02:56:32 on March 15
Dept: TrekWeb Features
John A. Alonzo, Oscar-nominated cinematographer who served as Director of Photography on 1994's 'Star Trek Generations', died Tuesday at the age of 66 due to illness. His other movies include classics such as 'Chinatown', 'Scarface' and 'Close Encounters of the Third Kind'.
In honor of his memory, TrekWeb.COM will take a comprehensive look at the scenes cut from 'Generations', including the cut opening and the original, alternate ending, from the shooting script, dated 03/16/94.
First, we take a detailed look at the lost opening, in which Scotty and Chekov meet a skydiving James T. Kirk and try to convice him to attend the launch of the new Enterprise NCC 1701-B.
"The purpose of that scene was to show that Captain Kirk still has a lot of muscles and is heroic," Walter Koenig told Cinefantatique magazine in an exclusive interview in 1995. "Very similar to the scene at the beginning of Star Trek V. Kirk is flying across the wheatfields with a jet pack and he parachutes down where we are standing, to join us".
[Note : as scripted, this scene would intercut with FX shots of the champagne bottle tumbling through space.]
1 EXT. SPACE (VFX-I)
A vast and sparkling starfield. A pinpoint of LIGHT appears and starts moving towards the camera...a small and distant cylindrical object tumbling end-over-end, but we can't make out exactly what is it yet...
2 WHEAT FIELD - DAY
A vast and undulating sea of wheat. We become aware that there are two HEADS sticking out of the stalks of wheat -- two men are standing and looking up at thei sky. As we move towards them, we begin to hear their conversation...and we can see that the two men are SCOTTY and CHEKOV, dressed in civilian clothing.
CHEKOV (points to sky) :
There he is...there, to the South !
SCOTTY (peers upward) :
What are ye, blind ? That's a bird.
3 EXT. SPACE (VFX-I)
The cylinder tumbling through space is now closer, and we can see that is a BOTTLE of some sort, and it is tumbling direct toward the camera...
4 WHEAT FIELD - DAY
As before, Chekov and Scotty staring at the sky.
Scotty (concerned) :
Repelling the Crystalinne Trench...rafting down lava flows...orbital skydiving...it's like the man is running a bloody decathlon across the galaxy.
Suddenly, we hear a double SONIC BOOM.
CHEKOV (re : Sound)
That should be him now. I think he's just crossed the sound barrier.
5 EXT. SPACE (VFX - I)
The bottle gets CLOSER...
6 EXT. WHEAT FIELD - DAY
A man in a high-tech body-harness and parachute LANDS in the wheat field in his back. His body-suit is charred, scorched, wisps of smoke still curling off it. There are small thrusters attached to his backpack and boots. Scotty and Chekov move to him. The man removes his helmet, revealing that it is KIRK. He smiles broadly, like a child who's just come off a roller-coaster.
Right on target ! I jump out over the Arabian Penisula....and I end up here, right on the dime.
Kirk gets to his feet.
Actually, Captain, your precise target area was thirty-five meters...(points) that way.
Thanks for pointing that out.
Kirk starts to pull off his suit, reacts to a sudden PAIN in his back
[Note : In the original filmed ending, Kirk feels this same pain in his back during his fight with Soran, just before Soran shoots him.]
I've warned ye about that back of yours. You should let a doctor take a look at it.
Kirk waves him away, and continues to remove his harness.
6A EXT. SPACE (VFX - I)
The tumbling bottle champagne rushes past, and we can now see that is a CHAMPAGNE BOTTLE - Don Perignon, 2265. Follow the bottles as it tumbles through space....
6B WHEAT FIELD - DAY
Kirk, Scotty, Chekov, as before
Tomorrow I want to make a tri-eliptical jump. That's where you jump over Northern China, and make three complete orbits before your start re-entry...
Captain. Peharps you have forgotten that tomorrow is the christening ceremony.
This strikes a nerve with Kirk - we see a flash of hesitation and irritation across his face.
I am not going. (beat) Scotty, help me here with this chute.
What do you mean, you are not going ? We promised.
When I retired, I swore I never set foot in a starship again, and I meant it.
KIRK (firm) :
I don't wanna hear anymore about it. I'm not going, and that's final.
7 EXT. SPACE (VFX -I)
The champagne bottle SMASHES onto the bow of a Federation starship (Excelsior Class) sitting in its dock in orbit around EARTH.
The second scene that was cut took place on the bridge of the Enterprise-B, just after the scene on Deck 15, in which Captain Harriman, Chekov and Scotty realize that Kirk has sacrified himself to save the ship from the Nexus.
"The editing has very much emasculated the role," Koenig told Cinefantastique magazine. "I do not want to suggest that I have this wonderful starring role that they somehow eviscerated. But, there is a moment with Jimmy [Doohan] that is very touching. I drew upon some personal grief that I was experiencing at the time and it really affected me. I never cried on camera or on stage before this time. [...] It was part of the director's cut. If it's not in the final cut, then I realize it's not because the work was bad but because they wanted to concentrate on the humor and visual effects. My feeling is, it would be nice for the audience to see that kind of work." What follows is that scene, from the shooting script, beginning with the last shot of the Enterprise-B from the final cut, before fading to sailing vessel shot in the TNG era.
36 EXT. SPACE - ENTYERPRISE-B (VFX-1)
A HUGE CHUNK has been ripped out of the Enginneering section, looking like an open wound. Scotty, Chekov and Harriman can be seen standing inside the small corridor, looking out into space...
CUT TO :
37 ENTERPRISE-B - BRIDGE
A short time later. Harriman, Scotty and Chekov are listening to Demora, who is working on the helm console.
I've checked the entire ship and the surrounding space...there's no sign of him.
A silent moment. Chekov looks to Scotty, hoping to hear some sort of miracle. Scotty takes a moment...looks at the empty command chair. Then he shakes his head. A long beat as everyone is forced to accept this terrible truth.
SCOTTY (quiet) :
Just a quick....run around the block.
I never thought it would end like this...
All things must end, Mister Chekov.
Harriman finally breaks the stillness of the Bridge.
Let's go home.
Harriman goes down to the Captain's chair and takes command of his ship.
Scotty and Chekov exchange a final look. Off the reactions of these two friends who've just lost someone very dear to them both...
CUT TO :
38 EXT. SPACE - ENTERPRISE-B (VFX-1)
The crippled ship turns and heads away...
FADE TO BLACK
SUPER : SEVENTY-FIVE YEARS LATER
39 EXT. SAILING SHIP - DAY
A nineteenth sailing three-masted sailing vessel (about the size of a frigate) is hove to and sitting in the water gently rocking. Across the stern of the ship, we can see the name ENTERPRISE picked up in gold letters.
Coming soon on TrekWeb : Soran tortures Geordi. Worf and Geordi rescue Picard and the original 'Kirk-shot-in-the-back' ending. Special thanks to Tim Hansen at Section31.com for some of the photos used in this feature.