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, February 27, 2014

Worldwide Exclusive: Excerpt from Marc Cushman's "These Are The Voyages: TOS - Season Two" - Presenting "Metamorphosis"

With the highly anticipated release of "These Are The Voyages - TOS: Season Two" only weeks away, this site is honored to present a never-before-seen excerpt from the second book in this critically acclaimed history of the original Star Trek series - with the following lengthy extract from the Production Diary of one of the most memorable and cherished TOS episodes of the 2nd season - "Metamorphosis".

The exhaustive research that author Marc Cushman performed on the original TOS production archive - to which he was granted special access by Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry and Co-Producer Robert Justman - in combination with exciting first hand accounts obtained over decades in interviews with the actors and production crew on the show led to hundreds of new revelations and anecdotes about the making of Star Trek that caused the Season One book to be universally heralded as "the new bible" on TOS. Billy Heller in a New York Post review predicted "Trek fans will die and get beamed up to heaven". Kevin Lauderdale of Author Magazine called the Season One effort "entertaining and informative in more ways than there are stars in the cosmos." And, acting entirely on his own initiative after thoroughly enjoying his copy of the first book, legendary Star Trek actor Leonard Nimoy felt compelled to reach out to author Marc Cushman and offer his own words of commendation. Nimoy stated that "the level of research is astounding .. an incredible job" and said he believed the book possessed "a tremendous amount of good information." Truly a remarkable compliment - coming from none other than Mr. Spock himself!

Yet as difficult as it might be to imagine, authors Marc Cushman and Susan Osborn have actually raised the bar a notch and surpassed the high standards that they demonstrated in the creation of the first book, with an unparalleled and thoroughly riveting account of the making of Season Two in this new and historic volume! Fans will be captivated again by the hundreds of new insights from previously unreported historical records and interviews; and they will not want to put down this engrossing narrative that places them in the Original Series offices and on the Desilu sound stages while their most beloved Star Trek episodes are filmed. And yes - the treasures that readers so enjoyed in the first book, such as the extensive reprints of memos from the likes of Roddenberry, Coon and Fontana as well as those famous Justman compositions - to chart the evolution of the storylines throughout the season - are still present, along with all the Neilsen ratings for all of the second year broadcasts, which are presented for the first time anywhere! But added to the chronicle of events is a dramatic and enlightening account of how the constant threat of imminent cancellation overshadowed the series throughout the season, and how the fans of TOS went to war against NBC - a first in the history of television - in an effort to save the series.   Imagine how the actors felt, repeatedly showing up for the filming of different episodes during the year and not knowing if that would be the last time that they would portray their now-familiar characters!  This second volume documents the story of how mounting financial pressures caused Lucille Ball to lose her cherished studio, and describes with new clarity the events behind Gene Coon's falling out with Gene Roddenberry - which ultimately forced Coon to leave the Star Trek production. And then there is the dramatic account of how Leonard Nimoy almost decided to quit TOS as well!  With the powers that be actively involved in developing contingency plans if the need should arise to replace him!  All of this turmoil unfolding over the course of the season only served to heighten the already tremendous pressures exerted on the dedicated Original Series creative team that strived to produce high quality and meaningful episodes while operating on what many would consider an ever tightening and insufficient budget!

Readers that felt captivated by the first season's narrative will be completely enthralled by the ever-increasing drama witnessed as the story of Season Two is presented in this new volume of "These Are The Voyages - TOS". Marc Cushman has once again "captured lightning in a bottle" with his brilliant work on this historic and fitting companion to last year's landmark publication!   An entertaining foreword penned by none other than the legendary Walter Koenig - who joined the recurring Star Trek cast as Mr. Chekov at the start of season two; as well as an impressive selection of hundreds of rare behind-the-scenes photos round out "These Are The Voyages - TOS: Season Two" and help to firmly enshrine this book series as the finest and most important written history of Star Trek ever produced.

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 book two on the making of the episode "Metamorphosis" ...

Note: This excerpt is a partial, edited section of Chapter 4.  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 Neilsen ratings, vintage reviews and fan letters.


Production Diary
Filmed May 11 (1/2 day), 12, 15, 16, 17, 18 & 19 (1/2 day), 1967.
(6 day production; total cost: $198,493)

Kelley purposely blows a line to get a reaction out of Shatner.  Note Nimoy, to the right, losing it.

     The week “Metamorphosis” began filming, the United States bombed the North Vietnam capitol of Hanoi. The top movie in America was an Italian import -- the spaghetti western For a Few Dollars More, starring Clint Eastwood. The title song to the movie The Happening, performed by the Supremes, was the most-played record on U.S. radio stations. Runner up: “Sweet Soul Music” by Arthur Conley. The top-selling album in stores was still More of the Monkees, keeping The Mamas and the Papas Deliver and The Best of the Lovin’ Spoonful out of the No. 1 spot on Billboard. The most popular Wednesday night TV series, playing as the Star Trek cast studied their scripts for the next day, included the CBS comedy block of Green Acres, The Beverly Hillbillies, and Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. (the latter of which Star Trek would be going up against in the fall when it too would move to Friday nights). I Spy was NBC’s best bet of the night, and was given a CLOSE-UP listing in TV Guide for “Sophia,” an episode filmed in Italy. Jack Webb and Harry Morgan had the cover of TV Guide, and an article about Dragnet 1967 (which followed Star Trek on NBC each Thursday night). The magazine cost 15 cents. A quarter would buy you a gallon of gas. A loaf of Wonder Bread was double that amount.
      Filming began after the wrap of “Catspaw” and a lunch break, on Thursday, May 11, 1967, on Stage 10. First up: all the scenes outside the shuttlecraft, including meeting Cochrane, the scene where Spock is attacked and given an electrical shock by The Companion and, later, McCoy coming to Spock’s aid.
      Nearly the entire episode was shot on Stage 10 -- Star Trek’s planet stage, which also housed the shuttlecraft. After the wide open spaces Ralph Senensky had enjoyed with “This Side of Paradise,” he now had to rely on his own inventiveness and that of cinematographer Jerry Finnerman to overcome the confinement of the stage. Note the camera views of Glenn Corbett through a hole in a rock formation as he approaches the shuttlecraft. This clever shot was necessary to conceal the limitations of the stage walls.
Matt Jefferies said, “False perspective was used to create an illusion of distance…. To achieve the effect of distance, you’ve also got to have something up close as a comparison. You get something that will cut your shot, that’s close to the camera, then you’ve magnified the distance to the far end.” (91-11)
There was a reason why that “something up close as a comparison” was a hole in a rock formation. Senensky said, “Otherwise we were shooting off the set. The set was just not high enough. It was the only way, and that was Jerry Finnerman’s contribution. I was still learning about cameras and the nine millimeter [lens] was a new weapon.” (155-3)
The nine millimeter, also known as the wide angle lens, made a small area look much larger. But when shooting on Stage 10, every solution brought about new problems. Senensky explained, “It’s very interesting that [the editors] don’t stay on that shot too long, when he runs toward camera, because it would have looked like he had on those magic boots with which you can take a step and every step is a mile. He covers that huge distance in about five strides.” (155-3)
“The other thing [when getting a false perspective] is they had to keep the camera at normal eyeball height,” Matt Jefferies added. Referring to one experience on Star Trek, perhaps not this one, Jefferies said, “I went up there one day and they had the camera on a cart on top of a six-foot platform. I said, ‘Fellas, we’re not going to get any distance. You’ve turned the set into a little sand pit.’ They said, ‘No, it’s going to be fine.’ I said, ‘OK, I’m going to stand here until you move the camera. You can either pick me up and move me, or call Justman or Roddenberry.’ They finally moved it. Otherwise the whole idea of perspective was just gone. You can make that 150, 170 feet look like 10 miles shooting long, but unless you’re shooting a point of view of somebody up on a rock, you’ve got no reason to be high up.” (91-11)
After production wrapped for the day, the Hugo award-nominated episode “The Corbomite Maneuver” had its second airing on NBC.
Day 4, filming The Companion's attack on Kirk and Spock

Day 2, Friday, May 12 -- the first full day of production. The company moved to Stage 9 but, for the first half of the day, shot something other than the Enterprise sets. Only the bridge was needed for this episode, so other ship sets were collapsed to make room for the interior of the shuttlecraft, moved here from Stage 10, which then allowed for a larger area of that stage to be used for the planetoid sets. The interior shuttlecraft scenes were filmed on this morning, comprising the show’s Teaser and first moments of Act 1.

After the lunch break, Shatner, Nimoy, Kelley, and Donahue were dismissed and series regulars James Doohan, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols, Eddie Paskey, and Bill Blackburn, along with several extras, manned the bridge. This was the first episode of the series where Kirk is never seen on the Enterprise.
Days 3 and 4, Monday and Tuesday. The majority of the scenes inside Cochrane’s house were filmed.
Elinor Donahue quickly learned that doing anything for the first time could be immensely challenging. Concerning her character, she said, “The opening scenes, where she was tough and liberated, were very hard for me.” (50-3)

Day 5. One half-day behind, trying to finish in Cochrane's house

Particularly hard on these days were the scenes in which her character has an emotional breakdown. The actress had played emotionally-charged scenes before, as a sometimes desperately emotional teenager on Father Knows Best, and began to approach her performance here in the same way. She later admitted, “I remember we were doing the crying scene and I had really worked myself into a dither so I could really cry. Shatner whispered in my ear and said, ‘You know, you don’t have to put yourself through all of this. You can just act a little bit; you don’t really have to cry.’ And he was absolutely right. You don’t have to get yourself all in a froth. On stage, perhaps you need to cry those tears, but on television, where they are doing many different angles, you’ve got to keep it going for a really long time.  Once you’ve stepped in those waters, so to speak, you’re in it up to your hips.” (50)
Matt Jefferies sketch of Cochrane's hut
Day 5, Wednesday. Senensky was running late. The morning hours were spent finishing the scenes inside Cochrane’s house which had been planned for the day before. Throughout the afternoon, the scenes outside Cochrane’s house were filmed.

Regarding the scene where Kirk speaks to The Companion, Donahue recalled, “They made sure that I knew my voice was not going to be that of the entity. But something which was truly fun was I got to do the dialogue with Mr. Shatner while they were filming his scene where he was talking to it. I stood on a ladder so he could look up at me and I did the dialogue with him. I had learned a long time ago from Robert Young and Jane Wyatt to stay on set for that. They were there all the time to do the ‘off camera dialogue’ with us. They were very specific about that. They never walked away. So they taught me.” (50) 
Among the fine performances, including those of Glenn Corbett and Elinor Donahue, that of William Shatner must also be cited. Watch as he pleads his case with The Companion, expressing his beliefs concerning human needs and the love between a man and a woman. The excellent wording came from Gene Coon. The delivery is pure Shatner. Ralph Senensky remembered, “Bill Shatner was a fine actor. The day that he did the scene where he talked to The Companion with the translator, and, after the take, Gene Coon, in the screening room said, ‘That’s why we pay him the big money.’” (155-6)

Day 5. Cochrane summons The Companion

“No one could have done Kirk the way Bill did,” said George Takei. “His energy, his vitality, his passion, and his supreme self-confidence -- that's Bill, and that’s Captain Kirk.”  (171-3)
Of the structure, designer Matt Jefferies said, “The idea was based on a 1927 or ’28 filling station in Burbank. I found it in the AAA magazine. I liked those crazy outriggers on it. I wanted something that was different, and we got away with this because we didn’t have an entrance or an exit to put up with. It was a terrible cheat, but it worked.” (91-11)
Glenn Corbett between takes

Day 5. Cochrane summons The Companion
(Unaired film trim courtesy of Gerald Gurian)
Elinor Donahue had stepped into a strange new world. The set designs and lighting techniques certainly contributed to putting her on unfamiliar ground, but her greatest memories came from interacting with the Star Trek regulars. She said, “All the actors were absolutely terrific toward me. Leonard was a little on the distant side, but I think that was more the character he was playing and him trying to stay in that frame of mind. So he wasn’t real friendly, but the crew -- Doc and all those others -- they were just darling -- except for Mr. Shatner. He was a little off with me from the get-go. It felt as though he was looking down at me, as if I wasn’t quite up to snuff. And maybe I wasn’t. I don’t think personally that I was the world’s greatest actress. But they wanted me and there I was.” (50)
Shatner had been a serious actor of the stage, and the star of a somber and message-heavy series called For the People, and Elinor Donahue was, simply put, from the world of sitcoms. “Metamorphosis” was an excellent script filled with subtle themes that Shatner had fair reason to believe Donahue would not be able to achieve.  

Director Ralph Senensky
 Donahue remembered, “At the table reading, I didn’t pronounce Glenn Corbett’s character’s name correctly and Shatner got very upset about that. Finally, the director said, ‘Will you just knock it off! Leave the young lady alone. Just leave her be.’ He really told Shatner off. And he did stop after that.” (50)
Day 6, Thursday, May 18, 1967. Cochrane’s house was removed and the area around it redressed to represent the opposite direction, looking away from the house -- the scenes where Cochrane communes with The Companion.

The planet area, built into only one corner of Stage 10, proved sufficient when only a few scenes from an episode were being shot. But “Metamorphosis” required over 50 minutes of edited film, and 50 pages of story, to be covered against that one corner. And Senensky had to shoot everything in only one direction -- toward the same two stage walls.
 “They had to move everything in and out,@ he said. “One day they would set up the shuttlecraft in that direction. Then they had the house in that direction, and I had to shoot all of that. When they did the reverse -- the shooting away from the house -- they had to take the house out and redress the set. In the scene where Kirk and Spock stand and watch Cochrane having his meeting with The Companion, it’s all the same site.” (155-3)
Matt Jefferies said, “There would be four different set-ups around the edge of that stage gunning into that corner. They would shoot the first one, then move to the next one, and then the next one. Then we’d begin to shift the first one around, change it a little bit and we could bring them right back to it again. That was one reason, especially with the planet set, I spent damn near all of my time on the stage because we couldn’t pre-program this stuff; we just had to do it by eyeball and shift it around.” (91-11)
Even with the limitations of filming on a cramped soundstage, “Metamorphosis” benefits from the indoor surroundings. The mood of this episode is enhanced through the beautiful lighting, with hues of purple and orange splashed on the panoramic background.
Senensky fondly recalled, “That purple sky is miraculous, and the clouds. Jerry [Finnerman] was a master. And you don’t find that today. Because, back then, the art of cinematography wasn’t written down in books; it was taught from master to master.” (155-6)
Finnerman said, “It was just a matter of reading.… I’d read the script and then come to the conclusion of whether it was a love story or if it was a story about evil, and then I’d go from there. I’d pick my colors; I’d never ask the producers, and they gave me omnipotence to do anything I wanted.” (63-3)
Senensky added, “Jerry Finnerman also contributed another effect to the set. He thought our sky should have clouds, so when we were ready to film, the doors to the soundstage were closed, the fans were turned off, every person was instructed to stand perfectly still, there could be NO movement. The special effects people then came in with their bee smokers and wafted smoke up above the trees. Presto -- we had clouds. It’s a beautiful effect that added to the reality.” (155-5)
After the beautiful effect, and the wrap for the day, at 8:30 p.m., the Hugo award-winning episode “The Menagerie, Part 1” had its NBC encore airing.
Day 7, Friday, May 19. A final half-day of shooting (for a total of six, since the production began at the halfway mark on its first day) finished with the scene on the knoll where Cochrane talks with the merged entity which is now Hedford and The Companion.
Donahue, at the time, still fighting the acting habits which traced back to Father Knows Best, recalled, “I think the thing that made it quite so good was the cinematographer -- Jerry Finnerman. As I was coming out of makeup and hair touchups, he started to walk alongside of me and he said, ‘I want to tell you something, I’ve lit you perfectly. You put your head in this spot when you sit down there, and don’t move your head. You have this tendency to bob your head around’ -- which I do – and he said, ‘If you move one inch, I’ll break your arm.’ He said it in that kind of ‘nice guy way’; kidding, but at the same time serious -- I could not move.” (50)
The acting tip came while shooting the climactic moment in the episode where the human and The Companion had merged. Donahue recalled, “When I commenced to do the speech, I realized in not moving, I was feeling more. My bad habit of the past was, instead of letting the emotion coming out, I would try to show the emotion and I’d move around too much. But this time I just sat there, and it just happened. And I think we did it in one take. Now I could be mistaken, but I remember them doing a print of the first take and then moving in for a close up, and we did maybe one or two of those. There was a camera glitch or I flubbed a line or something, so we did a couple of those, but it didn’t take very long to do my direction, then we did the over shoulder toward Glenn. It was interesting when I saw it, because I learned a valuable lesson, which I would always try to use down the road when I was doing anything similar to that, where I had to make a speech, and that was that it was really, really important to keep still. I was very grateful to him.” (50)

The famous barbeque lunches that Elinor Donahue remembered so well

Ralph Senensky said, “I thought Elinor Donahue did a fine job. I think the last scene she does with Glenn, she was just lovely in it.” (155-6)

Elinor Donahue remembered the mood on the set as being “lovely, very warm and comfortable.” She said, “Shatner got nicer, and I actually got invited to the infamous barbeque where he would have barbeque lunch. It was him, Doc, and Spock. They had like a man’s man get-together -- a special private lunch out behind the soundstage. I don’t know who he was who prepared the food -- somebody’s helper or a wardrobe guy, or something, and he had this hibachi and they would fix lunch on this hibachi, and I got invited to go. A big honor.” (50) 
Senensky was taken by both of his guest stars, saying, “I’d worked with Glenn on Route 66. I’d directed him in the two-part episode which introduced his character, and he was good in that, but he’s better on Star Trek. Looking back at the show now, I can see that he was a better actor than I realized at the time that we were doing it. At that time, I knew he was good. But now I look at it and I can see that it was better than good. He had a nice personality and was very professional.” (155-6)
Donahue said of Corbett, “He was extremely nice. We enjoyed doing our scenes together; he was wonderful. The scene that we did where I was leaning up against the tree was probably one of the most memorable ones that I did with him.” (50)
Senensky finished on schedule, at 1 p.m. on the seventh day. After the lunch break, Joseph Pevney took over the company for a move to Stage 9 and commencement of production on “Friday’s Child.”

These Are the Voyages – TOS: Season Two is now available for pre-ordering at www.thesearethevoyagesbooks.com. The book will ship the week of March 24, 2014.