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Flying Starships

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Author(s): Ronald B. Moore
Illustrator(s): Michael David Ward
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Published: 2 January 2013
Pages: 178
Reference(s): ISBN 1479151939
ISBN 162347731X (Kindle edition)

Flying Starships is the autobiography of former Star Trek Visual Effects Supervisor/Coordinator, Ronald B. Moore.

While the book covers the entire Hollywood visual effects career of the author, he conceded, by his own admission, that Star Trek was his most important, and most recognized body of work, and which therefore takes up the bulk of the text. (pp. iii-iv) All Star Trek productions, Moore has worked on, the television series, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Voyager, Star Trek: Enterprise, as well as the movie Star Trek Generations, passes the revue, his non-Star Trek work, organized around it. The book is illuminated with black and white photos throughout. The book gives a insightful and detailed look into the work and duties of a Star Trek visual effects supervisor/coordinator.

Aside from his official work for the franchise, Ronald Moore has dedicated a chapter detailing with his experiences with the fringe events of the franchise, such as his attendances at Star Trek conventions and his meetings with fans. Another noticeable chapter is the one where Moore describes what it is like to be an Emmy Award nominated Star Trek alumnus during the award ceremony with all the emotional gamuts and pitfalls. A rather grievous example was his second co-nomination with Dan Curry in the visual effects category for the season three The Next Generation episode "Déjà Q" during the 1990 ceremony. Apart from this episode, "Tin Man" was also nominated (with Robert Legato and Gary Hutzel as nominees), together with three non-Star Trek productions. In a bizarre turn of events all three non-Star Trek productions received the award due to a three-way tie, leaving the two Star Trek productions sole losers. In a calculated scoffing, the organization had Next Generation cast members Michael Dorn and Marina Sirtis purposely present the awards. Unaware of the set-up, both were horrified when they had to announce the winners, to which a thoroughly chagrined Moore added, "To add insult to injury they sent me a video copy of the award show so I can live it over and over." (pp. 109-110) Nevertheless, all the snubbed Star Trek staffers went on to receive multiple Emmy Award wins.

Published in both a paperback print, and a digital version, the book is released by a small independent publishing house, which released the print version as a print-on-demand edition, though internet sellers like Amazon.com, initially kept stock available for customers. The cover illustration is by space and fantasy artist Michael David Ward, who has provided such imagery not only for the Star Trek print franchise (predominantly commemorative plates, posters, mouse-pads and the like), but also for that of the Star Wars franchise as well. [1] Former GE Fabbri editors Ben Robinson and Tim Leng, (for whom Ron Moore wrote a two-part article for publication in Star Trek: The Magazine, reprinted in the book as chapter 6). helped Moore out with some of the practical publication aspects of his book. Written in a style, easily accessible for the layman too, the book was well received by its readership.

Summary

From the backcover
"Have you ever wondered what it takes to create the incredible visual effects seen on your favorite movies and television shows? Transferring the words and ideas of the written page to the screen, bringing new worlds and civilizations to life and allowing starships to fly from one corner of the Galaxy to the other?
In Flying Starships, five-times Emmy Award-winning visual effects supervisor Ronald B. Moore looks back over his remarkable 30-year career in Hollywood, revealing stories from his work on blockbuster movies such as Ghostbuster and Michael Jackson's Moonwalker to the 18 years he spent on Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Voyager and Star Trek: Enterprise.
Flying Starships presents an unparalleled insight into one of the most successful and beloved film and television franchises ever created, and the personal story of one of Hollywood's most celebrated visual effects artists."

Excerpts of copyrighted sources are included for review purposes only, without any intention of infringement.

Contents

  • Introduction, p. i
  • Chapter 1, A Night on the Set, p. 1
  • Chapter 2, Preproduction, p. 7
  • Chapter 3, Production, p. 17
  • Chapter 4, Flying Starships, p. 29
  • Chapter 5, Postproduction, p. 43
  • Chapter 6: "Fury", An Episode Diary, p. 55
  • Chapter 7: "Generations", p. 75
  • Chapter 8, Conventions, p. 93
  • Chapter 9, Having A Bad Day. 101
  • Chapter 10, Winning An Emmy, p. 107
  • Chapter 11, Working in Hollywood, p. 117
  • Chapter 12, Feature Film VFX, p. 127
  • Chapter 13, Hollywood Unions, p. 139
  • Chapter 14, Enterprise Blues Band, p. 149
  • Chapter 15, It's Teamwork, p. 159
  • Acknowledgments, p. 163
  • About the Author, p. 165

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