Director J.J. Abrams’ new vision of the greatest space adventure of all time, Star TrekEnterprise. The film quickly became a critical and commercial smash hit worldwide, as audiences — confirmed Trekkers and newcomers alike — thrilled to a state-of-the-art action epic which both respected the legacy of Gene Roddenberry’s archetypal modern myth and forged ahead into an exciting future of its own.

Star Trek: The Art of the Film is a lavishly illustrated celebration of that new vision, tracing the evolution of the movie’s look through a stunning array of previously unseen pre-production paintings, concept sketches, costume and set designs, unit photography and final frames.

Written by New York Times-bestselling author Mark Cotta Vaz in close co-operation with the film’s production team, and including a Foreword by J.J. Abrams, this is the essential companion to the film. features a young, new crew venturing boldly where no man has gone before, as it tells the story of how the brash Starfleet cadet James T. Kirk first meets a Vulcan named Spock, and earns the Captain’s chair of the Starship


“Star Trek: The Art of the Film” is not to be confused with “The Art of Star Trek”, which was published by Pocket Books and covers the original Star Trek timeline. The new hardcover book’s 162-pages are printed on glossy paper, and not surprisingly display more images than words. Nonetheless it covers a wealth of material.

Every one of the images in “Star Trek: The Art of the Film” is in color. They include stills from the film, behind-the-scenes shots and concept sketches and paintings. Several of the paintings span one or two-page spreads and many are impressive as works of art in their own right. They are worthy of publication if only to highlight the fabulous work done by oft-overlooked cinematic artists and illustrators.


In the era of behind-the-scene DVD featurettes replacing text-based ‘making of’ books, it is applaudable that Star Trek has been given this treatment. Hopefully, this book will be as successful as it deserves to be and more non fiction texts could follow (an annotated screenplay book for example). While bonus features on DVDs are great, there is no substitute for engaging a book’s text and photos in a way not possible no matter how big the television. Star Trek: The Art of the Film is bold and refreshing, and a welcomed addition to the line of Star Trek non fiction books.

Another intriguing avenue explored within the book involves designs that did not make it into Star Trek. This includes an extensive review of alien creature designs (including one based on the lizard-like Gorn from the series!); a closer look at the design evolution for Nero (Eric Bana) and the rest of his Romulan crew; a two-page look at the “Rura Penthe prison sequence,” which would have introduced Abrams’ version of the famous Klingons; and more. Particularly of interest to some is an alternate vision of Delta Vega, the icy planet to which Kirk (Chris Pine) is sent in exile. In the book, there are early illustrations depicting it as a desert planet—with an alien bazaar that bears more than a small resemblance to the Star Wars cantina—and would surely have inspired even more of the criticism that posited this was simply a Lucas-type version of Star Trek.

In the end, the book will amaze new Star Trek fans. While older fans will find new aspects of the revamp to adore. The release works wonders and it leaves one hoping for even better things for the sequel. I recommend this as a purchase to all Sci-Fi film fans.



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