StarTrek.com Offers Commentary On Wise Director's EditionBy Michelle
July 16, 2007 - 9:30 PM
A commentary track to accompany Robert Wise's director's edition of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, which describes the alterations made in the film since the 1979 theatrical release, is now available for download.
StarTrek.com provided the commentary, recorded by Director's Edition producer David C. Fein, restoration supervisor Michael Matessino and visual effects supervisor Daren R. Dochterman, who explained that Wise was unsatisfied with the theatrical version just as many fans were. He had had to rush to complete the movie by a scheduled release date, and some of the special effects were not ready.
In the two hour, 17 minute commentary, the team offered comparisons to the other big franchise of the late 1970s - Star Wars, of course - and discussed the invaluable contributions of composer Jerry Goldsmith. Fein noted that Wise rarely used a musical overture - a standard means of opening a movie with credits in the 1950s and 60s - but Star Trek: The Motion Picture and Disney's The Black Hole, which was released nearly simultaneously, both featured such overtures. "It was a way of stating that this was a big, important film," he said. "There was a lot of publicity about Star Trek when it opened in 1979."
Dochterman joked that he did not need to state the film's title, which would be well known to audiences, and laughed that he did not know what it meant to be recording "live on tape" since nobody uses tape anymore. The team explained that they worked with Wise on the changes so that the first Star Trek feature would not suffer the same fate as other remastered films of that era - another reference to Star Wars and its sequels, which have been extensively retooled by producer George Lucas. "Nobody was rallying for the 1979 version of the movie," the team explained.
Fans who already own Star Trek: The Motion Picture - The Director's Edition may download and listen to the commentary with the movie from this page.