Sunday, 13 March 2016

Reshoot Conundrum


Star Trek Beyond is a little over four months away and it's surely getting near to sweaty palms time for the production team.

Add into that factor the essential reshoots and fans can easily be led to believe that everything isn't going to plan however this kind of event on a motion picture is pretty standard. The latest news is that Shohreh Agadashloo has joined the cast at the eleventh hour to star as some sort of senior Federation officer during these additional days of filming. 

I'm not overly familiar with her work. I'd forgotten she'd appeared in X Men: The Last Stand (but then who tries to remember that movie) but I did think Shohreh was a great cast member in 24 as Dina Araz where her character wasn't without her fair share of terrorist-plot linked twists during the day. The role in Beyond will perhaps not be quite as taxing as facing off against angry Keifer Sutherland but it is a bit of scoop to get a recognised name in to do your reshoots.

Now here's the thing, where's this character come from? Is it brand new for additional scenes to shore up the movie and help it make more sense or is it a recasting because the original actor didn't cut it?   With the indication that it's reshoots and not additional scenes I would be inclined to think that we're seeing a dissatisfaction with already filmed sequences and Shohreh's casting has been done to improve what, of course, will be a top notch movie that we are all expecting... 

This character also can't be too essential to the whole of the movie since we're only talking reshoots however I don't seem to remember there being anything of this note happening for either the 2009 or Into Darkness flicks although there probably were but not with such high profile cast inclusions at the time. One further question has to be around when a second trailer will be arriving. Thinking that the final Captain America trailer has landed and that film is aiming for a similar time of the year, shouldn't we be getting a little more Beyond titillation? Into Darkness had punched out a November and a Superbowl trailer by this point. Maybe after the critical slashing the first trailer received they're really taking the time to make this one a lot more fan-appealing rather than a ton of action and explosions.

Second up is the continuing adventures of Axanar versus CBS. This has now been going on since the last few days of 2015 and threatens to roll on for a long time to come. The division among fans whether or not they actually helped fund Axanar is very much one side or the other with very little grey area - or neutral zone - in between. The stories of community barrings on social media, uncomfortable questions and a whole heap of nastiness that I don't really want to get into worries the hell out of me especially now.   

CBS/Paramount did have their hand forced it seems by Axanar, led by Alec Peters into providing precise details of what exactly they were infringing and with a limited time to come up with some form of response.

Respond they did and with some pretty precise examples from not just the series and movies but also from the expanded Star Trek universe found within the multitude of novels published over the years and from Axanar's own terminology found within its website and across its social media channels. I mean, talk about prodding the sleeping giant with a big stick but this is starting to get very testing. From what I can see, CBS/Paramount have certainly done their homework, citing episodes, events, costumes and, not surprisingly, characters such as Garth of Izar and Soval from Enterprise. Whether bravado, a case of seeing who would blink first, self-belief or utter stupidity, asking for details only seems to have motivated the owners of the franchise rights into action.You can read the full action here but from what I read there and also some of the notes made by 1701.com they are potentially digging their own graves.

This could now be tied up for years not only stopping Axanar from proceeding and allowing the full length feature to be made but also all material linked to the project could well be pulled and every infringement could cost Peters and co $150,000 each. That's going to be a lot of dollars to count up and don't expect to see your perks anytime soon.

Just as a further sidenote to this story and TOTALLY unrelated but Propworx, the business which Alec Peters also runs is about to launch its seventh Star Trek auction. You can view the catalogue right here and see the range of incredible items available from the franchise. It's due to kick off on March 26th and if I just had that kind of free cash I'd be all over some of those items like a rash. Of course - and I'm more than likely to be very cynical here - I hope none of this money is going to be helping along a certain lawsuit.

Is Shohreh playing an additional character? Does Axanar really stand a chance against CBS/Paramount?

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