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Berman Interview Fabricated?

By Christian
May 8, 2000 - 8:35 PM

Science fiction site SF Crowsnest, which launched rumours about the new series being called 'Star Trek: Excellent' several months ago, just posted an interview with Rick Berman, Star Trek's executive producer. Or at least, it seems to be an interview, as on closer inspection much, if not all of it, appears to be complete fabrication.

The article starts by SF Crowsnest stating that Berman has confirmed the franchise will not be given a rest, and that a tenth film featuring TNG is now in the works:

"I will be a little bit of a tease and tell you that although I can't talk about the new movie, or even talk about who is involved, I can say that we are about to begin the writing stages on what hopefully will be the next Star Trek feature film," Berman said.

This paragraph literally echos comments made by Berman a month ago in an interview with Fandom's Anna L. Kaplan. Following that, the article quotes Berman talking about the new series ("On the new Star Trek Excellent TV series")

"What I can tell you is that it's something that we have been working on nearly a year. Contrary to rumours, it's the only concept that we've developed. It's not one of three concepts we've developed. It's a concept that the studio is behind, and that we are discussing and finessing. As far as when it's going to go into production, as far as when it's going to go on the air, I don't know."

Again, this is literally quoted from the Anna Kaplan interview. The SF Crowsnest article then continues:

Berman confirmed the new series would not be featuring the prequal [sic] adventures of Hikaru Sulu and his new command, the U.S.S. Excelsior. "The only thing I can say about the new Star Trek Excellent series is that it's definitely Star Trek, but it is dramatically different. It is going to be far more different than all three of the last series have been from the original."

Interestingly, this quote also originates from the Anna Kaplan interview, though with one important difference, as in that interview the words "new Star Trek Excellent" simply weren't said. In addition, this quote followed directly on the previous one in the Kaplan interview - they did not deal with the Excelsior series idea at all. Following this come the two most surprising comments from the interview:

"Star Trek Excellent is set in a totally different part of Federation Space," he explained. "This will allow us a lot of latitude in the range of races, situations and story lines we will be able to incorporate in the new series."

"We've got a detailed plan in play to bring a level of CGI and FX to the next series which will redefine the standard. Seriously, it will blow the viewers away."

The comments about CGI seem slightly familiar, though I can't remember from where anymore, but Berman's supposed statements about the new series taking place "in a totally different part of Federation Space" appear to be completely new. Considering that an announcement about the concept of the series would likely not be made to the SF Crowsnest, and considering that the entire rest of the interview was apparently lifted from Fandom, I'd say it's safe to assume Berman never actually said this. An official announcement on the concept of the new series would likely come via an official press release from Paramount Pictures, or an interview with one of the major established SF sites, but this probably wasn't it.

At press time, SF Crowsnest had not yet responded to my request for clarification on this.

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