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Science Fiction and Fantasy Films
Stealing Star Trek
By David Whitney 10-22-2016
Star Trek fan films got robbed. Literally. And fans, being what they are, fell for it.
We were excited to see our favorite former Star Trek actors joining in on the fan films. But then the greed came. And I joined in.
Star Trek Renegades was the first to entice us in a new way. They saw what other fan films had accomplished, and they set out to make their own “Star Trek CBS Pilot”. They collected hundreds of thousands of dollars from us. I gave them a little bit too, I admit it. Did you? I got jealous, and I tried to join in but I could never match what they were doing. If I only could get Jeri Ryan to join our film! Why the heck weren't they?
And then Alec Peters created Axanar Productions, and loaded it with his Hollywood buddies. Well, they seemed to be his friends anyway. So fans gave them a million dollars. My goodness! My jealousy went through the roof. We even gave Star Trek Horizon's Tommy Kraft, over $70,000. Why? He had nice CGI that's why. Oh I wanted it badly too. But without “Star” power, I had no chance.
CBS has finally given fan film wanna be makers some advice. Avoid these things and you won't bother us. At first I was mad, but after months of thinking, and yes it took that long, I realized what Renegades and Axanar were trying to do was to steal Star Trek. But not just from CBS, they were stealing it from the fan film makers as well. Smaller, less blessed fan groups got run over like a dear leaping over a turtle.
I was frustrated I could not get any donations, I mean, big ones like they did. And now, Axanar is in court, being sued for trying to steal Star Trek. Alec Peters seems to think he has a right to do it. It's ridiculous. I was on his side at first. Star Trek belongs to the fans! But you can't just take someone's property and use it to make money. I've read all the arguments, well some of them, and for some reason there is a contingent of fans who think he can win the lawsuit.
The fans are partly to blame too. We were impressed with all the glitz. Those Hollywood actors! They're awesome! They worked for CBS! They can give us more STAR TREK...
I'm sorry fans, but we don't own Star Trek. It belongs to the copyright owners.
What CBS has done is to give Star Trek Fan Productions back to the fans. Where it belongs. Where CGI guys are not paid $3500 for a ten second star ship flyby. Where Hollywood actors are not paid $30,000 for a weekend of work. Heck, now they can't even volunteer.
So way to go Renegades and Axanar, you messed it up with getting greedy. It's over. Hope you're happy.
And where is that Jeri Ryan? I gave up trying. I have so many talented people at Starfleet Studios I don't need Jeri. I don't need a million dollars. And it's better this way. Because I like money, and I don't need the temptation.
Live long and get by.