Fan-produced live-action Star Trek episodes have proliferated on the Internet in recent years.
But it takes an extra measure of love to want to revive Filmation’s (barely) animated version of Trek from the 1970s. Apparently that degree of love is in the hearts of the folks at NEO f/x and Farragut Films: they have announced a two-episode release of Starship Farragut, The Animated Episodes.
The companies previously have made live-action episodes about the Starship Farragut, sister ship to the
The new animated episodes of Star Trek are the first produced in that format since NBC failed to renew the Filmation production of the original series in 1974. They take place in Star Trek’s hypothetical fourth season. A little foretaste is already online.
Episode one, penned by Michael Struck and Jack Treviño (co-writer of two Deep Space Nine episodes), is entitled “The Needs of the Many.” The second episode, “Power Source,” was written by Thomas J. Scott.
Next to the voices of the classic Trek cast, good writing was the best feature of the original animated Trek series. Writers included David Gerrold, who wrote a Tribbles sequel, and Larry Niven, whose “The Slaver Weapon” was a crossover between Trek and his own Known Space Universe. The series actually won an Emmy Award for the Best Children’s Series for the 1974-75 season, though it was canceled after 22 episodes.
Despite the historians who enthuse about the animation (even the Wikipedia entry is guilty), I remember its low-budget look being hard to take when I watched the series in first run. Producer Michael Struck of NEO f/x must have thought the same, because he told TrekMovie.com that his team is going out of its way to emulate the style of Star Trek: The Animated Series “right down to the cheese.”
Primary actors from the live-action Starship Farragut series will fill the same roles in the animated episodes. Additional star power will be provided by celebrities like Chase Masterson (Leeta on Deep Space Nine), Tim Russ (Tuvok on Voyager), and Chris Doohan, son of James Doohan.
[Thanks to Bjo Trimble for the pointer.]