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Date: 4/10/97 1:44:58 PM
<<Any updates on how many seasons of DS9 are left?>>
Nothing new. The smart money is one more year, and the long shot is two.
<<When DS9 is over, will you be transferred to the Voyager team, or has this
even been discussed yet? Would you want to work on Voyager?>>
This hasn't even been discussed yet. At the moment, I think DS9 will be my
last Trek series... but you never say never in this business.
<<Before you began writing for TNG, did you have any work produced? If so,
what was it?>>
Nope. "The Bonding" was my first professional sale.
<<Do you have time to watch television? If so, do you watch DS9, Voyager, or
any of the other Treks on a regular basis? And what other, non-trek related
shows do you watch, if any?>>
I surf the satellite channels nightly, but that's mostly for movies,
documentaries, and odd programming (there's nothing like stumbling across the
70's era "Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders Movie" for sheer bad TV viewing pleasure)
. I don't watch Voyager very often or any other sci-fi because that's almost
work and when I'm home I'm not looking for that. The only shows I watch on
any kind of a regular basis are: "The Larry Sanders Show" "Dennis Miller
Live" "Seinfeld" "The Chris Rock Show" "The Newshour with Jim Lehrer"
"Politically Incorrect" and of course, "Melrose Place."
<<Is there a story involving Kirk and company that you're just dying to tell?
And if so, can you give us any hints as to what it might be?>>
There're a few I could really get into, like Kirk's first mission as an
Ensign, Kirk taking command of the Enterprise, Kirk bringing the ship home
after the five-year mission was over -- I think these might all be novels by
now, actually -- as you can see, I'm interested in beginnings and endings
with the TOS crew. Seems like the TOS series itself was kinda "the middle"
and writing the bookend pieces would be really cool.
<<I know it's not easy designing future clothes, but why are civilian clothes
from all races always so....blah? They're always grey and subdued mauve.
Also, they always are skin tight....what's up with this?>>
Getting the 24th century to be more fashionable is a constant challenge and
we're always trying to improve this aspect of the show.
<<Who is the Baseball card of in "In the Cards? Someone we would know?>>
He's a real player and I'll let you find out in the episode who it is (no,
it's not the Roger Maris card from "Most Toys").
<<Will we see more of the Orian Syndicate? was this created to replace the
Tal' Shear and the Obsidian Order?>>
We'll probably hear more about these guys, but they weren't designed to
replace the Tal'Shiar or the Obsidian Order. The latter organizations are
intelligence services in the employ of their respective governments, while
the Syndicate is a criminal organization that answers to no one.
<<You want an Emmy so bad you can taste it. Admit it, Ron. >>
Actually, I want one so bad I can smell it. I can taste an Oscar.
<<is there the same kind of studio campaigning and "for your consideration"
advertising for the Emmys as the Oscars? Has Paramount made an effort to put
the Trek shows out in front of the members of the Television Academy, or do
you basically have to hope that the right people are watching week after
We usually get a one-page ad in the trades pushing the show "in all
categories", but I wish we were pushed louder and longer every year. Brannon
and I paid for an ad out of our own pockets for TNG during its final season
(you know, the season that we actually DID recieve a nomination). But as a
member of the TV Academy, I can tell you that if a prospective voter hasn't
actually SEEN the show, they're not going to vote for it just because there's
an ad or publicity campaign. On the other hand, an ad campaign certainly
increases the awareness and might get those few extra votes...
Date: 4/10/97 2:07:01 PM
<<Why has it been so acceptable for the other characters to bash Quark for
being a Ferengi? >>
I don't think he gets bashed for being a Ferengi so much as for following
Ferengi practices, which many of our people view as loathsome, sexist,
conniving, and flat-out wrong.
<<Does Chief Berman maintain a strict policy regarding the camerawork and
photography of the Trek shows in such a way that the visual flair is kept to
a minimum? And does the same go for the music (also professional, but for
the most part very subdued). If so, are there staff members who have pushed
for changes in the visual styles or musical styles of the shows? After 10
years of "modern" televised Trek, what could it hurt to make things "look" a
little more different and distinctive, adding some unique style to your
The shows definitely have "a look" that is well established by now. I'll
admit it's a style of film-making that is rooted in the mid-eighties and is a
little staid compared to other 90's TV, however, I think it would be jarring
and odd to suddenly switch the format in midstream. The hand-held, jerky
camera that works so well on NYPD Blue would really throw you out of the show
if it were suddenly introduced on DS9 as our new format. We're about to
enter the 6th year of our series and that's not the time for a sudden visual
style departure -- I think you do that kind of thing early on or not at all.
As for the music... well, I've always been an advocate of a louder and more
interesting score for the show and I imagine I'll keep complaining about it
right up until the end.
<<Any chance of seeing Bashir on a real espionage mission? Maybe with
It's a possibility, but not until (everyone sing along) next season.
<<Ron, to whom did you first pitch? Were you already staff, or did you go in
a few times after TNG's "The Bonding"?>>
My first pitch came after Michael called and said "We're interested in your
script... but I'm not sure if we're going to buy it or not. Care to come
and pitch some ideas?" I went in with about six short ideas and pitched to
Michael, Ira, Melinda Snodgrass, Hans, Richard Manning, and Richard Danus,
who were the entire staff at the time. I didn't sell anything at that
session, but I heard "we're already doing that story" about three times and
they seemed really pleased that I was thinking along the same lines as they
were. It was a very pleasant pitch, actually and I walked away happy. The
next week Michael bought "The Bonding" and then a week or two later I had my
second pitch session and that's when I sold "The Defector".
<<Will Barclay ever make another apearance most likely on Deep Space 9? and
#2 I want to write to him and tell him how his portrayal of Barclay has
changed my life, He isn't a Regular so I don't know if I can go through the
channels at paramount or not.>>
We have no plans for a Barclay episode and I don't think he'll be making an
appearance here. If you write to Dwight c/o Star Trek c/o Paramount Pictures
5555 Melrose Ave, LA CA 90038, I think the production offices will
automatically forward the fan mail to him.
<<We'd like our ships back.
That is......unless you're willing to reconsider ST:IX.
In that case, of course they'd be a gift. :)
They're insidious aren't they?
<<why the change from 2061 to 2063 for the invention of warp drive, as first
listed in the Okudas' Chronology?>>
I don't think there was a specific reason. As I recall, we just asked Mike
if 2063 was consistant with the chronology and he said yes. Also the 2061
date was conjecture on his part in any case.
<<Also, what was the deal with Odo's chick (Arissa?)? Was she a human from a
She was actually an Idanian, but her "cover" was a human from some
problematic background, yes.
Date: 4/10/97 2:16:04 PM
<<Since you don't accept story ideas outside of the pitch room, and then
mirror universe eps are out of the question, what if I were to suggest a cool
TITLE for the next mirror ep? Is that out of the question, as well?>>
Sorry to be hard-nosed about it, but I really can't accept suggestions for
ANYTHING over the net.
<<was there a subtext to [Lily and Picard's] argument to the effect that "we
blew up the ship in the last movie, and dammit, we're not going to do it two
movies is a row?">>
There was a bit of that, yes. Also, we really wanted to yank the audiences
chain and make them think that "Those idiot writers are going to do it
<<I was curious to know how many episodes, if any, have alreadybeen written
or decided upon for DS9's 6th season? Is it possible for a non-agented spec
writer to submit a DS9 story via your submission guidlines and get it read?
Or, since this is [expected to be] the last season, have your script readers
been sent home?>>
We're still accepting submissions, but if this is the last season we'll
probably cut them off around September/October, so if you're going to send
one in, you better do it now. At the moment, we have sketched out the first
10 shows or so, but it's EXTREMELY preliminary for now.
<<From all accounts, next season might be the last for DS9. Unfortunately, it
will be the last time you'll be able to write for these characters ever
again. With that in mind... do you feel an added pressure to tie up the loose
ends...? Do you feel you have to plan these events out further in advance
knowing you won't get a second chance at it? Or is it just too depressing to
This is very much on our minds and if it turns out to be the last season, we
plan on going out in style.
<<Are there any plans for celebrating the 10th anniversary of TNG? Thanks.>>
<<Any thoughts on whether or not we'll see the fate of the Vulcan
isolationists established in "Gambit?" Or were they crushed by the Vulcan
authorities four years ago? >>
I don't think we're going to follow up this thread. We assume the Vulcans
crushed the life out of this dissident movement like the narrow-minded
pointy-eared reactionaries we all know they are.
<< If the Dominion has to enter the wormhole to get into the Beta Quadrant,
How will they effectivly support the Cardassians in their attempts to regain
successfully, their power on the other side, without Federation Intervention?
How much longer will Starfleet allow this charade to go one? Obviously the
balance of power has tipped even further making the Cardasians a greater
threat than they have ever been. Are we looking at another Federation
Glad you asked. Now I can finally reveal our plans to everyone -- oops, I'm
needed in a meeting. Gotta go.