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Walter Koenig Reprises His Role as Chekov 199

hords writes "Walter Koenig returns to the role of Lt. Pavel Chekov in an upcoming episode of Star Trek: New Voyages, a fan made series mentioned earlier on Slashdot. He will be re-imagining the role that made him famous. 'The folks from New Voyages approached and we started kicking around ideas for a Chekov story,' said Koenig. 'It occurred to me that what we were coming up with was what every actor dreams of: a second chance to get it is almost beyond comprehension that this is happening so late in my life! Talk about belated reward!...I didn't believe I could ever again be this excited about performing a part...I guess it isn't so trite after all: perhaps, all good things do come to those who wait.' Amazingly enough they even got D.C. Fontana to write the episode!"
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Walter Koenig Reprises His Role as Chekov

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  • I always thought Walter Koenig was a fine actor. He was often underrated and often used simply for comic relief, which he is capable of much much more.

    Don't get me wrong, he has nice comedic timing, but I can guess that if he has something to do with the script, it'll be more than 30 minutes of "Nuclear Wessels!"

  • by clifforch ( 515800 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @01:25AM (#13419469) Journal
    That of Bester in Babylon 5, I mean, it was far more complex and he really showed he could play a bad(ish.. depends on your POV) guy in sci-fi.

    • Yup. After his role as Bester, Koenig is one of my favorite SciFi oldsters. If only the books of Bester's life story could be filmed, _then_ he would play the role he was destined for.
    • I have to agree with you there. As Bester, Coenig proved he is more than a two-dimensional actor.

      He makes a great villain.

      • I never really saw Bester do anything particularly evil, he was just protecting his people. Would you say G'Kar was a bad guy? No, he was just protecting his people.

        Some of what he did may have been, distasteful or mean, but they were being done with the greater good in mind.

        He surely wasn't a nice guy, but rather than an outright villian like Morden, he just didn't care about anyone else's well being, just his people's.

        • by tillemetry ( 223556 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @03:10AM (#13419755)
          I disagree. Bester messed up Garibaldi pretty good, and seemed to take a little too much joy in it. The sadistic streak made the character believable. If you followed B5, and looked at Bester, Chekov didn't even cross your mind. I thought it was great.

          Always thought the tip of the hat to Alfred Bester (whose book The Demolished Man laid out a lot of the "telepath lore") was a brillant move by the writers. Okay, they stole, but they gave the author credit at the same time. It was great.

          • by Nimrangul ( 599578 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @12:33PM (#13421171) Journal
            Yet is what he did something that can really be construed as evil?

            He did what he did to have is thumb on the pulse of Babylon 5, something vital to the continuation of his people. That he happens to get his kicks by pulling the wings off a fly kinda shows he has a dark side, but Garibaldi was the information man at the station and the telepaths needed that information.

            His view of mundane humans is understandable as well, it is the same view that many people have about the mentally retarded. Sure, they can go about living their lives, but you'd rather keep your people alive then them.

            If you are faced with the choice of letting a million mentally retarded people live or a hundred smart people live, where only one party could survive, which would be best for the race? It's a philosophical counter to Spock's needs of the many argument.

            Bester may have had an arrogance to him, but the end goal was a better world for his people. Dust was made to try and better humanity, it was designed to make people telepathic. The alliance with the Shadows was to make the race as a whole more powerful in the universe.

            Nah, I just can't view him as a villian, he isn't a protaganist, but he's definately not an antagonist either. Surely he was misguided, but that is in part because of what Psi-Corps had done to him.

            • Bester had been in telepathic contact with quite a few people as they died and seen across the barrier between life and death. This was depicted in the series as a very risky thing to do, something that involved giving up a little of your own soul each time. Doing it without damned good reason was supposed to be 'evil' in a "I think I'll open that weird old book and pronounce a few Elder God's names just to see what happens" sense, like doing anything with enormous consequences just for a moment's kick and
              • While I won't dive into the "soul" argument, I will say that being inside someone that died would probably have an effect on one mentally.

                Just being around death has an effect of removing one's joy of life and cheerfulness, the idea of feeling your life slip away, when it is not your own, is probably something that would change one's view on life.

                Being inside someone when they died would answer the question of what happens when we die, Bester would have first hand experiences with it.

                Perhaps that is more

                • Maybe Bester didn't do it the first time for kicks, maybe it was suggested to him, as a character building experience, maybe from then on he had returned to it, to reassure himself and make sure he completely understood the emptiness of death. Who knows such things?

                  The writers? It's a fricking TV show...
        • I never really saw Bester do anything particularly evil, he was just protecting his people

          Mmmm. There was that one scene where they were Bester and some other telepath were transporting a couple of criminals back from B5 to Earth, I believe it was. After they hit hyperspace, Bester dumped them out the airlock instead of taking them back. When the other telepath asked him about it he told her not to worry about it as they were "just mundanes" i.e. not telepaths.
          That struck me as being quite the epitome o
        • by infonography ( 566403 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @08:21AM (#13420381) Homepage
          Nobody did anything because they were evil. Well may just Emperor Cartagia, but he was nuts in a Caligula sort of way. Morden was a spiritual disciple of the Shadows. Who to human eyes where the ultimate Bug Eyed Monsters, were not really such bad guys. Their Nietzsche-esque strength thru war had the same misinterpretation the Nazi had.

          from Wikipedia [] :"has the joke goes, Nietzsche detested Nationalism, Socialism, Germans and mass movements, so naturally he was adopted as the intellectual mascot of the National Socialist German Workers' Party." He was also far from being a racist, believing that the "vigour" of any population could only be increased by mixing with others."

          Morden gets a bit more development in that Technomage series.

          Everybody had reasons and history for why they did stuff. The Bester character kept Garibaldi under his thumb because he was in such a perfect position to hear stuff. What malice there was was incidental, just bad blood between them.

          Overall Walter Koenig, is the only real actor to come out of the series. Later work by almost the whole cast had a 'Phone it in' feel. See Nimoy's role in Brave New World [], (it stank on ice)

    • by Digital Pizza ( 855175 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @07:05AM (#13420232)
      His portrayal of Bester actually made me forget all about Chekov, to the point that when I see Walter Koenig I think "Bester" instead of "Chekov". Considering how deeply the 'Trek characters have been driven into our memories over the decades, that's quite a testimony to his acting ability.
  • Anybody know how much he's getting paid?
  • In the Star Trek world, was Chekov related in any way to playwright Anton Chekov? I know they liked to toss around all sorts of literary allusions (including the famous "Shakespeare must be read in its original Klingon" line.

    More power to these guys! Star Trek continues, despite its critics, to (as Vulcans like to say) "live long and prosper".
    • wow... (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      there is so much going on in your post with your name and your sig and... wow. just wow.
  • by aussie_a ( 778472 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @01:49AM (#13419556) Journal
    Ron Moore of Battlestar Galactica said on his blog [] that with Star Trek: Enterprise cancelled and no plans on any future series or movies, that Star Trek had returned once more to its fans. I can understand now what he meant. Back when TOS was cancelled, fan run magazines popped up with fan fiction. Now, in the 21st century, the same thing is happening, only it's changed along with the technology we now have access to. And I can't think of any better hands for Star Trek to be in at the moment, then its fans.
  • Anyone else catch Walter in that goofy moon movie he made? I remember he was making out in a moon tent with a moon babe and some moon robot tried to kill him! On the moon! What was that movie called? Something ... 'trap'.

    Seriously it scared the hell out of me as a kid. Now when I watch it I'm just embarassed. Ah well.

  • Interesting sidenote (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 28, 2005 @01:58AM (#13419580)
    Here was a good read I found not oo long ago about the choice to add W.K. to the series. []
  • by HishamMuhammad ( 553916 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @02:09AM (#13419610) Homepage Journal
    As a Trek fan all I can say is "power to those guys", I'm looking forward to check out their stuff once their server recovers, but...

    what are the legal ramifications of this? Isn't there some Big Corporation who owns the rights to the Star Trek names? If New Voyages makes it big I fear they'll be sued out of existance... :(
    • fan fiction is usually safe

      i mean look at all the star wars fan films.. if lucas hasnt sued them im sure these guys will be safe
      • Those Star Wars fan films exist at the behest of Lucasfilm. That permission can be withdrawn at any time and one can lose their permission to legally redistribute the fan films. This is part of the power a copyright holder gets--the power to set terms for derivative works. Sometimes this power is used for maximizing benefit for the many (such as the GNU GPL's implementation of copyleft which aims to preserve the freedom to share and modify for all recipients of the covered program), most of the time it i
    • Chekov isn't being paid, and no-one is paying the guys making the "series" so it should be as safe as possible (with fan-fiction friendly Paramount). Could they, in the future, be sued? Possibly, but Paramount is obviously aware of them, and hasn't told them to stop (and may have given them the okay).
    • by some guy I know ( 229718 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @04:10AM (#13419897) Homepage
      what are the legal ramifications of this?
      According to IMDB [], none, as long as they don't make a profit.

      Relevant section:
      Trivia: Although this is a "non-official" Star Trek incarnation, Paramount Pictures which owns the name and the rights to Star Trek agreed to allow the producers of New Voyages to make these episodes on the condition that no profit was to be garnered from the show.
      • I wonder if they can just 'cook the books' as Paramount and the other studios are famous for so that they can get rich while 'technically' the movie won't make any money because while the gross profits were huge, they swell the expenses to compensate so there is no net profit.
      • If I remember correctly from the audio commentary for the (AWESOME) mirror universe Enterprise episodes, the New Voyages crew loaned Paramount the motorized pop-up Viewmaster thing for the bridge of the Defiant.

        Assuming I'm not completely making that up, it sounds like relations between the two groups are pretty good.
    • If you read into their page some you will also see that they have the support of Roddenberry Jr. They can't be much more legit, besides being on tv at this point.
  • by dtfinch ( 661405 ) * on Sunday August 28, 2005 @02:28AM (#13419648) Journal
    It's dead, Jim.
  • by cjsm ( 804001 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @03:06AM (#13419747)
    Somewhat off topic, but I was starshocked when I went to Circut City recently, and they had the original series on DVD for $129. I though, well, that's for the complete show, but it was one season. WTF. TNG is priced the same per season. I wouldn't mind owning these, but I'm not going to pay the rate of a newly released movie in widescreen enhanced def, for a forty year old TV series in low def TV format (I have an Infocus ScreenPlay projector and 6 ft wide screen).

    Well, the market is supposed to set the price, but the price on these old TV shows on DVD are way overpriced, IMO, and I'm not buying. These old TV shows are worth about the same or less to me as a discounted old movie at Walmart, nowhere near $390 for 3 seasons of Star Trek. Maybe 1/4th that amount.
    • Paramount are basically nothing more than "rip-off" merchants when it comes to pricing the Trek series on DVD.

      Over here in the UK, most TV series, including The Simpsons, 24, Babylon 5, The X-Files, etc. seem to be priced around £30 (=~$55) which, to me, is about right. However, the Star Trek series seem to be priced around £69.95 (=~$125) which is ridiculous.

      I'm gradually collecting Trek on DVD, having sold my videos on Ebay while I could still get a reasonable price for them, and I just wa

    • I did give in and buy them when I had some amazon credit. They have this ridiculous-yet-neat plastic shell on the outside and then on the inside it's two layers of paper products around a stack of loose single-dvd trays held together with a piece of tape, making a "book" with a scotch-tape spine. Lameness.

      But still it's better than the original format and price: 2 (two) episodes per dvd at $14.99 each dvd. That's right folks, the initial dvd release of the series would cost about $600. So I guess paramou
    • You're right: it's insane. I'll never buy the DVD's at those prices, let alone the newer episodes from Enterprise for example (which, AFAIK, were all done in HD, so when you buy the DVD's you're actually sacrificing quality and paying through the nose: hold out for the HD-DVD or BluRay releases).

      FWIW though: I'll happily pirate them on BitTorrent, and if I ever meet an exec from Paramount I'll flip them off and tell them I did.
    • Here, let me help you:

      *discount* []

    • If you don't like something enough to pay the price for it, that's fine, but that doesn't make them overpriced. People have no problem paying $20 for a 90 minute movie DVD. Now consider that a season of TNG has 26 episodes (except season 2). 26 episodes at 40 minutes each makes 1040 minutes of content. When you calculate the price per minute, 90 minutes of trek costs $11.25, which is pretty much your "discounted" movie price. I don't know why you sound so surprised that something which has more content
  • by tloh ( 451585 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @04:15AM (#13419908)
    Dear Wil,

    Since discovering you as a blogger and an author, I've begun to know you as more than just Wesley Crusher. First up, despite the cheese dick writers at TNG who had no clue how to develope your character, I've always apploaded the role you portrayed. In the real world where mediocrity often rule over those who dared to dream or excel, Wesley Crusher was one of the few shining examples where the geek spirit was truly celebrated. For me, personally, you made it okay to be smart. After reading "Just a Geek", I think that aspect of Wesley Crusher is something you can truly identify with. The compeling story in your book about your own internal relationship with a controvertial fictional persona you helped create as an actor fleshed both of you out in a way Trek and Hollywood never could.

    In the context of this /. post, I wonder if you have ever considered wrestling control of the character Wesley Crusher from those who have helped make your early life difficult. Have you ever considered using your own judgement to tell a story about this young man from an idealized future in a way that *you* see fit? The guy you like to call "William Fucking Shatner" has penned a number of books about Kirk. I think John De Lance has also written a novel about Q. You are an accomplished writter now, with two successful books to your credit and a number of magazine columns. What's to stop you from picking up a pen (or keyboard/laptop) and re-imagining Wesley Crusher in a way that isn't limited by political correctness, TV ratings, or studio beurocracy? In "Just a Geek", you seemed to have made peace with the tomultuous legacy Wesley have left you. But you still seemed some what regretful of the fact your left-on-the-cutting-room-floor cameo would be the last time you would bring Wesley to life. If you can pull it off, I think I wouldn't be the only one to find a Wesley Crusher novel told by the man who gave him life to be very worth reading. Please think about it.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 28, 2005 @05:15AM (#13420018)
    Fry: Melllvar, you can't let a TV show be your whole life. You can do anything you want. Look at Walter Koenig. After Star Trek, he became an actor!

    Koenig: Not just an actor but a well rounded person! With my own friends, credit cards, keys...
  • by ( 745183 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @08:41AM (#13420437) Homepage
    ...we started kicking around ideas for a Chekov story...

    Damn straight. Let's put the angst back into space-travel. Next stop, Dostoyevsky...

  • As it should be.

    Long Live, and Prosper. --And I mean that with all my heart!

    But please. . .

    Get good writers, directors and lighting crew. Please.

    Fan-made works often have little quality control because fans are usually operating from a state of unconditional love for their obsession. (Bless 'em!) Thing is, 'unconditional' doesn't cut it at the movies, because good work only happens under GOOD conditions, which means fans need to stay critically objective as well as just enthusiastic.

    But I'll be crossing
  • I've put up a mirror of the image. Seems that either ezboard doesn't really have much bandwidth, or the image is hosted on somebody's Nintendo-modded PC.

    teaser image []
  • could this be the beginning of the ad-hoc movement that Cory Doctorow predicted in "Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom"?
  • D. C. Fontana (Score:3, Insightful)

    by meburke ( 736645 ) on Sunday August 28, 2005 @01:40PM (#13421442)
    This is really pretty good news. I noticed that there was distinct difference in some episodes I liked, and realized that they were written to emphsize the "people" problems and psychological adjustments of the characters rather than just the technology or new worlds/experiences aspects. Then I noticed that these episodes were almost always written by Dorothy (D. C.) Fontana. She also contributed some of the absolute best episodes of "Police Woman" with Angie Dickenson. If Walter and D.C. are enthused about this project, I look forward to seeing it.
  • Is it legal for fans to just pick up and make new episodes of Star Trek? I figured there'd be copyright problems and such.

    I've always wanted to make Back to the Future IV but I figured I wasn't allowed to. That would be cool if I could do that.
    (If anyone wants to fund back to the future IV, reply to this post and we'll be in touch ;-)

  • I've been trying and trying to download these episodes, but all the mirrors are down, and the trackers are down for the torrents.
  • Well, I took a quick look at the imdb link. DC Fontana seems to be one of the writers/story editors behind classic Star Trek as well as a whole ton of big sci-fi movies and series. Cool thread, thanks for starting it. I learned something.

"An open mind has but one disadvantage: it collects dirt." -- a saying at RPI