Mike and Denise Okuda recently answered fan questions regarding the forthcoming Star Trek: The Next Generation Blu-ray release.
The couple covered a wide range of topics, including their Comic-Con panel this week (which took place earlier today), the cinematic screenings of The Next Generation (Where No One Has Gone Before and Datalore), commentaries, extended editions and lost footage, repairing errors, the possibility of Deep Space Nine in HD and the Okuda’s thoughts on just what Star Trek means to them.
Today’s Comic-Con panel including the Okudas featured the “principal people behind the restoration,” said Mike Okuda, “plus filmmakers Roger Lay and Robert Meyer Burnett. We’ll be talking about the restoration process, the visual effects, the bonus features, the documentaries and just the fact that this is such a huge project and it’s the largest – as far as we know – the largest project of its kind that has ever been attempted.”
Fans were excited when they heard that an extended version of The Measure of a Man might be included in the The Next Generation Blu-ray release, and it turns out that finding that extra footage was a lucky break for the Okudas. “That was kind of an unusual circumstance in that…first of all, we had a very, very early cut of the picture,” said Mike Okuda. “It happened to be Melinda Snodgrass‘ first professional tale. So when we found out there was an early version that was quite a bit longer than the final version, we were so excited about that! This was back in the day, I actually asked our friends in the editorial department for a copy of it and we gave that to her and she happened to hold onto it for all these years, because normally that sort of thing isn’t saved. When the Blu-Ray project started up, we emailed Melinda and said ‘Hey, is there any chance you still have that VHS tape?’ And she was so kind. She just mailed it back to us – that’s why we have it.”
“And everyone’s trying their darnedest to make it happen,” said Denise Okuda. “It’s kind of a crapshoot, but everybody is very enthusiastic that the process is going forward. Right now we can’t tell you if it’s going to be a happy ending, but everybody is very excited about the possibility and trying to make it happen.
According to Mike Okuda, in the extended version of the episode,”The plot itself does not change. What changes is more character development, more texture, there’s more emotion to it – you understand people’s motivations a little better.”
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine fans are hoping that after The Next Generation has all been released on Blu-ray, that their show gets the remastered treatment too. The Okudas would like to see that happen too. “God, would we love that,” said Denise Okuda. “Now that would be great!” added Mike Okuda.
But “It’s so far in the future,” said Mike Okuda.
“In the future,” said Denis Okuda. “But wouldn’t that be fun?”
The three-part interview can be found at the referring site.