Reading 1701News coverage of the copyright infringement lawsuit CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures have filed against Axanar Productions and its principal, Alec Peters, and wishing you could start from the beginning of the story?
Well, this page is where you do it. Read all of our stories, from the beginning of the lawsuit right up to our latest story. This page will be continuously updated with new stories as they're posted (look at the bottom for the latest, since we're presenting this in chronological order). Also, we're including some of our commentaries about the lawsuit, so you can see it all, in one place.
Each link opens in a new window, so don't worry about losing your place as you read through this rather dramatic story involving two studios who own Star Trek and an "independent" fan-film they claim has gone too far.
While this page might not always be available on the front page of 1701News, you can bookmark it and use it as a handy quick reference whenever you want to refresh yourself on the overall story, or want to experience the entire case from the beginning. All with the detailed coverage you can only find at 1701News.
As of our most recent story posting of July 13, 2016, we have published 57 total stories related to the Axanar case — 40 news stories and 17 commentaries.
Paramount, CBS Launch Lawsuit Against 'Axanar'
Dec. 30, 2015
Paramount Pictures and CBS have filed a lawsuit against the fan film “Axanar,” stating that the Star Trek production is a violation of their intellectual property.
Financed by more than $1 million in crowdfunding on Kickstarter and Indiegogo, the independent feature film is spearhead by Alec Peters, who serves as a producer, writer and actor on the project. “Axanar,” which was preceded by the 2014 short film “Prelude to Axanar,” is designed to reflect a professional, studio-quality production.
Peters: 'Axanar' Quality Spurred Lawsuit
Feb. 1, 2016
It's been a month since CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures Inc. shocked the Star Trek fan community when it filed a copyright infringement suit against Alec Peters, his planned full-length Trek production, "Axanar," and its already-produced short, "Prelude to Axanar."
From almost the beginning, Peters has championed the professional quality of "Axanar" and defended its need to raise more than $1.1 million from fans, even after being served with court papers. And in an exclusive sit-down with 1701News, Peters refuses to back away from those claims.
'Axanar' Fan-Film Wants Copyright Infringement Suit Dismissed
Feb. 23, 2016
The attorney representing Alec Peters and his "independent" Star Trek film company, Axanar Productions, is asking a judge to dismiss the copyright infringement case CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures have filed against it.
Erin Ranahan of Winston & Strawn, along wth attorneys Andrew Jick and Kelly Oki, filed the motion in response to the complaint Monday in the U.S. District Court's Central District of California. Ranahan and her team are looking to either dismiss the complaint outright, or at the very least remove some of the allegations in CBS/Paramount's original suit. That's everything in the suit, including the simple allegations that Peters and Axanar are making a film called "Axanar," and that those named in the suit are writing such a film.
CBS/Paramount Ask For Short Delay In 'Axanar' Lawsuit
Feb. 24, 2016
Two days after the attorney representing Axanar Productions Inc. and Alec Peters made her attempt to get the copyright infringement lawsuit against her client dismissed, the studios who levied the complaint in the first place have asked for a little more time.
CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures Inc. told Judge R. Gary Klausner that both sides have agreed to a two-week delay, providing extra time for the studios to respond to the technical allegations Axanar pro bono attorney Erin Ranahan laid out in a motion to dismiss the case on Monday. If the judge agrees, that would move the deadline for CBS and Paramount's response from Feb. 29 to March 11.
Axanar Attorney Says Studios Have Targeted 'Biggest Fans'
Feb. 25, 2016
Has CBS Corp. and Paramount gone too far by suing a group planning to create an "independent" Star Trek film?
Erin Ranahan thinks so. But then again, she's the Winston & Strawn attorney who is representing the defendants of that copyright infringement suit, Axanar Productions Inc. and Alec Peters.
Judge Says No To Axanar Case Delay
Feb. 29, 2016
An agreement by both sides to give more time in the copyright infringement case against a proposed Star Trek fan-film was denied Friday.
R. Gary Klausner denied a request by CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures to extend a deadline responding to a motion from Axanar Productions Inc. and Alec Peters to dismiss the case.
'Axanar' Script Leak Reveals Early Concept Of Trek Story
March 3, 2016
Robert Meyer Burnett called it the "best Star Trek script ever," at least according to one of its credited writers, Alec Peters.
No, we're not talking about the upcoming "Star Trek: Beyond" or the pilot episode of Star Trek: Series VI. Instead, Burnett was talking about the script for "Star Trek: Axanar," what the crew itself calls an "independent" fan-film in the Star Trek universe. And one that is currently part of a high-profile copyright infringement suit filed by Star Trek intellectual property owners CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures.
Mignogna: 'Continues' Fan Series Leads By Example
March 11, 2016
As CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures move forward on a copyright infringement lawsuit against one fan-film production, other amateur Star Trek producers are keeping one eye toward the courtroom, and another on their latest project.
And that's no different for "Star Trek Continues" executive producer and star Vic Mignogna.
CBS/Paramount File Amended, Detailed Complaint Against Axanar
March 12, 2016
Ask and you shall receive.
Just three weeks after the attorney representing the fan production "Star Trek: Axanar" said the copyright infringement suit filed by CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures was not detailed enough, lawyers for the two studios filed an amended complaint Friday detailing "Axanar's" alleged infractions against their Star Trek copyrights.
Cawley Says Some People Shouldn't Do Fan-Films
March 16, 2016
How is the ongoing legal battle between the two studios that own the rights to Star Trek against an "independent" fan-film affecting other fan film productions?
Last week, "Star Trek Continues" star and executive producer Vic Mignogna shared his thoughts with 1701News. And now, "Star Trek: New Voyages" producer — well, Star Trek fan — James Cawley has shared some of his thoughts about fan-films as well.
Lawsuit-Plagued Axanar Looking For Private Investors
March 17, 2016
A group of "independent" fan-film producers in the middle of a copyright infringement lawsuit from two major studios is poised to give up its own California studio space.
Alec Peters, a named defendant in the lawsuit from CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures Inc., told supporters on the "Star Trek: Axanar" website Wednesday plans are afloat to more or less spin off that converted office space to what he calls a "small group of backers and fans."
Axanar Once Again Seeks To Dismiss Copyright Suit
March 29, 2016
For anyone who remembers the "Star Trek: The Next Generation" episode "Cause and Effect," it looks like a district court in California is caught in its own temporal loop.
Erin Ranahan, the pro bono attorney representing the "independent" Star Trek fan-film company Axanar Productions and its producer Alec Peters, has filed a second motion to dismiss the copyright infringement suit filed by CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures last year.
Axanar Director: We're Trying To Reach A Settlement
April 2, 2016
There seems to be little motivation from CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures to settle its copyright infringement lawsuit against an "independent" Star Trek fan-film production, but the director in charge of that production thinks he has a win-win settlement.
"Let us make the movie," Robert Meyer Burnett, the director of "Star Trek: Axanar," said "We will give it to you when we're done, and you can have it for free. And if you like it, you can put it on your streaming service."
Peters: Axanar Operates As A Non-Profit
April 4, 2016
The self-imposed radio silence from Axanar Productions has ended after Alec Peters followed up his Feb. 1 interview at 1701News with a "live" discussion on Australia's Trekzone video podcast. The questions, however, weren't exactly what he had hoped for.
Matthew Miller peppered the Axanar producer with questions about not only the fan-film production, but the financial aspects of the project as well in the sometimes heated 30-minute discussion. The key point Peters tried to make, however, was parroting a recently revised frequently asked questions section on the Axanar website, which claimed the production operates as a California non-profit.
CBS, Paramount Say Axanar Motion Is Misguided, Misleading
April 12, 2016
When Erin Ranahan filed her second motion to dismiss a copyright infringement case filed by CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures, many news outlets and blogs had fun with some of the claims being made, like the similarities between Spock and the movie vampire Nosferatu, as well as whether the Klingon language is even copyrightable.
But according to an attorney for CBS and Paramount, the claims by Ranahan for her clients, Axanar Productions Inc. and its principal Alec Peters, are just as ridiculous as those outlets made it out to be.
Klingon Language Creator Responds To Ownership Claims
April 18, 2016
More than 30 years after it was created, the Klingon language still knows how to get attention in the press. That was apparent in recent weeks when some news outlets focused on its inclusion as part of a copyright infringement lawsuit CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures has filed against a fan-film.
But can someone (or some company) actually own a language? And if so, who owns it?
CBS Reportedly Shuts Down Second Fan-Film
April 21, 2016
Have Star Trek fan-films finally met their fate?
With CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures continuing its copyright infringement lawsuit against the fan-film "Star Trek: Axanar," at least one of the studios has reportedly forced a second fan-film project to pull the plug.
Fan-Film Makes Last-Ditch Effort To Salvage Fundraising
April 24, 2016
With less than two weeks remaining, "Star Trek Continues" producer Vic Mignogna is doing everything he can to try and raise $350,000 for more episodes of his popular fan-film series — even climb to the peak of Vasquez Rocks.
The 930-acre park, located about 45 miles north of Los Angeles, is a popular television and movie location setting, including episodes of the original "Star Trek," and the Vulcan scenes from "Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home." Mignogna used the geological park as a setting for what could be a final plea to get three more episodes of "Continues" funded — a goal that is about $110,000 short.
Axanar Won't Back Down From Dismissal Motion
April 26, 2016
With a hearing just two weeks away, the attorney representing the fan-film "Star Trek: Axanar" filed paperwork with the court Monday that reinforces its position that the two studios who own the copyright to Star Trek have failed to make an infringement claim against her client.
Erin Ranahan, a pro bono attorney with Winston & Strawn, defended her motion to dismiss she filed a month ago, arguing that CBS and Paramount have no standing to make the copyright claims, that the studios failed to properly identify the copyrights they said were infringed, and that there's no finished work for the studios to sue over.
Diary Of How CBS Halted Another Trek Fan Production
April 27, 2016
Anyone who talked to Tommy Kraft in February heard the same thing: He's finishing and releasing his fan-film, "Star Trek: Horizon," and then he's done with Trek fan-films.
Who could blame him? Kraft's valentine to "Star Trek: Enterprise" was an arduous undertaken he did for less than $50,000, and some three years of his own blood, sweat and tears to get the film out. But since releasing "Horizon" on YouTube at the end of February, the fan-film has topped 1 million views. And those who watched it wanted to see more.
No, You Can't Copyright Klingon, You PetaQ
April 28, 2016
There have already been some crazy fan-based filings when it comes to the copyright infringement case between the studios that own Star Trek and a proposed fan-film. But the Language Creation Society has now upped the bar.
And they did it in Klingon.
Third Fan-Film Closes, This Time Voluntarily
April 29, 2016
It's not one of the most prominent fan-films within the very limited Star Trek community, but it appears the tsunami of the Axanar copyright infringement lawsuit have taken out another production in its wake.
Joe Geragi, a character actor and producer, has decided to shut down his project, "Star Trek: Constellation." The fan project was designed to be a prequel to the original "Star Trek" episode "Doomsday Machine," featuring Capt. Decker and what is a brand-new crew for his ship, the USS Constellation, at the Mirdani Space Station.
Axanar Trial Coming In May ... 2017
May 3, 2016
Making plans for May is fun, especially with spring really coming into bloom in most parts of the world. But do you know what you'll be doing May next year?
Well, if the current court schedule holds up — and there isn't a settlement — both sides of a copyright infringement lawsuit will be gearing up for two weeks of court.
CBS, Paramount Want Klingon Brief Excluded From Axanar Case
May 4, 2016
A colorful yet informative brief filed last week defended the fictitious Klingon language from Star Trek as a "living language." However, the lawyer representing CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures in a copyright infringement suit against a Star Trek fan-film want the "friend of the court" brief to be stricken from the record.
Loeb & Loeb attorney David Grossman called the unsolicited brief from the Language Creation Society untimely and improper. In that brief, the California-based language group didn't take sides in the case, but felt that the component where CBS and Paramount claimed ownership of the Klingon language shouldn't be considered by the court.
Trek Author Chronicles His Days With Axanar
May 5, 2016
Fans of the Star Trek novels would certainly recognize the name Dave Galanter. Yet, the author considers himself more of an occasional novelist rather than a career one.
His library includes a few books he co-wrote with Greg Brodeur, like the 1994 "Star Trek: The Next Generation" novel "Foreign Foes," and the 2001 two-parter "Dead Zone" and "Forever Dark" in the Maximum Warp series. He even penned a "Star Trek: New Voyages" episode, "Enemy: Starfleet," that was released in 2011. In fact, Galanter considers "New Voyages" co-creator James Cawley a friend.
Both Axanar Lawsuit Sides Battle Over Klingon Language
May 7, 2016
The attorney representing a fan-film production being sued for copyright infringement is pushing even harder to yank the Klingon language out of the lawsuit, fueling a new battle over the fictitious language.
Erin Ranahan, an attorney representing Axanar Productions and its principal, Alec Peters, says CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures can't claim ownership to the language, which Marc Okrand created as a work-for-hire in the early 1980s. And while fans might not want to think about food and Klingons in the same sentence, Ranahan doesn't have to look any further than the kitchen to defend her position.
Who Is Klingon Lawyer Marc Randazza?
May 9, 2016
Before last week, you may have never heard of the Language Creation Society, a California non-profit that has about 140 members in 25 countries, according to its website.
The LCS has a strong cause — supporting those who enjoy constructing new languages, or those who support it. In fact, a flyer for the organization promotes these language constructers, or "conlangers," as those who do it "as a hobby, as an art form, or as an intellectual pastime." Sometimes these conlangers want to encourage others to speak the language and even actively promote them, other times these creators simply want to keep that language to themselves as "very personal statements."
Axanar Crash: Judge Denies Motion To Dismiss
May 10, 2016
Lawyers from both sides of a copyright infringement case against an "independent" Star Trek fan-film met in court for the first time Monday. And afterward, one of the defendants in that case was optimistic — even announcing plans to restart production of "Star Trek: Axanar" next year.
But Tuesday, Judge R. Gary Klausner dropped a huge hammer on "Axanar," denying completely the fan-film's motion to dismiss. Which means the suit filed by CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures against Axanar Productions and its principal, Alec Peters, will move forward at full force.
Axanar Copyright Trial Moved Up To January
May 11, 2016
If and when the producers of "Star Trek: Axanar" go to trial is a lot sooner than both sides anticipated, after the judge in the case rejected a schedule agreed to by both sides, and moved up a court date.
CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures will officially begin presenting its copyright infringement case to a California federal court jury Jan. 31, according to an order filed Tuesday by Judge R. Gary Klausner. That's much sooner than the original proposed trial date of May 9, 2017 — a year from when Klausner was expected to make a decision on the defense motion to dismiss the case (a motion he would ultimately deny).
Has 'Axanar' Soundstage Rebranded To Valkyrie Studios
May 14, 2016
Axanar Productions promoted its makeshift warehouse as "Ares Studios," but it seems the lawsuit-plagued company is now marketing the converted soundstage as "Valkyrie Studios."
Flyers promoting not just the name but the studio space itself were reportedly distributed at the Sci-Fest L.A. film festival last week, according to a report by AxaMonitor. An image of the flyer was shared on a social media page run by an Axanar crewmember, seeking film groups that might be interested in renting out the space.
Abrams: Axanar Lawsuit 'Going Away'
May 20, 2016
J.J. Abrams might not be pulling the director reins of the Star Trek movie franchise, but it seems his influence might be strong enough to convince at least Paramount Pictures to pull out of a copyright infringement lawsuit against an "independent" fan-film.
"There was a fan movie, 'Axanar,' that was getting made," Abrams told fans during a "Star Trek: Beyond" event in Los Angeles Friday night. He was joined on stage by "Beyond" director Justin Lin, who Abrams said was "outraged by this" lawsuit "as a lifetime fan."
Fan-Film Producers Finally Speak Out On Axanar Lawsuit
May 22, 2016
Shocking observers, fans — and according to at least four different sources, the studios themselves — "Star Trek: Beyond" producer J.J. Abrams publicly inserted himself into a copyright infringement lawsuit Friday night declaring his support for the fan-film being sued.
However, in an effort to defend fan-films, Abrams might have actually riled up many of those very fan-film communities not attached to "Star Trek: Axanar."
Axanar Countersues Paramount, CBS In Copyright Case
May 24, 2016
If Paramount and CBS are indeed in the process of settling its copyright infringement lawsuit against an "independent" fan-film, it will now have to settle two.
That's because the attorney representing Axanar Productions and its principal, Alec Peters, have filed a countersuit against Paramount Pictures and CBS Corp., claiming that not only has the fan-film not violated any of the Star Trek copyrights, but that the studios should be barred from suing Axanar over it again in the future.
Will CBS Continue Axanar Lawsuit On Its Own?
May 26, 2016
CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures first went their separate ways at the end of 2005 — and they might be doing it again.
Although "Star Trek: Beyond" producer J.J. Abrams insists the copyright infringement lawsuit the studios filed against an "independent" fan-film was "going away," it seems Abrams was really only able to speak on behalf of one of the plaintiffs. The other, CBS, is far from ready to settle. And a countersuit filed by Axanar Productions and its principal Alec Peters might have been enough to convince CBS to continue the lawsuit whether Paramount is on board or not.
Axanar Offers Fan-Film Guidelines Of Its Own
May 27, 2016
Settlement talks apparently continue between the studios that own Star Trek — CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures — and a fan-film they said went to far, "Star Trek: Axanar." With the announcement of those talks a week ago, the studios also surprised everyone by saying it was creating guidelines for fan-films.
Not to be left out, "Axanar" — which appears to be the very reason why CBS and Paramount are looking to create fan-film guidelines to begin with — have come up with some suggestions of their own. And Axanar Productions' principal, Alec Peters, has apparently brought a few other fan-film producers on board.
Fan-Films: We Weren't Involved In 'Axanar' Guidelines
May 31, 2016
CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures are reportedly working on Star Trek fan-film guidelines that could change the world such hobby productions currently exist. And Alec Peters — who, along with his fan-film company Axanar Productions, are being sued by the two studios for copyright infringement — was not invited.
So Peters thought he would put together a fan-film coalition of his own to draft guidelines. Except it now seems no one really showed up.
CBS, Paramount Release Much-Anticipated Fan-Film Guidelines
June 23, 2016
In the wake of its copyright infringement lawsuit against an "independent" fan-film, CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures for the first time have released fan-film guidelines. And they are expected to drastically change how fan-films move forward.
"Your support, enthusiasm and passion are the reasons that Star Trek has flourished for five decades, and will continue long into the future," the studios said in a statement at StarTrek.com. "You are the reason the original 'Star Trek' series was rescued and renewed in 1968, and the reason it has endured as an iconic and multi-generational phenomenon that has spawned seven television series and 13 movies.
Guidelines Eliminate Fan-Film 'Arms Race,' CBS Says
June 29, 2016
Fan-films have always been intended for fans to express their love in Star Trek. But in recent years — with the advent of stronger production, fundraising and distribution tools to average people — some fan-films have gone too far.
Because of that, CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures have released a new set of guidelines for Trek fan-films which one CBS executive says will end what has become an "arms race" in terms of fundraising, attracting big-name talent, and outright commercializing the Star Trek brand.
Director: Axanar Makes It Impossible To Disagree
July 7, 2016
Before there was a fancy warehouse studio constructed in the heart of the Los Angeles film community, Alec Peters had his sights set on something smaller. And yeah, it was probably a little too small.
Peters — who along with his "independent" fan-film company Axanar Productions, are defendants in a copyright infringement suit from the studios that own Star Trek — had wanted to shoot his "Prelude to Axanar" short in a small city called Victorville, about 90 minutes northeast of Los Angeles. Peters had found an old linen warehouse here he felt would be perfect to film the short he hoped would raise the money for his full-length feature "Star Trek: Axanar."
Axanar Lawsuit Warps Into Discovery Process
July 13, 2016
The two sides in the copyright infringement battle over an "independent" fan-film might not agree on a settlement, but it looks like they've cleared one hurdle facing discovery.
David Grossman, the attorney representing Paramount Pictures and CBS Corp. in their lawsuit against Axanar Productions and its principal Alec Peters, has filed what is known as a stipulated protective order intended to keep some information collected in discovery confidential. Discovery, of course, the process where both sides collect information from each other in order to help support their positions in a legal dispute.
'Axanar' Lawsuit A Questionable Step
Jan. 2, 2016
Some months back, I interviewed Richard Hatch and J.G. Hertzler, two of the principal cast members in the spectacular fan-funded production "Prelude to Axanar," produced by Alec Peters and Axanar Productions.
Both had expressed how innovative and exciting a venture it was, and both were looking forward to the full-length feature film "Axanar" set to be released this year. It is an innovative and exciting new entertainment model. Sad to say, there may be some doubt to the realization of that expectation.
'Axanar' Will Ruin Fan Trek For Everyone
Jan. 2, 2016
There always was a slippery slope when it came to what I always felt was a generous move by Paramount Pictures and CBS Corp. to turn a blind eye not just to Star Trek fan fiction but Star Trek fan productions as well.
Some of the early attempts were very low budget. It was more about good writing and some extreme technical know-how to make some of those early fan-produced episodes, and it seemed there was nothing for CBS/Paramount to worry about. Then James Cawley turned the entire fan production industry on its head with an elaborate continuation of the original "Star Trek" series, complete with sets and professional crew, that I felt would finally end CBS/Paramount's reluctant allowance of fan productions.
A Quote Is A Quote Is A Quote Is A Quote
Feb. 2, 2016
When John Kirk approached me on the idea of doing an interview with Alec Peters, the man who was leading the "Axanar" Star Trek film production and the defendant in a copyright infringement suit, I was not keen on it.
Not that every journalistic bone in my body didn't want to scoop competitors on an interview no one else had ... but because I knew that no matter how we handled it, Peters would go back to his isolated little social media world and spin anything he said as if Donald Trump was his mentor.
What Does A Fan Film Need With $2 Million?
Feb. 5, 2016
A few nights ago when Robert Meyer Burnett messaged me out of the blue on social media, I wasn't quite sure how to react.
I mean, here is the man who so entertained me back in the late 1990s with "Free Enterprise," a fun film that starred William Shatner as an alternate version of himself, and celebrating Star Trek fandom with the likes of Rafer Wiegel and a pre-"Will & Grace" Eric McCormack.
'Axanar' Misses Mark As Professional Film
Feb. 9, 2016
Independent filmmakers, like me, have a tough job.
Without the deep pockets of a studio, we’re forced to be creative when we compete with the "big boys." Our key weapon, the singular advantage we have in creating a memorable work that will impress audiences and engage imaginations, is to put the most money (and there’s never enough of it) on the screen as we can. The smarter decisions we make, the more creative we get with utilizing limited resources, the better we differentiate our needs vs. our wants, the more money we’ll have to put invest in the meaningful tools that make our final product the best it can be.
Are Expectations Too High In 'Axanar' Lawsuit Response?
Feb. 18, 2016
It's been quiet on the Axanar front lately. And while many expect that will change next week when the legal team representing the Star Trek fan film files an answer in the copyright infringement suit from CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures, they might come out of it a bit disappointed.
Since CBS and Paramount sued the "Axanar" production as well as its main producer, Alec Peters, last December, the fan production has brought in pro bono representation from Winston & Strawn, and even brokered an agreement with the studios agreeing to stop all production work on "Axanar" in exchange for more time to file its answer.
'Axanar' Must Stop Trying To Control The Conversation
March 3, 2016
Last weekend, 1701News was provided what was claimed to be an early draft of the screenplay for "Star Trek: Axanar."
"Axanar," in case you missed it, was an "independent" fan-film production that has raised more than $1.1 million in crowdfunding to create what was supposed to be a feature-length look into the backstory of the original "Star Trek" episode "Whom Gods Destroy."
Boldly Going Nowhere Near ...
March 3, 2016
When I was asked to read the script he’d gotten for the controversial fan-film "Star Trek: Axanar" and write up my thoughts regarding the script, I was more than happy to oblige. I'd already expressed my doubts over the “professional” nature of the project’s production plan. Taking a look at the script and seeing how if it worked based on what I’ve learned about writing, directing, and producing, was definitely of interest.
Besides, I just really wanted to know if the script was any damn good.
The Troll That Alec Peters Built
March 16, 2016
I think I was destined to love science-fiction.
I was born while the Apollo 9 mission was in Earth orbit testing the lunar module. I like to think my first moments of life were listening to the live broadcast of it. When I came home from the hospital, my mum would nurse me while watching the last few episodes of the original “Star Trek.”
Context Is The Key To Understanding
March 18, 2016
I think it was the late artist Kenneth Noland who said it best: "For me context is the key — from that comes the understanding of everything."
A decade or so ago, I mentored a few journalism school students, providing a real-world look at how journalism was operating at the time to compare and contrast what they were learning in college. One of them asked me once what I felt were the most important elements in journalism, what I held most sacred. The obvious answer, of course, is truth. But a very close second is context.
Axanar Is Many Things, But Not Transparent
April 1, 2016
While Winston & Strawn attorney Erin Ranahan has media outlets — and, she hopes, a judge — jumping through hoops trying to compare Mr. Spock to Nosferatu, a much bigger question looms. A question that seems to get bigger and bigger as both sides rack up legal costs, and the thought of there being a fan-film called "Star Trek: Axanar" becomes more and more unrealistic.
Where has all the money gone?
It's Time For Fan-Films To Take A Stand
April 27, 2016
I haven't exactly been a dedicated follower of fan-films, but as someone who is passionate about Star Trek fandom, I would follow their progress occasionally, and give kudos when kudos were due.
But since CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures filed a massive copyright infringement suit against fan-film producers Axanar Productions and Alec Peters, I have learned far more about fan-films than I thought was even possible to absorb. And a lot of it is good — these are fans, after all, many times playing Star Trek with a YouTube audience. Even Vic Mignogna will admit his "Star Trek Continues" production is simply an extension of his childhood in Pennsylvania, where he would get his friends together and play Star Trek with an 8mm camera.
Axanar Case Is About Klingon Language, And Other Myths
May 11, 2016
If you've had a chance to read more about Judge R. Gary Klausner's ruling Tuesday, you might be surprised that not everything you're reading in the mainstream press about the copyright infringement lawsuit against a Star Trek fan-film is accurate.
In fact, a number of publications in the last couple weeks or so have made the suit all about the Klingon language. As if the primary sin of "Star Trek: Axanar" was using the Klingon language without the permission of CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures.
Coming Soon: 'Lost: Hurley's Star Wars Script'
May 21, 2016
I have a big announcement I want to share, and I've been so excited about it, I don't know how I've kept the lid on it for this long.
But I have planned a huge crowdfunding campaign, beginning tomorrow, for "Lost: Hurley's Star Wars Script."
Be Careful What You Wish For ...
May 21, 2016
When I stepped out of my semi-retirement from news reporting at the beginning of the year, believe it or not, it had nothing to do with the fan-film "Star Trek: Axanar."
If anyone looked at how many fan-film stories on this site, or even our sister site Airlock Alpha, you likely would never see my name. That's because outside of making some friends through the fan-film community, I myself was never much of a consumer of fan-films, or even really fan-fiction.
Come Not Between Draconians
June 27, 2016
Last December, Paramount Pictures and CBS Corp. filed a lawsuit against Alec Peters and Axanar Productions for copyright infringement regarding Star Trek.
Stating he was making a fan-film and couldn’t understand why he was being sued, Peters told The Hollywood Reporter he’d long “asked CBS to give [him] guidelines similar to what Lucasfilm had done for fans of Star Wars" fan-films. Any infringement was only because no clear rules existed.
Fan-Film Guidelines: This Is What Compromise Looks Like
June 29, 2016
Growing up, and even through most of my adult life, I've never been the biggest fan of rules. I'm not sure why ... in a way, non-conformity is one of the things that, in my mind at least, makes us human and separates us from the rest of the animals.
When CBS Corp. and Paramount Pictures released their fan-film guidelines last week, that first instinct of rebellion first popped up. Restricted to 15 minutes. Crowdfunding limited to $50,000. You can't use anyone who's been employed by CBS or Paramount.