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Star Trek - Original Series The one that started it all...

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Old August 16 2011, 04:52 AM   #46
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

Kelso wrote: View Post
WTF? Are we now believing that the civil rights movement would have succeeded without Uhura?
Nor would we have made it into the 21st Century without the visionary utopian....um, visions of Gene Roddenberry.

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Old August 16 2011, 05:05 AM   #47
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

^ Without a phone call from a 22 year old Nichelle,
MLK would never have lead the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott.
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Old August 16 2011, 05:42 AM   #48
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
Koenig and Nimoy, on the other hand, only tell of one take, and that the lady wasn't one of the extras, but someone off the street who was just walking her dog, had no idea there was a movie being shot, and was giving directions to these two strange people. The moment was so humorous and honest, they knew they wanted to keep it, but now it was a mad dash to track her down and get her to sign a release so they could use the footage.
If true, I have an awful lot of respect for Koenig's ability to ad lib. His "Alameda, that's vat I said, Alameda" is what really sold it.

As for Nichols, I've always maintained she is an absolutely beautiful woman, inside and out. And she's been believing her own bullshit for waaaaay too long.
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Old August 16 2011, 06:35 AM   #49
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

Dennis wrote: View Post
Mr_Homn wrote: View Post
One person's memory against another.
Entirely wrong.

It's the memories of a number of people against an unwillingness on the part of others to accept those memories. The folks who prefer to believe the embellished version don't have memories reaching back decades which contradict those who know better, so it's not a matter of memory against memory at all.
Entirely wrong? How so? I quoted the post of one person recalling an event from the 1980s which contradicts another person's memory (the actress in question, who is a primary source, unlike the people on this forum) about an event that occured during the 1960s. There is nothing wrong about what I said. It was an entirely correct and objective assessment. One memory versus another. After that, a few others chimed in agreeing with the former. Still, no hard evidence whatsoever.

I prefer to believe neither side. I have no dog in this fight. All I'm asking for is some citations. Like I said, if there's no evidence, it's just hearsay. Just because some older people who have thousands of posts on a fanatical internet forum agree that it's bullshit based on some vague recollection of conventions in the 1980s doesn't make it fact. It's just not satisfactory. Don't let your bias get in the way, Dennis. Provide some citations if you feel so strongly about it.

Sir Rhosis wrote: View Post
Captain Robert April wrote: View Post
It should be noted that this is not the only instance where she's gilded the lily while relating a tale. Her version of that scene in ST IV where Chekov and Uhura are asking passersby the location of the "nuclear wessels" and the lady out walking her dog tells them Alameda is in stark contrast to the versions told by both Walter Koenig and Leonard Nimoy. In Nichelle's version, they went through multiple takes, the lady wasn't supposed to say anything, but kept chiming in "because they seem so nice", eventually leading to a minor conference where Nichelle suggests they just sign the lady to a one-day contract so they can use the footage and move on.

Koenig and Nimoy, on the other hand, only tell of one take, and that the lady wasn't one of the extras, but someone off the street who was just walking her dog, had no idea there was a movie being shot, and was giving directions to these two strange people. The moment was so humorous and honest, they knew they wanted to keep it, but now it was a mad dash to track her down and get her to sign a release so they could use the footage.

And we're not talking thirty years of failing and/or revisionist memory in this case, this started within a few years of the movie.
Well, neither story of the passerby is exactly true. Layla Sarakalo gave an interview a few years ago, which I personally encapsulated for Wikipedia as follows:


"The scene in which Uhura and Chekov question passersby about the location of nuclear vessels was filmed with a hidden camera. However, the people with whom Koenig and Nichols speak were extras hired off the street for that day's shooting and, despite legends to the contrary, knew they were being filmed. In an interview with StarTrek.com, [COLOR=#0b0080]Layla Sarakalo[/COLOR], the extra who said, "I don't know if I know the answer to that... I think it's across the bay, in Alameda", stated that after her car was impounded because she refused to move it for the filming, she approached the assistant director about appearing with the other extras, hoping to be paid enough to get her car out of impoundment. She was hired and told not to answer Koenig's and Nichols' questions. However, she answered them and the filmmakers kept her response in the film, though she had to be inducted into the Screen Actors Guild in order for her lines to be kept."

The original article is no longer on StarTrek.com it seems. She said she knew if she was able to get a line of dialogue in she would be paid more.

Sir Rhosis
So it appears Nichols, Nimoy, and Keonig were all wrong. All within a few years of making the movie. You'd think the DIRECTOR of the film of all people would know the real story. Why doesn't anyone accuse Nimoy and Keonig of being liars? Their version of what happened during the "nuclear vessels" scene seem to be just as inaccurate as Nichols's version. Yet she is the only one painted as a liar. In reality, they all probably just had faulty memories or didn't get the complete story while filming within a hectic schedule on location... Or any other number of reasons.
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Old August 16 2011, 07:24 AM   #50
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

Mr_Homn wrote: View Post
I prefer to believe neither side. I have no dog in this fight. All I'm asking for is some citations. Like I said, if there's no evidence, it's just hearsay. Just because some older people who have thousands of posts on a fanatical internet forum agree that it's bullshit based on some vague recollection of conventions in the 1980s doesn't make it fact. It's just not satisfactory. Don't let your bias get in the way, Dennis. Provide some citations if you feel so strongly about it.
You know, some of the televised interviews aired before the internet age, are not well indexed, and take, you know, good ol' fashioned work to track down. Once located, some of the video may even turn out not to be available anymore outside of certain public or university libraries. It's not like people aren't working on it. In fact, it's been pointed out to the contrary in this thread that some people are voluntarily making an effort to dig up the citations that everyone else can just double click on.

Here is a telling of the story from this year: http://www.blinkx.com/watch-video/ni...2bp1aSXToNt2uA.

There is some discussion here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Nichelle_Nichols.
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Old August 16 2011, 08:29 AM   #51
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

Mr_Homn wrote: View Post
So it appears Nichols, Nimoy, and Keonig were all wrong. All within a few years of making the movie. You'd think the DIRECTOR of the film of all people would know the real story. Why doesn't anyone accuse Nimoy and Keonig of being liars?
Koenig very likely didn't know the full story, only that this lady, who wasn't supposed to say anything, is suddenly speaking (which probably prompted him to think that she wasn't a rebellious extra but someone from off the street who happened to wander into the shot -- stranger things have happened, so why the hell not?), and the people behind the camera are chattering about how they want to keep that take and she has to sign something so they can. I don't recall Nimoy's exact version, but I know it doesn't differ all that much with Koenig's, or, for that matter, the actual facts as they've just been related to us, that it was just one take, the pretty lady spoke when she really wasn't supposed to, and some extra paperwork got generated so they could keep the shot.

Their version of what happened during the "nuclear vessels" scene seem to be just as inaccurate as Nichols's version. Yet she is the only one painted as a liar. In reality, they all probably just had faulty memories or didn't get the complete story while filming within a hectic schedule on location... Or any other number of reasons.
Koenig's, and possibly Nimoy's (if someone could check on that, it'd be appreciated), are only lacking a few details. Nichols adds in a whole boatload of stuff that just ain't so. And while her version makes for a great con story, not to mention filling a lot more time than either of the other versions, that doesn't make it any more true.
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Old August 16 2011, 08:55 AM   #52
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
Mr_Homn wrote: View Post
I prefer to believe neither side. I have no dog in this fight. All I'm asking for is some citations. Like I said, if there's no evidence, it's just hearsay. Just because some older people who have thousands of posts on a fanatical internet forum agree that it's bullshit based on some vague recollection of conventions in the 1980s doesn't make it fact. It's just not satisfactory. Don't let your bias get in the way, Dennis. Provide some citations if you feel so strongly about it.
You know, some of the televised interviews aired before the internet age, are not well indexed, and take, you know, good ol' fashioned work to track down. Once located, some of the video may even turn out not to be available anymore outside of certain public or university libraries. It's not like people aren't working on it. In fact, it's been pointed out to the contrary in this thread that some people are voluntarily making an effort to dig up the citations that everyone else can just double click on.

Here is a telling of the story from this year: http://www.blinkx.com/watch-video/ni...2bp1aSXToNt2uA.

There is some discussion here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Nichelle_Nichols.
One version I came across specifies the fundraiser taking place at UCLA, sometime in the fall of '67. Does this help anyone, one way or the other?
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Old August 16 2011, 09:40 AM   #53
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

I'm sure a search through the college archives could at least confirm that there was a fundraiser at that time, and perhaps the attendees, but I wouldn't know where to begin with such an inquiry.
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Old August 16 2011, 04:12 PM   #54
Captain Robert April
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

Well, first step, confirm whether or not UCLA hosted a NAACP fundraiser in the fall of '67. If that falls apart, that puts a major kink in things right from the start.
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Old August 16 2011, 07:28 PM   #55
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

I believe the contributors here who testify they heard her say it was a phone call. That's not hearsay. They are witnesses of an event (her speaking).

I am far more skeptical of "I read it somewhere that she said x or y." I read lots, as do most of all y'all, and I know how things I read get mushed and jumbled around in my brain after awhile.

I would accept someone remembering a distinct time when she said it was only a "What Would Martin Want?" hypothetical question in her mind. Anybody distinctly remember her saying that? Or a print citation? This is fun. I feel like Columbo.
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Old August 16 2011, 08:02 PM   #56
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

plynch wrote: View Post
This is fun. I feel like Columbo.
That's the spirit.
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Old August 16 2011, 08:33 PM   #57
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

plynch wrote: View Post
This is fun. I feel like Columbo.
You know what that means... William Shatner did it!

I do think it's a shame there's so much ridiculous hyperbole about Trek's amazing influence on things like race relations (usually from those involved blowing their own trumpet), because the perfectly natural "What a load of crap" reaction to such OTT comments means what Trek did do tends to get overlooked. Elements of it have dated now, but it was still one of several shows (some of which have been mentioned already) that marked a sea change in the attitudes of American TV. That's a good thing, even if it's not the Earth Shattering Epoch some would have you think.

As for changing stories, as well as memories not being what they were, actors in general often exaggerate their anecdotes, their much more interested in being entertaining than strictly accurate. It's annoying for TV and film historians, but it's not inherently sinister.
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Old August 16 2011, 09:40 PM   #58
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

Anyone know what was with the cop in the Wessels scene? I also always assumed he was hidden cameraed and honestly ammused by the scene he was witnessing. Was he an extra as well?
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Old August 17 2011, 05:00 AM   #59
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

^^^Memory Alpha identifies him as an actor named Mark Erickson.

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Old August 17 2011, 09:02 PM   #60
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Re: Nichelle Nichols Interview

plynch wrote: View Post
I believe the contributors here who testify they heard her say it was a phone call. That's not hearsay. They are witnesses of an event (her speaking).

I am far more skeptical of "I read it somewhere that she said x or y." I read lots, as do most of all y'all, and I know how things I read get mushed and jumbled around in my brain after awhile.
I have to stand up for Mr. Homm's posts...despite the fact that he challenged my and others' memories from almost 30 years ago! Cheers to you, Mr. Homm. You're entirely right. We can't rely on human memory, regardless of whether we're remembering something we heard, saw, or read. The human mind is faulty. I was sober at the con when I first heard her tell the story, but maybe I've got the facts jumbled up with other things I've heard or read since then. So, we do need to find some archival evidence.

In addition to tracking down whether or not the NAACP event occurred, it would be nice if somebody could dig up a published interview from Nichols where the story was different then than it is now.

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