Sci-Fi Ball – Day Two

Day two of the Sci-if Ball and after a nice big fry up breakfast we settled into the main hall to listen to our favourite guests.

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Gary Graham

The day started with a talk by Gary Graham who is best known (to us!) for his role as Ambassador Soval in Enterprise.

Gary spoke about how he got the part of Soval and thought he was going to be a one-off appearance in the pilot episode.

He also spoke to Rick Berman for a briefing on how Vulcans think, feel and behave.

Highlight: Gary has a great sense of humour and is a complete contrast to Soval. So it was extra delightful when he went full on Vulcan at the end of the talk and give us the customary Vulcan greeting.

Weird bit:

Vic Mignogna and Chris Doohan

For those unfamiliar with the fan series Star Trek Continues, we highly recommend you give it watch. It feels insulting to call it a fan film as it such a professional production.

Vic plays Kirk, writes, directs and generally creates the show!

Chris plays Scotty, the character of course was originally played by his late father James Doohan. He has also appeared alongside Simon Pegg’s Scotty in the 2009 Star Trek movie and Into Darkness.

Their panel was a highlight of the weekend and was by far the most engaging with audience.

Vic has an incredible passion for Star Trek that drove him to make Star Trek Continues. He spoke about how inspired he was by Star Trek. So much so he learned to sew so he could make costumes, and act so he could play Captain Kirk. In fact, he has been making fan films since he was a kid and he still has the video evidence, which he was more than happy to share with us!

Vic and Chris spoke frankly about the effect that the new fan films had on the production and continuation of Star Trek Continues.

Contrary to some fan speculation it wasn’t CBS being greedy but instead, protecting their brand. They had permitted and quietly supported the creative expression of fan films. They’d let fans get away with blantant copyright infringement for years, so long as you didn’t make any profit.

We all know one fan production didn’t obey that one rule and ruined it for the rest of us.

Speaking about his experiences growing up, Chris told us about the time he visited the set of The Original Series. Him and his twin brother weren’t allowed on the set whilst their father James Doohan worked, instead they played in this trailer.

One day they decided to explore the set. They opened a panel and were bombarded by a pile of tribbles!

Highlight: Vic and Chris are shining examples of the positive effect Star Trek has had. Whether like Vic, you are an inspired fan or Chris growing up in that world and are part of its legacy. We came away feeling like we could invent Warp Drive with just enthusiasm alone.

Weird bit: How uncanny Vic and Chris’s voices are to their original character actors. William Shatner and James Doohan could have been in the hall with us!

Terry Farrell

Terry was an absolute star this weekend, not just for attending and supporting this event but doing so after been diagnosed with flu just a week before. The doctors drugged her up and sent her packing.

She opened up talking about Star Trek Discovery. She has seen the first two episodes when she attended the premiere. An event where everyone who had ever had anything to do with Star Trek was invited.

Terry then took the opportunity to download the rest on Netflix whilst in the UK!

Last year when in Vegas she had met some of the cast and creatives of Discovery who apparently asked if she’d be interested in appearing!

Recently Terry opened up about her reasons for leaving Deep Space Nine and she chose to share the details again. Terry states that an executive producer would not allow her to be released for additional work despite allowing it to other cast members. When the contract was renewed it was a ‘take it or leave it’ offer. Terry decided that she couldn’t continue to work under these conditions.

An audience member asked about Jadzia’s sexuality and whilst Star Trek could have done much more she was pleased that Jadzia had so much fluidity in regards to her sexuality and gender.

As the talk was getting deep, our Sarah asked this question…

Asked about the Deep Space Nine Documentary “What we left behind”, Terry said she didn’t have the inside scoop since Adam Nimoy stepped down as director (they are engaged to be married this March!).

Highlight: How refreshing her talk was because she is such an open book. She is clearly a person who has spent her life self reflecting and and learning. In her own words….

Weird Bit: Someone kept interrupting Terry whilst asking a question. Terry responded “Be grateful I’m not Marina, she would slice you up!” Haha, with a batleth we hope!

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