Why was the Constitution refit never seen in TNG or thereafter/

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by Jason_Adank, Aug 2, 2020.

  1. Jason_Adank

    Jason_Adank Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    I recently picked up the HD bluray set of TNG, and have been enjoying watching it again. Seeing so many TOS movie era ships making appearances in the series, in particular the Oberth and Excelsior class ships, it made me wonder why it is that the iconic Constitution refit was never seen again after TUC? Not in TNG, nor in DS9, nor in VOY (which ok makes more sense). Its like it was simply put away forever only now to end up in the '06 Christie's auction and now reside in Jeff Bezo's Blue Origins lobby. Is there some backstory to this?
     
  2. FederationHistorian

    FederationHistorian Commodore Commodore

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    I think its because only the original NCC-1701 & Ent-A were refit. We never see other Constitution class ships in the movies. Its likely that Starfleet retired that class by the end of TUC.

    And there is no need to continue using Ent-A when Ent-B was launched weeks later.

    Basically, the Constitution refit was meant for Enterprise only, and not the ship class as a whole.
     
  3. Tosk

    Tosk Admiral Admiral

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    I assume the answer is "To make sure the Enterprise remains special."

    There's a glimpse of a wrecked one in ̶U̶n̶i̶f̶i̶c̶a̶t̶i̶o̶n̶. (Edit. Sorry, correction: Best of Both Worlds part II)
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2020
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  4. The Wormhole

    The Wormhole Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    They wanted it to remain a movie exclusive ship, just like the Sovereign class later on. Originally, the Stargazer was meant to be a Constitution refit, to the point that the actors actually said "Constitution class" while filming the episode. But someone stepped in at the last minute and said no to that, because they wanted to keep the ship for the movies, and so they decided to go with the ship design Picard had a model of in his ready room, which they named Constellation class since that was the easiest to dub over the actors saying Constitution in post-production.

    Which also creates the ironic situation in that The Battle is the only episode where the Stargazer model in Picard's ready room is replaced with a Constitution refit.
     
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  5. TommyR01D

    TommyR01D Captain Captain

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    This effect continues into the Dominion War - the Galaxy class is reduced to a generic background ship, but Sovereigns are nowhere to be seen, and an Intrepid only shows up once.
     
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  6. Jason_Adank

    Jason_Adank Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Ive often wondered if it was because of licensing / royalty issues among the studios and shops that created the prop for TMP. Midnight's Edge has an interesting video about all the trek licensing issues between pre and post JJ. Along thos same lines if insider politicsm (and I dont recall where I had read it) but I could have sworn that I had once read a discussion, perhaps referencing something Andy Probert had said when discussing the design of the D, that Paramount had wanted to avoid some licensing hassle that they were experiencing with using the refit model in production. Does this sound familiar to anyone?
     
  7. The Wormhole

    The Wormhole Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    And even using an Intrepid on DS9 faced some resistance. Initially, some of the higher ups wanted to use the Defiant sets, though DS9's production staff wanted to convey this was more of a diplomatic mission and felt Voyager's sets would be more appropriate. The higher ups conceded on the sets but were still reluctant to use the Intrepid design itself and only relented when the bean counters pointed out they could save money by using stock footage of Voyager flybys.
    Everything on Midnight's Edge is bogus horseshit. There were no legal, licensing, political issues preventing the use of the refit Consitution class anywhere else, nor are there any preventing the current Trek productions from using anything from prior Trek productions, as evidenced by the presence of the Enterprise D in Picard.
     
  8. F. King Daniel

    F. King Daniel Fleet Admiral Admiral

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  9. Jason_Adank

    Jason_Adank Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Ok got it on Midnights Edge's.

    That aside, I was simply surprised (and a bit disappointed) that the refit never made any further appearance when literally every other model from the films in the franchise had been reused repeatedly on the TV series. I cannot think of any model that didnt get used again except the connie refit. (except in the TNG episode Unification although which model were we seeing there? ie the little 3 footer they used briefly in TUC?)

    I guess it really just comes down to 'keeping it special' like with the lack of E appearances in DS9.
     
  10. Dukhat

    Dukhat Admiral Admiral

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    Here’s the history of the TMP Enterprise model post-movies:

    1. During post-production of the first season TNG episode “The Battle,” Picard’s old ship, the Stargazer, was supposed to be a reuse of the TMP Enterprise model. That would have been the first time the model would have been used on screen post-The Voyage Home. However, modelmaker Greg Jein built a new filming model based on the small yellow kitbash in the Ent-D’s ready room in time for filming, so the TMP model was never used.

    2. The wrecked TMP Enterprise model built specifically for the ship’s destruction in STIII was used as random ship wreckage in “Best of Both Worlds’ Pt. 2,” first as a wrecked saucer in the first scene, and part of the engineering hull in a later scene. Contrary to what was stated above, the TMP model was NOT used in “Unification.”

    3. The wrecked saucer was again used as a stand-in when the Galaxy class U.S.S. Odyssey was destroyed in “The Jem’Hadar.” It was supposed to represent the Odyssey’s saucer being destroyed, despite it not being the same class.

    4. The same wrecked saucer section above was later used as wreckage of the U.S.S. Olympia in the DS9 episode “The Sound of Her Voice.” It had crashed on a planet.

    5. The animated Short Trek “Ephraim & Dot” shows the TMP Enterprise, although it is just a cartoon version.

    So the original TMP filming model was never once seen on screen in TNG, DS9, VOY, ENT, DSC, or PIC, not even as stock footage. Plastic model kits or Franklin Mint metal models of the ship were used as desktop models in TNG, but that’s about it. The main reason why the model was never used as a guest ship was because it was a very unwieldy model to film. Its proportions made it very hard for the camera to get good angles of it. That’s why other ships were designed to be flatter, such as the Excelsior and the Enterprise-D: they were much easier to film.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2020
  11. ananta

    ananta Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I agree that it was probably to keep the Enterprise refit special and distinct. I’m happy with that decision. Although obviously TOS used the Enterprise model for other Starfleet ships due to budgetary reasons.

    I also agree that you can’t trust a single word of what is said by ‘Midnight’s Edge’. Professional troll and serial liar.
     
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  12. valkyrie013

    valkyrie013 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    As said, they want to keep hero ships rare. Plus the unwieldy model.
    And also as said. Uturders are worthless.
     
  13. Dukhat

    Dukhat Admiral Admiral

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    As I mentioned above, that was not the case. They were ready to reuse the TMP Enterprise as the Stargazer, and the unwieldiness of the model made filming it prohibitive. It had nothing to do with keeping the ship 'special,' just like that had nothing to do with why they never used the Enterprise-E model in the shows: not because they thought it was 'special,' but because they thought the viewing audience would get confused that they were seeing the Enterprise-E when the model would be representing a generic ship.
     
  14. Imaus

    Imaus Captain Captain

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    The Klingons demanded the Connie be pulled from service in the Khitomer Accords, and was a huge oddball issue, but Starfleet Engineers said 'Hey we're pumping out Excelsiors anyway and the Connie is fifty years old so...fine by us". So they pulled the Connies out of service to appease the Klingons who finally 'won' against the unbeatable Mid-Century ships...only to face Excelsiors in their place.
     
  15. Ralphis

    Ralphis Captain Captain

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    Anything Midnight's Edge says is only 25% true.
     
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  16. Paul755

    Paul755 Commodore Commodore

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    Ignoring real world production reasons...

    There were only 13 Connies to begin with right? And they lost at least 4 or 5 (counting the Enterprise) from the start of TOS to The Search for Spock. So by Voyage Home (assuming they didn’t create more) you’d only have 8-9 that had been refit and still in service and one of those became the 1701-A.

    adding another 75 years, there may have only been 1 or 2 that were still active. And at least 1 non-refit in the fleet museum. A ship that old was likely only being used as a transport/escort or short range planetary defense. The kind of ship that would have been sent to Wolf 359 in case of emergency.

    just not enough left to show onscreen.
     
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  17. nightwind1

    nightwind1 Commodore Commodore

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    I wouldn't listen to anything from Midnight's Edge. They're scumbags that don't know shit from Shinola about anything.
     
  18. nightwind1

    nightwind1 Commodore Commodore

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    That's being rather generous of you.
     
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  19. Jason_Adank

    Jason_Adank Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Putting aside production reasons, doesnt it seem unusual to have so many Oberths, Mirandas, and Excelsiors still running around in TNG, but no Connie Refit?
     
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  20. TommyR01D

    TommyR01D Captain Captain

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    As noted by Sonnenburg, it even had Voyager's registry number.

    Perhaps they just had larger production runs?
     
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