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Spiner: Paramount Wanted New Cast For Movies

By Caillan
October 10, 2002 - 12:27 PM

The Star Trek: The Next Generation crew almost didn't get to appear in the tenth Trek feature film, according to actor Brent Spiner (Data), who said recently that Paramount wanted to bring in a fresh new cast for the next movie.

"I had had a conversation with Rick [Berman]. The studio, I think, wasn't really crazy about doing another movie with the Next Generation crew," Spiner told Starlog (via TrekWeb). "What I think they wanted to do was a movie with a new Star Trek cast. Rick said he didn't think that that was a good idea, and he didn't think that it would work. He told them, believe it or not, that the audience still enjoys seeing us. He wasn't really interested in doing another one unless we were in it."

Eventually the studio agreed to allow the TNG cast another - possibly their last - trip to the silver screen, but then it was a matter of working out the storyline. "Through some negotiations here and there - about the budget and things like that - it came down to, 'Yes, they're interested in doing another one. And yes, they're interested in having us do it'," Spiner said. "Rick, Patrick [Stewart] and I got together and tried to come up with something. We stumbled around for a while, looking for a storyline, and then Patrick got really busy."

Academy Award and Emmy-nominated scribe John Logan ('Gladiator,' 'RKO 281') eventually stepped into the fold, bringing some well-needed Hollywood clout with him. "That was more than two years ago. John's a friend of mine, and I was talking to him in Chicago, where he lives. I said, 'You know, they want to do another one. We are not sure if we're going to be able to come up with it.' He said, 'Well, let me be a part of it. I want to write a Star Trek movie.' Who were we to turn down an A-list writer who had just written an Academy Award winning movie, knows Star Trek very well and wanted to be a part of it? So he and I started to fiddle around. We went to see Rick, and he said, 'Great, we'll work together.' And the three of us sat in Rick's office and wrote the story."

The full interview, in which Spiner also discussed Data's evolution, can be found in the November issue of Starlog. Alternatively, extracts are available online here at TrekWeb.

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