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Old July 25 2010, 06:20 AM   #136
Psion
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

It's definitely got that Mike Post & Pete Carpenter vibe going for it. Maybe if Tom Selleck had been cast as Decker and David Hasselhoff as Xon.
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Old July 25 2010, 08:35 AM   #137
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

Joe_Atari wrote: View Post
Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
Lessee....music from "Inside Star Trek"...
Fun stuff here; it's great seeing the Phase II Enterprise in action! Not to divert focus from Dennis' great rendering, but if I might suggest, this HAS to be the Phase II theme music:



Maybe from 0:38 to 1:13 or so... Yeah, it's the TMP theme but it would so give that late-'70s Dallas (or dare I say Space: 1999?) vibe. If you figure Phase II was going to be relatively low-budget with a lot of then-new video effects, they might have gone with a theme like this. Someone else already put this onto the end credits of TMP, but it might work even better here!
Oh...

Man...

That is SO freaking awesome!!! Too much disco-goodness! That would have totally been a good theme for a 1970's-era Trek...

I'd love to find an .mp3 of this music.
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Old July 25 2010, 10:46 PM   #138
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

Not a problem, if you have the audacity to acquire one...
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Old July 25 2010, 10:56 PM   #139
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
Gag me with a painstick.
Remember the idea was to envision what TPTB might have done had the show gone on the air as planned in February 1978. To do that you have to set aside 30+ years of tastes, fashions, and sensibilities and place yourself in the time. Disco was still very much in full swing, and its influences permeated practically every aspect of pop culture. Even the "23rd century" designs for Phase II were heavily influenced by the styles and designs of the day; ever seen Mike Minor's concept art for the PII bridge (with Kirk basically sitting in a white "capsule" chair straight out of the decade), rec room, and the Starfleet casual attire that was actually produced (and ultimately ended up in the PII fan production)? Also, the series had to appeal to more than just hardcore Trek fans, so it follows that the creators might take theme music cues from other dramatic shows of the day (e.g. the aforementioned Dallas). And painsticks didn't exist back then either!

Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
And whoever said that Phase II was going to be a low budget show?
Without going into too much detail (and not to get too far off-topic), with the 2-hour pilot initially budgeted at approximately $3 million (certainly a lot of money for the day), that had to go a long way:

1. All of the development costs for prior aborted Trek projects (ala TMP) -- estimated at about $500,000

2. Elaborate standing sets that were designed to be durable enough for a multiple-year series run

3. Multiple pay-or-play actor salary committments (with a pretty fair chunk undoubtedly going to Shatner)

Had the series gone to production, costs would have been kept in check (whether intentionally or otherwise) through:

1. Extensive use of Doug Trumbull's Magicam video-compositing process to (rather convincingly really) insert actors into miniature environments, drastically cutting set construction and location filming costs (interesting to note that this would have doomed PII to standard definition video only like TNG et al today, although this would not have been anticipated in 1977 like it could have been in 1987, but I digress)

2. No salary for Nimoy (and I firmly believe his planned non-participation in PII was all about money or lack thereof -- another discussion entirely, but notice how fast he jumped aboard once Paramount settled his lawsuit and PII transformed into a big-budget theatrical release? I Am Not Spock indeed!)

3. The Decker character, which was designed to either force Shatner to take a pay cut or be replaced with a less expensive actor

4. Admittedly dated miniature construction and non-motion control VFX techniques (that by all accounts had to be drastically upgraded for TMP)

5. Extensive use of stock footage (this WAS Star Trek after all)

So much like Battlestar Galactica at the time, where the budget was heavily front-loaded to create elaborate sets and to rent John Dykstra to create a stock library of visual effects, the PII post-pilot per-episode budget would probably have been much closer to, say, Six Million Dollar Man. Interestingly both Galactica and PII had also planned to recoup their upfront costs via domestic and/or international theatrical releases.

I guess the point is that although Star Wars had hit, at the time the suits were not yet convinced that its success could be duplicated. They were persuaded by CE3K, but it is unlikely that even at that point Paramount was of a mind to spend unlimited cash on PII (which they ended up doing with TMP of course thanks to problematic management but that's another story).
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Old July 25 2010, 11:48 PM   #140
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

There was a great deal made, for publicity purposes, of the seven million dollar budget for the first seven hours of Battlestar Galactica - "a million dollars an hour!"
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Old July 26 2010, 12:57 AM   #141
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

Dennis wrote: View Post
There was a great deal made, for publicity purposes, of the seven million dollar budget for the first seven hours of Battlestar Galactica - "a million dollars an hour!"
A Galactica domestic theatrical release poster I have from 1979 says, "Two years in the making... presented at a cost of $14,000,000"! I guess they were counting the entire series at that point? I'm sorry, "The Lost Warrior" did not cost $1,000,000. Publicists...

Good luck with the PC; looking forward to your next pass on the PII E!
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Old July 26 2010, 06:35 PM   #142
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

Roddenberry would've nixed any sort of disco music for the same reason he didn't go for any funky 60's style music for the original series, because it immediately dates the program, network execs be damned.

And Magicam was not Trumbull's company. Trumbull was brought in when the project was finally changed to a major motion picture and Magicam was let go. They would've been fine for the small screen (just see how they did with Carl Sagan's "Cosmos"), but not for the big screen.
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Old July 27 2010, 02:14 AM   #143
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
And Magicam was not Trumbull's company. Trumbull was brought in when the project was finally changed to a major motion picture and Magicam was let go. They would've been fine for the small screen (just see how they did with Carl Sagan's "Cosmos"), but not for the big screen.
I don't know exactly what you're talking about, but didn't Trumbull invent the Magiam system in the first place for The Starlost? I believe that's why the poster above referred to it as "DOug Trumbull's Magicam video composition process".
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Old July 27 2010, 05:11 AM   #144
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

Is it just me or didn't the Magicam process footage look just like the chroma key shots from Land Of The Lost? I really don't see why they thought it was gonna work for ANY production...
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Old July 27 2010, 05:32 AM   #145
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
Roddenberry would've nixed any sort of disco music for the same reason he didn't go for any funky 60's style music for the original series, because it immediately dates the program, network execs be damned.

And Magicam was not Trumbull's company. Trumbull was brought in when the project was finally changed to a major motion picture and Magicam was let go. They would've been fine for the small screen (just see how they did with Carl Sagan's "Cosmos"), but not for the big screen.
Well, the TOS theme was very samba-like, and samba music was HUGE in the 1960's.
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Old July 27 2010, 06:25 AM   #146
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

From Memory Alpha...

Magicam was a relatively short-lived company specialized in building miniatures. The company, headed amongst others by vice-president Carey Melcher, was a full subsidiary of Paramount Pictures, who created the company to maintain full control over filming models. The most notable contributions of the company are the models built for Star Trek: Phase II and Star Trek: The Motion Picture, most notably the refit-USS Enterprise. The company was in existence from the mid seventies until 1982, when the shop was closed down and Paramount began using Industrial Light & Magic for the pre-production of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.

[snipped list of model makers]

The only credits of the company after The Motion Picture were the TV shows Cosmos(1980) and The Greatest American Hero(1981).
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Old July 27 2010, 09:59 AM   #147
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

Trumbull did develop Magicam. Here's the patent application illustration on wiki.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Magicam-patent.png

And from the Wiki page on the Starlost http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Starlost

Originally, the show was to be filmed with a special effects camera system developed by Doug Trumbull called Magicam. The system comprised two cameras whose motion was servo controlled. One camera would film actors against a blue screen, while the other would shoot a model background. The motion of both cameras was synchronized and scaled appropriately, allowing both the camera and the actors to move through model sets. The technology did not work reliably. In the end a simple blue screen effects were used forcing static camera shots.[2]
The failure of the Magicam system was a major blow — as the Canadian studio space that had been rented was too small to build the required sets. In the end partial sets were built, but the lack of space hampered production.[2]
To the best of my knowledge, the ONLY aspect of Magicam that Paramount ever dealt with was the miniatures fabrication end of things. The acquired it when the agreed to finance Trumbull's "Showscan" project, which utilized a wide format 70mm film (w/ sideways frames, 70mm tall by roughly 150mm wide) shown at 60fps (basically, a more advanced predecessor to IMAX, which utilized the same "sideways" format to more than double the projectable dimensions of 70mm filmstock).
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Last edited by chardman; July 27 2010 at 10:16 AM.
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Old July 27 2010, 06:21 PM   #148
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

chardman wrote: View Post
Trumbull did develop Magicam. Here's the patent application illustration on wiki.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Magicam-patent.png

And from the Wiki page on the Starlost http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Starlost

Originally, the show was to be filmed with a special effects camera system developed by Doug Trumbull called Magicam. The system comprised two cameras whose motion was servo controlled. One camera would film actors against a blue screen, while the other would shoot a model background. The motion of both cameras was synchronized and scaled appropriately, allowing both the camera and the actors to move through model sets. The technology did not work reliably. In the end a simple blue screen effects were used forcing static camera shots.[2]
The failure of the Magicam system was a major blow — as the Canadian studio space that had been rented was too small to build the required sets. In the end partial sets were built, but the lack of space hampered production.[2]
To the best of my knowledge, the ONLY aspect of Magicam that Paramount ever dealt with was the miniatures fabrication end of things. The acquired it when the agreed to finance Trumbull's "Showscan" project, which utilized a wide format 70mm film (w/ sideways frames, 70mm tall by roughly 150mm wide) shown at 60fps (basically, a more advanced predecessor to IMAX, which utilized the same "sideways" format to more than double the projectable dimensions of 70mm filmstock).
I've always been amazed at how little there is about Magicam out there. I've started compiling references in order to write a Wikipedia entry on the subject, but not quite gotten to the point where I have enough material to make anything more than a stub out of it.

Joe_Atari wrote: View Post
1. All of the development costs for prior aborted Trek projects (ala TMP) -- estimated at about $500,000.
What's the source for this number?
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Old July 28 2010, 02:12 AM   #149
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

DS9Sega wrote: View Post
I've always been amazed at how little there is about Magicam out there. I've started compiling references in order to write a Wikipedia entry on the subject, but not quite gotten to the point where I have enough material to make anything more than a stub out of it.
It's not all that surprising to me, as it was a technology that just didn't work reliably, and was quickly abandoned. The only reason the company stayed around as long as it did had little or nothing to do with the Magicam technology itself, but because of the incredible model-making crew they had, and their ability to stretch standard chroma-key composites to their very limits. Keep in mind that the ONLY screen credits the company has beside ST:TMP are "Cosmos" and "The Greatest American Hero". And while they used the actual Magicam technology in "Cosmos" for Sagan's visit to a virtual Alexandrian Library, ALL the other effects were standard chroma-key shots that didn't utilize any aspect of the Magicam process, or simple miniatures shots. And the effects for Greatest American Hero were limited to a few standard miniatures shots (the alien craft of the guys who left the super-suit) and fairly pedestrian chroma-key flying shots.


Years ago, I saw a video film on late night television, which was apparently the only project to utilize the Magicam process extensively. I don't know what it was called, and can't find any reference to it at all, and remember only that the effects looked pretty crappy.
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Old July 28 2010, 03:53 AM   #150
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Re: "Star Trek: Phase II" Enterprise

I'm surprised no one has actually tried to do this with modern technology. It shouldn't be hard to write a program for and build a rig that would accurately translate and scale both cameras in sync.

Sure, we can bypass this thanks to CGI, but I'd just like to see this done as a proof-of-concept.
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