Vulcans get their “Trek”, sort of

May 2, 2009

startrekCBC is reporting that Paramount is bringing 300 residents of Vulcan to Calgary for an advanced screening of the new Star Trek movie. Residents of Vulcan, Alberta, that is.

The small town southeast of Calgary has capitalized for years on having the same name as the homeworld of Spock. For several months residents had been lobbying the studio to stage the world premier of the much-anticipated prequel in their town. Spock himself, Leonard Nimoy, even added his voice to their cause. Paramount wound-up choosing the Sydney Opera House in Australia instead.

As a gesture of goodwill, the studio will be holding a special screening of the movie in Calgary for some of Vulcan’s residents on May 6th – two days before the North American premier. Actor Bruce Greenwood, who plays Captain Christopher Pike in the film, will also be on hand for the event.

It’s good that Paramount’s willing to do something for these folks – a form of payback maybe, because one might wonder if the director, writers, etc may have taken some inspiration from the town. Just take a look at the Vulcan tourism site with its photo of the big model of the heavy cruiser that’s been mounted in a local park for years. Doesn’t look too different from the ridiculous shot in the movie trailer of Enterprise squatting in an Iowa cornfield while under construction like something found on the cutting-room floor of Field of Dreams, does it? (Seriously, the first time I saw that shot I was waiting for Kevin Costner to come shuffling out onto the road in front of Kirk’s motorbike mumbling “If you build it, he will come.”) But then again, knowing Hollywood types, they probably haven’t seen the tourist attraction ever. More likely it’s a case of parallel evolution, which would put the whole thing quite comfortably within Star Trek’s familiar ground.

Star Trek XI opens for the rest of us on May 8th.

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