Updated April 16, 2013
Hello, and Welcome to Startrekhistory.com
It’s hard to believe, but the original Star Trek – the television series that went where no television series has gone before – is over 45 years old. This website is about its production, and includes rare behind-the-scenes photos, documents, and interviews.
Open Call For Original Series Film Trims and
To ensure their longevity, the original negatives of the series are kept in a climate controlled storage facility deep within a converted salt mine in the central part of the United States. There is, however, a part of Trek history that is being lost as you read this – a visual record of the behind-the-scenes aspects of the series.
The Trek Film Clips
Nothing Lasts Forever
Before & After
Do you know what episode this is from? Probably not, it was a scene filmed but never shown from the third season episode, Elaan of Troyius.
Another example. This clip hasn't succumbed to the magenta tint yet, but it has plenty of stains and scratches.
This is a behind the scenes special effects shot. The gray circle has the dual purpose of providing an exposure for a spot meter and is also used in color timing. Notice also that the interior lights of the model are not lit. This is to prevent heat build up and use of the lights. The slate, also known as the clapper, is shown in this image being held in front of the camera lens. It contains the scene, take and other information and is typically photographed before principal photography begins.
This next clip literally had the scene number and take scratched into the film. Editors would do this to quickly find a particular take.
Some of you may own black and white film clips. In the process of shooting films on a day to day basis reviews are done of the previous days' work. These segments of film are referred to as dailies or rushes. They are very rough cuts of film without sound tracks or effects of any kind. They are printed in black and white as it takes less time and costs less then processing color prints. Dailies are viewed daily early in the morning by the producer, director, cameraman to see what has been accomplished and what else needs to be done for the completion of a particular scene.
Dailies are often referred to as rushes because of the haste with which they are assembled for viewing. In the trek blooper reel there is a shot of Shatner addressing the camera saying, " I want you to know in the rushes that I am doing this shot under protest". If you happen to see this scene in color and with sound it is because it was saved specifically for the Christmas party blooper reel by the editors. Below is a restored daily clip.
Titan's 10th anniversary issue of Star Trek magazine published in the UK.
“My favourite feature this issue is probably our revamped Flashback feature, which covers the making of the ST: TOS episode ‘Space Seed' and features some great behind the scenes visual effects images. A guy called Curt McAloney has digitally restored them and they look terrific.”
– Chris Teather, Titan's Editorial Director
Restoring Your Faded Clips
First, for us to restore the images on your clips, they need to qualify as unique and/or special (e.g., behind-the-scenes, special effects, a missing scene and/or anything else that you would not find in a broadcast episode). If you think your clips qualify, you need to contact our restoration expert Curt via e-mail. After you have contacted him, and if he determines that your clips are unique, he will e-mail you with an address to send the clips to. You may send your clips insured, but be aware of the post office’s regulation for insuring packages. Once he receives the clips, they will be handled with lint-free gloves and be inspected, then cleaned with PEC-12, an archival emulsion cleaner, which will remove the embedded dirt, stains, grease pencil marks, etc. The clips will then be scanned on a high resolution scanner and imported into a computer for processing. After scanning, the clips are returned to you. When the clips have been restored, you will be contacted via e-mail. Depending upon your needs, you will be sent either low resolution or high resolution images or both. Remember, we do not need your clips after we have scanned them, therefore there is no incentive for theft.
What about rolls of film? Can you transfer those to a digital format so that I can watch them on a DVD?
How can I find out when the site is updated?