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First Contact Revealed

On the 55th anniversary of the first broadcast of Star Trek, CBS/Paramount unveiled a writing project that kept me busy for the early part of 2021: Titan Books’ upcoming publication, Star Trek: First Contact - The Official Story of the Film.

Street date for the book is TBD. This was originally planned to coincide with ‘First Contact Day,' April 4 – the yet-to-be-realized date in the Star Trek timeline, in 2063, when beings from an intelligent alien civilization first encounter occupants of planet Earth.

To mark the occasion, I interviewed 16 cast and crew members – including director and performer Jonathan Frakes, producer Rick Berman, screenwriters Brannon Braga and Ron Moore, actors Marina Sirtis and Alice Krige, production designer Herman Zimmerman, cinematographer Matthew Leonetti, makeup designer Michael Westmore, visual effects supervisor John Knoll, and more.

All of my material is original and new. Archival guest appearances include composer Jerry Goldsmith, actor Patrick Stewart and, briefly, series creator Gene Roddenberry. I also had complete access to the Paramount visual archive. And Industrial Light & Magic and conceptual designer John Eaves were particularly generous in sharing material from their Star Trek brain trust. Should be pretty.

This was my fourth journey around Starfleet. I previously covered J.J. Abrams’ two Star Trek films, as well as Season One of Star Trek: Picard for Cinefex magazine. Each tour of duty has been a trip, as I used to watch the original Jim Kirk Trek with my mum in the 1970s. So, I’m dedicating his one, sentimentally, to Mum.

  • Forbidden Planet U.K. pre-order here.

  • Amazon U.S. pre-order here.

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