Submitted questions have been moved to Memory Alpha:Ask J.J. Abrams/submittedQuestions.

Memory Alpha / JJ Abrams Interview!Edit

Hi everyone,

I'm on Wikia's Entertainment team, and wanted to drop in and say hi. I'm excited for the new Star Trek film, but am not sure what to expect. My favorite iteration is "the next generation". The movie should be very interesting tho...

I just got word that JJ Abrams wanted to do an interview with the Memory Alpha community!!

Would you guys be interested in doing something like this? We recently did an interview on the Spore Wiki with Will Wright, the creator of the game. It was really cool and everyone loved it. The admins let the community know about the event, and set up a page where everyone could submit questions. We picked the best questions, asked them to Will, then later posted the Interview. Does something like that sound good? I can help set this up and can also help write a blurb to send out to the community. Lemme know :)

-- Karim@fandom (talk) 22:17, 26 March 2009 (UTC)

If Mr. Abrams is interested in doing such a thing, I think that would be an excellent idea.--31dot 22:21, 26 March 2009 (UTC)
Definitely sounds good to me. :) The community could compile a number of questions which whoever interviews him could ask. But who would interview him, and how would it be conducted? --From College with Love
I am actually a bit more interested in "why?" and "who approached whom?" on this idea. But judging from how the example above is presented, it looks more like something someone could/would email to him and simply post his responses, as in, an interactive interview seems the least likely option. --Alan 23:00, 27 March 2009 (UTC)
Also: So we aren't really a news site, the production is finished, and the release is so close right now that any questions about the movie will be answered in a month, so why try and spoil it. I think it would be better (more interesting and more relevant to MA) to ask him questions about the movie after it comes out. Maybe we will have something meaningful to ask him after we see it, instead of the usual "how was it like" questions that every other interview is going to have. Of course, he could always make a user page and let us Talk: to him with our questions, if he "wants" (—Karim) to so much. Mike Sussman did it, that was really great, it would be really cool to have access to Abrams, but somehow we have to work in the no-original-research problem as well. --bp 23:50, 27 March 2009 (UTC)
I was actually under the impression that we could settle on a date and that date would likely be sometime after the movie is released. I figured it would probably take us a while to work out the details anyway, especially since we're not really a news/interview site, but rather, an encyclopedia. But if Mr. Abrams is game and if we can work things out, I say, sure, why not? --From Andoria with Love 03:41, 28 March 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for the feedback guys. Mr. Abrams wanted to do this interview pre-release in order to promote the movie though. The idea is to have the community submit questions (for about 10 days) via talk page starting wednesday or thursday of next week. I know there are rules about spoilers here, so admins will have control of what questions will and won't make the cut. Once the best 10-20 questions are picked, i'll send to Mr. Abrams, he'll reply via email, and we'll be able to post on the wiki shortly afterwards. It would be cool if we could have the interview posted by Tuesday May 5. An event like this will bring in alot of new readers and interest to the wiki. This is a really cool opportunity, and i'm super excited to get things going with your support! -- Karim@fandom (talk) 17:37, 30 March 2009 (UTC)

Well, like what may or may not have been directly stated above: if he's doing it just to 'get the word out' and just to 'promote the film', I really don't think there is much benefit in doing a pre-film interview on MA just to help promote the film on a site that already has a large population of visitors/contributors that will be watching the movie anyway. Seeing as it is not an "exclusive interview", as there are many already out there that he's done, I'm not sure what the draw will be. At least in the case of a post-film interview, we can be able to obtain and present valuable "insiders information" on specific film items/references that would make this site more "exclusive". Those are my thoughts anyway.
-I just wanted to amend to my comment that, I'm not trying to "snub" the request by what I stated above, I'm speaking more on the behalf of the fact that I purposely don't know anything about the film (aside from the unfortunate discoveries I've made upon admin related actions), so it's really not - I dare say - "fair" to those of us who wish to contribute, but for the most part cannot based on having no prior knowledge of the film. Obviously, my argument for the post-film interview is based more-so on the fact that after watching the film, there'd obviously be more questions to be had and more contributors willing to participate.
-Whatever the case may be, if we are only able to get a pre-film interview - unless he is kind enough to agree to a post-film one as well - it might useful to have access (for others, moreso than myself, I suppose) to existing film related interviews so as to avoid repeat questions. --Alan 18:45, 30 March 2009 (UTC)
Okay, here are the questions I can come up with:
  • 1. Can we do another interview after the release so we can ask the burning questions then? This will help sort things out, clear up things that weren't perfectly clear in the movie and help improve MA and the ease inclusion of the info from the new movie into our present structure of MA.
  • 2. Did you or the writers use Memory Alpha when doing research for the movie?
  • 3. Does Memory Alpha (the planetoid from "The lights of Zetar") appear in the movie (some starchart, background graphic etc)?
  • 4. the long one: In Star Wars, all background aliens, characters, starships etc get assigned a name and some background info. This has never happened in Star Trek (with the exception of some of the background aliens in TMP and TVH). Many cool background aliens have been seen in various series, but they never got a name and thus - are rather obscure. Would it be possible to provide names for all those aliens/ships/characters seen in the movie as well, similar to the info about Alnschloss K'Bentayr, the security officer of the USS Kelvin, that has already been released? This would make many things a lot easier. It's simple to create a short page about an alien seen in the movie, if it has a name. It's more difficult (and unsatisfying) to add another unnamed alien to Unnamed humanoids (23rd century). This would make the universe more coherent and you could sell (wink wink), let's say an action figure much better if it has a name and a backstory and is not just "Unnamed humanoid alien (23rd century) No. 4". --Jörg 19:25, 30 March 2009 (UTC)
(edit conflict with Jorg)
Some points made on IRC about why it would be better to have the interview after the film is released, also in the above text (but not in this nice list format):
  • MA is an encyclopedia, the idea is to analyze rather than speculate.
  • After the release, we could ask about specific characters, species, ships, scenes, references, etc; usable info for MA
  • Why spoil? It would just mean that people who have gone to great lengths to avoid spoilers couldn't participate, and the film will be released in a month so just wait for the answer.
  • Everyone editing MA is already going see the film.
Anyway, if a before-release interview is the only option that Wikia gives us, then lets do it, but the first question will be "JJ, will you please do an interview after the film is released?" --bp 19:45, 30 March 2009 (UTC)
Wasted question alert:
  • "Did you or the writers use Memory Alpha when doing research for the movie?"
Bob Orci already stated that he and Alex Kurtzman used MA while writing the script and even referenced the site during the film's production. There was even talk of MA being given a special thanks in the credits, which Mr. Orci found to be a good idea, but I'm not sure whether they'll do this or not. Here's the exact Q&A, found here:
  • Charles Trotter: I am a contributor and administrator at Memory Alpha ( Did you guys use Memory Alpha when researching for the movie? And if so, can MA expect to receive a mention in the end credits?
  • Roberto Orci: We absolutely used Memory Alpha during the entire process, and still reference it occasionally during production. It was great to be able to refer the less educated members of the team to your great site. THANK YOU! Will see what I can do about credits. Not a bad idea at all.
So, yah, no need to ask that question of Mr. Abrams. :) Perhaps ask something like, how acquainted is he (Abrams) with Memory Alpha and at what times did they need to refer to MA for information? You might also ask about some of the design aspects, keeping things limited to what was seen in the trailers. --From Andoria with Love 03:19, 31 March 2009 (UTC)
Keeping things limited to what was seen in the trailers seem like a good idea! Regarding the usage of MA to do research - good points, Shran. We should fine tune that question so we get some new info, especially regarding Abrams and MA in contrast to the writers and MA. Two more I came up with:
  • 5. memory-alpha appears in the Countdown Comic, when Nero does some research on James T. Kirk. Was this put in there solely as a reference to the planetoid Memory Alpha or (because it is written with a hyphen) as a nod to Memory Alpha.
  • 6. Although many things were changed in the movie, design-wise, one thing that is all over the trailer is the Federation logo designed by Mike Okuda. This is a nice bit of continuity, as it has been seen in every modern Star Trek incarnation, in TOS movies FF and TUC and also in Enterprise aboard the USS Defiant ("In a mirror darkly") establishing, that the logo was indeed already around during the TOS era. I was sure that the logo would be redesigned and was positively surprised when I saw that it was kept like it is. Any story behind that? --Jörg 09:34, 31 March 2009 (UTC)
A couple of thoughts... I would say that this is outside the "no original research" rule. This isn't like adding in your own theories gleaned from your own interpretation of the film... this is like using a valid resource (Mr Abrams) to look up the answers to specific questions. After all, the interview could easily be posted elsewhere too, and then would be an outside source in itself.
I'd also suggest that there's a good argument for making an exception to "no spoilers". This is a unique opportunity, and I think it deserves special handling. What about using collapsable sections to hide spoilers, with a warning on the page not to click if you don't want to see them? That would allow the non-spoiler types to participate, but also give everyone the opportunity to ask more questions. Or there could be two pages, spoiler and non-spoiler versions (I think I prefer the first option better though)
What do you think? -- sannse@fandom (talk) 08:52, 1 April 2009 (UTC)

Hey everyone, can you nominate 2 admins to help with the question selection process? I'll set up a page where everyone can submit their questions and post it shortly. I'll also talk to Mr. Abrams's camp and see what they think about also doing a post movie release interview. But for now, this pre-release interview is going to be a great start!-- Karim@fandom (talk) 17:41, 1 April 2009 (UTC)

Shran and Jörg are the best suited for this... --Alan 17:45, 1 April 2009 (UTC)
I'll second Alan's suggestion.--31dot 19:18, 1 April 2009 (UTC)
I'd have nominated Shran and ThomasHL, given his experience talking in the industry, but I do not oppose Shran and Jörg. --OuroborosCobra talk 19:50, 1 April 2009 (UTC)
Well, before I go to bed and wake up one year older tomorrow: I'd love to work on that together with Shran, as I'm one of few admins who seems to be a complete spoiler-whore ;-) --Jörg 21:44, 1 April 2009 (UTC)
I must agree that exceptions to Memory Alpha's policies should be taken in this instance, as it is a rare opportunity. I do not often hear of interviews in which the question(s) will be asked by a larger group of fans. I like the suggestion above a spoiler and non spoiler option for the questions and answers. In short, I think it would be silly to decline this opportunity because of the rules in place. let's try to figure something out. --Terran Officer 00:56, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
No one is saying not to do it, we've been saying we'd rather have it after the release when it would be useful and interesting, questioning Wikia's marketingtalk BS, and talking about what problems might need to be dealt with. It is happening, and now we're "nominating admins" to pick the questions. Since Jörg's got some questions already, I think he should be one. So, Shran and Jörg. --bp 01:32, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
Alright, the submission page is here: Memory_Alpha:Ask_J.J._Abrams. If you can think of a question, go ahead and post it. We're looking forward to all the things you can come up with! --Jörg 19:16, 9 April 2009 (UTC)

Moved from the talk page: Wow, who would have thought that Wikia would leave out important parts, like that it is a "contest", and that submissions can be sent by e-mail, and "randomly chosen by Wikia?" Anyway, remember that some people that edit MA are trying to avoid spoilers, and also remember that the questions should be relevant to MA, a trek encyclopedia, and not the same superficial questions asked in every other interview. It's hard to be specific about anything before seeing the film and without spoiling, but that is the situation Wikia puts us in. --bp 19:09, 9 April 2009 (UTC)

Will JJ Abrams still respond to MA user questions? Edit

It seems that the link to the 15 plus 5 questions chosen for Mr. Abrams to answer has been removed from the portal page, and I can't find it anywhere else on the site. Is he still planning to answer these questions? --BlueResistance 3 May 2009 23:05 UTD.

I believe the plan was for his answers to be posted closer to the US release date. The submitted questions are located here.--31dot 23:15, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Um....I thought they were there, but I guess not. They should be posted soon, anyway.--31dot 23:19, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Memory Alpha:Ask J.J. Abrams/Final --Alan 23:24, 3 May 2009 (UTC)


Just a quick update on the prizes for interview questions... we are waiting to hear from Paramount about the posters and other swag they are going to send us. Hopefully they will get back to us soon! Then we will draw names randomly from those who asked the 20 selected questions and send out the prizes. Karim or I will let you know when we hear more :) -- sannse@fandom (talk) 19:34, 18 May 2009 (UTC)

It's been over a month since the contest was started. I really think wikia should step up to the plate on this one and give out other prizes or at least contact paramount over this issue. I can't believe one of the largest wiki's on wikia is getting the cold shoulder regarding this. — Morder 20:40, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
Looks like we finally have an answer here - Thanks KarimB — Morder 23:22, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
Hi, yes we finally have prizes :) As Karim said, there were some logistics problems. But they are in our hands now, so we can get them out to the winners - sannse@fandom (talk) 08:29, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

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