Discussion in 'Future of Trek' started by jefferiestubes8, Oct 3, 2012.
interesting opinion piece on Trekmovie:
Should Star Trek Come Back to TV? An Objective Evaluation
Good article. The key question is whether and how the Abrams movie fans can be used as a core audience to build a new series around. And he's right that, like it or not, an animated series is the most likely option.
Maybe that can still be a path to a live-action TV series. There won't be huge audience expectations so if an animated series does attract, say, a few million fans, that would be impressive and keep it going. Then you've got the fans corralled in one place, both old fans and new, and can eventually market a live action show to them.
The important thing is to keep the awareness generatd by Abrams' movies from dissapating. Casual fans are reminded of Star Trek once every few years, but once the movies are over, awareness will sink once again. A new show must be launched whle the movies are still generating millions of dollars worth of publicity. The biggest threat to the franchise is not oversaturation but the opposite.
But is Paramount really the one making $$ off the T-shirts? I thought that was CBS.
The business angle is tricky but creatively, there's no issue. There are plenty of stories for Star Trek to tell, it's a whole galaxy and a few centuries as your canvas! The Clone Wars has demonstrated that an animated series could be made primarily for kids but still appeal to adults. It's also possible they'd flip that around and air it late at night, with primarily an adult appeal.
An animated series would also make an anthology format more do-able since the same small group of voice actors could play many roles. i like this really expansive vision here:
I'd probably still watch it, but I'd be way more interested in live action. I like Star Wars quite a bit, but have never really felt motivated to watch the Clone Wars at all. I'd imagine that a good deal of fans who aren't hardcore might feel the same way about Star Trek.
What I've really been waiting for is the live action Star Wars show. I think that it seems to be forever put off, but if they can revolutionize live action sci-fi TV production, that could bode well for Trek. Especially so if the series was actually good or had good ratings. And we all know that if Star Wars excelled at something that Star Trek would be right there to try and copy it. I don't think a live action show will happen until then.
A series might not even happen until the 50th anniversary. That would be good timing. Perhaps a probable 3rd (and maybe last) Abrams movie in May of 2016, and then a series that starts in September.
The Star Wars live action show is hitting the same budgetary obstacle as a Star Trek one would. The two biggest problems for space opera on TV in general is how to get the budget down to doable levels and where to reach space opera fans nowadays since SyFy is more interested in doing cop shows with genre elements and ghost hunting reality malarky.
TCW can reach kids and animation fans on The Cartoon Network, and some (definitely not all) of the fans will find the show there as well, which bundles together a large enough audience to allow the show to be a comfortable success. So a Star Trek show needs to have some "audience bundling" approach like that. No all Star Trek fans will accept it, regardless of what it is, and not all will be motivated to find it.
One route is to make it anmated, put it on The Cartoon Network and follow the same path as TCW, but there are other, more difficult approaches, such as building the worldwide Star Trek fandom in Netflix via reruns of the old series and then launching a live action show via Netflix (how to make it cheap enough is still an open question) or taking advantage of the larger budgets possible in premium cable - you could do a great Star Trek series with Game of Throne's budget - but that series must be adapted to appeal to the premium cable audience.
Editing my above post, I mean "she," I didn't notice that the article was written by "Kayla."
It is. The article isn't entirely accurate in regards to Trek's ownership, since Paramount really doesn't have a say in a new Trek series.
A good space show can be done cheap. Whether people want to watch it depends on it's aesthetic. I don't think people care how cheap or retro fifties it looks. It's all a giant conceit anyway. No bumpy headed aliens. Too many aliens to begin with and too much money poured into too many cooks in bed with each other's pockets. TOS was streamlined and spartan and minimalistic. It's a tightwire minefield no doubt from both sides which is why it should be taken out of CBS hands and given to either NBC, Netflix or and internet web series pay per view, direct to dvd sort of thing.
CBS is not going to allow Star Trek to be done cheap. It would be smarter to so nothing than to denigrate the brand to make what will amount to chicken feed anyway.
I'm sure there's an audience for crappy looking space shows, but its not enough for CBS to bother with. If that's what you want, there are fan productions on the internet now. And TOS was not a cheaply made show. It was expensive for its time, and looked it.
The only smart move for CBS, besides doing nothing, is to spend the money needed for a first-rate show. The problem is, does a channel exist where can they recoup their investment for that show?
Since CBS owns the franchise, there is nobody with the authority to "take it away" from them. If CBS wants to partner with Netflix, fine, but that would be their decision,
Temis, have you seen some of these fan film Trek web series? They can be vastly superior than anything you'd expect than from something done by committee headed up by a suit or a mediocre talent with clout. It should be a CBS sponsored web series direct to dvd showrun by the two Brians - Fuller and Singer. I hear they're pretty good. Or let netflix take a stab at it.
I agree a straight to DVD series by the two Brians would be good but please no more of those fan-made series. They make me cringe just watching them. I think CBS and Paramount should sue their asses to stop them from being made.
Personally; I think a new Star Trek would do great; if they did it right.
The article brought it up; that a show can flop before it starts if the writting staff doesn't have it together. I for one, was really looking forward to Enterprise; but quickly lost interest when they introduced the new specieces which we had never heard of before, and the temporal cold war.
I tried to continue to watch it, but honestly, when they brought in the whole Xindi thing, and the attack on earth I had, had enough. There was more than enough history from the previous shows to build on,they could and should of used the Romulans as the bad guys instead of creating an entire new bad guy. But instead of treating it as a spin off, they treated the show as its own show, which totally ruined it for me, and I suspect millions others, who would of watched it.
I may not be in the entertainment business; but when you have really good ratings at first, then the ratings decline; it means you're doing something wrong, that a lot of people were interested in the concept, but you failed on delivery.
In my humble opinion, this combined with over saturation of Star Trek at the time; is why the series failed.
We've now been several years without a Star Trek show; and I suspect, many Trek lovers, would watch a new one, if they brought one back. Not to mention, you'd have a bunch of folks who used to watch trek, who would now be sitting down with their kids to watch it. (I got hooked, watching reruns of TOS with my dad).
So, honestly; if they put forward a good show, with a good plot, and didn't try to convey some goofy message that most poeple don't want to hear, (i.e. the Federation has to be the good guys, and willing to beat up the bad guys); then I suspect it would do far better than they think it would do. I also suspect, that once the writters got involved, they would screw it up; thereby tanking the show, and causing it to fail.
Why? If you dont like them, don't watch them.
Straight to DVD is ancient history, there's a new thing called streaming content now. CBS could partner with Netflix to create an original series. I'm sure it could be transferred to DVD as well for those who don't have streaming capabilities yet or in regions where Netflix does not yet serve.
I've tried watching them and haven't got past 15 minutes yet. They're an embarrassing insult to official Star Trek, with ex-Star Trek actors trying to relive the past when they were in the show and sad fanboys playing Star Trek when they should be watching the real thing.
As Temis said, if you don't like them, don't watch them. It's real easy.
Just strike the word "worldwide", because Netflix is not worldwide at all.
They're trying to be. But CBS can handle alternate distribution in regions where Netflix has yet to get their act together.
And who knows, in certain regions it might make sense to put the show on broadcast. It doesn't make sense in America, certainly not on CBS, that's all, and we need an American home for the show before CBS will do anything.
Speaking of Netflix, I don't even think Star Trek is on Netflix everywhere. It certainly isn't on the UK version of it.
Les Moonves has noticed how well the existing series do on Netflix, so maybe they'll show up everywhere. He might just be talking about America, but they can't really know how they'd elsewhere until they try.
CBS is the one making money from T-shirts using images from the television series, but Paramount must be making money from licensed products based on the motion pictures.
A recent article in Variety about Paramount licensing most of their back catalog to Warner Bros. for home video release noted that the Star Trek films were one of about 100 properties the studio chose to retain the rights to because they performed so well on home video. They're definitely making money from the franchise.
Only in the sense of home video and cable syndication sales of the movies.
CBS owns Trek outright. Paramount has a license to make Trek movies from CBS and profit off them, but CBS retains the merchandising rights to everything Trek, including Star Trek XI and the upcoming Star Trek XII.
Here's their current sell sheet (pdf):
I didn't realize Paramount's deal with CBS didn't include merchandising rights for the film series. Thanks for the link.
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