ( and from the series' own production history and notes it seems plain that Gene Roddenberry was an inveterate meddler in the scripts of other writers and something of a hack in his own "write" (pun very much intended).
re Roddenberry and the "need" to rewrite scripts (emphasis mine):
Inside Star Trek, p. 138-9 wrote:
BOB [JUSTMAN]: At the time, I was disappointed by the fact that Gene never responded to my request to be paid for the story [for Tomorrow Is Yesterday]. I knew he had come up with a number of story ideas for the show, "springboards" as we called them. He claimed that he wouldn't get paid for them; they were part of his duties as creator of the show. But since I was part of the management team, I rationalized, if Gene could do it gratis, then so could I. The important thing was to help the show in every way possible. At the time, I had no idea that Gene would receive extra money from the studio for this "extra work." Many years later when I had the facts, I came to realize that the "feet of clay" syndrome was kicking in--but at the time, I didn't want to accept that fact.

HERB [SOLOW]: Gene's refusal to acknowlege Bob Justman's story contribution was a particularly cruel treatment of his Associate Producer and friend, especially when considering his money demands for anything he wrote or rewrote. Part of the salary and royalty paid series "Creator-Executive Producers" covered some rewriting of stories and scripts. After I left [Desilu] and went to MGM, Gene's agents submitted bills directly to the Paramount Business Affairs Department for almost every story or rewrite he did. The payments ranged from $750 to over $3,000, at times even more than what the writer of a particular script was paid. It was like putting the fox in charge of the henhouse; it was Gene himself, deciding what stories and scripts needed rewriting. And the more stories and scripts he rewrote, he more extra money he was paid. It's no wonder that almost all of the Star Trek writers, at one time or another, were angered over his treatment of their scripts. At the time, even Bob Justman didn't know about Gene's additional "perks." These extraordinary payments were not reflected in the studio's weekly cost reports.

By the time I heard about Roddenberry's refusal to give RJ credit, money, or even a personal acknowledgement for his story, it was twenty-seven years later and there was nothing I could do to correct the situation.
Inside Star Trek, p. 139 wrote:
(Several years later, the Writers Guild ruled that scriptwriters must be given the opportunity to do their own first rewrite and, if they chose not to do so, specifically forbade producers from rewriting a script without first consulting the writer.)
So make of that what you will.
* * *
"There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.
óWill Rogers
Maurice is offline   Reply With Quote