2 posts tagged khan
2 posts tagged khan
Star Trek’s fandom is legendary. It saved the show from cancellation, and had Paramount planning a sequel despite an expensive debut film – 1979’s Star Trek: The Motion Picture – that turned out to be less than stellar.
But Nicholas Meyer wasn’t thinking about all that when he met with Harve Bennett to talk about a Star Trek sequel. He just wanted to make a movie. Bennett showed him the first Trek film, which cost $45 million and asked, “Do you think you could make a movie twice as good for half the money?”
Meyer’s response: “Well, I don’t know if I could make anything as good much less twice as good, but I do know they’ll never give me $45 million, so I could definitely do it for half the money.” He actually did it for even less than that, making Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan for about $11 million, as Meyer details in his book, The View From the Bridge.
Becoming the savior of the beloved franchise, as he is considered by many, was the furthest thing from his mind. “I had never seen Star Trek, so saving it, the importance of saving it the possibility of saving it, were not what I was concerned with,” he said. But Meyer did know from franchises, and sci-fi: He had already earned an Oscar nomination for his Sherlock Holmes story, The Seven Per Cent Solution. And he had written and directed Time After Time, in which H.G. Wells chased Jack the Ripper from 1800s London into ‘70s San Francisco.
Meyer gave Star Trek a future by looking to the past – to the Hornblower novels he loved as a kid, and to lessons of his Oscar-nominated Sherlock Holmes story, The Seven Per Cent Solution, and Time After Time, in which H.G. Wells chased Jack the Ripper from 1800s London into ‘70s San Francisco.
Because he wasn’t too wedded to what Star Trek had been, he was able to reimagine it as something richer. Our conversation:
Some highlights, from Hornblower to script challenges, to taking his heroes seriously:
Tomorrow, Seasholtz will open up SHAPPY’S LONGBOX OF OPINIONS and tell us more about what made ‘82 so great — and whether or not 2012 can top it. Now, though, it’s time for him to introduce himself:
Greetings, True Believers!
The name is Shappy and I am happy to be joining the Hollywonk crew as the resident comic-book geek and pop-culture enthusiast! I have been bagging and boarding and consulting my Overstreet price guide since I was a young nerd of 10. I went to my first comic book convention in 1982 and met Marvel Editor-In-Chief, Jim Shooter and saw footage from a new movie coming out later that summer, BLADE RUNNER. I remember when DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, WATCHMEN and MAUS all came out and changed how everyone thought about comics. I held a tape recorder to the family TV set to record SUPERMAN THE MOVIE until my arm went numb. I spent some time in the trenches at CHICAGO COMICS and QUIMBY’S, two of the finest comic book and underground literature purveyors on the planet! I played a Trekkie in Ernie Cline’s FANBOYS. I created the NERD SLAM at the National Poetry Slam which has been running for over 10 years. I have a book out called SPOKEN NERD REVOLUTION and I currently draw a twice weekly comic strip called UNCLE SHAPPY’S CHUCKLE PARLOUR! If that’s not enough nerd cred for you I’m always ready to accept a trivia challenge or a YAR’S REVENGE play-off!
With all that being said, it’s great to meet you!