What We Left Behind

In 2017 television producer¬†and¬†screenwriter, Ira Steven Behr who was the showrunner¬†and executive producer of the show, announced he had reconvened much of the former cast and crew of Star Trek Deep Space Nine¬†for a documentary film entitled¬†What We Left Behind. The purpose behind it was to commemorate 25 years of `Star Trek: Deep Space Nine’, an exploration of the film’s legacy.¬†It had a very positive response and surpassed its fundraising goals, and this success lead to ground-breaking conversions of¬†Deep Space Nine¬†footage into higher definition although it caused some delays. A screening version was released in late 2018 in Hollywood, New York, and at the¬†Destination Star Trek¬†convention in the U.K.

By February 2017, the documentary was partially finished, according to Behr, with an¬†Indiegogo¬†fundraising page set up to crowdsource the rest of the money needed to complete it. In addition to interviews with cast and crew, the documentary will explore¬†Deep Space Nines legacy; Behr also reconvened the series’ old writers’ room to develop a script for the first episode of an imagined eighth season, which will be featured in the film. In 2017, a fundraiser for the documentary surpassed its target of nearly $150,000 within a day of going live. It went on to raise over $500,000 by March 2017, almost four times the amount requested. When it concluded it had raised over $631,000 from thousands of donators.

the documentary would have original music scored by¬†Star Trek¬†veterans¬†Dennis McCarthy¬†(256¬†Star Trek¬†episodes scored) and¬†Kevin Kiner¬†(10¬†Star Trek¬†episodes scored). The documentary’s producer is Kai de Mello-Folsom, in consultation with others from the original creative team including¬†Star Trek¬†franchise legends such as¬†Michael Okuda, Jonathan West, and¬†Doug Drexler. The documentary includes interviews with the following:

  • Cecily Adams
  • Marc Alaimo
  • Rene Auberjonois
  • Ira Steven Behr
  • Hans Beimler
  • Felecia Bell Rutkowski
  • Rick Berman
  • Marc Bernardin
  • Avery Brooks
  • Casey Biggs
  • B.C. Cameron
  • David Carson
  • Jeffrey Combs
  • Dan Curry
  • James Darren
  • Nicole de Boer
  • Michael Dorn
  • Doug Drexler
  • Ren√© Echevarria
  • Aron Eisenberg
  • Terry J. Erdmann
  • Terry Farrell
  • Lolita Fatjo
  • Max Grod√©nchik
  • Hana Hatae
  • J.G. Hertzler
  • Penny Johnson Jerald
  • David Livingston
  • Cirroc Lofton
  • Junie Lowry-Johnson
  • Dennis Madalone
  • Chase Masterson
  • Kerry McCluggage
  • Colm Meaney
  • Ronald D. Moore
  • Bill Mumy
  • Larry Nemecek
  • Denise Okuda
  • Michael Okuda
  • Robert O’Reilly
  • Steve Oster
  • Michael Piller
  • John Putnam
  • Lou Race
  • Andrew Robinson
  • Ben Robinson
  • Wallace Shawn
  • Armin Shimerman
  • Alexander Siddig
  • Luke Snailham¬†(uncredited)
  • Ian Spelling
  • Ron Surma
  • Nana Visitor
  • Jonathan West
  • Michael Westmore
  • Robert Hewitt Wolfe
  • Herman Zimmerman

RIP René Auberjonois

American actor and singer René Auberjonois best know for his role as the alien shapeshift Odo in Star Trek : Deep Space Nine has passed away at the age of 79. He had been married to his wife Judith since 1963. They had two children, Tessa and Remy, and three grandchildren. René Auberjonois died from lung cancer at his home in Los Angeles.

Auberjonois was born in¬†New York City. His father, Swiss-born¬†Fernand Auberjonois, was a¬†Cold War-era foreign correspondent and¬†Pulitzer Prize-nominated writer. His paternal grandfather, also named¬†Ren√© Auberjonois, was a Swiss¬†post-Impressionist¬†painter. His mother, Princess Laure Louise Napol√©one Eug√©nie Caroline Murat (1913‚Äď1986), was a great-great granddaughter of¬†Joachim Murat, one of¬†Napoleon’s¬†marshals¬†and¬†King of Naples¬†during the¬†First French Empire, and his wife,¬†Caroline Bonaparte, Napoleon’s youngest sister.

In 1968, Auberjonois landed a role on¬†Broadway, and appeared in three plays simultaneously: as Fool to¬†Lee J. Cobb’s¬†King Lear¬†(the longest running production of the play in Broadway history), as Ned in¬†A Cry of Players¬†(opposite¬†Frank Langella), and as Marco in¬†Fire!¬†In 1969, he earned a¬†Tony Award¬†for his performance as Sebastian Baye alongside¬†Katharine Hepburn¬†in¬†Coco. He received Tony nominations for his roles in¬†Neil Simon’s¬†The Good Doctor¬†(1973) opposite¬†Christopher Plummer; as the Duke in¬†Big River¬†(1984), winning a¬†Drama Desk Award; and, memorably, as Buddy Fidler/Irwin S. Irving in¬†City of Angels¬†(1989), written by¬†Larry Gelbart¬†and¬†Cy Coleman.

Other¬†Broadway¬†appearances included Malvolio in¬†Twelfth Night¬†(1972); Scapin in¬†Tricks¬†(1973); Mr. Samsa in¬†Metamorphosis¬†(1989); Professor Abronsius in¬†Dance of the Vampires (musical), the English-language version of¬†Jim Steinman’s musical adaptation of¬†Tanz der Vampire; and Jethro Crouch in¬†Sly Fox¬†(2004), for which he was nominated for an¬†Outer Critics Circle Award. In films, Auberjonois portrayed¬†Father Mulcahy¬†in¬†MASH¬†(1970), the expedition scientist Roy Bagley in¬†King Kong¬†(1976), and Chef Louis in¬†The Little Mermaid¬†(1989), in which he sang “Les Poissons”. In the American animated musical comedy film¬†Cats Don’t Dance¬†(1997), Auberjonois lent his voice as Flanagan, the human film director of “Li’l Ark Angel”.

His subsequent film roles included the gangster Tony in¬†Police Academy 5: Assignment Miami Beach¬†(1988 ), and Reverend Oliver in¬†The Patriot¬†(2000). He made¬†cameo appearances¬†in a number of films, including: Dr. Burton, a mental asylum doctor patterned after¬†Tim Burton, in¬†Batman Forever¬†(1995), and a bird expert who gradually transforms into a bird in¬†Robert Altman’s 1970 film¬†Brewster McCloud. He appeared as Colonel West in the 1991¬†Star Trek¬†film¬†Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. Other notable film appearances have included:¬†McCabe & Mrs. Miller¬†(1971),¬†Images¬†(1972),¬†Pete ‘n’ Tillie¬†(1972),¬†The Hindenburg¬†(1975),¬†King Kong¬†(1976),¬†The Big Bus¬†(1976),¬†Eyes of Laura Mars¬†(1978),¬†Where The Buffalo Roam¬†(1980),¬†Walker¬†(1987),¬†My Best Friend Is a Vampire¬†(1988 ),¬†The Feud¬†(1989),¬†Inspector Gadget¬†(1999), and¬†Eulogy¬†(2004).

Auberjonois portrayed the character of Straight Hollander in the 1993¬†Miramax¬†film¬†The Ballad of Little Jo. He voiced Professor Genius in¬†Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland,¬†Louis the Chef¬†in the¬†1st¬†and¬†2nd¬†Little Mermaid¬†films, Flanagan in¬†Cats Don’t Dance, the Butler in¬†Joseph: King of Dreams, and the concierge in¬†Planes: Fire & Rescue. In various long-running television series, Auberjonois portrayed a number of characters, including: Clayton Endicott III on¬†Benson¬†(for which he was an¬†Emmy Award¬†nominee),¬†Odo¬†on¬†Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and¬†Paul Lewiston¬†on¬†Boston Legal. He was also in two episodes of Frasier. He also branched out into voice acting for video games, having appeared in a number of popular video games. He portrayed the Greek mythological figure¬†Talos¬†in the first¬†God of War¬†(2005) game, the enigmatic Mr. House in¬†Fallout: New Vegas¬†(2010), Karl Schafer in the¬†Uncharted¬†video game series, and Odo in¬†Star Trek Online.

RIP DC Fontana

Dorothy Catherine Fontana or DC Fontana was an American television script writer and story editor, best known for her work on the original Star Trek franchise and several Western television series.

After a short period working for¬†Samuel A. Peeples¬†as a secretary, she moved to work for¬†Del Reisman, a producer on¬†The Lieutenant, whose creator was¬†Gene Roddenberry. Though¬†The Lieutenant¬†was soon cancelled, Roddenberry began working on¬†Star Trek, and Fontana was appointed as the series’ story editor but left after the second season to pursue freelance work. She later worked with Roddenberry again on¬†Genesis II¬†and then as story editor and associate producer on¬†Star Trek: The Animated Series. During the 1970s and early 1980s, she worked on¬†Logan’s Run,¬†The Six Million Dollar Man, and¬†Buck Rogers in the 25th Century.

Roddenberry hired her to work on¬†Star Trek: The Next Generation, but, while she was given an associate producer credit, the experience soured their relationship and resulted in a claim put to the¬†Writers Guild of America. She later wrote an episode of¬†Star Trek: Deep Space Nine¬†and an episode of the¬†Star Trek fan-made¬†series¬†Star Trek: New Voyages. Leonard Nimoy¬†credited her for expanding¬†Vulcan¬†culture within¬†Star Trek. He was unsure when “This Side of Paradise” was proposed, as Fontana had changed the romantic lead from¬†Hikaru Sulu¬†to¬†Spock but he enjoyed being able to act out emotions with the character, and also praised her work on “Journey to Babel” and “The¬†Enterprise¬†Incident”. Nimoy also felt that unusually among¬†Star Trek‘s¬†writers, Fontana was able to write believable female characters who were fully developed in the screenplay.

She also sold stories to several more science fiction series, including The Six Million Dollar Man, Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, and Automan, although the latter never became an episode due to the cancellation of the show. Fontana wrote scripts with her brother for The Waltons and under her own name again for The Streets of San Francisco. Fontana married cinematographer Dennis Skotak. She died on December 2, 2019, following a short illness.

USS Bellerophon

The USS Bellerophon (NCC-74705) was a 24th century Federation Intrepid-class starship operated by Starfleet. Under the command of Admiral William Ross, the Bellerophon transported Federation delegates to Romulus for a conference on Dominion War issues in 2375. (DS9: “Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges” ) The¬†Bellerophon¬†was the only¬†Intrepid-class starship other than the USS¬†Voyager¬†ever seen in¬†Star Trek, and the only one to appear outside of¬†Star Trek: Voyager.

The¬†Bellerophon¬†sets were a reuse of the¬†USS¬†Voyager¬†sets from¬†Star Trek: Voyager. This resulted in the¬†Bellerophon¬†having a¬†galley-style counter in the¬†mess hall¬†instead of the two food service¬†replicators, seen in “Caretaker“, and¬†captain’s dining room, mentioned in “Phage“. “Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges” writer¬†Ronald D. Moore¬†named the¬†Bellerophon¬†after the¬†HMS¬†Bellerophon, a British warship which served as part of a fleet commanded by¬†Lord Nelson¬†in the early 19th century. This vessel was in turn named after the¬†Greek¬†mythological¬†hero¬†Bellerophon, who rode the winged horse,¬†Pegasus. Coincidentally, the¬†USS¬†Pegasus¬†was featured in another episode written by Moore, namely¬†TNG: “The Pegasus“.

The¬†Bellerophon¬†was also the name of the starship that colonized planet Altair IV in the film¬†Forbidden Planet. That film was said to be among¬†Gene Roddenberry’s inspirations for creating¬†Star Trek. This was at least the second starship to bear the name, the first being the¬†Nebula-class¬†vessel¬†USS¬†Bellerophon¬†seen in the¬†Star Trek: Deep Space Nine¬†pilot “Emissary“.

Voyager’s Demon Class Beings

The things that come to you in the shower. I was in the shower earlier today when I started thinking that it was so sad about what happened to the Voyager crew duplicates from the Demon class or class Y planet (created in the season 4 episode # 23 “Demon” ). The being or “silver blood” comes to know about being “alive” for the first time after it comes into contact with Harry Kim & Tom Paris and duplicates them.

They then get to replicate the crew of the ship and even creates another Voyager and have the abilities and memories of the crew. Later in season 5 they are all killed after they start to deteriorate and try to find their class Y planet. No one is aware of what they achieved in that year of their existence and it’s a shame even the real Voyager isn’t aware of them.

I just had to sit and watch the episode “Demon” this afternoon before I had to get coffee and get ready to go to work. The episode is darkly haunting and beautiful in ways, especially when they are on the planet. I love these kind of episodes. I don’t have time to watch “Course : Oblivion” now so I will wait for when I come back home and then watch it.

RIP Aron Eisenberg

Actor Aron Eisenberg¬†(January 6, 1969 ‚Äď September 21, 2019) has died. Aron was an American actor and filmmaker known for his role as¬†Nog¬†on¬†Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Born to a¬†Jewish¬†family.He was born with only one, partially functioning,¬†kidney¬†and received a¬†kidney transplant¬†at the age of 17. This limited his growth to 5 feet (1.52 m).

Eisenberg appeared on TV shows including¬†Tales from the Crypt, Amityville: The Evil Escapes,¬†Parker Lewis Can’t Lose,¬†The Wonder Years, and¬†General Hospital. He guest-starred in “Motherly Love”, an episode of¬†Brotherly Love. Eisenberg had a repeating guest star role in the ’90s TV series¬†The Secret World of Alex Mack, in which he played the character Jerry. He appeared in films such as¬†The Liars’ Club,¬†Puppet Master III,¬†Streets, and¬†House 3. Eisenberg starred as¬†Nog, a¬†Ferengi, through all seven seasons of¬†Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Although the part called for him to appear under heavy makeup, he appeared without makeup as a news vendor in the episode “Far Beyond the Stars”.

He later guest-starred as a¬†Kazon, called Kar, on “Initiations”, an episode of¬†Star Trek Voyager. Eisenberg has also performed on stage in such productions as¬†The Indian Wants the Bronx,¬†On Borrowed Time¬†and¬†Minor Demons. He has occasionally directed for the theater, as in the 1997 production of¬†On Borrowed Time¬†and the 1998 production of¬†The Business of Murder¬†at the Conejo Players Theater.

Eisenberg worked as a professional¬†photographer, opening his own gallery sometime before 2013. In August 2015 Eisenberg was once again diagnosed with kidney failure. He underwent a successful kidney transplant on December 29, 2015, the medical bills for which were crowdfunded. On September 21, 2019, Eisenberg was rushed to hospital in what was described as “critical condition”. He died at the age of 50 later that day.

Deep Space Nine Leaves Me Shattered…Again!

That’s it. Just finished watching the series finale of Star Trek Deep Space Nine and I am a crying, emotional mess. Why did it have to end that way? Now I can’t go to work my evening shift.

Me: Boss, I can’t come in to work today.

Boss : Why such short notice?

Me : It’s not my fault. The war is over, the battle is won and the treaty is signed. But Worf is going away to be the Federation ambassador to the Klingons and joins Martok, Miles is off to earth to teach at the academy, and has taken Keiko, Molly & Yoshi with him, Odo has joined the great link and it looks like it was a final goodbye between him and Kira and that is just heart breaking and then….SIsko is with those stupid wormhole aliens who now want him there for who know how long, leaving a pregnant Cassidy and his son Jake behind in DS9. Rom already left for Ferenginar. And yeah Ezri & Julian have become a couple and the station is in good hands with Kira but to see Jake & Kira stare out from the station looking at the stars and wondering if we will ever see Odo & Benjamin again and then the sad version of the theme music plays and I….I….I….I…???

Boss: Ok. These are friends of yours? Or family?

Me: ???

Boss: Ok leave granted!

Star Trek Blows A Guy’s Mind!

This happened a few days ago. I have a Star Trek starships collection by Eaglemoss that is about 52 in total displayed in one of my bookshelves in my bedroom in my apartment. We’ve had some issues with termites and hence we have had to take apart the three built in cupboards in one bedroom and the 2 in mine as well as all the kitchen cabinets. The last section to go was my built in cupboards that serve as my wardrobe and storage for some junk. While the guys who were getting¬†the job done were in my room one of them noticed my starships and touched one of them and then looked at the Deeps Space 9 model. He had a smile on his face and looked at me. I thought he must think these are toys.

He asked me what they were and I took about 30 minutes to tell him that they were models of starships from the Star Trek franchise. He had never heard of Star Trek before, barely spoke any English. I told him it’s this vision of the future and explained what the show is about and how things work and how technological advancements are shown in this series and aliens and etc etc.

I could literally see his mind being blown. He had the biggest look of wonderment in his face. Did I say mind blown? No, I think I “Blasted” his mind with this information and I could see that he was left in awe as he left my apartment.

Thanks Star Trek & Eaglemoss!

Please Stand By

Please Stand By is a 2017 American comedy-drama film directed by Ben Lewin and based on the 2008 short play of the same name by Michael Golamco, who also wrote the screenplay. The film stars Dakota Fanning, Toni Collette, Alice Eve, River Alexander, and Patton Oswalt, and was distributed by Magnolia Pictures. After playing at various film festivals, the film was simultaneously released theatrically and on-demand on January 26, 2018.

Wendy (played by Dakota Fanning) is an autistic young woman who stays in a group home in Oakland, California monitored by her primary caregiver, Scottie (played by Toni Collette). She is fixated by Star Trek and spends her time writing a 450-page Star Trek script to enter in¬†Paramount Pictures’¬†screenwriting contest in hopes of winning the $100,000 prize. Wendy is visited by her sister Audrey (Alice Eve), who shows Wendy pictures of her infant daughter, Ruby, and reveals that she is selling their childhood home. Wendy asks Audrey to take her home, arguing that she will be able to buy back the house and help Audrey care for Ruby once she wins the screenwriting contest. Audrey refuses, telling Wendy she isn’t capable of caring for a baby. Wendy has a meltdown and Audrey leaves in tears.

Wendy misses the date to submit the script via post so she sneaks out of the house early the next morning and is followed by the group home’s small dog, Pete (who is in a Star Trek themed outfit knitted by Wendy) and decides to hand it over in person to Paramount Pictures. Wendy and Pete board a bus to¬†Los Angeles, but are kicked off and left by the side of the road after Pete urinates in the bus. She then walks into a small town and is mugged off most of her money. At a nearby store where she goes to buy some food, she is nearly tricked out the rest of her cash but an elderly woman named Rose comes to help her. Rose sympathizes with Wendy as her grandson also has autism, and lets Wendy accompany her on the senior citizens’ bus. The bus driver subsequently falls asleep at the wheel, crashing the bus. Following the bus crash, Wendy wakes up in a hospital in¬†Bakersfield. Still determined to turn in her script, Wendy leaves Pete at the hospital, attacks a nurse, and escapes. During her escape, Wendy loses part of her script. She gathers used paper and begins rewriting the script.

While this is happening Scottie realizes that Wendy is missing and along with her son heads to find her. Audrey too joins the search, leaving her baby in the hands of her husband. The Bakersfield hospital notifies Scottie and Audrey of Wendy‚Äôs whereabouts; police continue the search from there. Sam and Scottie find the missing script pages while scouring the hospital. Wendy then attempts to buy a bus ticket to Los Angeles, but is unable as she has no money. She ultimately stows away on the next bus to Los Angeles, hiding herself inside a baggage compartment. Upon her arrival in Los Angeles, Wendy wanders around until two police officers recognize her from the missing person‚Äôs report. Officer Frank (Patton Oswalt) gains Wendy’s trust by speaking to her in¬†Klingon. The officers take Wendy to the police station, where she is reunited with Audrey and Scottie. They bring Wendy to Paramount Pictures so she can deliver her script.

A rude mailroom worker tells her that the scripts have to be sent by post but Wendy is able to sneak past security and submit the script to the turn-in box. Satisfied that she has completed her mission, Wendy tells her sister she did it to prove that she was more capable than Audrey thought. Wendy returns back to the group home where she later receives a letter from Paramount stating her script was not chosen, but encouraging her to continue writing. Despite the rejection, she is satisfied with everything she has accomplished. Wendy visits Audrey and holds her niece for the first time and the two sisters bond again.

It’s a sweet movie ably acted by the powerhouses of Fanning & Collette & ably supported by Alice Eve and the rest of the cast. It’s a coming of age film with a Star Trek hue that will make us Trekkies very happy. I give the film an 8 outta 10 for the low budget, art & film festival type movie that it is.