Paramount ‘Needed Convincing’ to Hire a First-Time Male Director on ‘Star Trek 3’, So Here’s Some Female Alternatives.

Paramount 'Needed Convincing' to Hire a First-Time Male Director on 'Star Trek 3', So Here's Some Female Alternatives.

Deadline Hollywood is reporting that Roberto Orci is the frontrunner to be hired to direct the forthcoming “Star Trek 3” – yes, we’re getting another sequel. Orci has a vast resume as a writer and a producer, on the Star Trek films and various other big, noisy blockbusters, but he’s never directed anything. Ever.

First-time feature directors have taken on huge blockbusters in the past, but they’ve usually come from the world of directing commercials or music videos (Rupert Sanders and “Snow White and the Huntsman” being a recent example). The latest case of a first-time feature director coming at a $100 million + project with zero directing experience is Wally Pfister on “Transcendence”. And look how that worked out.

Needless to say, this only ever happens with male directors. Women directors just don’t get hired for projects like this. But it’s not too late! According to Deadline, “Paramount needed convincing” over Orci’s credentials, although they concede “now it all could happen at warp speed”. But since the deal has not been made official yet, we’d like to suggest that Paramount don’t ignore their cold feet, and consider that just maybe, the risk of hiring a totally untested director on such a huge project is greater than the risk of hiring – gasp! – a woman with a track record.

There are dozens of women out there with the proven directorial experience to take on a project like this. Jamie Babbit has a superlative TV resume, as does Michelle MacLaren. Mimi Leder has been there and done that. Isabel Coixet could be the female Guillermo del Toro if given a chance. Lexi Alexander has proven she has the chops. Or what about an indie director like Tamara Jenkins, or Mary Harron, or Dee Rees, or Lone Scherfig, or… the list goes on and on and on. Of course, some of these women may scoff at the very idea of directing “Star Trek 3”, and more power to them if so. But the point is that studios’ willingness to take punts on totally unproven male directors, while continuing to ignore their female counterparts, is looking more and more ridiculous.

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Comments

FP

Trulyfreefilm.
hopeforfilm.
com/2014/05/slated-fighting-gender-bias-with-data.html

Via Ted Hope, for emphasis.

thetrekkie

The next movie is supposed to be for the 50th anniversary of the franchise. Handing the reigns of such an important event over to someone who has shown contempt for the fans and the franchise is a huge mistake. There is already a hashtag on twitter regarding his involvement: #StopOrci2014.

All of the extras for STID were split up on different releases, making it impossible to buy a single release from a single retailed with all of the extra material. The only reason they were able to do that is because of the loyalty of the fanbase. Will the fanbase show the same loyalty to the man who called Trekkies sh*tty and told us to f*ck off? I don't think so.
STID underperformed domestically, and actually had a smaller opening weekend in terms of tickets sold than its predecessor. Part of the reason it made as much money as it did was because of the IMAX 3D charges.

Can Paramount afford to make the same mistake with the next movie? Maybe, if they're content for nuTrek to be a trilogy and only that. It doesn't seem like a good decision to hand over such an important franchise to a novice who doesn't seem to understand the appeal of Star Trek.

Melody

Orci is more interested in making a successful movie than making a good star trek movie, we need someone who respects the fans and the nearly 50 years of the show that he's building on. Star Trek fans are already less than satisfied with his work on writing the reboot films, so I don't think it would be a good move to have him direct too, especially since he's never directed anything before

Amanda

Letting Orci direct is a mistake. Star Trek fans are already angry about the reboot movies, and Orci doesn't care about Trekkies' concerns. Paramount is risking loosing a large amount of money on the next movie if they go with him. Honestly, I'd feel a little better if they got former Star Trek actors-turn directors to direct.

Izzy

It might be a commentary on J.J. & Co.'s failure to produce quality in the reboot series so far that they're willing to hire Mr. Orci rather than an actual, factual, seasoned director – it might just be that no one wants to put their name on this crashing, burning & falling-out-of-the-sky enterprise… All that being said, and having seen J.J.'s, Orci's, and by extension Paramount's attitude regarding the reboot projects so far, there's little doubt in my mind that these are the kind of dusty & bigoted Hollywood types that would rather bring First-Time Bob on as director, rather than a female ready and better suited by miles to take on the roll. The only thing I'm certain of is that if I don't start seeing more of an effort to bring in new talent to the directing roll soon, they won't be seeing a cent of this female Trekkie's prospective ticket money.

Not Tom

Pardon my factual ignorance, but to combat Tom's attitudinal ignorance, can someone please elaborate the credits to the women directors listed here that point them in the direction of being able to take this on? Clearly as writer/producer involved in the last 2 ST movies he has some relevance, but as director? C'mon! Let him be the AD to a woman (or anyone) who has actually directed before! It's not rocket science! So to shut up people like Tom, can anyone who knows the careers of Jamie Babbit, Michelle MacLaren, Mimi Leder, Isabel Coixet, Lexi Alexander, Tamara Jenkins, Mary Harron, Dee Rees, Lone Scherfig etc. list which pictures they have directed that contain some of the same elements (SciFi, large budget, multi-picture narrative, passionate fanbase) that make this argument a no-brainer?

StephenT

Wow, this @Tom fellow took an article about unintentional sexism or unconscious sexism and really ratcheted it up with statements like "So women, if you want bigger roles in Hollywood, embrace the technology" and "Women must earn their right to direct large scale blockbuster movies, not just be given the jobs because of their gender." FWIW, Tom, directing is about storytelling, first and foremost, and dealing with people, not technologies. A director need not be a cinematographer, actor, writer, set designer, composer, costumer designer, editor, CGI artist etc. to interact with these departments and the people in them. Also, no one, not the author of this piece nor the @FP demanded that a woman direct this movie. They simply pointed out the implicit sexism in most-likely giving this huge job to someone with no directing experience. Your comments and those by @Ryan like "Also, Paramount's gonna do what Paramount's gonna do. Hollywood is still a boys club; the only way to change this, and if we're arguing women need to be hired for bigger, tent-pole projects because they are talented and qualified (and not because of some arbitrary gender-balancing issue), then they need to keep knocking it out of the park with smaller indie features" make that kind of sexist mindset quite explicit.

Glenn

What about Patty Jenkins? She was even hired to direct THOR 2 so somebody saw something in her and thought she could helm a big budget effects-driven movie. I hope she eventually gets given the chance.

Jane

It's a fun article, but there's tons of experienced male directors, too. There's no lack of experience, male or female–but studios like hiring new, unproven directors because they can be completely controlled, and will bow to all the wishes of the studio execs. This is becoming a disquieting trend. Wally Pfister, sure–but many other big budget films coming out this summer follow the same trend. This article should be about inexperienced males vs. experienced females, it should be about giving a chance to a first-time female who they can control just as well as a male.

Jess

Wow, I'm so pleasantly surprised to see someone call the studios out on this! Yes, more women should be given a chance. It's sad that in this day and age they aren't for no reason other than ignorance.

Ryan

Things to consider:

Are any of these women interested?
Are any of these other candidates already incredibly familiar with other collaborators on board?
Are any of these other candidates better known to Paramount than Orci?

Also, Paramount's gonna do what Paramount's gonna do. Hollywood is still a boys club; the only way to change this, and if we're arguing women need to be hired for bigger, tent-pole projects because they are talented and qualified (and not because of some arbitrary gender-balancing issue), then they need to keep knocking it out of the park with smaller indie features, and WE need to spend our money watching them. Hollywood will follow the money.

Tom

I don't think its as clear cut as that. Films like the Star Trek franchise are basically huge CGI spectacles. The majority of the film is going to be created on a computer. And like it or not, there are very few women working in the world of IT.

Paramount need a Director, to not only get the best performances out of the cast, but also direct the legions of technicians necessary to create the visual FX expected of a movie of this size.

Someone whose directed a short indie flick, or a TV drama series, just isn't going to cut it.

So women, if you want bigger roles in Hollywood, embrace the technology.

Seriously?

What makes Paramount think that this guy knows two cents about working with actors to create great performances, managing tone, smart visual storytelling or offers any sort of fresh creative perspective? Why not give this to someone who has at least done some killer short films? Or I dunno… directed anything, ever?

FP

Why has Kathryn Bigelow has stopped directing studio pictures? Hasn't she earned a big fat check by now like ST3?

I'd throw my vote to Michelle McClaren, probably the best for-hire director out there in TV, but her schedule is probably filled for the next 18 months. Not that she wouldn't want to do it.

Oldtime Trekkie (Trekker for you old'uns)

Yep. So many amazing ones! Would love to see Callie Khouri in the director's chair, too. Thelma and Louise has more balls than Star Trek, and I LOVE Star Trek!

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