Welcome! As part of its ongoing mission to document the Art and Production History of Star Trek, this site will present technical articles on Star Trek prop and costume authentication - focusing on The Original Series - with detailed photos and episode screenshots to complement the information presented; as well as feature pictorials to showcase Star Trek memorabilia in private & public collections, present rare Behind The Scenes TOS imagery & discuss other topics.
Gerald Gurian is a 40+ year collector of screen used Star Trek memorabilia and a passionate fan of TOS
- Star Trek TOS At Auction Part I - Gurian Collection Highlights - Greg Jein TOS Hero Type II Phaser
-Authenticating a TOS Communicator -6 Myths About Star Trek Prop Design -Star Trek 3rd Season Command Tunic
- Design Features of TOS Tricorders -Star Trek Props At National Air & Space - TOS Leatherette Tricorder
- TOS Federation Sciences Dress -Desilu Studio TOS Prop Fabrication - Unreleased Allen/Gurian Prop Photos
- The Beautiful Women of TOS Part I -TOS U.S.S. Enterprise 11' Filming Model - Captain Kirk's Chair from TOS
- Spock Ears -TOS Control Panels & Displays - Mr. Spock's Science Station
- TOS Soundstage at Desilu -TOS Shatner Romulan Pants - The Beautiful Women of TOS Pt. II
- TOS Galileo Shuttlecraft -Greg Jein TOS Cage Laser Pistol - TOS 3rd Season Midgrade Type II Phaser
- Dr. McCoy's Sickbay on TOS -TOS Balok Puppet Head - Captain Kirk "Mirror, Mirror" Tunic
- Greg Jein TOS Hero Tricorder -1992 Smithsonian TOS Cast Video - TOS 1st Season Command Tunic
- TOS "Where No Man" Silver Contact Lenses -TOS Special Effects: The Transporter - The Art of Matt Jefferies
- TOS "Space Seed" Gold Mesh Jumpsuit -Gorn Costume from "Arena" - Rare TOS Behind-the-Scenes Videos
- TOS Stunt Type II Phaser -1993 Bill Theiss Estate Auction - TOS Shatner Command Dress Tunic
- TOS Elasian Royal Guard Tunic -TOS Finnegan Silver "Shore Leave" Tunic - TOS Science Officer Tunic "The Cage"
- TOS Shatner Early 1st Season Command Tunic -William Shatner TOS Tunics At Auction - TOS Shatner Late 1st Season Command Tunic

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Worldwide Exclusive: Excerpt from "These Are The Voyages" - the new epic 3 volume 1500 page History of TOS by Marc Cushman - Presenting "The Corbomite Maneuver"

“This is going to be the bible to Star Trek® and how it was made.  This is a book that I’m going to keep near and dear and utilize through my life.”  -  Rod Roddenberry

"Clearly an important work! Trekkies will devour it.  It's what they always wanted to know." - Leslie Parrish (Lt. Carolyn Palamas in the Original Series episode "Who Mourns for Adonais?")

It is a great honor and distinct pleasure for this site to present the following never-before-seen excerpt from Book 1 of "These Are The Voyages", the first offering in an epic three volume 1500 page history detailing the making of Star Trek: The Original Series - which releases worldwide on August 12th from Jacobs Brown Press. 

Writer Marc Cushman (co-creator of the story for the TNG episode "Sarek") was given unprecedented and total access by Gene Roddenberry and Bob Justman in the '80s to the entire TOS production archive (filled with memos on story development, production reports, script writing, casting, budget, etc.) and encouraged to write these books which will without question be regarded as the definitive work on TOS, and an indispensable element in every Star Trek enthusiast's personal library.  

In addition to performing an exhaustive amount of research within the vast Original Series archive, now housed in the UCLA Performing Arts Special Collections library, Cushman has conducted interviews with many actors that appeared in TOS as well as many members of the production team that worked behind the cameras; quite a number of which were never approached previously for their recollections or interviewed to such great extent as they were for "These Are The Voyages".   Truly, the groundwork for this spectacular biography of The Original Series has spanned a 20+ year timeframe - bringing this three volume set to the public has been a lifelong ambition of the author - and this work will never be equaled in terms of its comprehensiveness or importance to the franchise. 

Readers will be captivated by the hundreds of new insights and anecdotes from both the historical records and the first hand accounts of the people that made this beloved series.  A particularly, fascinating disclosure regards the true Neilsen ratings and the popularity of the TOS episodes as they were first broadcast; which was much stronger than modern day mythology has led us to believe.  The author of "These Are The Voyages" licensed the complete set of Neilsen reports for all Original Series episodes and they are presented - for the first time - in this work for the public to appreciate.

The '60s Star Trek series is arguably the most successful television show of all time - spawning a franchise that has witnessed 4 subsequent television series and 12 major motion pictures to date.  The mythos of Star Trek is unshakably woven into the fabric of modern day society, and iconic phrases such as "beam me up" or "set phasers on stun" are instantly recognized around the globe.  Tens of millions have been inspired by The Original Series and credit it with triggering a generation of technological advancement that followed its initial release.  Given the incredibly daunting task of chronicling the making of this exceptional television show in a manner that does it justice, Cushman and co-author Susan Osborn have succeeded spectacularly!  

The novelesque style of writing throughout "These Are The Voyages" makes for a captivating and highly enjoyable read; literally transporting the reader onto the Desilu soundstage 47 years ago or into the Star Trek offices and boardrooms to feel as if they were a witness to the making of every, now-so-familiar episode.  The intensity of the research performed and the wealth of perceptive insights on the underlying social commentaries that Gene Roddenberry insisted on designing into the episodes - something that makes TOS so dramatically stand out in comparison to virtually all other series of its day or afterwards - will be applauded by Star Trek fans and researchers for decades!

"These Are The Voyages" will be considered the ultimate reference work on TOS - a treasured and indispensable centerpiece in the libraries of Star Trek fans worldwide, to be enjoyed time and again.  It is the most significant written history ever produced on the making of Star Trek: The Original Series - the most successful television series ever produced!

Part of the great success of Star Trek: The Original Series can be attributed to the coming together of an extraordinary team of exceptionally talented individuals - from the superlative performances of the actors in front of the cameras to the brilliance of folks like Roddenberry, John D. F. Black, Gene Coon and Dorothy Fontana in scriptwriting; the genius of Matt Jefferies in Production Design, Bill Theiss in Costume Design, and Wah Chang in Prop Design ... the list goes on and on.  Cushman and Osborn have brought an equal level of talent and dedication to the creation of this work.

And now, with special thanks to Marc Cushman and the outstanding team at Jacobs Brown Press for their very gracious permission to present the following, please enjoy an exclusive excerpt from "These Are The Voyages - Season One" on the making of  "The Corbomite Maneuver" - the historic first episode of TOS filmed after the creation of the two pilots ... 

Note: This excerpt is a partial, edited section of Chapter 8.   Each episode of the original Star Trek series is given a chapter of its own, running anywhere from 10 to 20 pages, tracing the production from script development, through filming, to editing and post optical work, to first NBC broadcast, with Nielsen ratings, vintage reviews and fan letters.

"The Corbomite Maneuver"

Production Diary
Filmed May 24, 25, 26, 27, 31, June 1 & 2 (1/2 day), 1966
(Planned as 6 day production; finishing 1/2 day behind; total cost: $190,430.)

Tuesday, May 24, 1966. The No. 1 song on U.S. radio was “Monday, Monday” by The Mama’s and the Papa’s. CBS had the top rated TV program from the night before – Desilu’s own The Lucy Show. The Broadway play Mame was opening for the first of 1508 performances at the Winter Garden Theater. And this was kickoff day for production on Star Trek, the original series. The first scene tackled was Kirk’s physical in sickbay, accompanied by the verbal sparring with Dr. McCoy.
DeForest Kelley recalled, “Gene Roddenberry came down to the set, called the crew to attention, gathered everybody around and made a speech on what we were embarking on, the dedication that had gone into the show, and that he wished it to continue with everyone who was involved -- himself, and everybody from the stars to the man who sweeps the floor.” (98-6)
After the pep talk, Kelley said Roddenberry took him aside and asked that he remove the ring he wore -- the ring that had belonged to his deceased mother. Kelley remembered, “Roddenberry said ‘no jewelry.’ I said, ‘No jewelry, no DeForest.’” (98-1)
Roddenberry, not always willing to bend to the whims of others, relented.
As for the first scene, Kelley said, “[Gene] had this thing all laid out in the medical lab, giving Bill a physical examination. I said something about, ‘I’m a doctor, not a moon shuttle conductor...’ and that was the first scene shot in the series.” (98-6)

For this, William Shatner agreed to allow his chest to be shaved. Shatner, with a moderate amount of hair on his body, did not fit into Roddenberry’s idea that men of the future would have little or no body hair.
The scenes in Kirk’s quarters came next, again with McCoy, and introducing Yeoman Janice Rand who, per McCoy’s instructions, brings Kirk his dietary salad. Of this, NBC’s John Kubichan had instructed, “Please avoid playing this sequence in any manner which might suggest the relationship between Kirk and Janice is anything more intimate than that of Captain and Yeoman.” (BS2)
Kubichan, one of the network’s watchdogs for programming and censorship issues, knowing that Roddenberry was pushing for sexual tension between these two characters, felt it inappropriate for a ship’s captain to flirt with a subordinate. Roddenberry and Sargent went for the sexual tension anyway. With Rand’s miniskirt -- the shortest to be seen on TV -- it was hard to take it any other way.
William Theiss designed -- or rather built -- the wig Yeoman Rand wore. Grace Lee Whitney said, “They put a cone on my head, and put the blonde hair [from two separate wigs] on it, and tried to find different ways of weaving it. It was really her signature. Without that hair I am practically unrecognizable. That hair put me on the map…. But that was Bill Theiss all the way. A genius.” (183-3)
Theiss had also rethought the look of the uniforms -- with that “mini” Grace Lee Whitney dared him and Roddenberry to allow her character to wear, and now with the addition of the third primary uniform color, joining the gold and the blue. While Uhura -- for this episode and the next -- was clad in gold, Rand, like Scotty, got an upgrade to the more RCA color TV-friendly red. Bill Theiss said, “The colors were chosen purely for technical reasons. We tried to find three colors for the shirts that would be as different from each other as possible, in black-and-white as well as color.... I think the uniforms’ greatest asset is their simplicity.” (172-2)
And then the company moved to the spectacular -- for its time and medium -- bridge set. George Takei, for his book To the Stars, recalled:

What commanded all eyes and pulled them like some gravitational force to the blazingly lit center of the set was the single most compelling presence there, the unmistakable star of the production, William Shatner. Everything seemed to revolve around him. The camera crew, the light crew, the sound crew were all converged on him. And Shatner fully occupied the epicenter. He commanded the hub of all activity on the set. He radiated energy and a boundless joy in his position. He shouted his opinions out to the director; he sprang up, demonstrating his ideas; he laughed and joked and bounced his wit off the crew. He beamed out an infectious, expansively joyous life force.

Joseph Sargent took his last shot at 6:45 p.m., one half-hour into union overtime.
Days 2, Wednesday – the first of four full days on the bridge, with more of that “infectious, expansively joyous life force” George Takei spoke of. Leonard Nimoy, however, was not projecting the same energy and sense of pleasure. He recalled that Joseph Sargent helped him to “break through” and “realize exactly who the Vulcan was.” Spock was supposed to stare at the giant alien space ship growing on the view screen. His spoken reaction was a single word, for the first time: “Fascinating.”
Nimoy remembered, “I just didn’t have a handle on how to say it. I was still somewhat in ‘first officer’ mode, but it didn’t seem appropriate to shout such a word out. Everyone was reacting in character -- humanly, of course -- but I couldn’t figure out how the Vulcan would respond or how the word should come out.” (128-3)
Sargent said, “Leonard came up to me and he was ready to quit. He said, ‘Joe, I can’t take this. I’m an actor and I don’t know how to play a character that has no emotion.’ As an actor, he was trained to work for an emotional element in his character, and he felt there wasn’t any. Having been trained myself as an actor, I knew exactly what was bothering him. Fortunately I was able to make a virtue out of something that, for him, seemed awfully negative, and I convinced him that having so-called ‘no emotion’ was just an external aspect of the character’s element. It didn’t have anything to do with the richness of his intellectuality. He was merely able to conquer the emotional distortions that can interfere with reasoning.” (151)

Nimoy remembered, “The director gave me a brilliant note which said: ‘Be different. Be the scientist. Be detached. See it as something that’s a curiosity rather than a threat.’ I said, ‘Fascinating.’ Well, a big chunk of the character was born right there.” (128-18)
Nimoy was not the only one who very nearly quit. Sargent remembered how Jerry Finnerman still wanted to jump ship. Even with the production schedule this relaxed, spending more time on a single set than any other episode, Finnerman was overwhelmed by the pressure of running the camera and lighting units -- an immense responsibility for anyone, especially someone who had never done it before.
Finnerman later said, “The director of photography -- the cinematographer -- creates the look of the show. They create the dimension; they tell a story with their lights, hopefully not overpowering the story so much that you’re looking at the photography and not the story. I’ve always considered cinematographers like composers. You get a real good one on a real good story and you’re listening to Wagner, Tchaikovsky or Beethoven. You know, people get that emotional feeling. It’s more than just putting the lighting on a face. Anybody can do that. But it takes a special breed to be a good director of photography.” (63-3)
Finnerman just wasn’t sure he was of that breed, and admitted, “I used to get very nervous. And Bob Justman would accompany me to the men’s bathroom when I regurgitated, and tell me how good I was. Really.... It’s terrible to talk about, but I was that nervous... being so young.” (63-3)
Justman stood by Finnerman as the green cinematographer lost his breakfast and lunch. And Sargent gave Finnerman pep talks as a counterpoint to Herb Solow’s threat that he might never work in Hollywood again. All could see the talent their novice cinematographer was bringing to the series, the textures and moods TV lighting rarely saw.
“I would describe it as classic black-and-white photography of the ’40s,” Finnerman said. “I never thought of it as television. I thought of it as theatrical. If I’d thought of it as television I would have just come in and taken a light and lit everything. That wasn’t what they wanted and it wasn’t what I wanted.... So, when you look at Star Trek, even today, you’re gonna say, ‘Hey, that looks like a feature.’ And it was lit that way.” (63-3)
Fortunately, Finnerman stayed. His work was brilliant, even though his nerves were frayed. He later said, “That continued through my lifespan, unfortunately. I used to get awfully nervous.... But I never regurgitated after that.” (63-3)
The second day’s production stopped at 6:50 p.m.
Day 3, Thursday, began with a bang … on the highway. Production notes reveal Nichelle Nichols had been involved in an “auto accident” on her way to the studio and was “sent to hospital for stitches in lip (inner), returned to work at 9:50 a.m.” Nichols’ call time for makeup had been 6:30 a.m.
Sargent started filming at 8 a.m., shooting around Nichols until she made it to set at 9:50. He took his last shot at 7:15 (a full hour into overtime pay for the crew).
On The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite this night, America saw startling still images of a Buddhist monk setting himself on fire in front of the U.S. consulate earlier that day, in Hue, South Vietnam.
Day 4, Friday. Another full day on the bridge set, with filming stopping at 7:10 p.m. and the set wrapped by 7:30.
Monday, May 30. While the stage was dark for Memorial Day, the U.S. launched Surveyor 1 to the moon, and 300 U.S. warplanes bombed North Vietnam.

Day 5, Tuesday. On the fifth day of production, as work continued on the bridge, six year old Clint Howard was brought in for makeup tests. He remembered, “They asked me -- or, actually, they asked my dad -- if I might be willing to shave my head bald. And I didn’t think that was a good idea at all. I didn’t want to go to school bald, didn’t want to be that kid with the shaved head; I didn’t want any part of that. Neither did my dad, because I was a working actor and that would take me out of the running for parts for a couple months. So we said ‘no’ on the shave. Then they said, ‘Okay, we can put a bald cap on him.’ And I remember really vividly going in and sitting in the makeup chair and the one fella, you know, the main guy, the old guy with white hair [Fred Phillips], fitted me for the bald cap. He was really nice. They were all nice. It took the whole afternoon, because they wanted to do a test, to make sure they could get it to look good. And it looked great.” (85)
James Doohan said of Howard in his Balok makeup, “I had never seen anyone as strange as he.” (52-1)
Meanwhile, the grownups continued filming continued until 6:50 p.m., followed by the removal of makeup and wrapping the set.
Day 6, Wednesday. Work continued for the first half of the day on the bridge set, then the company moved to the briefing room. Later this set was redressed for the interior of Balok’s ship. 

Clint Howard said, “I certainly appreciated the whole sort of spaceship fantasy thing of being on the Enterprise. I certainly thought it was cool. I had my dad take some snapshots of me sitting in the captain’s chair. But, even at that age, I understood I had a job to do. I knew I was playing a 400-year-old little alien who ran this giant spaceship all by himself. And I knew that I was curious and that I had the power over the Enterprise. I wasn’t worried about these people. These people were friendly; I knew they were friendly and I was just jerkin’ on their chain.
 “They called me on the set and William Shatner seemed very professional -- everybody did. I liked the costume, I was having fun, and the people were all nice. Of course, they never told me right out of the box that they were going to replace my dialogue, and, in fact, what I remember them telling me is they were going to run my voice through this new-fangled gizmo called a synthesizer. They were going to synthesize my voice and then stretch it and bend it and make it like an alien.” (85)
“Clint was a darling kid,” Joseph Sargent said. “But he didn’t have quite the treble or the vocabulary at seven that took care of the kind of authoritarian cadence that was necessary.” (151)
Howard had no problem with his voice being replaced. It was something else that worried him. He said, “You know, I did have issues with the ‘tranya.’ Because, the prop man, when he wheeled his cart over and we were getting ready to shoot, showed me and my dad what ‘tranya’ was, and it was pink grapefruit juice. And I’ve never had a taste for pink grapefruit juice. Even today, I’d be choking it down. It just bothers me. But by god it was pink grapefruit juice. And I asked my dad, ‘Can’t they put some grape juice or apple juice in the canister? Does it have to be pink grapefruit juice?’ And I remember my dad looking at me and he said, ‘You’re gonna drink the grapefruit juice and you’re gonna like it.’ So, as you see in the scene, when I swallow it, I let out this overblown reaction, like a little kid drinking liquor. Because that’s what it tasted like to me.” (85)
Howard took his last sip of tranya and filming stopped at 7:10 p.m. 

Day 7, Thursday, June 2, 1966. Even with all the action taking place on a single stage, Joseph Sargent had fallen behind, delaying the start of the next scheduled production (“Mudd’s Woman”) by a half day. He took his last shots in the transporter room.
At 1 p.m. “The Corbomite Maneuver” wrapped. Robert Justman, keeping production notes at the time, wrote, “One-half day over -- shot extra camera but blew it on unnecessary setups.”
John D.F. Black recalled, “On that night of the first shoot, I was coming from the stage and I saw Shatner sitting on the rear fender of a car across from my office. And we talked a bit. He said, ‘What am I going to do, Johnny?’ And I said, ‘What do you mean, pal?” And he said, ‘Well, if it doesn’t work … It’s just so damned important to us.’ And I said, ‘No, no, it’s going to work. It’s going to be fine.’ And he said, ‘I hope so,’ and walked away.” (17)
On that last night, DeForest Kelley said to Roddenberry, “This is going to be the biggest hit or the biggest miss God ever made.” (98-1)
Then the editors and musicians, not God, took over.

The following link to the Jacobs Brown Press site provides additional information on "These Are The Voyages":  http://www.jacobsbrownmediagroup.com/these-are-the-voyages.html

and here is the link to the Facebook page for these books, which provides some sneak peeks at rare photos and a wealth of TOS trivia: