Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Star Trek DVD Release Party

I had the fortune (figuratively speaking - this was actually a pro bono job) of attending and working the Paramount "Star Trek" DVD release party last night at LA's fabulous Griffith Observatory. Paramount's "restart" Star Trek movie from earlier this year is out on DVD today. Even With all the glitz, glamor and splendor of the event, the highlight for me was the 5 minutes I spent interviewing Mr. Spock himself, Leonard Nimoy.

My partner Harry was signed on to help with the broadcast media relations work (Paramount Pictures is one of his clients). I assisted by conducting red carpet interviews. How thrilling to ask questions of director JJ Abrams (it was all I could do NOT to ask questions about "Lost"), John Cho (young Sulu), Zoe Saldana (young Uhura), Zachary Quinto (young Spock), Bruce Greenwood (Capt. Pike), and the two teenagers who played childhood versions of Capt. Kirk & Spock. Unfortunately, Chris Pine was on location back east and could not attend. Leonard Nimoy walked the carpet with the grace and dignity of an A-lister, and when he stopped at my position his handshake was warm and his smile inviting. What a gentleman. I asked him about getting back into the role of Spock, and how Quinto did following in his shoes. His answers were gracious and thoughtful. His voice as booming as ever. I got all "fan boy" but kept it inside as best as I could. This is MR. SPOCK, for crying out loud! I was also asking humorous questions on behalf of Canada's Space TV, pitting Star Trek characters against Star Wars characters. I asked Nimoy who would be most likely to talk a cop out of a traffic violation, Mr. Spock or Obi Wan Kenobi? Nimoy laughted a hearty laugh (thank God he saw the humor, because that could have gone down like a lead balloon!)... and said, of course, "I don't believe Mr. Spock would ever get himself into that position in the first place! So not a problem for him!" Love him.

The event was spectacular. I arrived in the afternoon while the crews were setting everything up. AV crews, satellite truck, florists, caterers, party planners, party suppliers, media personnel, etc. It was one of those perfect days: 70s and not a cloud in the sky. You could see the ocean with the sun shining off of it, with Catalina in the distance. Panoramic view with just a little smog inland. The event began at 6:30 just after twilight & a gorgeous sunset. Two outside areas on the terrace overlooking the LA Basin were set up with ultramodern couches, tables, vases and accessories worthy of Star Trek and Hollywood. An impressive, 30 foot tall sculpture of the Starfleet emblem was created and placed on the grass mall in front of the observatory (see pictures). The observatory was lit with all sorts of groovy lighting, and there were glowing "runner" lights along the walkways and the roofline of the observatory. Paramount spared no expense on this one!

Access Hollywood Video Clips:

JJ Abrams (also talks about "Lost")


Cathryn said...

This sounds like an incredible night Scott. Did you get to speak with Zachary Quinto? What was that like? Did you want to ask him about Heroes? Cathryn

jodi (bloomingwriter) said...

I enjoyed your adventure, Scott. Somehow I missed that you would be doing this, and only found out when I checked out DwoP. Interviewing L. Nimoy would be definitely a star-striking moment.

Scott said...

Cathryn, I did! He was great! He was funny and playful and kind of quirky. His answers were were probably the least usable in terms of promoting the DVD, but they sure were the most fun. I bet Access Hollyood used his sound bites - they were set up right next to me and he was hilarious with them. Their field producer is a huge Trekker and had a Star Trek shirt on... the cast all remembered him from the theatrical release junket. I didn't ask Zachary about Heroes, nor JJ Abrams about Lost because I was working as the "house" crew and had to keep it Paramount/Star Trek related.

Jane said...

Fantastic! Great pix and great post Scott. As a Trekkie, I will be insanely jealous of your amazing encounter for the rest of my life!

Lisa said...

What a thrill it must have been, and no one could better appreciate the experience than you (and of course all of the Trek fans on The Flaming Nose).

I'm sure we all envy your conversation with Nimoy, who consistently has been such an inspiration for so many of us. He seems like the ideal combination of intellect, spirit and humanity, and no doubt always will be.

I will look forward to your contributions on Space, which of course I watch up here in Canada. They are an excellent channel and run classic Trek every weekday, as well as all the other Trek series!

Great post and so happy that you were able to attend this!