Even though Harlan Ellison wasn’t happy with Star Trek‘s version of his The City on the Edge of Forever script, the writer is content that he did his best to get out the truth behind what happened with the changes to the story.
The passing of time and writing a book about his Star Trek experience has tempered Ellison’s anger.
Ellison is now at peace about being associated with The City on the Edge of Forever. “…once I wrote my book about The City on the Edge of Forever (The City on the Edge of Forever: The Original Teleplay that Became the Classic Star Trek Episode) and published all the documents that proved what [Roddenberry] was saying I had done I had not done and that what I had done I had done. I won the Writers Guild Award with it.”
Even though his script was changed and Paramount has made bank on the episode, Ellison has elected to move on from the disappointing experience. “They’ve made all manner of tchotchkes and geegaws out of it,” he said. “And the fact that Paramount and their heirs have made millions upon millions off me and I have made only thousands and thousands is something you learn to live with after, what?… forty years. If you don’t learn to live with it, you are a petty person, and I live every day in hopes that I will be just a little bit smarter than I was the day before.”
If he had another chance, would Ellison like to produce his original script? “Yes. I think it would be smarter and deeper and truer to what the original idea of what Star Trek was when Gene Roddenberry came to my house and told it to me, when he told me he was proposing to do it.”
Ellison is still churning out stories. “It is of note that there’s a small renaissance in my work at the moment,” he said. “I have had nineteen books come out in the last eleven months.”