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Inside Star Trek: The Real Story

by Herbert F. Solow, Robert H. Justman

Series: Star Trek (1996.06)

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293871,748 (3.74)None
In the spring of 1964, a rumpled, soft-spoken ex-cop named Gene Roddenberry walked into the office of Herbert F. Solow, the new head of production at Desilu Studios. Roddenberry presented an idea for a new science fiction television series called Star Trek. Immediately seeing the show's potential, Solow struck a script development deal with Roddenberry on the spot. Soon, Solow and Roddenberry brought Robert H. Justman on board as assistant director and together the three men embarked on an incredible odyssey that would make television history. "Inside Star Trek" is a comprehensive look at the development and life of a television and cultural phenomenon. It is also a story no one else could tell. Between them, Solow and Justman had a hand in virtually every aspect of the development and production of Star Trek--from the battles with NBC and the internal conflicts with studio executives to the behind-the-scenes decisions about actors and their characters, writers, scripts, directors, budgets,and the endless details of weekly television production. Here is the simple, fascinating and accurate account of a unique television series l… (more)
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For all fans of the original series, this is the definitive story of the beginning of STAR TREK and the life of a cultural phenomenon. Forget the myths; read the story from the men who served, respectively, as a producer and as a director for the series.

It’s a simple, fascinating account of the launching of a television show destined to become a legend. It’s also, at times, enthusiastically snarky and often more-than-willing to paint many of the principals with less-than-complimentary brush strokes. Which truth is indeed truth? Probably, considering that everyone brought their own personalities and foibles with them, somewhere between this account and the fervent idolization of the cast and the Great Bird of the Galaxy.

The strength of the book lies in the detailing of the generally unknown work involved in putting together and airing a television show. Photographs accompany the narrative, unfolding from its genesis through the struggles of the first season, followed by a transfiguration, and rebirth. A must for fans of the series as well as for readers interested in taking a behind-the-scenes look at the production of a television series.

Highly recommended. ( )
  jfe16 | Oct 26, 2019 |
Herb Solow seems to have taken out thirty-five years of vitriol and anger in his account of the year's when Star Trek was shown on NBC. He especially seems to have hated William Shatner, although Shatner was not well-loved by many on that set. Still, Bob Justman's good humor and unique position as the series' associate producer give a less-tainted look at the high-pressured world of series production in general and this amazing series in particular.

I had a good deal of difficulty working through this book because it abused so many of my long-held beliefs regarding Star Trek. Some of that abuse was because of Solow's viewpoint, but when Justman then reinforces these corrections, I have to believe them. ( )
  bfgar | Apr 20, 2014 |
This is a behind-the-scenes story of Star Trek. It starts from its early concept and pitch to the studios. Herb Solow and Robert Justman (co-authors) discuss the politics and manipulations that happened to make Star Trek turn into a tv series. Years of work and three pilots later they debuted on the screen. But their obstacles never ceased, each year was a fight for renewal, there were problems with the cast, and problems with Desilu.

After reading it, I certainly have a different view of many of the people involved. My opinions of some of the major and minor actors and supporting staff has changed drastically. The authors attempt to take some of the credit normally attributed to Roddenberry and distribute it to other deserving individuals.

The book isn't just for Trekkies, (the term was coined by the staff during the series run), but anyone interested in what goes on in a series production. My complaint is that the book is too terse. I feel like there's a lot of information still untold. ( )
  Nodosaurus | Nov 20, 2009 |
If you liked Star Trek, TOS, you will love this book. It offers a close look at how the series came about and the struggle to keep it on the air, to its eventual cancellation. Great anecdotes from the set!
  termsguy | Apr 18, 2008 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Herbert F. Solowprimary authorall editionscalculated
Justman, Robert H.main authorall editionsconfirmed

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Star Trek (1996.06)
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As Vice President of Desilu Studios, Vice President of Paramount Television, and Executive in Charge of Production of the Star Trek sereis, Herb Solow was responsible for the sale, development, and production of both pilots and the series.
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In the spring of 1964, a rumpled, soft-spoken ex-cop named Gene Roddenberry walked into the office of Herbert F. Solow, the new head of production at Desilu Studios. Roddenberry presented an idea for a new science fiction television series called Star Trek. Immediately seeing the show's potential, Solow struck a script development deal with Roddenberry on the spot. Soon, Solow and Roddenberry brought Robert H. Justman on board as assistant director and together the three men embarked on an incredible odyssey that would make television history. "Inside Star Trek" is a comprehensive look at the development and life of a television and cultural phenomenon. It is also a story no one else could tell. Between them, Solow and Justman had a hand in virtually every aspect of the development and production of Star Trek--from the battles with NBC and the internal conflicts with studio executives to the behind-the-scenes decisions about actors and their characters, writers, scripts, directors, budgets,and the endless details of weekly television production. Here is the simple, fascinating and accurate account of a unique television series l

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