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Fan Productions Creating our own Trek canon!

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Old January 3 2014, 09:42 PM   #136
Maurice
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

Phase 2 has consistently applied the Director credit at the top of Act One until this episode, ergo someone did "change their to-date policy". How is that "assumption"?
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Old January 3 2014, 10:33 PM   #137
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

Maurice wrote: View Post
The transporter room scene is just overcrowded with characters who don't need to be there. It really only needed Kirk, Spock, Scotty and the Admiral.
That's a really good point. Adding the other two smacked of "sure, we can get you in a scene!" and cluttered the shot.
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Old January 4 2014, 01:42 AM   #138
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

RCAM wrote: View Post
Maurice wrote: View Post
The transporter room scene is just overcrowded with characters who don't need to be there. It really only needed Kirk, Spock, Scotty and the Admiral.
That's a really good point. Adding the other two smacked of "sure, we can get you in a scene!" and cluttered the shot.
Plus Bones and the transporter tech, neither of whom were necessary.
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Old January 4 2014, 01:57 AM   #139
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

urbandefault wrote: View Post
I think all this argument about credits is a little silly.
I said the same thing...but apparently I am wrong. I'll just shut up about it now, It simply seems distracting from a good conversation about the episode. And I can't speak for the production and my personal opinion that P2s choice of where to put each credit is something they are entitled to is apparently wrong. (and I still have never seen a published list of what order TV credits are listed in on screen - only how each credit reads, so that is what I based my statement on.)
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Old January 4 2014, 02:09 AM   #140
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

USS Excelsior wrote: View Post
As for the story, what was running the Klingon Empire prior to this episode since they just started the High Council in it, and supposedly there were no emperors for 2 centuries in TOS times.
There is actually NO references in TOS to how the Klingon Empire is governed. I believe you are thinking of Worf's assertion in TNG that "we really haven't had an emperor in 200(?) years". As a writer, I took the liberty of taking that to mean the Emperor wasn't really governing back then...by way of him restarting a High Council. (sort of how the King/Queen in England doesn't really govern the country. They have other duties, with the Prime Minister and Parliment doing the government stuff.)
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Old January 4 2014, 02:14 AM   #141
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

Maurice wrote: View Post
RCAM wrote: View Post
Maurice wrote: View Post
The transporter room scene is just overcrowded with characters who don't need to be there. It really only needed Kirk, Spock, Scotty and the Admiral.
That's a really good point. Adding the other two smacked of "sure, we can get you in a scene!" and cluttered the shot.
Plus Bones and the transporter tech, neither of whom were necessary.
Ehhhh, yeah, I guess you're right. The transporter room did seem a bit crowded. I actually thought the corridor right outside it seemed really narrow, but I could be wrong on that one. Still, I thought that scene was good, as it set the tone for what was to come later in the episode.
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Old January 4 2014, 02:21 AM   #142
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

Harvey wrote: View Post
If it were a DGA production, the guild would certainly arbitrate who received credit, the original or the replacement director, based on the work completed.
As you can't "hear" exactly what is meant in type, I just want to comment on this because of how it comes across to me.

To be clear...there was no "replacement director" pulled in during or after the main film shoot in disrespect to Mr. Mignogna. Deniz Cordell (a professional music director/composer by profession who has directed a lot of children's theater productions) was asked to take the reigns by Mr. Mignogna and Mr. Cawley when Mr. Mignogna left the film shoot to attend two different conventions on two different weekends - leaving the production at a stand still unless a second director was named.

So, while this was technically a "replacement director", it was Mr. Mignogna's choice at the time, both the person and teh need for another director to add to his work...due to his choice to fulfill other professional committments during the shoot.
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Old January 4 2014, 04:25 AM   #143
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

Some of that crowdedness is my fault (although not too much).

One of my pre-production script notes on the “Kitumba” script (I do a kind of a combined Bob Justman/Kellam de Forest Research script pass to check for, well, all sorts of things) was to suggest that we add a transporter technician into the transporter room assisting Mr. Scott with the transport duties. (I always liked the Old School visuals of an Engineering smock-clad technician assisting the transporter officer in an elaborate technical “dance” of working coordinately on the transport function, gesturing to one another.) But one of the things I forgot to specify in my suggestions was to have that technician be directed to clear out when the Admiral beams aboard and we begin to learn about the Top Secret nature of the upcoming mission. (Dispensing with the ND character served a small dramatic point: forcing him to vacate the room was meant to suggest a sense of intrigue and urgency.) In the end, even though he fails to leave the room as I had planned, the technician is hardly in any of the shots, so he’s not really contributing much to the crowdedness of the shot.

The major contributing piece of the puzzle as I recall is that Mr. Mark Goddard (“Major Don West” from Lost in Space) was slated to do our cameo as “Admiral West”—to get us started on our mission and get our story going. In the end, Mark couldn’t make the shoot at the last minute (I forget why) and we were forced to punt. By coincidence, Gil Gerard and Andy Probert were visiting the studio that day. So we hastily got some uniforms for the two of them (and for Ken Thomson) and came up with the idea of a “Captain’s Summit:” something really big must be brewing because of this gathering of so many high muckamucks from Starfleet. (We were able to capitalize on the notion that “Commodore Probert” was mentioned by name in Star Trek: The Motion Picture.)

In retrospect, it really is just pretty darned crowded in what is a pretty darned small room—especially when K’Sia the Klingon comes on board; that’s nine people in that room (assuming Klingons aren't 3/5 of a person)—as well as lights and cameras and production crew, of course. I don’t know if we would do it again if we had it to do over—including my notion of adding that extraneous transporter technician. (I’m not sure his presence, as well intended as it might have been visually, really would even have been worth it—even if there had been only one Admiral coming aboard.)

For what it’s worth, I think McCoy is fairly extraneous too, but he gets little enough to do in the episode as it is. (Candidly I think we disliked any time we made any change to John Meredyth Lucas’ script; keeping McCoy there helped to keep the fidelity of Lucas’ script if nothing else.

As always, question or comments are welcome.

(A reminder about having to “punt:” Special Teams account for about 30 percent of all points scored in American Football.)

J. Allen wrote: View Post
Maurice wrote: View Post
RCAM wrote: View Post

That's a really good point. Adding the other two smacked of "sure, we can get you in a scene!" and cluttered the shot.
Plus Bones and the transporter tech, neither of whom were necessary.
Ehhhh, yeah, I guess you're right. The transporter room did seem a bit crowded. I actually thought the corridor right outside it seemed really narrow, but I could be wrong on that one. Still, I thought that scene was good, as it set the tone for what was to come later in the episode.
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Old January 4 2014, 04:56 AM   #144
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

For what it's worth--from the DGA Basic Agreement for those who are DGA Signatories and so are bound by such agreement (or productions that simply aspire to the same level of professionalism of course):

"For television programs covered under the BA, as well as prime time and high budget dramatic programs covered under the FLTTA, the Director’s screen credit must be accorded on a separate card, which shall be the last title card before the first scene of the program or the first title card following the last scene of the program. However, in the case of split credits where credit is given to any person before the first scene of the picture, the Director’s credit must appear on the last solo card before the first scene of the program. No commercial or other material shall intervene between the Director’s card and the body of the program. For BA-covered programs only, the Director’s credit must be accorded in a size no less than 40% of the episode or series title, whichever is larger. Television programs less than two hours in duration require the directorial credit to be displayed for two seconds, and not less than three seconds for shows two hours or more in length."
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Old January 4 2014, 05:10 AM   #145
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

GSchnitzer wrote: View Post
The major contributing piece of the puzzle as I recall is that Mr. Mark Goddard (“Major Don West” from Lost in Space) was slated to do our cameo as “Admiral West”—to get us started on our mission and get our story going. In the end, Mark couldn’t make the shoot at the last minute (I forget why) and we were forced to punt.
He ended up having family obligations that conflicted with our shoot dates.

GSchnitzer wrote: View Post
For what it’s worth, I think McCoy is fairly extraneous too, but he gets little enough to do in the episode as it is...keeping McCoy there helped to keep the fidelity of Lucas’ script if nothing else.
I disagree. McCoy, as CMO, really needed to be informed of this "top secret information" so he knew what was going on - hence his need to be there. (face it, McCoy would have been a thorn in the side of Kirk till he got filled in anyway.) Also, If you recall, I cut the scene which should have followed this...with McCoy running tests on the Klingon for some reason trying to make him believe the Federation had "truth torture machines". It is referenced though, and McCoy serves the purpose of getting K'Sia somewhere after this scene...accounting for his whereabouts while Kirk goes on about ship's business.

GSchnitzer wrote: View Post
(Candidly I think we disliked any time we made any change to John Meredyth Lucas’ script;
umm...yeah, no. I respectfully disagree. Okay, yes and no. I disliked making any changes to JML's writer's drafts to begin with. But when I decided on a new story on his framework, I basically closed my eyes and punted - taking a huge chance that my trying to explain what happened between TOS and the feature films to the Klingons we knew, as well as changing the Kitumba from a weak, ignorant boy who didn't ever buy Kirk (who ended up making no impact on the Klingon Empire in the end) wouldn't be thrown back in my face as "NOT what JML intended!". James ended up liking it.

JML's "writer's draft" was clearly that...a draft and there was a lot that just didn't work - especially considering the Klingon history that canon had been established since he wrote it. So I kept the bones and wrote a different story. Then, after getting notes from Carlos Pedraza and Diane Randall, I threw that in the trash and restructured the whole thing. (There is actually one scene that is copy and pasted exactly in three different spots. As a writer I found that very interesting...seeing how another writer's mind was working. "hey, maybe that scene I put in earlier would work better here") An interesting note...in JMLs drafts, you didn't meet anyone in the Klingon Empire until almost the end of the first episode. That's pretty much death to an episode. It was also written in the middle of the 70s and was clearly an "anti-cold war" treatise. That was no longer socially relevant...IMHO.
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Old January 4 2014, 05:45 AM   #146
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

GSchnitzer wrote: View Post
For what it's worth--from the DGA Basic Agreement for those who are DGA Signatories and so are bound by such agreement (or productions that simply aspire to the same level of professionalism of course):

"For television programs covered under the BA, as well as prime time and high budget dramatic programs covered under the FLTTA, the Director’s screen credit must be accorded on a separate card, which shall be the last title card before the first scene of the program or the first title card following the last scene of the program. However, in the case of split credits where credit is given to any person before the first scene of the picture, the Director’s credit must appear on the last solo card before the first scene of the program. No commercial or other material shall intervene between the Director’s card and the body of the program. For BA-covered programs only, the Director’s credit must be accorded in a size no less than 40% of the episode or series title, whichever is larger. Television programs less than two hours in duration require the directorial credit to be displayed for two seconds, and not less than three seconds for shows two hours or more in length."
well, there you have it.

Though Phase II is not a DGA signatory. Or a WGA signatory for that matter (last I knew)
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Old January 4 2014, 06:33 AM   #147
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

Thanks for your thoughts on the crowded transporter scene. It makes sense to me now (with respect to the extra Starflett brass and the transporter operator). McCoy is certainly still extraneous in my view, so I'll have to go with Greg on that one.

Other thing I noticed is that Kirk says "gentlemen, let's get some answers" twice in about 30 seconds, which took me out of things a bit.

Don't want to belabor the negatives, though, so I should add a couple positives:

- I liked the scene with Chekov, Peter, and Prescott. Good way to develop the minor characters without letter them take over like Peter did in past episodes.
- I appreciated the writing for Uhura in the episode, and Kim played the part very well.
- The complicated space shots were visually excellent.
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Old January 4 2014, 07:19 AM   #148
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

GSchnitzer wrote: View Post
...By coincidence, Gil Gerard and Andy Probert were visiting the studio that day. So we hastily got some uniforms for the two of them (and for Ken Thomson) and came up with the idea of a “Captain’s Summit:” something really big must be brewing because of this gathering of so many high muckamucks from Starfleet. (We were able to capitalize on the notion that “Commodore Probert” was mentioned by name in Star Trek: The Motion Picture.)...
That's not accurate. Andy didn't just happen to be visiting. He was specifically there to play a part. I just consulted my email archive and on Thursday, June 11, 2009 there are emails back and forth with Andy over his planned cameo (he left for the shoot Saturday June 13th). He had sought some advice on acting for the first-time actor, which is why I knew he was going to appear. He'd been given dialogue and was working on learning lines beforehand. Andy emailed me about the experience of the shoot on June 16th.
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Old January 4 2014, 07:44 AM   #149
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

It's been so many years Greg just got the facts a little cloudy. Goddard did let us know ahead of time that he couldn't attend, so Andy (who was coming partly because James was using his design for Malkthon's ship) had been asked to step in.

Gil Gerard just happened to be visiting that day to discuss the possible "Buck Rogers Begins" series. He confessed he hated Star Trek, but that his wife was a huge fan...and by the end of the day he asked to participate. Ken Thompson the same...he came to check out the shoot and so "happened" to be available to add to the scene.

That very crowded, very HOT scene was shot late into the night....we had to use hairdryers between scenes to dry the sweat off the actors uniforms and went through a lot of towels and setting powder to keep the sweat running down the actors faces off camera. The fact that there is not one sweat stain visible is a testament to the costume and makeup department in this scene.
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Old January 4 2014, 10:16 AM   #150
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Re: Star Trek: Phase II - "Kitumba" Officially Released!

You could well be right Maurice. I attended the shoot for only a few days--and that scene wasn't one of the days. Patty is right that I might not be remembering right.

I guess only Gil was kind of a surprise visit. I suspect Mark's necessary pull-out was not quite "last minute." Andy might have been asked to fill in a couple of days before the shoot.

It would be interesting to know what Andy's lines were planned to be when he was prepping for the role. Did he have all the lines--including the ones that eventually went to Gil? Does your e-mail chain explain at all when and why he landed this acting gig with us?

Whatever the timeline had been for casting this final scene, it was some fancy (or clumsy) footwork to escalate the scene to a "Captain's summit" idea as I crappily recall.

Maurice wrote: View Post
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...By coincidence, Gil Gerard and Andy Probert were visiting the studio that day. So we hastily got some uniforms for the two of them (and for Ken Thomson) and came up with the idea of a “Captain’s Summit:” something really big must be brewing because of this gathering of so many high muckamucks from Starfleet. (We were able to capitalize on the notion that “Commodore Probert” was mentioned by name in Star Trek: The Motion Picture.)...
That's not accurate. Andy didn't just happen to be visiting. He was specifically there to play a part. I just consulted my email archive and on Thursday, June 11, 2009 there are emails back and forth with Andy over his planned cameo (he left for the shoot Saturday June 13th). He had sought some advice on acting for the first-time actor, which is why I knew he was going to appear. He'd been given dialogue and was working on learning lines beforehand. Andy emailed me about the experience of the shoot on June 16th.
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