Alex Kurtzman is an American film and television writer and director. He is best known for co-writing the scripts to Transformers, Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 with his writing and producing partner Roberto Orci, directing and co-writing The Mummy. Kurtzman was born and raised to a secular Jewish family in Los Angeles, where he met his high school friend and longtime collaborator Roberto Orci, he attended Wesleyan University. Kurtzman first teamed with Orci on television on the syndicated series Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, for the television unit of Pacific Renaissance Pictures operating out of Universal International. After they produced several storylines to cope with the absence of lead actor Kevin Sorbo following a stroke that Sorbo had suffered during the fourth season and Orci, both aged 24, were placed in charge of the show, they moved into films. The film earned $162 million at the worldwide box office, on a budget of $126 million, enough of a success that they were brought to write Bay's Transformers, which earned $710 million.
Though The Island and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen were not well received by critics, the three films earned a combined $1.7 billion. They co-created the Fox TV series Fringe in 2008 along with J. J. Abrams. After the pilot, Kurtzman served as consulting producer on the show for the remainder of its run, they co-wrote the 2009 film Star Trek. In 2011, Forbes magazine described Orci and Kurtzman as "Hollywood's Secret Weapons" as, over the course of the previous six years, their films had grossed a combined total of over $3 billion at the box office; the partnership wrote People Like Us known as Welcome to People, Kurtzman's directorial debut. He collaborates with a knit group of film professionals which include J. J. Abrams, Damon Lindelof, Adam Horowitz, Roberto Orci, Edward Kitsis, Andre Nemec, Josh Appelbaum, Jeff Pinkner, Bryan Burk. In April 2014, both Orci and Kurtzman confirmed to Variety that they would no longer work together on film projects. In 2002, Kurtzman married the daughter of lawyer Nick Counter.
Alex Kurtzman on IMDb
Star Trek (film)
Star Trek is a 2009 American space opera film directed by J. J. Abrams and written by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, it is the eleventh film in the Star Trek film franchise, is a reboot that features the main characters of the original Star Trek television series portrayed by a new cast, as the first in the rebooted film series. The film follows James T. Kirk and Spock aboard USS Enterprise as they combat Nero, a Romulan from their future who threatens the United Federation of Planets; the story takes place in an alternate reality because of time travel by both Nero and the original Spock. The alternate timeline was created in an attempt to free the film and the franchise from established continuity constraints while preserving original story elements; the idea for a prequel film which would follow the Star Trek characters during their time in Starfleet Academy was discussed by series creator Gene Roddenberry in 1968. The concept resurfaced in the late 1980s, when it was postulated by Harve Bennett as a possible plotline for what would become Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, but it was rejected in favor of other projects by Roddenberry.
Following the critical and commercial failure of Star Trek: Nemesis and the cancellation of the television series Star Trek: Enterprise, the franchise's executive producer Rick Berman and screenwriter Erik Jendresen wrote an unproduced film titled Star Trek: The Beginning, which would take place after Enterprise. After the separation of Viacom and CBS Corporation in 2005, former Paramount Pictures president Gail Berman convinced CBS to allow Paramount to produce a new film in the franchise. Orci and Kurtzman, both fans of Star Trek, were approached to write the film, J. J. Abrams was approached to direct it. Kurtzman and Orci used inspiration from novels and graduate school dissertations, as well as the series itself. Principal photography commenced on November 7, 2007 and ended on March 27, 2008; the film was shot in various locations around Utah. Abrams wanted to avoid opting to use sets and locations instead. Heavy secrecy surrounded the film's production and was under the fake working title Corporate Headquarters.
Industrial Light & Magic used digital ships for the film, as opposed to the previous films in the franchise. Production for the film concluded by the end of 2008. Star Trek was promoted in the months preceding its release, it was released in the United States and Canada on May 2009, to critical acclaim. Star Trek was a box office success, grossing over $385.7 million worldwide against its $150 million production budget. It was nominated for several awards, including four Academy Awards at the 82nd Academy Awards winning Best Makeup, making it the first Star Trek film to win an Academy Award, it was followed by Star Trek Into Darkness and Star Trek Beyond. In the 23rd century, the Federation starship USS Kelvin is investigating a "lightning storm" in space. A Romulan ship, emerges from the storm and attacks the Kelvin. Narada's first officer, demands that Kelvin's Captain Robau come aboard to negotiate a truce. Robau is questioned about the current stardate and an "Ambassador Spock", whom he does not recognize.
Narada's commander, kills him, resumes attacking the Kelvin. George Kirk, Kelvin's first officer, orders the ship's personnel, including his pregnant wife Winona, to abandon ship while he pilots the Kelvin on a collision course with Narada. Kirk sacrifices his life to ensure Winona's survival. Seventeen years on the planet Vulcan, a young Spock is accepted to join the Vulcan Science Academy. Realizing that the Academy views his human mother Amanda as a "disadvantage", he joins Starfleet instead. On Earth, Kirk becomes a intelligent young adult. Following a bar fight with Starfleet cadets accompanying Nyota Uhura, Kirk meets Captain Christopher Pike, who encourages him to enlist in Starfleet Academy, where Kirk meets and befriends doctor Leonard McCoy. Three years Commander Spock accuses Kirk of cheating during the Kobayashi Maru simulation. Kirk argues; the disciplinary hearing is interrupted by a distress signal from Vulcan. With the primary fleet out of range, the cadets are mobilized. McCoy and Kirk board Pike's the Enterprise.
Realizing that the "lightning storm" observed near Vulcan is similar to the one that occurred when he was born, Kirk breaks protocol to convince Pike that the distress signal is a trap. Enterprise arrives to find Narada drilling into Vulcan's core. Narada attacks Enterprise and Pike surrenders, delegating command of the ship to Spock and promoting Kirk to first officer. Kirk, Hikaru Sulu and Chief Engineer Olson perform a space jump onto the drilling platform. Olson is killed but Kirk and Sulu disable the drill. Despite their efforts, Nero launches "red matter" into Vulcan's core, forming an artificial black hole that destroys Vulcan. Spock rescues the high council and his father Sarek; as Narada moves toward Earth, Nero tortures Pike to gain access to Earth's defense codes. Spock maroons Kirk on Delta Vega after Kirk attempts mutiny. Kirk encounters an older Spock. In that future, Romulus was threatened by a supernova. Spock's attempt to use
Star Trek is an American space opera media franchise based on the science fiction television series created by Gene Roddenberry. The first television series called Star Trek and now referred to as "The Original Series", debuted in 1966 and aired for three seasons on NBC, it followed the interstellar adventures of Captain James T. Kirk and his crew aboard the starship USS Enterprise, a space exploration vessel built by the United Federation of Planets in the 23rd century; the Star Trek canon includes The Original Series, an animated series, five spin-off television series, the film franchise, further adaptations in several media. In creating Star Trek, Roddenberry was inspired by the Horatio Hornblower novels, the satirical book Gulliver's Travels, Westerns such as the television series Wagon Train; these adventures continued in the 22-episode Star Trek: The Animated Series and six feature films. Five other television series were produced: Star Trek: The Next Generation follows the crew of a new starship Enterprise, set a century after the original series.
The most recent Star Trek TV series, entitled Star Trek: Discovery, aired on the digital platform CBS All Access. The adventures of The Next Generation crew continued in four additional feature films. In 2009, the film franchise underwent a "reboot" set in an alternate timeline, or "Kelvin Timeline," entitled Star Trek; this film featured a new cast portraying younger versions of the crew from the original show. Its sequel, Star Trek Beyond, was released to coincide with the franchise's 50th anniversary. Star Trek has been a cult phenomenon for decades. Fans of the franchise are called Trekkers; the franchise spans a wide range of spin-offs including games, novels and comics. Star Trek had a themed attraction in Las Vegas that opened in 1998 and closed in September 2008. At least two museum exhibits of props travel the world; the series has Klingon. Several parodies have been made of Star Trek. In addition, viewers have produced several fan productions; as of July 2016, the franchise had generated $10 billion in revenue, making Star Trek one of the highest-grossing media franchises of all time.
Star Trek is noted for its cultural influence beyond works of science fiction. The franchise is noted for its progressive civil rights stances; the Original Series included. Star Trek references may be found throughout popular culture from movies such as the submarine thriller Crimson Tide to the animated series South Park; as early as 1964, Gene Roddenberry drafted a proposal for the science-fiction series that would become Star Trek. Although he publicly marketed it as a Western in outer space—a so-called "Wagon Train to the Stars"—he told friends that he was modeling it on Jonathan Swift's Gulliver's Travels, intending each episode to act on two levels: as a suspenseful adventure story and as a morality tale. Most Star Trek stories depict the adventures of humans and aliens who serve in Starfleet, the space-borne humanitarian and peacekeeping armada of the United Federation of Planets; the protagonists have altruistic values, must apply these ideals to difficult dilemmas. Many of the conflicts and political dimensions of Star Trek represent allegories of contemporary cultural realities.
Star Trek: The Original Series addressed issues of the 1960s, just as spin-offs have reflected issues of their respective decades. Issues depicted in the various series include war and peace, the value of personal loyalty, imperialism, class warfare, racism, human rights, sexism and the role of technology. Roddenberry stated: " a new world with new rules, I could make statements about sex, Vietnam and intercontinental missiles. Indeed, we did make them on Star Trek: we were sending messages and they all got by the network." "If you talked about purple people on a far off planet, they never caught on. They were more concerned about cleavage, they would send a censor down to the set to measure a woman's cleavage to make sure too much of her breast wasn't showing"Roddenberry intended the show to have a progressive political agenda reflective of the emerging counter-culture of the youth movement, though he was not forthcoming to the networks about this. He wanted Star Trek to show what humanity might develop into, if it would learn from the lessons of the past, most by ending violence.
An extreme example is the alien species, the Vulcans, who had a violent past but learned to control their emotions. Roddenberry gave Star Trek an anti-war message and depicted the United Federation of Planets as an ideal, optimistic version of the United Nations, his efforts were opposed by the network because of concerns over marketability, e.g. they opposed Roddenberry's insistence that Enterprise have a racially diverse crew. The central trio of Kirk, McCoy from Star Trek: The Original Series was modeled on classical mythological storytelling. There is a mythological component with science fiction. It's people looking for answers – and science fiction offers to explain the inexplicable, the same as religion tends to do... If we accept the premise that it has a mythological element all the stuff about going out into space and meeting new life – trying to explain it and put a human element to it – it's a hopeful visio
Roberto Gaston Orci is a Mexican-American film and television screenwriter and producer. He began his longtime collaboration with Alex Kurtzman while at school in California. Together they have been employed on television series such as Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Xena: Warrior Princess. In 2008, together with J. J. Abrams, they created Fringe. In 2013, they created Sleepy Hollow alongside Phillip Iscove. Orci and Kurtzman's first film project was Michael Bay's The Island, due to that partnership they went on to write the scripts for the first three films of the Transformers film series. Orci first again with 2009's The Proposal, he and Kurtzman since returned to working with Abrams on Mission: Impossible III and both Star Trek and Star Trek Into Darkness. Between 2005 and 2011, Kurtzman and Orci's film projects took revenues of more than $3 billion. In April 2014, Orci and Kurtzman announced that they would only collaborate in television projects, Orci worked on the third Star Trek film, Star Trek Beyond, until being replaced the following December.
Orci created the television series Matador for the El Rey Network, but after this was renewed, it was cancelled at the end of the first season. Both Kurtzman and Orci continue to work as producers on the television series Limitless and Scorpion. Orci was awarded the Norman Lear Writer's Award and the Raul Julia Award for Excellence, in addition to shared awards and nominations including The George Pal Memorial Award. Orci was born in Mexico City on July 20, 1973, to a Cuban mother, his mother immigrated to the United States with her parents. Orci grew up in Mexico, moved with his family to the United States at the age of 10, he was raised in Los Angeles and Canada. He is the older brother of screenwriter-producer J. R. Orci, he met his longtime friend and collaborator Alex Kurtzman when both were 17-year-old students at Crossroads, a funded school in Santa Monica, California. The first time they came across each other was in a film class, where they discovered each other's love for films and in particular the Steven Soderbergh film Sex and Videotape.
The duo found that they had a number of things in common, as Kurtzman had lived in Mexico City and the two could relate. Orci called him an "honorary Hispanic". Orci went on to attend the University of Texas at Austin; the duo got together once again, began to write scripts. These included one called Misfortune Cookies which Orci described as "loosely autobiographical", Last Kiss, which Kurtzman said was their version of The Breakfast Club but was set in a lunatic asylum; the duo modeled their relationship on writers Billy Wilder and I. A. L. Diamond, but were much closer friends rather than just writing partners, they took the approach that they were in a band together and purposely studied teams to discover why they break up. Kurtzman explained in 2009 that "One big thing that makes the wheels start to wobble is when someone feels that the contribution isn't 50-50. We make sure. If we didn't, we wouldn't have lasted this long." Orci and Kurtzman began their writing collaboration on the television series Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, after being hired by Sam Raimi.
After actor Kevin Sorbo suffered a stroke, the duo were required to come up with inventive ideas to minimize his appearances on screen. Due to this work, they became show runners at the age of 24, they were involved in the sister-series to Hercules, Xena: Warrior Princess. They found this difficult. After receiving a series of negative responses, they met with J. J. Abrams, starting work on Alias at the time; the meeting went well, resulted in them working on the series. They would go on to work together again on the Fox science fiction series Fringe where all three were listed as co-creators. Orci and Kurtzman received their break in writing for films in 2004, with the Michael Bay film The Island, for which they developed the spec script by Caspian Tredwell-Owen; when Kurtzman and Orci first met Bay, he asked the pair "Why should I trust you?", to which Orci replied "You shouldn't yet. Let's see what happens." While the film was not an overwhelming success, they were brought back for Bay's following film, after producer Steven Spielberg asked them to come in for a meeting.
The movie took in $710 million at the box office. Following their work on that film, the duo were brought in to revise the script for Zack Snyder's Watchmen, in an uncredited capacity, they worked once more with Abrams, on Mission: Impossible III. When they collaborated once more with Bay for Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, they were under significant time pressures due to the 2007–08 Writers Guild of America strike. Kurtzman and Orci had two weeks to outline the film, after the strike Bay had them moved into the Hotel Casa del Mar; the hotel was six blocks away from his office. In the period between 2005 and 2011, the films written by Kurtzman and Orci grossed more than $3 billion, leading to Forbes describing them as "Hollywood's secret weapons"; the busyness of their screenwriting careers required them to collaborate with other writers due to the number of projects they were involved in. For example, on Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, they teamed up with Ehren Kruger, who took over from them on the writing duties for the Transfomers franchise from Transformers: Dark of the Moon onwards.
Orci's first credit as a producer came with the film Eagle Eye, where he worked once again alongside Kurtzman. He said in an interview with the magazine Extra that he had previousl
Star Trek: The Motion Picture
Star Trek: The Motion Picture is a 1979 American science fiction film directed by Robert Wise and based on the television series of the same name created by Gene Roddenberry, who served as its producer. It is the first installment in the Star Trek film series, stars the cast of the original television series; the film is set in the year 2271, when a mysterious and immensely powerful alien cloud known as V'Ger approaches Earth, destroying everything in its path. Admiral James T. Kirk assumes command of the refitted Starship USS Enterprise, to lead it on a mission to save the planet and determine V'Ger's origins; when the original television series was canceled in 1969, Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry lobbied Paramount Pictures to continue the franchise through a feature film. The success of the series in syndication convinced the studio to begin work on the film in 1975. A series of writers attempted to craft a "suitably epic" script, but the attempts did not satisfy Paramount, so the studio scrapped the project in 1977.
Paramount instead planned on returning the franchise to its roots, with a new television series titled Star Trek: Phase II. But the box-office success of Close Encounters of the Third Kind convinced Paramount that science-fiction films other than Star Wars could do well, so the studio canceled production of Phase II and resumed its attempts at making a Star Trek film. In 1978, Paramount assembled the largest press conference held at the studio since the 1950s to announce that two-time Academy Award–winning director Robert Wise would direct a $15 million film adaptation of the original television series. With the cancellation of Phase II, writers rushed to adapt its planned pilot episode, "In Thy Image", into a film script. Constant revisions to the story and the shooting script continued to the extent of hourly script updates on shooting dates; the Enterprise was modified inside and out, costume designer Robert Fletcher provided new uniforms, production designer Harold Michelson fabricated new sets.
Jerry Goldsmith composed the film's score, beginning an association with Star Trek that would continue until 2002. When the original contractors for the optical effects proved unable to complete their tasks in time, effects supervisor Douglas Trumbull was given carte blanche to meet the film's December 1979 release date; the film came together only days before the premiere. C. opening, but always felt that the final theatrical version was a rough cut of the film he wanted to make. Released in North America on December 7, 1979, Star Trek: The Motion Picture received mixed reviews, many of which faulted it for a lack of action scenes and overreliance on special effects, its final production cost ballooned to $46 million, it earned $139 million worldwide, short of studio expectations but enough for Paramount to propose a less expensive sequel. Roddenberry was forced out of creative control for Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. In 2001, Wise oversaw a director's cut for a special DVD release of the film, with remastered audio and added scenes, new computer-generated effects.
In 2271, a Starfleet monitoring station, Epsilon Nine, detects an alien force, hidden in a massive cloud of energy, moving through space toward Earth. The cloud destroys three of the Klingon Empire's new K't'inga-class warships and the monitoring station en route. On Earth, the starship Enterprise is undergoing a major refit. Starfleet dispatches Enterprise to investigate the cloud entity as the ship is the only one in intercept range, requiring its new systems to be tested in transit. Citing his experience, Kirk takes command of the ship, angering Captain Willard Decker, overseeing the refit as its new commanding officer. Testing of Enterprise's new systems goes poorly. Kirk's unfamiliarity with the ship's new systems increases the tension between him and Decker, temporarily demoted to first officer. Commander Spock arrives as a replacement science officer, explaining that while on his home world undergoing a ritual to purge all emotion, he felt a consciousness that he believes emanates from the cloud, was unable to complete the ritual because his human half felt an emotional connection to it.
Enterprise is attacked by an alien vessel within. A probe appears on the bridge, attacks Spock and abducts the navigator, Ilia, she is replaced by a robotic replica, another probe sent by "V'Ger" to study the crew. Decker is distraught over the loss of Ilia, with, he becomes troubled as he attempts to extract information from the doppelgänger, which has Ilia's memories and feelings buried inside. Spock attempts a telepathic mind meld with it. In doing so, he learns that the vessel is V'Ger a living machine. At the center of the massive ship, V'Ger is revealed to be Voyager 6, a 20th-century Earth space probe believed lost in a black hole; the damaged probe was found by an alien race of living machines that interpreted its programming as instructions to learn all that can be learned and return that information to its creator. The machines upgraded the probe to fulfill its mission, on its journey, the probe gathered so much knowledge that it achieved consciousness. Spock realizes that V'Ger lacks the ability to give itself a purpose other than its original mission.
Star Trek: The Original Series
Star Trek is an American science fiction television series created by Gene Roddenberry that follows the adventures of the starship USS Enterprise and its crew. It acquired the retronym of Star Trek: The Original Series to distinguish the show within the media franchise that it began; the show is set in the Milky Way galaxy during the 2260s. The ship and crew are led by Captain James T. Kirk, First Officer and Science Officer Spock, Chief Medical Officer Leonard McCoy. Shatner's voice-over introduction during each episode's opening credits stated the starship's purpose: The series was produced from September 1966 to December 1967 by Norway Productions and Desilu Productions, by Paramount Television from January 1968 to June 1969. Star Trek aired on NBC from September 8, 1966, to June 3, 1969, was seen first on September 6, 1966, on Canada's CTV network. Star Trek's Nielsen ratings while on NBC were low, the network canceled it after three seasons and 79 episodes. Several years the series became a bona fide hit in broadcast syndication, remaining so throughout the 1970s, achieving cult classic status and a developing influence on popular culture.
Star Trek spawned a franchise, consisting of six television series, thirteen feature films, numerous books and toys, is now considered one of the most popular and influential television series of all time. The series contains significant elements of Space Western, as described by Roddenberry and the general audience. On March 11, 1964, Gene Roddenberry, a long-time fan of science fiction, drafted a short treatment for a science-fiction television series that he called Star Trek; this was to be set on board a large interstellar spaceship named S. S. Yorktown in the 23rd century bearing a crew dedicated to exploring the Milky Way Galaxy. Roddenberry noted a number of influences on his idea, some of which includes A. E. van Vogt's tales of the spaceship Space Beagle, Eric Frank Russell's Marathon series of stories, the film Forbidden Planet. Some have drawn parallels with the television series Rocky Jones, Space Ranger, a space opera which included many of the elements that were integral to Star Trek—the organization, crew relationships, part of the bridge layout, some technology.
Roddenberry drew from C. S. Forester's Horatio Hornblower novels that depict a daring sea captain who exercises broad discretionary authority on distant sea missions of noble purpose, he humorously referred to Captain Kirk as "Horatio Hornblower in Space". Roddenberry had extensive experience in writing for series about the Old West, popular television fare in the 1950s and 1960s. Armed with this background, the first draft characterized the new show as "Wagon Train to the stars." Like the familiar Wagon Train, each episode was to be a self-contained adventure story, set within the structure of a continuing voyage through space. Most future television and movie realizations of the franchise adhered to the "Wagon Train" paradigm of the continuing journey, with the notable exception of the serialized Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Star Trek: Discovery, the third season of Star Trek: Enterprise. In Roddenberry's original concept, the protagonist was Captain Robert April of the starship S. S. Yorktown.
This character was developed into Captain Christopher Pike, first portrayed by Jeffrey Hunter. April is listed in the Star Trek Chronology, The Star Trek Encyclopedia and at startrek.com as the Enterprise's first commanding officer, preceding Captain Christopher Pike. The character's only television/movie appearance is in the Star Trek: The Animated Series episode "The Counter-Clock Incident" In April 1964, Roddenberry presented the Star Trek draft to Desilu Productions, a leading independent television production company, he met with Desilu's Director of Production. Solow signed a three-year program-development contract with Roddenberry. Lucille Ball, head of Desilu, was not familiar with the nature of the project, but she was instrumental in getting the pilot produced; the idea was extensively revised and fleshed out during this time – "The Cage" pilot filmed in late 1964 differs in many respects from the March 1964 treatment. Solow, for example, added the "stardate" concept. Desilu Productions had a first look deal with CBS.
Oscar Katz, Desilu's Vice President of Production, went with Roddenberry to pitch the series to the network. They refused to purchase the show, as they had a similar show in development, the 1965 Irwin Allen series Lost in Space. In May 1964, who worked at NBC, met with Grant Tinker head of the network's West Coast programming department. Tinker commissioned the first pilot – which became "The Cage". NBC turned down the resulting pilot, stating that it was "too cerebral". However, the NBC executives were still impressed with the concept, they understood that its perceived faults had been because of the script that they had selected themselves. NBC made the unusual decision to pay for a second pilot, using the script called "Where No Man Has Gone Before". Only the character of Spock, played by Leonard Nimoy, was retained from the first pilot, only two cast members, Majel Barrett and Nimoy, were carried forward into the series; this second pilot proved to be satisfactory to NBC, the network selected Star Trek to be in its upcoming television schedule for the fall of 1966.
The second pilot introduced most of the other main characters: Captain Kirk, Chief Engineer Lt. Commander Scott and Lt. Sulu, who served as a physicist on the ship in the second pilot but subsequently became a helmsman throughout the rest of t