James Doohan smiling in dress uniform as Montgomery “Scotty” Scott in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.

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Scotty’s accent was legendarily bad, but Scottish Star Trek fans loved him anyway

Is Strange New Worlds about to break a streak?

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[ Ed. note: This piece contains spoilers for Star Trek: Strange New Worlds season 2, episode 10, “Hegemony.”]

Great Scott! In this week’s season finale of Strange New Worlds , Star Trek ’s most beloved miracle worker finally arrives aboard the USS Enterprise. During a rescue mission on the border of the Gorn Hegemony, Captain Pike and his crew encounter the lone survivor of another Starfleet vessel, the talented and loquacious Lt. Junior Grade Montgomery Scott, who joins the effort to save a group of human colonists from an ongoing massacre.

Scotty’s debut on the show (the earliest TV appearance in the character’s personal chronology) was an unadvertised surprise, but not a total shock, as Strange New Worlds used its previous season finale to unveil Paul Wesley as the new James Kirk . What makes young Scotty a particularly sweet treat, however, is that for the first time, he’s being performed by an actual Scot: Martin Quinn has finally endowed the engineer with a convincing Scottish accent.

Martin Quinn as Scotty, making a confused face while Anson Mount as Captain Pike stands in the background.

But before we criticize him a bit, let’s pay proper respect to the late James Doohan, who originated the role on Star Trek: The Original Series back in 1966. Doohan essentially created Montgomery Scott himself, having been brought in to audition for a then-unnamed role as the Chief Engineer of the USS Enterprise by James Goldstone, director of the show’s second pilot episode.

According to Marc Cushman’s exhaustive multi-book reference guide These Are The Voyages , Doohan tried a variety of different accents for the character, and when series creator Gene Roddenberry asked which accent sounded best for an engineer, Doohan selected Scottish, citing Scotland’s history of naval innovation. Doohan was also permitted to name the character, and in the years that followed, “Scotty” became American television’s most famous man from Braveheart Country.

The trouble is, if you ask any true Scottish person, they’ll tell you that Doohan’s accent is laughable. Though Doohan learned it firsthand during World War II while serving alongside a soldier from Aberdeen, it’s widely mocked for its inaccuracy, and can frequently be found on lists of the worst Scottish accents in TV and film history . The Scotsman ’s David McLean called it “the Dick Van Dyke of Scottish accents,” in reference to the American comedian’s infamously awful attempt at a Cockney accent in Mary Poppins . On the other side of the pond, however, few Americans knew any better: Doohan says he was turned down for multiple roles in the 1970s because casting directors weren’t looking for a Scot.

Despite Doohan’s goofy accent, many Scots still took a liking to the jolly engineer. As foreign as the idea may seem in Trek’s native United States, positive representation for Scots has never been a given in the broader landscape of British television. In 2020, a survey of BBC viewers found that no single demographic — across nationality, race, class, gender, and sexual orientation — was more dissatisfied with their depiction on the network than Scots.

When Star Trek first arrived in the UK in 1969, Montgomery Scott was a relatively textured and dignified “Aberdeen pub-crawler.” He’s a consummate professional, often seen in command of the Enterprise, and adored by all. He enjoys a drink, but he’s not a drunk. He’s a flirt, but not a cad. Scottish audiences were so enamored that, upon James Doohan’s death in 2005, four different towns declared themselves the “future birthplace” of Montgomery Scott, each citing a different piece of non-canonical provenance. When Doohan’s son Chris visited one of the claimants, Linlithgow, the town provost told him that Scotty’s phony accent was, in fact, “one of the things they loved about him.”

However, when English actor Simon Pegg was cast as the new Scotty in J.J. Abrams’ 2009 feature film reboot, Scottish Trekkies were far less forgiving. Pegg based his take on Scotty’s lilt on his own father-in-law, who hails from Glasgow, but that didn’t prevent fans from voicing their strong negative reactions when the film’s first trailers were released.

Simon Pegg as Scotty in Star Trek (2009) spreads his arms in a questioning gesture, sitting in warm clothing at a cluttered desk.

While Pegg’s accent is certainly closer to the mark than Doohan’s was, the audience’s standards for a major motion picture in the 21st century were significantly higher. The performance fell victim to a common criticism of Hollywood Scottish accents, that being a lack of playable local identity, though this could be a consequence of Abrams asking Pegg to dial the accent back so an international audience could understand him.

More than a decade later, Strange New Worlds has gone where no Star Trek has gone before — the actual Scotland — to recruit 29-year-old Martin Quinn. Born in Paisley and trained at London’s Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Quinn has no previous North American productions on his résumé , though American viewers might recognize him from a bit part on the Netflix hit Derry Girls . Quinn makes a charming Star Trek debut, and even a clueless American listener (such as myself) can immediately detect the difference between the typical “Hollywood” Scots accent and the real deal.

Will his performance pass muster for Scottish viewers, and finally put to rest what part of the country Montgomery Scott calls home? Has even this accent been sanded down to better relate to American audiences, but to an extent only detectable by native speakers? Or, could it be that Strange New Worlds has really worked out the last bug in the man who can fix anything?

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Star Trek: Strange New Worlds has a Scots actor taking on iconic role for the very first time

Martin Quinn will be the third actor to take on the role as Scotty - but the first actual Scottish person!

  • 14:12, 14 AUG 2023

star trek strange new worlds scotty actor

Scots actor Martin Quinn has taken on the iconic character of Scotty in the latest series of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds and fans have said that he was 'born for the role'.

The Paisley-born star is the third actor to play Scotty following James Doohan from The Original Series and the classic movies, and Simon Pegg, who played Scotty in all three reboot films. This means Martin is the first ever Scot to take on the legendary part.

The finale of the new season, which aired on Paramount+ on Thursday, left fans totally gutted that it was over - but left them looking forward to a third season, and a chance to see more of Martin as Scotty.

Since he appeared, the official Star Trek Twitter page shared a snap of Martin as Scotty and wrote: "Here's a look at actor Martin Quinn on the set of the #StarTrek #StrangeNewWorlds season finale."

Many fans of the science fiction franchise took to praise Martin and hail him as "perfect" for a young Lieutenant Montgomery Scott, AKA Scotty.

One penned: "He was born for the role." While one wrote: "He's going to be great!" Another added: "Excellent portrayal. Letter perfect."

While one said: "With Scotty being introduced in the season finale makes any Trek fan excited for the next season and the thrilling conclusion of this storyline. Bravo!"

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star trek strange new worlds scotty actor

Another added: "He really IS Scotty! Can't wait to see more of him."

While another commented: "What great casting!"

One added: "Scotty was amazing and I can't wait to see more of him."

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds season 2 is streaming on Paramount+ .

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Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Boss Discusses [SPOILER]'s Debut in Season 2 Finale

The Season 2 finale of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds introduces another central character from the beloved 1960s original series.

The following contains spoilers for Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Season 2, Episode 10, "Hegemony," now streaming on Paramount+.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds co-showrunner and executive producer Henry Alonso Myers has opened up about introducing their take on fan-favorite character Montgomery "Scotty" Scott in the Season 2 finale.

Scotty appeared midway through "Hegemony," the Paramount+ series' Season 2 finale, which saw the Enterprise crew helping a colony under attack by the Gorn. Speaking with TVLine , Myers explained how Scotty's cameo in the Season 2 finale came to be. "We've been talking about him for a while as a general idea," he revealed. "As we were going into the finale, it suddenly became a weird, rare opportunity to introduce him for a lot of different reasons. What we’d like to do with the characters [from the original Star Trek series]… We don’t meet our understanding of who they are in that series, we meet who they are before. They don’t know who they will be, and they aren’t that person yet. They have some stuff to go through."

RELATED: Why Captain Kirk Never Mentions La'an in Star Trek's Khan Stories

The Season 2 finale isn't actually the first time Scotty has appeared on Strange New Worlds . The character's voice was previously heard in the Season 1 finale, played by Matt Wolf. However, in "Hegemony," the role is played by Martin Quinn, who is of Scottish origin. "We also had a great opportunity to cast someone who’s from Scotland," noted Myers, "who can do that Scotty, but also who can go through all of the things that we want to see him go through before he becomes the person that we know." In the original Star Trek series and movies, Scotty was portrayed by Canadian actor James Doohan.

Scotty Will Return in Strange New Worlds Season 3

Myers also confirmed that Quinn will return as Scotty in the upcoming third season of Strange New Worlds , which was recently delayed indefinitely due to the ongoing WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes . Season 3 of Strange New Worlds will continue to follow Captain Christopher Pike (Anson Mount) and the crew of the starship USS Enterprise as they explore new worlds throughout the galaxy about a decade before the events of Star Trek: The Original Series .

RELATED: Strange New Worlds Reminds Fans People Are Still Flawed in the Future

In addition to Strange New Worlds Season 3, Paramount+ is in post-production on the fifth and final season of Star Trek Discovery , which will be released in early 2024. A young adult series set at Starfleet Academy and the fifth season of the animated series Lower Decks are also in development as is Section 31 , an upcoming movie starring Michelle Yeoh as her Discovery character Empress Georgiou. Meanwhile, Star Trek fans continue campaigning for a Picard legacy series that would follow the children of The Next Generation cast.

The first two seasons of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds are streaming on Paramount+.

Source: TVLine

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Season 2 Kept Its Biggest Surprise For The Finale

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Scotty

This post contains major spoilers for the season 2 finale of "Star Trek: Strange New Worlds."

The more time passes, the closer "Star Trek: Strange New Worlds" gets to the original 1966 TV series. "Strange New Worlds" takes place seven or eight years prior to "Star Trek" and its second season has already teased some of the eventual connective tissue to its forebear. Kirk (Paul Wesley) is still only a first officer aboard the U.S.S. Farragut, but has been on the Enterprise an awful lot, and has already met future crewmates Uhura (Celia Rose Gooding) and Spock (Ethan Peck). The series has been fleshing out the romance between Spock and Nurse Chapel (Jess Bush), but is carefully arranging their relationship to be more professional as it will be seen later in the "Star Trek" timeline. It's also likely that, before "Strange New Worlds" comes to an end, the Enterprise will be massively damaged and have to be refit and rebuilt so that it more closely resembles the ship we have all been familiar with for the last 57 years. 

Ten bucks says that the final shot of the series is a wide-angle crane shot/wistful zoom-out of the original Enterprise bridge, now staffed by the original series characters. 

A few question marks have remained in the inevitable connective tissue between "Star Trek" and "Strange New Worlds," however. Kirk, Spock, Uhura, and Chapel are accounted for, but no one has heard tell of Sulu, Dr. McCoy, Yeoman Rand, or Chekhov (who might still be too young to attend Starfleet Academy at this point in "Star Trek" chronology). It's entirely likely that some of these characters are already serving on board Pike's Enterprise, and we merely haven't seen them yet. 

As of "Hegemony," however, the season 2 finale of "Strange New Worlds," Montgomery Scott (Martin Quinn) is now located. Meet the young Scotty.

A Martin Quinn Production

No, Scottish actor Martin Quinn is not related to the famous Desilu TV producer Quinn Martin. Their names are a mere (astonishing) coincidence. 

Scotty was, of course, the chief engineer on board the U.S.S. Enterprise from the start of the series in 1966 and last appeared in "Star Trek: Generations" in 1994. Scotty also appeared on an episode of "Star Trek: The Next Generation," having been kept alive in a transporter buffer for many years. Throughout, Scotty was played by actor James Doohan. In 2009, an alternate-universe version of Scotty was played by Simon Pegg .

Here's a fun piece of trivia (culled from the 1997 book "Inside Star Trek: The Real Story" ): Gene Roddenberry nearly cut Scotty from the series, thinking that the Enterprise didn't require an engineer. It wasn't until Doohan's agent confronted Roddenberry that Scotty was allowed to remain a part of the show. Doohan has told the tale numerous times at conventions, but he was prepared to give his character one of numerous dialects. He nearly made Scotty Russian, as he could do a good Russian accent. Eventually, Doohan decided that his character should be a Scot, as he knew several clever Scottish engineers in the War (Doohan fought at D-Day). 

Quinn is the first actor of actual Scottish descent to play Montgomery Scott. He is currently 28 years old, although Doohan was already 44 at the start of Trek. In "Hegemony," Scotty is able to build, from scratch, a lantern-like device that lures Gorn monsters into a trap. When he is rescued from a desperate situation and brought on board the Enterprise (for the first time!), he is recognized by Pelia (Carol Kane) a former teacher of his. Evidently, Scotty was a brilliant engineer who got terrible grades. 

Scotty's history

Going by the information given in "Relics" (October 12, 1992), Scotty was born in 2222 in Scotland, and he said that the Enterprise was his first gig as chief engineer, a position he held for decades. He was also the Enterprise's second officer, often sitting in the captain's chair when Kirk (William Shatner) and Spock (Leonard Nimoy) were on away missions. Unlike Kirk, Scotty was typically violent and trigger-happy, as his first command decisions were often to ready weapons. Scotty also employed a lot of strange colloquialisms ("Fuzz-faced goons!" "The haggis is in the fire!"), and could outdrink anyone on the Enterprise; in "By Any Other Name" (February 23rd, 1968) it was revealed he had a lot of rare hard liquor in his quarters. The Scottish Scotty loved Scotch.

Scotty was also a clever criminal, having helped to steal the Enterprise in "Star Trek III: The Search for Spock," and sabotaged the new-fangled U.S.S. Excelsior by merely removing a few vital computer chips from the vessel's trans-warp drive. In certain corners of expanded universe lore, Scotty was presented as a clever badass from the start. In the 1989 tie-in novel "The Kobayashi Maru," written by Julia Ecklar, several members of the Enterprise senior staff related their experience with the notorious Starfleet command test. The test, as Trekkies know, is designed to be failed, gauging students' character under pressure more than their abilities. Scotty employed a lot of strange theoretical engineering ideas to transform a distressed shuttlecraft into a black hole (!). The test moved Scotty from the Academy's command track to its engineering track. 

Scotty also appeared — in voice form — in the "Strange New Worlds" episode "A Quality of Mercy."  

Actor Martin Quinn has been appearing in Scottish stage productions ever since he was a child and received a lot of acclaim for his performance as Oskar in a stage adaptation of "Let the Right One In." He appeared on a few episodes of Scottish and Irish TV shows like "Derry Girls" and "Scot Squad." He also played voice roles in the new video game "Diablo IV." It seems that he and Doohan have voice acting in common; Doohan played multiple roles on "Star Trek: The Animated Series." For Quinn, "Star Trek" seems to be his highest-profile acting gig to date. 

It was never stated in Trek lore when exactly Scotty began his career on the Enterprise, so there's every reason to believe that Quinn will appear in future episodes of "Strange New Worlds," studying engineering under Pelia, the current chief engineer. Like in the third season of "Star Trek: Picard," it seems that the function of "Strange New Worlds" moving forward will be to slowly introduce familiar characters one by one until they're all finally in the same room. Also to assure Pike is grievously injured, as seen in "The Menagerie." Once all that is taken care of, "Star Trek" proper can begin. 

While it's exciting to see new actors in classic roles, there is a vaguely disappointing sense of fatalism to all this. "Strange New Worlds" has been grand and clever and exhilarating, and is moving into a realm where they have to line up with events that are already known. As such, it won't have the freedom to be wholly creative; Pike cannot abscond with the Enterprise and prevent "Star Trek" from happening. 

Or perhaps he can. Perhaps the showrunners will be that daring. 

Strange New Worlds actor reveals why Hemmer is Star Trek’s own “Daredevil”

Bruce Horak’s new Star Trek character is unlike any Starfleet engineer before.

star trek strange new worlds scotty actor

A blind engineer is running the engines of the Starship Enterprise .

If that sounds familiar, it should. Bruce Horak’s new Strange New Worlds character, Hemmer, is the second blind chief engineer to be a series regular in Star Trek. Back in The Next Generation , LeVar Burton played famously played Geordi LaForge, but the difference is simple: Horak is legally blind in real life.

Just before Strange New Worlds aired its second episode, “Children of the Comet,” Inverse caught up with Horak to discuss how Hemmer is like a certain Marvel hero and what makes him “so different” from any Trek character before him. Spoilers ahead.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - APRIL 30: Bruce Horak and Ethan Peck attend the Paramount+'s "Star Trek: Strang...

Bruce Horak and Ethan Peck at the New York premiere of Strange New Worlds .

“Hemmer can see way better than I can,” Horak tells Inverse . “He’s like Daredevil and has that little Daredevil moment in that first scene. Only if his telepathy were messed up would he be in real trouble.”

As Spock (Ethan Peck) says in the episode, Hemmer’s other senses “compensate” for the fact that he’s blind, which includes a sense of telepathy. The “Daredevil moment” Horak mentions is when Spock chucks a carrot, and Hemmer catches it without looking. Uhura (Celia Rose Gooding) is impressed, and Hemmer is cranky that she’s trying to treat him like an invalid.

“He’s written really well,” Horak says of Hemmer’s blindness. “I had no notes, especially that first scene with Uhura where they touch on the impairment. And he just brushes it off and shows off his incredible skills.”

In Trek canon, Strange New Worlds happens before both The Original Series and The Next Generation , making Hemmer not only Scotty’s predecessor in The Original Series but also — chronologically speaking — the first blind chief engineer of a starship named Enterprise . He’s also the first actor since 2005 to play a member of the Aenar — a subspecies of the Andorians first introduced in the prequel series Star Trek: Enterprise .

A lifelong fan of Trek, Horaks says he studied the performances of Andorians and famous character actor Jeffrey Combs, who played the Andorian Shran on Enterprise .

“Oh yeah, you’ve gotta give a nod to him,” Horak says of Combs’ performance.

He adds, “But I really trust the writers. So much of my background is in theater, in disposable performance. Every time I do this, it’s getting written in stone. It’s creating canon. It’s terrifying. It’s a bit like the first time you ever pick up a pencil.”

“He’s a pacifist .”

In addition to thinking of Hemmer as a blind superhero in the mold of Marvel’s Daredevil (but in Starfleet), Horak also draws a very specific distinction between this chief engineer of the Enterprise and every other person who has occupied this position before.

“There are so many engineers in Trek. They're all incredibly skilled and capable,” Horak explains. “But you know, he’s a pacifist, which I don't believe any of the other engineers had ever expressed. They may have been maybe in action, but I don't believe they actually outwardly stated that. And that’s one of the Aenar things; they’re pacifists. And that really touched home for me.”

star trek strange new worlds scotty actor

Hemmer is ready for action... but not the violent kind!

As the new resident engineer on the Enterprise , Horak will be required to pull off technological miracles on the fly constantly. “Children of the Comet” is only the tip of his Aenar antenna, and Horak promises that as the series goes on we’ll find out a lot more about Hemmer.

“There’s a really soft side to him,” he says.

If there’s one defining, overriding constant in all of Star Trek, it’s that the action heroes are always trying to avoid senseless brutality. And in this very specific way, Horak thinks Hemmer embodies the Gene Roddenberry idealism of Star Trek’s ethos perfectly.

“It’s a very powerful statement that the engineer of the flagship that's responsible for moving this thing through the cosmos is a pacifist,” Horak explains. “It speaks to the real heart of Roddenberry's vision; that we're going to find another way. That we're going to find diplomacy or that compromise. Or maybe, just maybe, we leave people alone. I think that’s pretty great.”

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds airs new episodes on Thursdays on Paramount+.

Phasers on Stun!: How the Making — and Remaking — of Star Trek Changed the World

Ryan Britt's new book on the history of Star Trek's biggest changes. From the '60s show to the movies to 'TNG,' to 'Discovery,' 'Picard,' Strange New Worlds,' and beyond!

This article was originally published on May 13, 2022

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The Future of ‘Star Trek’: From ‘Starfleet Academy’ to New Movies and Michelle Yeoh, How the 58-Year-Old Franchise Is Planning for the Next Generation of Fans

“I can’t believe I get to play the captain of the Enterprise.”

“Strange New Worlds” is the 12th “Star Trek” TV show since the original series debuted on NBC in 1966, introducing Gene Roddenberry’s vision of a hopeful future for humanity. In the 58 years since, the “Star Trek” galaxy has logged 900 television episodes and 13 feature films, amounting to 668 hours — nearly 28 days — of content to date. Even compared with “Star Wars” and the Marvel Cinematic Universe, “Star Trek” stands as the only storytelling venture to deliver a single narrative experience for this long across TV and film.

In other words, “Star Trek” is not just a franchise. As Alex Kurtzman , who oversees all “Star Trek” TV production, puts it, “‘Star Trek’ is an institution.”

Without a steady infusion of new blood, though, institutions have a way of fading into oblivion (see soap operas, MySpace, Blockbuster Video). To keep “Star Trek” thriving has meant charting a precarious course to satisfy the fans who have fueled it for decades while also discovering innovative ways to get new audiences on board.

“Doing ‘Star Trek’ means that you have to deliver something that’s entirely familiar and entirely fresh at the same time,” Kurtzman says.

The franchise has certainly weathered its share of fallow periods, most recently after “Nemesis” bombed in theaters in 2002 and UPN canceled “Enterprise” in 2005. It took 12 years for “Star Trek” to return to television with the premiere of “Discovery” in 2017; since then, however, there has been more “Star Trek” on TV than ever: The adventure series “Strange New Worlds,” the animated comedy “Lower Decks” and the kids series “Prodigy” are all in various stages of production, and the serialized thriller “Picard” concluded last year, when it ranked, along with “Strange New Worlds,” among Nielsen’s 10 most-watched streaming original series for multiple weeks. Nearly one in five Paramount+ subscribers in the U.S. is watching at least one “Star Trek” series, according to the company, and more than 50% of fans watching one of the new “Trek” shows also watch at least two others. The new shows air in 200 international markets and are dubbed into 35 languages. As “Discovery” launches its fifth and final season in April, “Star Trek” is in many ways stronger than it’s ever been.

“’Star Trek’s fans have kept it alive more times than seems possible,” says Eugene Roddenberry, Jr., who executive produces the TV series through Roddenberry Entertainment. “While many shows rightfully thank their fans for supporting them, we literally wouldn’t be here without them.”

But the depth of fan devotion to “Star Trek” also belies a curious paradox about its enduring success: “It’s not the largest fan base,” says Akiva Goldsman, “Strange New Worlds” executive producer and co-showrunner. “It’s not ‘Star Wars.’ It’s certainly not Marvel.”

When J.J. Abrams rebooted “Star Trek” in 2009 — with Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto and Zoe Saldaña playing Kirk, Spock and Uhura — the movie grossed more than any previous “Star Trek” film by a comfortable margin. But neither that film nor its two sequels broke $500 million in global grosses, a hurdle every other top-tier franchise can clear without breaking a sweat.

There’s also the fact that “Star Trek” fans are aging. I ask “The Next Generation” star Jonathan Frakes, who’s acted in or directed more versions of “Star Trek” than any other person alive, how often he meets fans for whom the new “Star Trek” shows are their first. “Of the fans who come to talk to me, I would say very, very few,” he says. “‘Star Trek’ fans, as we know, are very, very, very loyal — and not very young.”

As Stapf puts it: “There’s a tried and true ‘Trek’ fan that is probably going to come to every ‘Star Trek,’ no matter what it is — and we want to expand the universe.”

Every single person I spoke to for this story talked about “Star Trek” with a joyful earnestness as rare in the industry as (nerd alert) a Klingon pacifist.

“When I’m meeting fans, sometimes they’re coming to be confirmed, like I’m kind of a priest,” Ethan Peck says during a break in filming on the “Strange New Worlds” set. He’s in full Spock regalia — pointy ears, severe eyebrows, bowl haircut — and when asked about his earliest memories of “Star Trek,” he stares off into space in what looks like Vulcan contemplation. “I remember being on the playground in second or third grade and doing the Vulcan salute, not really knowing where it came from,” he says. “When I thought of ‘Star Trek,’ I thought of Spock. And now I’m him. It’s crazy.”

To love “Star Trek” is to love abstruse science and cowboy diplomacy, complex moral dilemmas and questions about the meaning of existence. “It’s ultimately a show with the most amazing vision of optimism, I think, ever put on-screen in science fiction,” says Kurtzman, who is 50. “All you need is two minutes on the news to feel hopeless now. ‘Star Trek’ is honestly the best balm you could ever hope for.”

I’m getting a tour of the USS Enterprise from Scotty — or, rather, “Strange New World” production designer Jonathan Lee, who is gushing in his native Scottish burr as we step into the starship’s transporter room. “I got such a buzzer from doing this, I can’t tell you,” he says. “I actually designed four versions of it.”

Lee is especially proud of the walkway he created to run behind the transporter pads — an innovation that allows the production to shoot the characters from a brand-new set of angles as they beam up from a far-flung planet. It’s one of the countless ways that this show has been engineered to be as cinematic as possible, part of Kurtzman’s overall vision to make “Star Trek” on TV feel like “a movie every week.”

Kurtzman’s tenure with “Star Trek” began with co-writing the screenplay for Abrams’ 2009 movie, which was suffused with a fast-paced visual style that was new to the franchise. When CBS Studios approached Kurtzman in the mid-2010s about bringing “Star Trek” back to TV, he knew instinctively that it needed to be just as exciting as that film.

“The scope was so much different than anything we had ever done on ‘Next Gen,’” says Frakes, who’s helmed two feature films with the “Next Generation” cast and directed episodes of almost every live-action “Trek” TV series, including “Discovery” and “Strange New Worlds.” “Every department has the resources to create.”

A new science lab set for Season 3, for example, boasts a transparent floor atop a four-foot pool of water that swirls underneath the central workbench, and the surrounding walls sport a half dozen viewscreens with live schematics custom designed by a six-person team. “I like being able to paint on a really big canvas,” Kurtzman says. “The biggest challenge is always making sure that no matter how big something gets, you’re never losing focus on that tiny little emotional story.”

At this point, is there a genre that “Strange New Worlds” can’t do? “As long as we’re in storytelling that is cogent and sure handed, I’m not sure there is,” Goldsman says with an impish smile. “Could it do Muppets? Sure. Could it do black and white, silent, slapstick? Maybe!”

This approach is also meant to appeal to people who might want to watch “Star Trek” but regard those 668 hours of backstory as an insurmountable burden. “You shouldn’t have to watch a ‘previously on’ to follow our show,” Myers says.

To achieve so many hairpin shifts in tone and setting while maintaining Kurtzman’s cinematic mandate, “Strange New Worlds” has embraced one of the newest innovations in visual effects: virtual production. First popularized on the “Star Wars” series “The Mandalorian,” the technology — called the AR wall — involves a towering circular partition of LED screens projecting a highly detailed, computer-generated backdrop. Rather than act against a greenscreen, the actors can see whatever fantastical surroundings their characters are inhabiting, lending a richer level of verisimilitude to the show.

But there is a catch. While the technology is calibrated to maintain a proper sense of three-dimensional perspective through the camera lens, it can be a bit dizzying for anyone standing on the set. “The images on the walls start to move in a way that makes no sense,” says Mount. “You end up having to focus on something that’s right in front of you so you don’t fall down.”

And yet, even as he’s talking about it, Mount can’t help but break into a boyish grin. “Sometimes we call it the holodeck,” he says. In fact, the pathway to the AR wall on the set is dotted with posters of the virtual reality room from “The Next Generation” and the words “Enter Holodeck” in a classic “Trek” font.

“I want to take one of those home with me,” Peck says. Does the AR wall also affect him? “I don’t really get disoriented by it. Spock would not get ill, so I’m Method acting.”

I’m on the set of the “Star Trek” TV movie “Section 31,” seated in an opulent nightclub with a view of a brilliant, swirling nebula, watching Yeoh rehearse with director Olatunde Osunsanmi and her castmates. Originally, the project was announced as a TV series centered on Philippa Georgiou, the semi-reformed tyrant Yeoh originated on “Discovery.” But between COVID delays and the phenomenon of “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” there wasn’t room in the veteran actress’s schedule to fit a season of television. Yeoh was undaunted.

“We’d never let go of her,” she says of her character. “I was just blown away by all the different things I could do with her. Honestly, it was like, ‘Let’s just get it done, because I believe in this.’”

If that means nothing to you, don’t worry: The enormity of the revelation that Garrett is being brought back is meant only for fans. If you don’t know who the character is, you’re not missing anything.

“It was always my goal to deliver an entertaining experience that is true to the universe but appeals to newcomers,” says screenwriter Craig Sweeny. “I wanted a low barrier of entry so that anybody could enjoy it.”

Nevertheless, including Garrett on the show is exactly the kind of gasp-worthy detail meant to flood “Star Trek” fans with geeky good feeling.

“You cannot create new fans to the exclusion of old fans,” Kurtzman says. “You must serve your primary fan base first and you must keep them happy. That is one of the most important steps to building new fans.”

On its face, that maxim would make “Section 31” a genuine risk. The titular black-ops organization has been controversial with “Star Trek” fans since it was introduced in the 1990s. “The concept is almost antagonistic to some of the values of ‘Star Trek,’” Sweeny says. But he still saw “Section 31” as an opportunity to broaden what a “Star Trek” project could be while embracing the radical inclusivity at the heart of the franchise’s appeal.

“Famously, there’s a spot for everybody in Roddenberry’s utopia, so I was like, ‘Well, who would be the people who don’t quite fit in?’” he says. “I didn’t want to make the John le Carré version, where you’re in the headquarters and it’s backbiting and shades of gray. I wanted to do the people who were at the edges, out in the field. These are not people who necessarily work together the way you would see on a ‘Star Trek’ bridge.”

For Osunsanmi, who grew up watching “The Next Generation” with his father, it boils down to a simple question: “Is it putting good into the world?” he asks. “Are these characters ultimately putting good into the world? And, taking a step back, are we putting good into the world? Are we inspiring humans watching this to be good? That’s for me what I’ve always admired about ‘Star Trek.’”

Should “Section 31” prove successful, Yeoh says she’s game for a sequel. And Kurtzman is already eyeing more opportunities for TV movies, including a possible follow-up to “Picard.” The franchise’s gung-ho sojourn into streaming movies, however, stands in awkward contrast to the persistent difficulty Paramount Pictures and Abrams’ production company Bad Robot have had making a feature film following 2016’s “Star Trek Beyond” — the longest theaters have gone without a “Star Trek” movie since Paramount started making them.

First, a movie reuniting Pine’s Capt. Kirk with his late father — played in the 2009 “Star Trek” by Chris Hemsworth — fell apart in 2018. Around the same time, Quentin Tarantino publicly flirted with, then walked away from, directing a “Star Trek” movie with a 1930s gangster backdrop. Noah Hawley was well into preproduction on a “Star Trek” movie with a brand-new cast, until then-studio chief Emma Watts abruptly shelved it in 2020. And four months after Abrams announced at Paramount’s 2022 shareholders meeting that his 2009 cast would return for a movie directed by Matt Shakman (“WandaVision”), Shakman left the project to make “The Fantastic Four” for Marvel. (It probably didn’t help that none of the cast had been approached before Abrams made his announcement.)

The studio still intends to make what it’s dubbed the “final chapter” for the Pine-Quinto-Saldaña cast, and Steve Yockey (“The Flight Attendant”) is writing a new draft of the script. Even further along is another prospective “Star Trek” film written by Seth Grahame-Smith (“Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter”) and to be directed by Toby Haynes (“Andor,” “Black Mirror: USS Callister”) that studio insiders say is on track to start preproduction by the end of the year. That project will serve as an origin story of sorts for the main timeline of the entire franchise. In both cases, the studio is said to be focused on rightsizing the budgets to fit within the clear box office ceiling for “Star Trek” feature films.

Far from complaining, everyone seems to relish the challenge. Visual effects supervisor Jason Zimmerman says that “working with Alex, the references are always at least $100 million movies, if not more, so we just kind of reverse engineer how do we do that without having to spend the same amount of money and time.”

The workload doesn’t seem to faze him either. “Visual effects people are a big, big ‘Star Trek’ fandom,” he says. “You naturally just get all these people who go a little bit above and beyond, and you can’t trade that for anything.”

In one of Kurtzman’s several production offices in Toronto, he and production designer Matthew Davies are scrutinizing a series of concept drawings for the newest “Star Trek” show, “Starfleet Academy.” A bit earlier, they showed me their plans for the series’ central academic atrium, a sprawling, two-story structure that will include a mess hall, amphitheater, trees, catwalks, multiple classrooms and a striking view of the Golden Gate Bridge in a single, contiguous space. To fit it all, they plan to use every inch of Pinewood Toronto’s 45,900 square foot soundstage, the largest in Canada.

But this is a “Star Trek” show, so there do need to be starships, and Kurtzman is discussing with Davies about how one of them should look. The issue is that “Starfleet Academy” is set in the 32nd century, an era so far into the future Kurtzman and his team need to invent much of its design language.

“For me, this design is almost too Klingon,” Kurtzman says. “I want to see the outline and instinctively, on a blink, recognize it as a Federation ship.”

The time period was first introduced on Season 3 of “Discovery,” when the lead character, Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green), transported the namesake starship and its crew there from the 23rd century. “It was exciting, because every time we would make a decision, we would say, ‘And now that’s canon,’” says Martin-Green.

“We listened to a lot of it,” Kurtzman says. “I think I’ve been able to separate the toxic fandom from really true fans who love ‘Star Trek’ and want you to hear what they have to say about what they would like to see.”

By Season 2, the “Discovery” writers pivoted from its dour, war-torn first season and sent the show on its trajectory 900-plus years into the future. “We had to be very aware of making sure that Spock was in the right place and that Burnham’s existence was explained properly, because she was never mentioned in the original series,” says executive producer and showrunner Michelle Paradise. “What was fun about jumping into the future is that it was very much fresh snow.”

That freedom affords “Starfleet Academy” far more creative latitude while also dramatically reducing how much the show’s target audience of tweens and teens needs to know about “Star Trek” before watching — which puts them on the same footing as the students depicted in the show. “These are kids who’ve never had a red alert before,” Noga Landau, executive producer and co-showrunner, says. “They never had to operate a transporter or be in a phaser fight.”

In the “Starfleet Academy” writers’ room in Secret Hideout’s Santa Monica offices, Kurtzman tells the staff — a mix of “Star Trek” die-hards, part-time fans and total newbies — that he wants to take a 30,000-foot view for a moment. “I think we need to ground in science more throughout the show,” he says, a giant framed photograph of Spock ears just over his shoulder. “The kids need to use science more to solve problems.”

Immediately, one of the writers brightens. “Are you saying we can amp up the techno-babble?” she says. “I’m just excited I get to use my computer science degree.”

After they break for lunch, Kurtzman is asked how much longer he plans to keep making “Star Trek.” 

“The minute I fall out of love with it is the minute that it’s not for me anymore. I’m not there yet,” he says. “To be able to build in this universe to tell stories that are fundamentally about optimism and a better future at a time when the world seems to be falling apart — it’s a really powerful place to live every day.”

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Screen Rant

A star trek tos character makes a huge return in strange new worlds season 2 finale.

Strange New Worlds' season 2 finale brings back another iconic character from Star Trek: The Original Series to help Captain Pike's Enterprise.

Warning: SPOILERS for Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Season 2 Finale - "Hegemony"

  • Captain Pike leads a rescue mission to save the colony planet from the Gorn and reunite with his significant other in the finale of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds season 2.
  • Lt. Montgomery Scott, a younger version of the iconic character, makes a surprise appearance and brings valuable information about the Gorn to the Enterprise crew.
  • The addition of Scotty to the crew raises questions about the future of Commander Pelia as Chief Engineer and whether Scotty will take on that role in the next season.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds season 2's finale features the return of an iconic character from Star Trek: The Original Series . In Strange New Worlds season 2, episode 10, "Hegemony," Captain Christopher Pike (Anson Mount) leads a landing party rescue mission to Parnassus Beta after the colony planet is attacked by the Gorn. Pike hopes his significant other, Captain Marie Batel (Melanie Scrofano), survived the destruction of the USS Cayuga at the hands of the Gorn. But Pike and the USS Enterprise's crew meet an unexpected Starfleet Officer who will go on to become a seminal member of the USS Enterprise's crew in Star Trek: TOS.

The Gorn threat has been ramping up since the premiere of Strange New Worlds season 2 . Admiral Robert April (Adrian Holmes) and Starfleet Command have been monitoring an increase in Gorn activity coming dangerously close to the United Federation of Planets. Starfleet has faced Gorn aggression already, notably when the Starship Enterprise faced the alien reptiles in the Strange New Worlds season 1 episodes "Memento Mori" and "All Those Who Wander." Lt. Hemmer (Bruce Horak), the Enterprise's Chief Engineer, sacrificed himself to save his crew when he was infected by Gorn eggs on Valeo Beta V. However, Captain Pike meets another engineer who may be the key to beating the Gorn in Strange New Worlds season 2's finale.

Scotty’s Return In Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Explained

Future Star Trek: The Original Series legend Lt. Montgomery Scott (Martin Quinn) makes a surprise appearance in Strange New Worlds' season 2 finale . Scotty, a Lieutenant junior grade, was aboard the USS Stardiver research vessel when it was attacked by the Gorn. The lone survivor of the Stardiver, Scotty fled aboard a shuttle and escaped the Gorn, although his ship was damaged, and he crashed on Parnassus Beta. But Scotty, an ingenious engineer, also learned enough about the Gorn during his escape that he was able to build a "Gorn trap" and gathered intel about the murderous alien lizards.

Scotty observed the Gorn reacted to the CMEs, i.e. coronal mass ejections, or sun spots, of a nearby star that may have caused them to swarm and attack. Along with what could be a solar vulnerability, Scotty learned how to "hide in plain sight" and evade Gorn sensors by building a Gorn transponder of his own. Scotty beamed aboard the Enterprise at the end of Strange New Worlds season 2's finale, where he met his old Starfleet Academy instructor, Commander Pelia (Carol Kane) . But together, the two genius engineers may be able to construct another Gorn transponder that will let the Enterprise evade the killer lizards.

What Scotty Means For Star Trek: Strange New Worlds

Martin Quinn's Scotty in Strange New Worlds ' season 2 finale is the canonical younger version of the Scotty played by James Doohan in Star Trek: The Original Series and the films that followed. (Simon Pegg's Scotty exists in the alternate Kelvin reality of J.J. Abrams' Star Trek movies.) Strange New Worlds season 2, episode 10, "Hegemony," marks the first time in canon that Mr. Scott sets foot aboard the USS Enterprise, the starship that he would cherish and serve on as Chief Engineer for 30 years. Commander Pelia is also established as Scotty's former teacher who saw him as a gifted engineer who nonetheless earned poor grades from her.

Scotty now joins Lt. Spock (Ethan Peck), Ensign Nyota Uhura (Celia Rose Gooding), Nurse Christine Chapel (Jess Bush), Dr. Joseph M'Benga (Babs Olusanmokun), and Lt. James T. Kirk (Paul Wesley) as Star Trek: The Original Series icons who are destined to serve together aboard the Starship Enterprise after Strange New Worlds . However, now that Scotty is on the Enterprise, a big question is whether he will replace Pelia as Chief Engineer. It's unclear how long Carol Kane will be part of Strange New Worlds in her recurring role, but Pelia has been a unique and lovable presence on the Enterprise, and it may be much too soon to replace her, even with Scotty. Mr. Scott's destiny aboard the Starship Enterprise is assured, but it remains to be seen if Star Trek: Strange New Worlds season 3 will make Scotty Chief Engineer.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds season 2 is streaming on Paramount+.

star trek strange new worlds scotty actor

Strange New Worlds' Futuristic VFX Tech Has A Delightful Star Trek Nickname

A   Variety cover story about the future of "Star Trek" includes plenty of exciting updates about the future of the series, but it's also just a trivia treasure trove for "Trek" fans -- including the ones who work on the shows. "Star Trek: Strange New Worlds" stars Anson Mount (who plays cool, calm, and collected Captain Pike in the series) and Ethan Peck (who plays a younger, slightly more emotive Spock) both noted how surreal their jobs are, while Mount also revealed that they get to go to work on a set named after part of a starship.

"Sometimes we call it The Holodeck," Mount told Variety when describing the massive augmented reality walls (similar to those used by Industrial Light & Magic's The Volume ) that turn the set into a virtual-physical hybrid space. Variety's Adam B. Vary observed that Mount "[couldn't] help but break into a boyish grin" when he talked about the AR walls they call The Holodeck, as if it's yet another childhood dream come true. In an interview with Entertainment Tonight back in 2019, Mount explained that he'd been a "Star Trek" fan since he was seven or eight, and said of his own casting, "It was almost like you had been sitting in the audience for a really long time and somehow you get sucked into the screen and then you're standing in the starship in front of a Klingon with a phaser in your hand."

Read more: The Main Star Trek Captains Ranked Worst To Best

The AR Walls On Set Are Nicknamed The Holodeck

The Holodeck title apparently isn't just a nickname among the actors; according to Variety, posters of the holodeck from "Star Trek: The Next Generation" adorn the walls along the path to the virtual set, along with the phrase "Enter Holodeck" written in a classic "Star Trek" font (though, sorry font geeks, there's no word on whether it's Galaxy or Horizon ). As with other virtual sets being used in Hollywood today, the AR walls known as The Holodeck utilize massive LED screens that display highly realistic, kinetic CGI backdrops. Mount says they're a bit dizzying.

"The images on the walls start to move in a way that makes no sense," the actor told Variety. "You end up having to focus on something that's right in front of you so you don't fall down." Peck, meanwhile, said he's not as bothered by the CGI walls, and wished he could take one of the Holodeck signs home. "I don't really get disoriented by it. Spock would not get ill, so I'm Method acting," he joked.

Virtual Sets Still Need The Human Touch, And Trek's Got It

While virtual sets were initially praised as a technology capable of revolutionizing film and television, it's become clear by now that not every production is made better by AR walls. "The Mandalorian" set the standard by coupling its realistic set graphics with great production design and cinematography, but movies like "Thor: Love and Thunder" (which didn't quite hit the background/prop ratio needed to look real) and shows like "Percy Jackson & The Olympians" (which, as the first production to use the Vancouver-based virtual set , has an uncanny valley shininess to it) prove it's not enough to let the sets do the work, no matter how magnificent -- and disorienting -- they are.

Luckily, though, "Star Trek: Strange New Worlds" seems to be firing on all cylinders. The first two seasons look great, and everyone from the costume department to the director's chair delivers the goods again and again. As "Trek" star turned director Jonathan Frakes put it elsewhere in the article, "Every department has the resources to create." We can't wait to see what they'll create next.

"Star Trek: Strange New Worlds" will return for season 3 on Paramount+ in 2025.

Read the original article on SlashFilm

Ethan Peck, Jack Quaid, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds

Star Trek legend calls his Strange New Worlds season 3 murder-mystery “the best episode of television I’ve ever done"

Season 3 is expected to drop in 2025

star trek

Star Trek actor and director Jonathan Frakes has some high praise for Strange New Worlds season 3.

"[It's] the best episode of television I’ve ever done," Frakes told Variety , referring to a Hollywood murder-mystery episode he directed. The actor-director starred as Captain William Riker in Star Trek: The Next Generation and began directing episodes during the show's third season. He went on to helm Star Trek: First Contact, Star Trek: Insurrection, and episodes of almost every subsequent live-action Star Trek TV show including Voyager, Discovery, Picard, and Strange New Worlds.

Strange New Worlds follows Captain Christopher Pike and the crew of the starship Enterprise as they embark on intergalactic adventures that take place in the 23rd century. Oscar-nominated screenwriter Akiva Goldsman and Ugly Betty writer Henry Alonso Myers serve as showrunners. The cast includes Anson Mount, Ethan Peck, Jess Bush, Christina Chong, Celia Rose Gooding, Melissa Navia, Babs Olusanmokun, and Rebecca Romijn.

The series premiered in on Paramount Plus, the home for all things Star Trek, in 2022 and became the most-watched original Star Trek series on the network. Season 2 was greenlit in January 2022 and aired in June 2023. Season 3 was announced in March of last year, but production was delayed due to the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds season 3 does not yet have a release date, but is expected to hit Paramount Plus sometime in 2025. For more, check out our list of the best new TV shows coming your way in 2024 and beyond.

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Lauren Milici

Lauren Milici is a Senior Entertainment Writer for GamesRadar+ currently based in the Midwest. She previously reported on breaking news for The Independent's Indy100 and created TV and film listicles for Ranker. Her work has been published in Fandom, Nerdist, Paste Magazine, Vulture, PopSugar, Fangoria, and more.

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‘Star Trek: Strange New Worlds’ Season 3 Gets New Science Lab… And 2025 Release

star trek strange new worlds scotty actor

| March 28, 2024 | By: TrekMovie.com Staff 65 comments so far

In addition to updates on Section 31 and Academy as well as Star Trek feature films , the big cover piece in this week’s Variety also had some tidbits about the third season of Strange New Worlds , which is still in production.

Frakes mystery episode (and puppets?)… coming in 2025

Season 3 of Strange New Worlds will continue the show’s style of mixing up different genres. According to the Variety feature on Star Trek, this will include an episode “framed as a Hollywood murder mystery,” directed by Jonathan Frakes, who describes it as “the best episode of television I’ve ever done.”

Season 2 ramped up the genre-hopping style of the show, but co-showrunner Akiva Goldsman says he is still not sure if there is a limit. From Variety :

“At this point, is there a genre that ‘Strange New Worlds’ can’t do? “As long as we’re in storytelling that is cogent and sure handed, I’m not sure there is,” Goldsman says with an impish smile. ‘Could it do Muppets? Sure. Could it do black and white, silent, slapstick? Maybe!'”

It sounds like Goldsman was just spitballing ideas, so maybe those are just season 4 possibilities. Season 2 saw a crossover with Lower Decks (directed by Frakes) that mixed live-action and animation, as well as a musical episode. While the mention of Muppets may have been a joke, is it such a stretch? It can be argued that Strange New Worlds followed in the footsteps of the acclaimed Buffy the Vampire Slayer musical episode from 2001, so why not follow the Buffy spinoff Angel, which did a puppet episode titled “ Smile Time ” in 2004?

The double strikes of 2023 caused a seven-month delay in the start of filming, which finally began in December. As of last week, they were just starting to shoot episode 7 . Production for the 10-episode season should be wrapped up in mid-May. As expected, it looks like we won’t see the series return until next year. A throwaway line in the Variety piece noted that Season 3 will arrive in 2025.

Spock’s new lab

Season 3 is introducing a new set for the USS Enterprise: a science lab, described as “a transparent floor atop a four-foot pool of water that swirls underneath the central workbench, and the surrounding walls sport a half dozen viewscreens with live schematics custom designed by a six-person team.”

Here is the first look:

star trek strange new worlds scotty actor

Ethan Peck on the new science lab set (Marni Grossman/Paramount+)

Spock is studying a “Chimera Blossum,” according to the screens behind him. As pointed out by Jörg Hillebrand on Twitter/X , Spock’s red environmental suit is a modernized version of the one he wore in the TOS episode “The Naked Time.”

star trek strange new worlds scotty actor

The Variety piece also had some fun behind-the-scenes details, like how the pathway outside the virtual AR wall set is dotted with posters from the Star Trek: The Next Generation holodeck, along with the words “Enter Holodeck” in classic Trek type.  Ethan Peck talks about those signs and working with the AR wall:

“I want to take one of those home with me,” Peck says. Does the AR wall also affect him? “I don’t really get disoriented by it. Spock would not get ill, so I’m Method acting.”

Series star Anson Mount also weighed in on working with the AR Wall, noting the way images move across the wall “make no sense” when you are inside the set and it can be disorienting, with the actor pro tip to “focus on something that’s right in front of you so you don’t fall down.” AR Wall dizziness aside, Mount remains his enthusiastic self, even into his fourth season of Trek (counting Discovery season 2):

I don’t think a day goes by where I don’t at some point stop and think to myself, ‘I’m on fucking “Star Trek.’

star trek strange new worlds scotty actor

Behind the scenes with the AR wall for season 2 of Strange New Worlds (Paramount+)

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I think most of us assumed it wouldn’t come out until 2025 but looking forward to it.

I do assume Goldsman is just joking about the Muppets but you never know with this guy lol.

The angel puppet ep was pretty good. Is this new set a redress of a past bridge?

Never seen Angel but now I’m intrigued lol.

I’m pretty sure that’s a new set.

The Angel puppet episode is hilarious.

It’s a very funny episode!

Ok now have find it and watch it! Thanks guys.

Would I feel lost on the story itself?

I’ve maybe seen a dozen ANGEL eps, and I think this one is a standalone pretty much, though some of the supporting players may come off a little … strange.

I won’t hold my breath for an episode where the Cookie Monster has a cameo…

Normally I would figure cookie monster is a reference to Shatner’s weight, but after seeing him on Kimmel I have to admit he seems to be in much slimmer shape.

Naah, I wouldn’t do that. Especially after just recently giving him mucho respect for THE INTRUDER! The mention of puppets and Muppets above reminded me of an incident from my pre-kmart era as a young filmmaker, when one of my actors had to climb with a flashlight through part of an interior ship set, to get to something that needed repair in the story. What my friend (in 1975) didn’t know, is that I had secreted a Cookie Monster puppet deep inside the bowels of the ship (set). What ensued was shock and fright, followed by laughter, shaking walls, and a shouted “Damn you, Kevin!” coming from the back of the set. I have a couple of pics of that, somewhere.

That’a a good gag. On a somewhat meaner note, I have to mention that in order to get a shocked reaction out of Paul Vallerga (you might remember him as my roommate at the time I was first making CRITICAL ORBIT, as the Devil in MisJudgment Day — that movie we shot in a suite at the LeBaron hotel — or as Felix Leiter in YOU ONLY DIE THRICE), I revealed to him that his favorite actor Robert Shaw had just died while the camera was rolling. This was low on a ‘Jackie, your dog just got hit by a car’ level, but it did work, though for a movie (pre-Vokar) you probably never saw called CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD REICH, made for my German class in high school but later redubbed into English for a contest that channel 54 was having. We used whipped cream instead of mashed potatoes and shot the UFO arrival at Cinema 150 theater, which is of course where the film debuted months earlier.

Oh sure, I remember Vallerga! He was the very serious guy who thought he was better than the rest of us, right? I do vaguely recall seeing YOU ONLY DIE THRICE, a long time ago. And I can recall doing some shooting for your films CRITICAL ORBIT and STARS. We need our own bbs…

I was going to mention my film MAN OUT OF TIME, but it’s a MOOT point. *smirk*

He did have some genuine talent — he wrote the original version of MisJudgement Day, called STAYIN’ ALIVE, then retitled GOD, SATAN & SIDNEY CZINOWITZ, plus another short script called SOUL OF DARKNESS that preceded BLADE by quite a few years, that was one we came pretty close to shooting, and I think you were going to play the grieving and soon to be dead husband of a female victim of the main vamp. I actually storyboarded the thing — yeah, the images were as illegible as my handwriting and printing, but they worked for me — but we couldn’t figure out a way to flood a culvert where the climax was going to take place. Also, there was potential for disaster, as we’re talking night shooting and lights plus water.

But Vallerga always felt he had to scoop stuff in from other people’s work — some steals from MORK for the first one, some steals from STAR TREK in SOUL, right out of AMOK TIME, less than subtle, easily recognizable. He has managed to afford to keep living in the bay area (maybe he inherited his folks’ place in Los Gatos?), I looked him up, and he teaches drama/stage stuff at some ritzy pay-to-go high school, so he stayed true to his roots (although those are his only roots, he looked balder than Patrick Stewart in the image I found.)

Don’t know if I shared this here or not, but one night when we were shooting CRITICAL ORBIT in my upstairs bedroom (standing in for auxililary control on the ship), Vallerga was walking home and looked up at our apartment. We had a bank of four 600 watt lights that were being flickered, and it put such a strain on the local circuits that lights for the entire building encompassing adjoining apartments was strobing on and off. Might have looked cooler than what we were shooting inside! (we were probably doing the electrocution of the John Nelson character Martin Hansard, which was awkward because he refused to lay down on the floor, so we had to shoot everything at right angles with him ‘lying down’ against the wall of the set.)

My main memory of Nelson is when he “kindly” did one little scene in one of my short films in the garage/studio, with an alien (played by my dad) strangling him. Oh, how I wanted to take dad’s place for the closeup! Yeah, N was pretty humorless, unless it was at my expense or yours. BTW, wasn’t I a character in C.O. for a shot or two in the dining room? A shot where my line was followed by your puppy making a fart sound or whatever underneath the table?

If I’d actually finished CO, you’d’ve probably been the fifth-billing character, as you would have had a bunch of scenes down in the ship’s power bay (dominated by a pair of sunglass racks with pulsed fluorescents inside, masquerading as towering glowing energy cores, looking a lot like something out of THE MATRIX 15 years later.)

The only scene I actually shot showing the power bay was when, in desperation, I cast my mother as the ship’s soon-to-be-late captain. It actually looked really good — we were on what was supposed to be a ledge, and the sunglass racks were only a few feet away, but I had blue plastic stretched between us and the racks, which created a veil of atmostphere making them look like they were off in the distance. But mom was even hammier than I was, and she kind of came off like Grace Zabriskie (Laura Palmer’s mom) when she played the captain of the Hesperus in GALAXY OF TERROR (the movie where Jim Cameron electrically shocked slugs to get them to ‘perform.’)

That puppy, Peanut, was probably 8 or 10 years old, but yeah, it did fart right after you delivered a dramatic line, ‘power level zero in 15 minutes.’ It sounded like a bass music stinger! Sort of like what Goldsmith did when Shatner is spelling v … g … e … r – vger!

I just thought Peanut was very young from his/her size, which I recall as pretty small. Making sets is one thing I can’t do these days, due to my lack of wood-working tools and my leg and feet neuropathy pain issues. So we are shooting in existing exteriors and interiors. I miss that 2-car garage studio I had to make films in, back in San Jose. That was great!

My folks actually had a pro portrait done of Peanut when he was about 15 (how he lived that long with the way they fed him — often being dropped whole frozen hamburgers — I’ll never know) that was printed at about 16×20 and must have been much bigger lthan life-sized. They got another chihauhau, Shakespeare, after that, but it was more like THE ENEMY WITHIN version, as it snapped at and bit everybody, whereas Peanut practically invented the ‘trust fall’ he was so sweet.

I still remember the first time Peanut did that for me when I was house-sitting. He climbed up in my lap,then flung himself backwards, apparently expecting me to catch him. It was a very AlanRickman/HansGruber/DieHard moment, seeing his startled expression as he fell (In fact, every time I remember that funny but painful moment, it is with the Michael Kamen score for that film superimposed on the moment as he falls.)

My tolerance for these “Big Swings” directly correlates to the low number of episodes these guys have to tell actual sci fi stories. If we’re talking 24 episodes, I’d be a lot more tolerant of these show runners and writers desires to do other genres. Here’s an idea… why don’t they go get a job where they can actually write for a puppet based show? I’m anxious to see some writers that actually want to play in the world of Star Trek, not shoehorn Trek into something it’s not. This is an unserious writing staff. So over it.

Thanks for describing why I don’t watch SNW.

There’s plenty of precedent for the crew of starships named Enterprise encountering powerful beings who can warp reality. If they do a Muppet episode, hopefully it involves a bratty near-omnipotent kid playing with the crew by transforming them into puppets. At the end, after reality has been restored to normal, we could hear the voice of John de Lancie telling the kid to leave the humans alone for a little while; he has checked up on them in a couple hundred years and wants them to have some time to mature before then. [As long as the kid never identifies themselves as a Q, but maybe calls themselves Quentin or Queen, it wouldn’t break canon.]

Yeah, with modern TV production and the strike, I anticipated a 2025 release date, although they could have done what they did one year with Discovery and given us the first 5 episodes later this year and the next 5 early next year, but I suspect the Section 31 movie will drop later this year and they are trying to not “oversaturate” the Star Trek available at once, apparently believing that too much content is their problem rather than too little great content. Ah well. Strange New Worlds is worth waiting for, so here I am…. waiting. :)

Well hopefully there isn’t a super long production gap between the filming of S3 and the filming of S4. I realize post-production takes the longest, but hopefully cast and crew will take a shorter break to compensate.

I think that was the only possibility.

“At this point, is there a genre that ‘Strange New Worlds’ can’t do? “As long as we’re in storytelling that is cogent and sure handed, I’m not sure there is,” Goldsman says with an impish smile. ‘Could it do Muppets? Sure. Could it do black and white, silent, slapstick? Maybe!’”

Can SNW do gimmicks? Sure! Impish smile, indeed.

I don’t mind them as long as they are good but yeah I was very mixed on the musical and pray they never do it again.

The musical episode had some good scenes but it wasn’t my favorite either. Although, I do admire their willingness to try new things. I am hoping the addition of the science set means we might actually get them visiting some strange new worlds. Those haven’t been as plentiful as I would like with this show.

Definitely agree about the musical.

I actually liked it more than I thought I would. It was fun and obviously creative but I have only watched it once when it aired.. I still have zero desire to watch it again.

And yes the criticism I and others had about season 2 is the complete lack of any real exploration. I just don’t understand that you know 90% of your audience watch the show for this reason, you call your show Strange New Worlds to emphasize it and yet only spend 1 or 2 episodes on It.

It doesn’t have to be the whole season or even half but should be more than 1 or 2.

Now, now. They explored Vermont and the Great White North.

The episode was technically sound, and I enjoyed it as an aside. I wish they had kept it non canonical though. I despise the efforts to explain it and place it as an actual event. It’s just not believable.

What’s odd is that TV shows usually pull this sort of stuff when they’re in their sixth or seventh season and getting desperate for ideas.

I think it’s because they don’t have any decent Sci Fi writers on the show that could elevate the exploration theme that the show is supposed to be about with it’s title Strange New Worlds. Instead we get awful writing for it’s characters, weak sit com and gimmick shows. Unfortunately as season 2 was probably a success we will get more of more nonsense rather than quality Sci Fi writing or decent ideas. Also why have new ideas when you just take TOS canon and basically walk all over and do what you like with it.

That is why TOS was great, they had actual science fiction writers writing the scripts.

Yeah, could be. I like to think that every writer has at least one good sci-fi idea in them, it just depends if they’re allowed to use it. I mean, it could be an order coming down from the top that these shows need to take “big swings” in terms of gimmicks and nostalgia and so forth to get as many subscribers as possible. But who knows with these things.

Order coming down from the top or not it’s pretty mediocre rubbish being dished out. The fact that people are lapping this up worries me. Forget sci fi what about character growth as there was actually zero in season 2 unless you think romances with zero substance is a good thing in Star Trek. It does make me laugh that Discovery gets absolutely slaughtered here but people think SNW is good story telling and character growth (which it is certainly none of the above). Why because it has recast legacy characters? Older Star Trek did very good episodic and sometimes really good sci fi to boot episodes. SNW season 2 is a mish mash on nonsense episodes and very shallow poor writing even for a sit com series.You know The Orville did it much better than this if you like that sit com vibe. Nah this is not good Star Trek and if the Academy series is anything like this , Star Trek is going nowhere. Just look what we have to look forward to this and another mindless Star Trek action flick 😞

I’ve seen a copy of their master plan for the gimmick episode per season.

S1 – Fantasy. S2 – Musical. S3 – Muppets. S4 – Gameshow. S5 – Sitcom. S6 – Anime. S7 – Bollywood S8 – Mockumentary. S9 – Whodunnit? S10 – It was all a Holodeck program.

Season 2 actually had 4 gimmick episodes for me. 1) Doctor and nurse go John Wick on us 2) Spock becomes human and acts like a complete idiot 3) Let’s start with a cartoon and then turn it into live action and then back to a cartoon again. I can’t say much more but ffs 4) Disney high School Musical with some nonsensical reason for it all. And wow that is nearly half a season of gimmicks lol. Season 1 had potential and only 2 gimmick episodes the fairytale one and the silly Spock brain swap one. Hopefully season 3 doesn’t follow this trend with 6 gimmick episodes 😟 Is this what Star Trek has become.

lol! Im with you, dude.. 10 episodes a season, and they want to fill it with more side projects than actual Star Trek and Sci Fi.


Oh, it will happen…..

So it’s your fault then, thanks.

Jonathan Frakes is an amazing director. His best work is FC and S3 Picard. I often wondered what NEM would have looked like with Frakes instead of Baird.

I think “The Offspring” is his best television episode. Yes he’s an amazing director and look forward to more of his work.

I’d take both The Drumhead and Cause and Effect from TNG (and both of his parts 2 from DS9, come to think of it.) But The Offspring is very good.

I consider FC the best-directed of any ST feature, and yes, NEM might have been a wee bit better! ;)

There is a banquet hall in The San Fernando Valley that has a pool in the floor like the new Science Lab set. That one has koi fish.

there is a resturant near my town that has a glass floor and you can see the micro brewery below the main floor making the beers they serve

My guess is that is Cetacean Ops!!!

Too long of a wait for the return of my favorite show. It’s good to have stuff to look forward to, I guess.

It’s funny to see that the shower curtain environmental suit got a modern update. It looks good.

At this point, is there a genre that ‘Strange New Worlds’ can’t do? “

Yes, Star Trek!

Ok lets spitball potential episode ideas since Goldsman is so fond of doing it: I am thinking a Trek erotic thriller or a body horror episode directed by David Cronenberg.

That sounds awesome! In S2, they talked about big swings, but took zero risks. A Cronenberg style episode would be a big swing and something new.

I was even thinking that they should get Cronenberg to direct it since he is part of the franchise as an actor, maybe they could pay him a bit more to get him to direct.

“ they talked about big swings, but took zero risks.”


Now that it’s confirmed we are in a separate timeline from TOS, I’m on board with whatever they go with – and will likely skip any Muppet episode.

When was that confirmed?

The episode with Khan basically said it. They said that history has been modified numerous times, which is why the Eugenics Wars (from SNW’s perspective) didn’t actually happen in the 90s. Since Trek deals with time travel by creating timelines whenever there’s a change, it means SNW is not in the same timeline as TOS.

This ^, thank you, Chris.

2025!?!?!?! The people in charge of these shows SEEMS like they do everything in their power to ruin them. There has been so many shows that I’ve lost interest in because of these ridiculous long waits between seasons.

Post-production takes a LONG time…

I think we can give them a break this year, I mean the strikes are the big reason for delays, now if the delayed seasons keep happening then I agree!

Who knows if Paramount will exist next year as an independent company?

Mr. Mount is really a good guy.

If it’s Muppets using puppets like Farscape did, or real Yoda from TESB, go for it. I’ll watch. Particularly if it’s like the TOS small birdlike creatures named Korob and Sylvia… or fake Balok… or other TOS examples. Trek already has had puppetry since the beginning.

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The now-tossed Star Trek 4 went through many iterations since the first announcement in July 2016 , including a story by legendary Hollywood director Quentin Tarantino, a surprise 2022 Kelvin cast announcement that apparently Chris Pine and company only learned about through the press, and prequel story set “decades before the 2009 film.”

Following the new Star Trek 5 announcement, star Chris Pine reportedly reacted “with a deep sigh” according to Deadline . “Chris is excited learn about this new film through today’s studio announcement,” said a representative for the actor, “because it went really well the last time this happened, right?”

Also expected for the Trek 5 reunion are co-stars Zachary Quinto (Spock), Zoe Saldana (Uhura), Simon Pegg (Scotty), Karl Urban (“Bones” McCoy), and John Cho (Sulu). Actor Anton Yelchin, who portrayed Chekov in the first three films, passed away in 2016.

While little is known about the planned story of this new film, sources close to Trek 5 development hear that Paramount is pursuing  Dune and  Wonka star Timothée Chalamet for the role of “Sybok,” half-brother of Spock, originated by actor Laurence Luckinbill in 1989.

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  1. Who plays Scotty in Star Trek Strange New Worlds? Meet the new actor

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  2. See Scotty Recast And Back On Star Trek's Enterprise For Strange New Worlds

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  6. Retour de Scotty dans la saison 2 de Strange New Worlds

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  8. Scotty (Star Trek)

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