The Trek Nation - From Trek X To Nemesis
From Trek X To Nemesis
By Caillan Davenport
Posted at December 13, 2002 - 5:46 AM GMT
After 'Star Trek: Insurrection's' premiere on December 11 1998, the question on everyone's lips was 'Will there be another film?' Today, four years since the Enterprise-E battled the Son'a and Federation corruption, 'Star Trek Nemesis' - the tenth Star Trek feature film and possibly the last for The Next Generation crew - premieres in cinemas across North America. In this special feature article, we trace the development of the film from first rumour to final cut.
Please note that due to the nature of this article, it does contain major spoilers for 'Star Trek Nemesis.' If you've stayed spoiler-free this long, turn away now and come back when you've seen the film!
TrekToday opened in February 1999, approximately two months after the premiere of 'Star Trek: Insurrection.' At this stage information on a tenth Trek feature film was scarce, and the rumours that did emerge were unsubstantiated, with the only accurate information coming from Rick Berman in his regular chats with publications such as the Star Trek Communicator and Star Trek Monthly. The one thing everyone agreed on was that if there was going to be a Trek X, it would be at least two to three years away.
February 10, 1999 - The first Trek X news to appear on TrekToday was inauspiciously shelved in the 'Unreliable Rumours Department.' Section 31 reported Paramount was considering a premise involving three ships (including the Enterprise-E) which travel to the Andromeda galaxy and encounter a new alien species. The article then said the concept had been "shelved."
February 22, 1999 - British Teletext's Trek page included the news "Big Movie Star Approaches For Trek 10."
February 26, 1999 - Franchise head Rick Berman told the Star Trek Communicator he had embarked on "very preliminary discussions" regarding the next feature film. TrekWeb reported Voyager executive producer and 'Generations' and 'First Contact' co-writer Brannon Braga would probably be first in line to get the gig, with the studio looking at a Thanksgiving 2001 release.
March 3, 1999 - British Teletext ran the headline "First discussions on next Trek movie."
March 8, 1999 - In an interview with a Brazilian Sci-Fi magazine, Patrick Stewart (Jean-Luc Picard) said he and Brent Spiner (Data) had come up with a "simple" premise for the next film, possibly the same as a previous idea to explore corruption within the Federation. Teletext again chipped in with the rather cryptic headline "New Trekker Film/Kirk CD/G La Forge."
April 2, 1999 - According to TV Guide, Jonathan Frakes (Will Riker) said Paramount probably wouldn't release Trek X until after all the 'Star Wars' prequels had premiered.
April 5, 1999 - This time around, Teletext promised "News on next Trek film as work starts."
April 9, 1999 - Speaking with Sci-Fi Talk, Brent Spiner (Data) said he would be "good for one more and after that the suitability quotient is out the window," revealing he asked to be killed in 'Insurrection.' That wasn't to be, but the actor received a card from Rick Berman with his script which said "Sorry, kill you next time."
April 27, 1999 - Teletext once again took pride of place in the 'Unreliable Rumours Department,' reporting "Voyager star set for Trek movie role." Although it is not known which Voyager actor they were referring to at the time, this headline turned out to be true - don't blink or you'll miss Kate Mulgrew's cameo as Admiral Janeway.
June 22, 1999 - The next Trek X-related news item appeared almost a month later, with Rick Berman stating in the Star Trek Communicator there would be no movie released in 2000, and all details (including which cast the film would feature) were up in the air.
July 30, 1999 - In a chat at the official site, Patrick Stewart said he knew nothing about the next Trek feature, and didn't expect to hear anything for another 9 to 12 months.
August 8, 1999 - Speaking with Star Trek Monthly, Rick Berman said the earliest release date of the next Trek film would be sometime in 2001.
December 1, 1999 - Several months later, Rick Berman provided a further movie update in the Star Trek Communicator, reiterating all the points he had made in previous interviews. "Whether it will be a Next Generation film, or a film that will combine characters from different series, has not been decided. It will not be released in 2000, though. I would think that the earliest the film will be released is fall of 2001."
December 13, 1999 - TrekToday reported an unconfirmed rumour that Patrick Stewart and Brent Spiner were trying to take control of the Trek feature franchise.
December 14, 1999 - Ain't It Cool News posted the same report about Stewart and Spiner's alleged efforts to have Rick Berman replaced as head of the Trek movies.
December 19, 1999 - A Paramount spokesperson told Sci-Fi Wire there was no truth in the reports that Stewart and Spiner were trying to gain control of the movie franchise. "These rumors are absolutely incorrect and erroneous and couldn't be further from the truth," the spokesperson told the site, before going on to say "There will be one [another movie], but we have no information at this point."
January 5, 2000 - Majel Barrett-Roddenberry told the Sci-Fi Wire all plans for Trek X were "on the backburner for the while."
February 2, 2000 - Despite reports to the contrary in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, a Paramount representative told Sci-Fi Wire the next Trek film had not been given the go-ahead.
March 24, 2000 - Rick Berman confirmed to Fandom.com that a tenth Trek feature was in development, with a story already being hammered out. In a second report, Berman told the Star Trek Communicator he had held discussions Patrick Stewart, Brent Spiner and Jonathan Frakes about the film and had met with a "non-Trek writer."
"The Write Stuff"
Once Rick Berman announced there was a film in early development, Internet speculation turned to the writer of the picture. The previous three TNG outings had been written by in-house veterans - Brannon Braga, Ronald D. Moore and Michael Piller - but this time a fresh writer would be brought in to pen the movie. The names of various Hollywood scribes were bandied about, until the spotlight settled on one man - John Logan, the fan who made the big time.
April 3, 2000 - Jonathan Frakes said he felt there would be no new movie until after Series V had premiered. "I think Star Trek 10 is probably a step behind the next TV series. [...] I know that Rick Berman has a commitment to Paramount to get the next series up and running. While he's doing that, I know there have been primary meetings and discussions on 10. Certainly there are no writers on board, no director."
April 16, 2000 - In an interview with Star Trek Monthly, Rick Berman revealed the writer he was working with on the next movie was a "great fan" of the franchise. At this stage Paramount was aiming at a Thanksgiving or Christmas 2001 release.
May 20, 2000 - Trek archivist Richard Arnold told fans at a convention in Germany that the first negotiations over a tenth picture had been held, with Patrick Stewart, Brent Spiner and Marina Sirtis (Deanna Troi) among those approached.
May 21, 2000 - Rick Berman dropped a few more hints about the writer of the next film in an interview with SFX Magazine. "Obviously I can't name him, but he's a very successful screenwriter, who has some major movies to his credit, and some of them, I think, you could definitely say fit within the science fiction realm and a number of them do not." The producer also spoke of the need for a "more formidable, more classic villain."
June 5, 2000 - Corona Coming Attractions reported an unconfirmed rumour that 'Batman & Robin' scribe (and later Oscar winner for 'A Beautiful Mind') Akiva Goldsman had been hired to write Trek X. TrekWeb later contacted Goldsman's production company and Rick Berman's office, which denied the rumours.
June 7, 2000 - 'Gladiator' scribe David Franzoni was next reported to be the writer by Corona, but his agent debunked the rumour.
June 8, 2000 - With the rumours flying, Berman continued to tease fans with details about the Trek X writer, whom he called "an A-list writer with some major movies to his credit." The producer also said they had worked out a "wonderful story," and spoke of the need to be a "drop less serious when it comes to Picard's character."
June 15, 2000 - After over a year of speculation, the first plot details for Trek X emerged, centring around the character of Data. IGN FilmForce reported the producers were considering killing the much-loved android in the film.
June 26, 2000 - In June's issue of the Star Trek Communicator, Rick Berman confirmed that an "extremely poignant" Next Generation story was currently being considered by Paramount. Reiterating the plan to see the movie released in late 2001, the producer said it had "a remarkable villain and is a very action-oriented space film."
June 30, 2000 - Patrick Stewart jumped on the Trek X bandwagon. "A director has not been selected," he said. "We're really at the very earliest stages of creating a possible story for this film, and perhaps in a couple of months ... I will have more to say." The actor also debunked rumours that Buffy The Vampire Slayer creator Joss Whedon was involved.
July 1, 2000 - Corona Coming Attractions hit the jackpot, revealing 'Gladiator' co-writer John Logan had been tapped to pen Trek X. Actor J.G. Hertzler (Martok) had let the information slip at an Atlanta convention after being told Logan was the writer by Marina Sirtis.
July 5, 2000 - StarTrek.com confirmed John Logan had been hired to write the next feature film.
"The Android, The Clone & The Wedding"
With the writer announced, the majority of rumours now focused on the actual plot of the film. One of the first to emerge was an old favourite - the death of Data. Brent Spiner, visibly older than when he originated the role back in 1987, had reportedly wanted to kill off the popular android in 'Insurrection,' but it was not to be. The question was - would Data survive Trek X?
Murmurs of other plot details soon emerged. Fans were promised Romulans and a "memorable villain." Two major characters would get married, and there would be special guest appearances from well-known Trek faces. But above all, Trek X looked to have a finality to it, with the TNG crew parting ways at the end of the movie.
July 7, 2000 - Corona Coming Attractions was now on a roll, reporting Brent Spiner was involved in the development of the story, and that Data would in fact be killed off in the film. Most significantly, they revealed one of the key elements of the flick - an "alternate version of Data" would be discovered, enabling Spiner to return in future installments.
On the same day, IGN Movies posted the first rumour about the film's director, stating it would be John Logan himself.
July 10, 2000 - A few days later Patrick Stewart told Sci-Fi Weekly no director had been selected. He also said he did not know if he would serve as associate producer on the film, a role he had filled on 'Insurrection.'
July 21, 2000 - Due to his commitment to direct 'Clockstoppers,' Jonathan Frakes told Cinescape he might not be able to direct Trek X. Frakes helmed both 'First Contact' and 'Insurrection.'
August 4, 2000 - John Logan's 28-page treatment for the film was described as "very impressive" by Patrick Stewart speaking on British radio. The Sci-Fi Wire also reported a first draft of the screenplay was expected soon, with both Rick Berman and Brent Spiner contributing to the story.
August 15, 2000 - Patrick Stewart told SFX he thought Trek X would be his last franchise outing.
August 31, 2000 - On stage at a Canadian convention, Jonathan Frakes told fans Trek X "better be better than the last one."
September 15, 2000 - Marina Sirtis also said the next film would probably be the end of the line for the TNG crew. "The 10th movie will probably be my last. I don't think she [Deanna Troi] will be killed off but it will make the last film for our cast."
October 27, 2000 - USA Today reported Patrick Stewart had officially signed on to film Trek X. However, due to the looming writers' and actors' strikes in Hollywood, the production of the movie would no longer start in Spring 2001 for a Thanksgiving release.
November 10, 2000 - In his latest production update with the Star Trek Communicator, Rick Berman praised John Logan's work on the Trek X script, saying it had "a wonderful arc" for Data and "an all-new villain and an all-new race." The producer said the studio had targeted the film for release in early 2002.
November 25, 2000 - Hollywood trade paper Variety officially announced John Logan's involvement with Trek X, and said both Patrick Stewart and Brent Spiner would star in the film. However, in an interview with the Indianapolis Star Spiner said "I haven't signed anything, but we've been in serious talks."
December 2, 2000 - Star Trek pre-production coordinator Lolita Fatjo reportedly announced at a convention that Jonathan Frakes would direct the next film.
January 3, 2001 - StarTrek.com posted the first interview with screenwriter John Logan, who talked about his love for the Trek franchise and one of the film's primary themes - the passage of time. "[I want] to portray the crew of the Enterprise as having lives between adventures, growing personally as well as within their relationships with each other," he said, adding that the chance to ink the film was a great honour. "I think what I will bring to it is my love for the characters and the world of Star Trek. At age 39, to be able to sit in the captain's chair is a dream come true; my hope is that it will form every part of my writing."
January 4, 2001 - Jonathan Frakes said he would be "thrilled and proud" to direct Trek X, despite rumours that he was not being considered for the job.
January 9, 2001 - The first details of a key Trek X event emerged online. At a convention in New York, Marina Sirtis refused to comment on her character's arc, but Michael Dorn (Worf) hinted Troi and Riker would tie the knot.
January 10, 2001 - At the Television Critics Association press tour in Pasadena, Rick Berman revealed John Logan had completed the script for Trek X.
January 22, 2001 - Speaking to Cinescape, Jonathan Frakes commented on the production process, saying "We've allegedly got a script on the way that everyone's thrilled with."
February 7, 2001 - Rick Berman revealed for the first time that the movie would involved the Romulans, though not as the principal villains. He told the Star Trek Communicator there would be "some surprises" as to the look of the Romulans in the film.
March 16, 2001 - Marina Sirtis talked briefly about the upcoming flick, stating that it would "probably be the last one," as Patrick Stewart wasn't too keen about doing a Trek XI. "I don't think Patrick wants to do any more after that because he has two franchises, Star Trek and the X-Men," she said.
In an interview with Ian Spelling, Rick Berman revealed the film would deal with the issue of cloning. "All I can tell you now about the plot is that it will deal with a supreme and hopefully memorable villain. There's some cloning involved, and there are also a lot of Romulans involved. But I will say no more."
March 23, 2001 - The Associated Press reported filming on Trek X would start in fall 2001, with Patrick Stewart set start production on 'X-Men 2' in early 2002.
March 29, 2001 - British tabloid newspaper The Sun quoted Patrick Stewart as saying he would be killed off in the next Trek feature.
April 3, 2001 - At the Pasadena Grand Slam convention, Michael Dorn said Jonathan Frakes would probably not be chosen to helm the film. "If anybody from the cast is going to direct the new movie, it'll be LeVar [Burton]. He's got a lot of credits now. He'll do a great job, and we can tease him mercilessly - especially Patrick." The actor also commented on the Worf/Troi relationship. "There won't be a relationship between Worf and Deanna [in Trek X]. They've let go of that, even though I like it; it's like Beauty and the Beast."
April 8, 2001 - Following on from Michael Dorn's comments, LeVar Burton (Geordi La Forge) announced he would likely be Trek X's director. Burton also said casting had not yet started, quashing rumours that British thespian Alan Rickman had secured the villain's role.
In an interview with TrekNews.de, Trek archivist Richard Arnold offered his own interpretation of Burton's comments. "I think he meant that he would like to direct. He believes it's his turn. But while they do have a script, there is no director yet. But he is in negotiations with Paramount."
April 10, 2001 - Rick Berman's regular chat with the Star Trek Communicator revealed a few more tidbits about the film, including possible guest appearances. "We have planned surprises in the feature film that we'll be shooting this year with some characters from other series than Next Generation," he said.
The producer also mentioned Trek X would be stylistically different. "It is more of a heroic Picard vs. the evil villain type of picture as compared to some of the previous films," he said. "I think there is more action in it and it's a film that takes place primarily in space. We have wonderful villains, wonderful species both known and new and I would describe the film as being in the same style as John's film 'Gladiator'. The film has a real epic quality to it."
April 18, 2001 - Writer John Logan spoke for the first time about his love for 'Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.' "One of the smartest things they did in Star Trek II, my favourite of the movies, was to give Captain Kirk glasses," Logan told the Star Trek Communicator. "It acknowledges the passage of time, and that these characters change over time, and their relationships with each other change."
April 26, 2001 - TrekToday revealed the working title of the next Trek feature film was 'Star Trek X: Nemesis.' After an opening sequence similar to 'Insurrection' (ie: not on a space background), the film was reported to begin with the wedding of William Riker and Deanna Troi.
May 1, 2001 - Sources told TrekToday Paramount was planning to include a cameo by Jeri Ryan (Seven of Nine) in 'Nemesis.'
May 8, 2001 - IGN FilmForce confirmed the Riker/Troi wedding, adding that the script included cameo appearances by Lwaxana Troi and Mr. Homm, with Beverly Crusher acting as maid of honour.
Later in the day, the first Trek X script review was posted at MovieHeadlines.net. The site said the film would revolve around Shinzon, the leader of the Remans, the sister race to the Romulans. Shinzon "shares a secret" with Picard and plans to build a new "superweapon" to bring his race out of the shadow of the Romulans.
May 10, 2001 - In an interview with Star Trek: The Magazine, John Logan expressed his desire to include references to other Trek series in the film.
June 12, 2001 - TrekToday reported Kate Mulgrew (Kathryn Janeway) would appear in 'Nemesis,' as Jeri Ryan was unable to reprise her Seven of Nine role due to scheduling conflicts with her new series, Boston Public.
June 14, 2001 - An article at TrekWeb suggested 'L.A. Confidential' cinematographer Dante Spinotti had been tapped to serve as director of photography on Trek X.
June 19, 2001 - Robert Duncan McNeill (Tom Paris) told fans at a convention that Kate Mulgrew was up for a cameo in Trek X.
July 9, 2001 - Ain't It Cool News posted an extensive review of 'Star Trek: Nemesis.' Details mentioned in the review included a cameo by Dr Leah Brahms ('Booby Trap'), the first mention of the "24th century jeep" sequence, and the discovery of Data's double, B-9, later renamed B-4. The film's twist was reported to involve cloning.
July 14, 2001 - Paramount Pictures registered 'Star Trek: Nemesis' as an official trademark.
July 16, 2001 - TrekToday revealed 'Nemesis' villain Shinzon is in fact a clone of Jean-Luc Picard, created by a Romulan general twenty-five years ago to replace the Enterprise captain. The other major spoiler was the news that Data would sacrifice himself to save the Enterprise at the conclusion of the film.
July 23, 2001 - Thanks to information provided by longtime source 'Faith', TrekToday published extensive details of the character arcs for the TNG crew. These included the news Riker and Troi would leave for the U.S.S. Titan and Crusher would take up a new position at Starfleet Medical at the end of the film. The major theme for Picard would be the passage of time, accentuated by the youth of his new first officer, Commander Martin Madden.
July 25, 2001 - Putting an end to months of speculation, trade paper Variety announced Stuart Baird had been hired to direct 'Star Trek: Nemesis.' Baird previously helmed 'Executive Decision' and scored Oscar nominations for editing 'Superman' and 'Gorillas In The Mist.'
August 10, 2001 - TrekToday reported John Logan had included several nods to Trek continuity in 'Nemesis.' These included references to the Dominion War, the Andorians, 'Defensive Pattern Kirk Epsilon,' and Doctor Soong.
August 15, 2001 - Dark Horizons posted a new 'Nemesis' script review, the first to give the film a negative write-up, saying "the script reads like a bland two part episode from The Next Generation TV show."
August 16, 2001 - Corona Coming Attractions reported 'Gladiator' composer Hans Zimmer was being considered to write the music for 'Nemesis.'
August 17, 2001 - Dark Horizons webmaster Garth Franklin chimed in with his thoughts on the Trek X script, calling it "a very serious, very talky drama when it should be a action-packed tense thriller to send off the gang in style."
On the same day, Ain't It Cool News reported the TNG cast were reluctant to sign on for Trek X. "Seems the principal players are making demands, and Paramount isn't meeting them. And there are power games being played."
August 18, 2001 - "Trek X News Week" continued with Ain't It Cool News revealing effects house Digital Domain ('Titanic' & 'Armageddon') had been contracted to provide the VFX for 'Nemesis.'
A new casting rumour also emerged, as Corona Coming Attractions reported Jude Law ('A.I.') and Craig T. Nelson (The District) were up for the roles of Shinzon and the Reman Viceroy, respectively. The site also debunked rumours Sean Connery was being considered for the Shinzon role, with the producers apparently wanting him to appear as the leader of the Romulan Senate.
August 28, 2001 - Trek archivist Richard Arnold reportedly told fans at a convention that none of the main TNG cast had signed on for 'Nemesis' yet, with Patrick Stewart and Brent Spiner only having an "agreement" with Paramount, rather than a contract.
August 29, 2001 - One of the oddest Trek X rumours appeared online, with Corona Coming Attractions reporting location scouts were considering filming sequences in Vulcan, Canada.
Established insider 'Robnhud' published his review of 'Nemesis' at TrekWeb, describing the final battle between the Enterprise-E and Shinzon's Scimitar as "easily the most ambitious space battle for a Trek film."
August 30, 2001 - The latest Trek X script review, this time published at IGN FilmForce, said "the plot itself is a retread of past stories albeit a mildly enjoyable one. From clones to destroying the earth with a doomsday weapon, this story ran the risk of being unofficially renamed Star Trek: Replicant."
September 4, 2001 - Speaking at a Denver convention, Michael Dorn said Worf would still be an ambassador in 'Nemesis' but the film would also have "a lot of changes."
September 7, 2001 - Also out on the convention circuit was LeVar Burton, who said Whoopi Goldberg had been asked to make a cameo as Guinan in the Riker/Troi wedding scene.
"Set Course For Christmas 2002"
In September 2001, Paramount Pictures gave 'Star Trek: Nemesis' the go-ahead to proceed into production for release in late 2002, four years after 'Insurrection.' The large hiatus served to whet the appetite of the fan community, as TNG regulars continued talking up their film on the convention circuit.
September 21, 2001 - Paramount officially greenlit 'Star Trek: Nemesis' and announced filming was set to begin on November 28. Trade paper Variety confirmed Digital Domain as the effects provider, but also reported the film was set for a fall or holiday 2003 release, not 2002.
October 2, 2001 - Actress Kate Mulgrew denied all knowledge of her Trek X cameo in an interview with SFX Magazine. "The internet is always right! It's ahead of everybody else! Lots of times that's happened to me. Somebody says 'Did you hear this on the internet?' Absolutely not. Bingo a week or two later it comes to fruition."
Variety's 2003 release date for 'Nemesis' turned out to be a typo, with Paramount confirming to Upcoming Movies that the film would be released in the 2002 holiday season.
October 3, 2001 - Marina Sirtis said she hoped John Logan's love for her character would mean a bigger role for the Counsellor. "[John Logan] is a huge Trekkie," she told SFX. "He has said that he had a purely professional crush on Troi, which hopefully will translate into Troi having a bigger part, which would work for me."
October 30, 2001 - 'Nemesis' was reported to begin shooting in late November by TrekWeb and Dark Horizons. SyFy Portal suggested the script was undergoing rewrites due to the September 11 terrorist attacks.
November 2, 2001 - John Logan weighed in with his thoughts on Internet rumours. "I never comment on Internet rumours because they're so despicable," Logan told Cinescape. "A work in progress is an ugly thing. A writer should only be judged when the work is completed. If I were to tell you the plot of Casablanca, you would say, 'That sounds like an OK thriller,' but when you see the movie, it is so much more than what just the plot would suggest."
November 3, 2001 - Speaking with Starlog, Rick Berman explained why he chose Stuart Baird to helm 'Nemesis.' "Stuart Baird is someone I met with at length. His major experience has been in film editing. I love the sense of fun and action that existed in 'Executive Decision.' He is someone who's familiar with Star Trek, but not that familiar, which is exactly what I wanted. I wanted some fresh blood and I think he'll bring it. The cinematographer and editors he'll use will be great for the franchise."
November 12, 2001 - At Robert Beltran's (Chakotay) Galaxy Ball, Patrick Stewart announced 'Nemesis' would start filming on Monday, November 19. He also denied changes had been made to the film because of the events of September 11, adding "there is no better time for a Star Trek movie and for this movie in particular."
Gates McFadden (Beverly Crusher), one of the least heard-from TNG stars, said Crusher and Picard would have a few "special moments" in the movie.
November 14, 2001 - The news of 'Nemesis' cameo appearances continued with Wil Wheaton (Wesley Crusher) announcing at his web site that he would appear in the film. "I am really excited about this for three reasons," he said. "I am going to get to work with my friends again. Wesley Crusher will have some real closure, finally. For the last 5 years, at least, everywhere I go, fans ask me if I'm going to be in a movie, and what happened to Wesley, and I can honestly say that I'm doing this for the fans, because it will be so damn cool to see all of us together again."
November 16, 2001 - TrekWeb reported 'Nemesis' would have a budget of $80 million, $20 million more than the cost of 'Insurrection.' The site also said Academy Award-winner and Trek veteran Jerry Goldsmith would compose the film's score.
"Lights, Camera, Action!"
Even as filming commenced, several key roles had not yet been announced. The search for an actor to play the key role of Shinzon was a difficult one, until a young British actor by the name of Tom Hardy sent in a poorly-lit audition tape from the set of 'Black Hawk Down' in Morocco.
Production began in late November with the wedding sequences, before moving to the north of Los Angeles for the planet-based scenes. The rest of the shoot took place on the Paramount sound-stages, with the cast and crew spending most of December on the bridge before moving to the Romulan and Reman locales.
November 19, 2001 - On the first day of filming, Kate Mulgrew confirmed her 'Nemesis' cameo as Admiral Janeway, telling fans at a Philadelphia convention she would be "ordering Picard around." Denise Crosby (Tasha Yar, Sela), who was also at the convention, said she had discussed the possibility of an appearance with Rick Berman, but it didn't pan out.
November 26, 2001 - Trek stalwart Rick Sternbach told Ex Astris Scientia he would be working as a graphic artist on Trek X.
November 27, 2001 - November continued to be quite the news month, with TrekWeb reporting young British actor Tom Hardy had been cast in the key role of Shinzon. Hardy previously appeared in 'Black Hawk Down' and Band of Brothers.
November 29, 2001 - Paramount Pictures confirmed Tom Hardy had been selected to play Shinzon, a role Stargate SG-1 actor Michael Shanks also auditioned for (story).
December 7, 2001 - Wil Wheaton related his experiences on the 'Nemesis' set to readers of his web site. "It's like I never left, and I love it," the actor wrote.
The Sci-Fi Wire reported Whoopi Goldberg had been seen on the Paramount lot, where 'Nemesis' was shooting. At this stage, Paramount had not yet confirmed her cameo as Guinan.
December 11, 2001 - At a 'Black Hawk Down' press conference, Tom Hardy compared 'Nemesis' to 'The Prince and the Pauper.' StarTrek.com reported the cast and crew had filmed scenes around Palmdale and Lancaster north of Los Angeles at the end of November, while most of the December sequences would be shot on the bridge.
December 13, 2001 - Paramount Pictures released the official synopsis of 'Nemesis,' confirming several plot details including the Riker/Troi wedding and Picard's "personal nemesis." The official site reported filming would be completed by March 2002.
December 19, 2001 - Paramount announced Jeffrey L. Kimball ('Mission Impossible 2') would serve as the 'Nemesis' cinematographer, with Trek veteran Peter Lauritson as co-producer and Marty Hornstein as executive producer.
December 21, 2001 - Corona Coming Attractions reported 'X-Men' director Bryan Singer would be making a cameo in Trek X, with the helmer seen reporting for a costume fitting on the Paramount lot.
December 26, 2001 - The Hollywood Reporter announced Steven Culp and Dina Meyer would fill the roles of Commander Madden and Romulan Commander Donatra.
December 27, 2001 - 'Nemesis' casting news continued with StarTrek.com reporting Beauty and the Beast actor Ron Perlman would play the Reman Viceroy in the film.
December 30, 2001 - While Patrick Stewart announced there would be no romance for Captain Picard this time around, SyFy Portal reported the 'Nemesis' teaser trailer could be released by May, 2002, in time for the premiere of 'Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones.'
January 9, 2002 - Entertainment Tonight aired the first footage from 'Nemesis.' The segment included Patrick Stewart denying rumours of Picard's death and Jonathan Frakes and Marina Sirtis talking about the Riker/Troi wedding.
January 20, 2002 - The Chicago Sun-Times reported 'Nemesis' would premiere on November 22, the same date as the 'First Contact' debut.
February 1, 2002 - Principal photography on 'Nemesis' reached the halfway point, with filming set to conclude in March. The official site announced several other production personnel, including editor Dallas Puett, production designer Herman Zimmerman and costume designer Bob Ringwood.
February 4, 2002 - Rick Berman confirmed Whoopi Goldberg's appearance as Guinan.
February 6, 2002 - Speaking with DreamWatch, Patrick Stewart said he had no official role on 'Nemesis' apart from acting.
February 26, 2002 - Rick Berman said Majel Barrett Roddenberry would not be reprising her role of Lwaxana Troi in the film. "No. Because one of the major story points is that this is the first of two weddings - the second one being held on Betazed, although an element of story kinds of gets in the way of that."
March 1, 2002 - According to a report at Upcoming Movies, Paramount Pictures pushed back the release date of 'Nemesis' to December 20.
March 8, 2002 - E! News Daily visited the Trek X set, airing footage of Shinzon, B-9 and the Remans.
March 14, 2002 - Rick Sternbach told StarTrekUK principal photography on 'Nemesis' was "pretty much done" apart from some second-unit shooting.
March 18, 2002 - A report in Film Score Monthly officially confirmed Jerry Goldsmith would compose the 'Nemesis' soundtrack.
March 19, 2002 - Patrick Stewart said the rumour of 'X-Men' director Bryan Singer's cameo was true. "He's a bridge officer during a particularly dramatic sequence on the bridge. He has action, and he has a piece of dialogue."
March 21, 2002 - TrekWeb posted the official 'Nemesis' logo, featuring a bird of prey with the twin worlds of Romulus and Remus clasped in its talons.
March 23, 2002 - Jonathan Frakes revealed to Cinescape he was never offered the Trek X directing gig.
March 25, 2002 - United International Pictures released the first official image from Trek X - a thrilling shot of Picard, LaForge, Data, Riker and Worf staring at a bridge console.
April 15, 2002 - Zentertainment published a report which claimed Ashley Judd said she would reprise the role of Robin Lefler in 'Nemesis' during an appearance on The Late Show With David Letterman. The actress later debunked the news.
April 30, 2002 - Upcoming Movies reported Trek X's release date had changed again, this time to December 13, which finally stuck.
"A Generation's Final Journey Begins"
With principal photography complete, fans could do little but wait for the first footage to emerge. Rick Berman continued to provide official updates on the progress of the film and relayed how pleased Paramount was with how things were going. But clouds were looming on the horizon - 'Nemesis' would have to be the Trek to end all Treks to beat off competition from 'Die Another Day,' 'Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets' and 'The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers' in the cut-throat holiday season. If the film tanked at the box-office, the future of the Trek feature franchise would be bleak.
May 17, 2002 - Paramount announced footage from 'Nemesis' would be available on a special CD-ROM distributed at the E3 entertainment expo.
May 28, 2002 - Patrick Stewart dismissed rumours 'Nemesis' would be the final TNG film. "Those conversations are only happening in the fan community," he told SFX.
June 4, 2002 - The first concept art for Art Asylum's 'Nemesis' action figures appeared online.
June 13, 2002 - Rick Berman told the Sci-Fi Wire Paramount "couldn't be more pleased" with how 'Nemesis' was turning out.
June 17, 2002 - Also speaking to the Sci-Fi Wire, Marina Sirtis said the cast "butted heads a little bit" with freshman director Stuart Baird during filming.
June 20, 2002 - The first review of a 'rough cut' of the film appeared at Ain't It Cool News. "This is the Next Generation film we've all been waiting for," the article said.
June 22, 2002 - The one-and-a-half-minute 'Nemesis' teaser trailer was shown for the first time at the Trek Expo in Tulsa, Oklahoma. TrekToday source 'Faith' provided a scene-by-scene breakdown of the clip.
On the same day, Canadian network Bravo aired a special on the film, showing concept art and makeup designs, while FilmJerk published a new review which called 'Nemesis' a "mixed bag."
June 27, 2002 - The 'Nemesis' teaser trailer received its television premiere on Entertainment Tonight and the movie's new official web site, which launched after the broadcast.
June 30, 2002 - Patrick Stewart told Empire Online he was an "absolute breath away" from turning down 'Nemesis' due to difficult negotiations.
July 3, 2002 - The 'Nemesis' teaser poster arrived in theatres, bearing the film's tagline 'A Generation's Final Journey Begins.' The trailer also debuted in cinemas over the July 4 holiday weekend.
Toy manufacturer Art Asylum released the first images of its range of 'Nemesis' figures.
July 7, 2002 - Paramount Pictures released several more images from the movie, including shots of the Romulan Senate and the Reman Viceroy.
July 16, 2002 - The validity of the movie's tagline was soon thrown into doubt, with Jonathan Frakes commenting "I think if this one does well, I can't imagine why they would stop making them."
July 20, 2002 - Writer John Logan also stepped up to the sequel plate, telling Cinescape he'd like to write Trek XI.
August 14, 2002 - Wil Wheaton told fans at his web site he had received a phone call from Rick Berman, who told him his 'Nemesis' cameo had been cut out. The first cut of the movie ran for almost 3 hours.
August 22, 2002 - The Motion Picture Association of America gave 'Nemesis' a PG-13 rating for "sci-fi action violence and peril and a scene of sexual content," only the second film after 'First Contact' to receive a rating about PG.
August 30, 2002 - Rick Berman told the Star Trek Communicator 'Nemesis' would have a running time of approximately two hours. On the same day, IGN FilmForce posted the first photo of the Romulan warbird Valdore, commanded by Donatra.
August 30 marked another important milestone in the Trek X saga - 'Star Trek: Nemesis' officially lost the colon to become 'Star Trek Nemesis.'
September 2, 2002 - Patrick Stewart premiered the full 'Nemesis' trailer at the 60th World Science Fiction Convention in San Jose.
September 12, 2002 - Rick Berman weighed in with his thoughts on the 'Nemesis' tagline in an interview with the Sci-Fi Wire. "The film is being promoted as 'The final journey is about to begin.' Now there are a lot of ways that one can interpret that, and I'm not about to help you interpret that. You'll have to wait and see."
September 18, 2002 - The full theatrical trailer for 'Star Trek Nemesis' was shown after Enterprise's 'Shockwave, Part II', two days before its premiere in theatres before the Paramount film 'The Four Feathers.'
September 20, 2002 - Patrick Stewart said the 'Final Journey' tagline "took all of us by surprise."
September 30, 2002 - Several new images from the film were posted online, including the first look at the Riker/Troi wedding and Admiral Janeway.
October 4, 2002 - Paramount Pictures released the final 'Nemesis' poster, which still featured the controversial tagline. The poster depicted Shinzon holding a large dagger aloof, with Data and Picard's faces looming from behind green smoke.
October 10, 2002 - In an interview with Starlog, Brent Spiner let slip that Paramount had wanted another cast for Trek X. "The studio, I think, wasn't really crazy about doing another movie with the Next Generation crew. What I think they wanted to do was a movie with a new Star Trek cast."
October 17, 2002 - Music label Varese Sarabande announced it would release the soundtrack to 'Star Trek Nemesis' on November 26.
October 20, 2002 - During one of his regular chats with Star Trek Monthly, Rick Berman said the 'Nemesis' running time was "five or six minutes under two hours." The producer added that although his lines had been cut, Wil Wheaton could still be seen in the film during the wedding sequence.
October 29, 2002 - TrekNews.de reported Shannon Cochran, Jude Ciccolella and Alan Dale had filled the supporting parts of Senator Tal'Aura, Commander Suran and Praetor Hiren.
November 3, 2002 - The British Board of Film Classification gave 'Nemesis' a 12A rating, with the rated version of the film running for 116 minutes. USA Today named 'Nemesis' one of its seven "super sure-fire holiday hits."
November 13, 2002 - After screening the completed cut of 'Nemesis' to Paramount, Rick Berman said the studio "could not be more pleased." The producer also mentioned the film has 500 opticals produced by Digital Domain, significantly more than any previous movie.
November 24, 2002 - IFILM made five minutes of Trek X footage from the Show East reel available online.
November 25, 2002 - Speaking with Cinescape, Rick Berman said there will be a Trek XI. "I can tell you right now we'll be making another film. [...] As to whether the next film will include these [TNG] characters, or a combination of these characters with other characters from other series, [or] new characters - that's all yet to be discussed."
Ain't It Cool News posted their first review of the film based on the finished product, calling 'Nemesis' "both a success and a slight disappointment."
November 26, 2002 - Rick Berman told TrekWeb he had no regrets about cutting 40 minutes of footage out of 'Nemesis'. "Our goal was to make the movie as good as possible and that involved the studio's opinion of the pacing of the film, Stuart's, and mine."
Patrick Stewart provided an update on the status of 'X-Men' director Bryan Singer's cameo - his line was cut, but Singer can be glimpsed in 28 frames of the film.
November 30, 2002 - In an interview with DreamWatch, John Logan said he had considered using both Spock and Sela in 'Nemesis,' but there wasn't room for them in the end.
December 3, 2002 - TV Guide celebrated the release of 'Star Trek Nemesis' with a special issue and four collectible covers.
December 8, 2002 - Variety published the first industry review of 'Nemesis'. "Despite the intriguing set-up, there's something unambitious and scaled-back about 'Star Trek Nemesis,' so that most of the time it feels like a slightly suped-up episode of the Next Generation TV series." The Hollywood Reporter was more upbeat about the film, calling Tom Hardy's performance as Shinzon "very impressive."
December 9, 2002 - 'Star Trek Nemesis' received its world premiere at Grauman's Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard, Los Angeles.
December 13, 2002 - As 'Star Trek Nemesis' is released in cinemas across North America, a generation's final journey begins...
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Caillan Davenport is one of the TrekToday editors.