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Fade In: The Writing of Star Trek: Insurrection -- by Michael Pillar


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#1
The Shadow

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Just read about this over at AICN (yeah I know, but sometimes they have a lead on interesting news) -- Fade In: The Writing of Star Trek: Insurrection was written by Trek screenwriter Michael Piller -- Piller worked as a writer on TNG and creative consultant on DS9 & VOY as well as helping create/develop DS9 and VOY. The book, which Paramount originally blocked from publication is now available online for free thanks to Star Trek fan site Trek Core. Trek Core focuses on all sorts of Star Trek, and related, multimedia across all of the Star Trek properties.


According to the folk at AICN, bits and pieces of the Fade In have appeared online over the years but this is the first time the whole book has become available.


From AICN -- http://www.aintitcool.com/node/46662

For those who don't recall Piller's name, he was a writer/producer on many shows - WIDLFIRE, THE DEAD ZONE series, STAR TREKs DEEP SPACE NINE and VOYAGER, and the writer/co-producer of INSURRECTION. As such, he was in a position to offer considerable fascinating and illustrative insight into how STAR TREK movies were grown in the Berman era, and how and why certain things went both right...and awry...on the production of INSURRECTION in particular.



From TrekCore -- http://www.trekcore.com/

We have a very special treat for Star Trek fans today - an unpublished book honestly detailing the writing process for Star Trek Insurrection. The book was written by the movie's writer, Michael Piller, who passed away back in 2005. It includes story drafts, internal memos, letters from actors, etc. It's an incredibly insightful read into the process, even if it is unfinished. This link takes you to a Word File.



Here's TrekCore's link -- like the quote from them, it connects directly to a Work (.doc) file -- so yo'll want to right click and use "save as" .

http://movies.trekco...tion/FadeIn.doc


UPDATE: Michael Pillar's family rasked TrekCore to no longer offer the book, and TrekCore has complied with their request.

Edited by The Shadow, 26 September 2010 - 02:55 PM.


#2
Tank

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i downloaded it thinking it might be fun to peruse... and ended up losing half my day reading it straight through.

if you want to know what it is like to write a screenplay in Hollywood-- read this!

Also a great example of seeing how even the best ideas and plans can turn into a ho-hum product without you even realizing it until it was finished.

#3
Wally Q

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Let me just say there's nothing wrong with AICN despite what some piss ant talk backers might say about them.

Either way, yeah it's a pretty interesting read.

#4
Ryn

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404 NOT FOUND

#5
The Shadow

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TrekCore has an update on the book -- Michael Pillar's family asked them to stop offering it and TrekCore has agreed to remove the download.



Let me just say there's nothing wrong with AICN despite what some piss ant talk backers might say about them.



Yeah -- it's really the Talkbackers that get you down. AICN is certainly one of the better news sources out there for geek interests.

Edited by The Shadow, 26 September 2010 - 03:04 PM.


#6
Tank

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Too bad it was taken down, it was an interesting read.

#7
Stevil

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Can anyone summarise for me? Did the guy write about anything interesting?

#8
Wally Q

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If anyone wants it, I managed to save it.

#9
Tank

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Same here.

It was basically a step by step account of writing Star Trek Insurrection from the moment he was hired by Rick Berman to the movie's premiere, including early treatments, rough drafts and copies of the various notes from the studio/cast/producer's etc.

If you want insight into a bunch of Trekery, it's not that interesting. if you want to see just how hard it is to get a script written in the Hollywood system, it's a great read.

#10
Ryn

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Please?

#11
mattbignell

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Hey guys, I'm an aspiring screenwritier and would really like to read this book/document. If one of you would be so good as to send it to me if I send you a PM then I would be very grateful.

#12
Stevil

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If I'm honest i was interested in the squabbles and the power struggles. I imagine there to be bickering like:

"if there's no Riker love scene, Jonathan's not on board"

Or

"... and then Jean-Luc kicks the alien's ass"

#13
R.CAllen

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Ten years ago (or more) I listened in on a Q & A session Michael Piller did at a local Toronto convention during the time before John de Lancie came on stage. He seemed cool.

If Tank or Wally or Ryn would send the book to me that'd be nice. For me.

Slightly off topic : I once had a free-to-read PDF book by an older comedy writer (he wrote for Wayne & Shuster and from there got onto Johnny Carson including a sketch where Johnny sings the entire history of the human race in the time it takes for a pair of waffles to get done in a toaster) but I lost it ------ and, after a lot of Googling, I found it again. It's called Valuable Lessons : How I Made (And Lost) Over Seven Million Dollars Writing For Over A Hundred Shows You Never Heard Of and is here. I remember it being great (there are horror stories in there of selling a joke for, like, five bucks and then seeing it for the rest of his life on bumper stickers and t-shirts and of not being allowed to write the nerdy smart kid on a children's TV show as knowing anything that the typical child wouldn't already know or of being asked to pitch animated projects based on soap flake mascots) and a candid and well explained guide to what it's been like to work in Hollywood. So, y'know, you could read that if you want guys.

#14
Ryn

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I'd share it if I had it.

*glares*

#15
Guest_booyah!_*

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If anyone wants it, I managed to save it.


If you do have a copy I would love to finish reading it....I was 10 pages from the end when it was taken down :-/

#16
Tank

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.

Attached Files


  • Iceman and R.CAllen +1 this

#17
Ryn

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So will it ever be released properly? Perhaps proceeds shared with Pillar's family?

#18
Tank

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I highly doubt Paramount would spend the money to publish a book by a dead guy on the making of a movie that bombed almost a decade ago in a franchise they are busy trying to reinvent.

#19
mattbignell

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Thank you very much Tank for that PDF. Most useful to me :)

#20
R.CAllen

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Thanks, Tank.

Thtanks.