Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Orci Comments Cryptically on Trek Firing

As reported last week, Roberto Orci is no longer directing Star Trek 3 but will retain producer credit on the movie. Now I think that means his involvement with the film will be next to nil but his posts in the comment section of seems to contradict that.

On comments about his level of involvement with ST3:
203. boborci - December 6, 2014
I will be very involved:)

To a comment about his inexperience as a director:
206. boborci - December 6, 2014
185. not at all. still excited to makeTrek 3! And on time. We’ll find the right director!

To the rumors of the script involving time travel:
208. boborci - December 6, 2014
no time travel was ever considered, fyi

On telling if John Harrison as Khan was his idea or not:
209. boborci - December 6, 2014
197. I can’t at the moment, but someday;)

A commentor pointing out the Star Trek: Generations quote from Kirk to Picard: "Don’t let them do ANYTHING to take you out of that chairs. Because while you’re there, you can make a difference." Actual quote: "Don't let them promote you. Don't let them transfer you. Don't let them do anything that takes you off the bridge of that ship because while you're there, you can make a difference."
444. Boborci - December 7, 2014
428. Have not forgotten. On the contrary, factored into decision. Their are bigger chairs to consider

To the question "So are you also going to Star Wars soon?" which itself is suggesting it is the bigger chair as bigger franchise or more money
481. boborci - December 7, 2014
456 I walked away from Tf and the x it would pay. understand?

So while Orci saying anything is appreciated, really we learned almost nothing and really just begs more questions. What will his level of involvement be? At the script level? Casting? On set? What is the "bigger chairs to consider" even mean? I know he was sticking with the quote analogy so he is saying "larger factors to consider" but still what are those? As for the time travel element, that was never credible as the "source" was of the 'heard from a friend that heard from the brother of' type.

I still can't decide if this is a good thing or a bad thing. I am not really a big fan of the last two films because they were more "action film" than "Star Trek film". Nor if I am much of a fan of the Orci/Kurtzman scripts of the last decade. However, I am a huge fan of their ideas. Like Abrams they have great ideas. And like Abrams, the execution to completion is muddy at best. I also recognize that I have not seen is what happens when Bob Orci is charge of executing his own vision. Everything he has worked on, Star Trek and otherwise, was always part of a team of other writers, producers and directors, all of whom could easily overrule his vision as the writers are at the bottom of that org chart. Even when not being overruled, that level of collaboration requires a ton of compromise. With him as producer and director, he would still have to compromise but a whole lot less (as he would have been doing the overruling) which means the final product would have been his version of Star Trek. For all I know it might have been a version I could love. Except now we will never know.

As for those wondering why the director matters...its hard to explain. The best Trek film had a writer and director that were unfamiliar with the franchise but respected it. Nicholas Meyer directed and wrote two of the franchise's best - Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. Meyer freely admits that when he was assigned STII he had not familiar with Star Trek. So he learned what he needed to, respected what he learned, and knew what he didn't know so he could collaborate with those that did. The result was his vision while retaining the Star Trek feel. Ironically the film was not really "classic Star Trek" but had such a strong story and excellent characterization that Wrath of Khan became the "new" version of "classic Star Trek" that all Star Trek movies and really TV series are measured against. The unspoken hope was that Abrams would be the "new" Nicholas Meyer - a non-Trekkie who would breath new life into the franchise with the (mostly exaggerated) history of strong ideas, vision, and ability to create good stories with great characterization. Instead he was just another action director focused on the action and visual effects over the story and the characters. A director of a film is always important. With Star Trek it is even more so because that franchise lives and dies on the strength of story and characters, not special effects but their choice has be strong at both. Not in rumor (like Abrams' whose rep was mostly built on his TV series that he executive produced) but in proof (by their actual filmography).


  1. I'm psyched that we're going to see the classic Enterprise design return in ST3, as hinted at by the illustration above!

    1. That's the Enterprise from ST and STID. Note the curved pylons and bulbous nacelles.