Paramount Said No To TrekUnited CampaignBy Christian
April 12, 2005 - 9:43 PM
Paramount Television today revealed they told the TrekUnited fan campaign in mid-March they would not accept contributions from fans for a fifth season of Star Trek: Enterprise.
"Paramount Network Television and the producers of Star Trek: Enterprise are very flattered and impressed by the fans' passionate outpouring of attention for the show and their efforts to raise funds to continue the show's production," Paramount marketing VP John Wentworth wrote to TrekUnited founder Tim Brazeal on the 15th of March, in a letter now posted at StarTrek.com. "[The] the recent decision to conclude the show's run on UPN is final. We can not and will not be able to accept funds from viewers to produce Star Trek: Enterprise or any other series."
The TrekUnited campaign, which so far has raised $143,583 and has collected pledges for another $3 million, has claimed it is in secret discussions with top-level Paramount executives about continuing Enterprise. However, Wentworth told the Sci-Fi Wire that "there are no talks going on with anybody at Paramount."
Despite the denial from Wentworth, TrekUnited said discussions with Paramount are in fact going on. "I think it's probably a case of the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing," a spokesperson told the Sci-Fi Wire last week. In addition, Tim Brazeal told the site that while he had indeed received Paramount's March 15 letter, the group had since incorporated to form TrekUnited, Inc. He maintained that as a result, the group should no longer be seen as a group of viewers - from whom Paramount would not accept contributions - but rather as a corporation.
Currently, the campaign is still collecting donations from viewers to allow Enterprise to continue. The campaign is also still attracting major media coverage, including most recently a profile in the New York times. If the campaign fails and Enterprise remains cancelled, TrekUnited has promised to return all donations, minus a 5% "handling fee" intended to cover PayPal and banking costs.
Paramount's Wentworth ended his letter with a hopeful message for fans of the overall Star Trek franchise. "Paramount Network Television is extremely proud of Star Trek: Enterprise and the accomplishments of its actors and producers and the entire crew, but we must bid farewell to the show," he wrote. "We believe the franchise is still very vital as evidenced by the fans' demand for books, DVDs and all sorts of related merchandise. We are grateful for the fans' rich history of unwavering enthusiasm for all things Trek, and we hope they'll join us in looking forward to the next chapter of this enduring series in the future."