Orci: Fans Will See Different Trek Film Than NovicesBy Michelle
June 26, 2007 - 7:44 PM
Continuing to make the rounds of interviewers to promote the Transformers movie he co-wrote with Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci said that he was initially daunted by the idea of writing a Star Trek screenplay but once the pair had a grasp on what they wanted to do, they were happy to be involved.
Speaking to Dark Horizons, Orci discussed the difficulty of making a realistic storyline for Transformers, which had its genesis as a toy line and cartoon, and credited the assistance of the military with providing production values beyond what the budget would have allowed. "I was a little bit surprised by the fact that they were willing to jump in so readily because there is a slight thematic complexity in terms of what the military's role is," he explained. "They get a terrorist scenario wrong...they blame the wrong people. The only person who figures it out is a woman among all the men."
Director Michael Bay is known for violent action movies, but Kurtzman and Orco sat down with producer Steven Spielberg and decided they wanted to make a movie about a boy and his car which just happened to be a robot from another world. "We love the old Amblin days," he explained, discussing movies from Spielberg's early career that had made an impact on himself and Kurtzman. "It's very much a mix of Spielberg/Amblin in a way and Bay/modern day action. That's kind of where it ended up."
Since Star Trek, too, is "a known brand", Orci expects the same sense of ownership from the fans and just as much criticism even though leaks have been absolutely minimal compared with other projects he has worked on. "They trek through the stars in the future," was all he would say about the plot. "They have nothing to go on...on Transformers, we had so many leaks that they did have things to go on so I felt like we had to engage the fans." He said he felt that different audiences would see it as a different movie, with longtime fans picking up on one set of issues while those who have never been introduced to the franchise will see it "in a different kind of a way."
But when asked whether all the movies he has made about aliens have affected his belief about them, Orci replied, "I don't know. Obviously, we're doing so much alien stuff all the time that I am now becoming an expert and reading everything I can. I'll have an opinion one of these days." Star Trek, he noted, was a vehicle "to tackle social issues in just detached enough way that they were palatable" and allowed a subtlety despite the aliens, "kind of a projection of our fantasies and our fears."
The full interview is here.