The Motion Picture – Director’s Edition’ – TrekMovie.com
After more than two decades, the director’s edition of Robert Wise Star Trek: The Movie has been remastered in 4K HDR, which debuted last month on Paramount+ (see TrekMovie review). This week it returned to the big screen via Fathom events, with the final screenings taking place on Wednesday evening.
TrekMovie has teamed up with Drew Stewart, the man behind the Star Trek TMP Twitter Account Visual Comparisons, to put together a sample of what we consider to be some of the most interesting differences between this new 2022 streaming release compared to the 2001 DVD release of the Director’s Edition (TDE) and the 2021 4K HD Blu-ray release of the theatrical edition (TE) of the film. Note that all images can be enlarged for even more detail.
The opening titles
The original opening credits were pure white as it was only meant to be temporary. For the DVD, the original plates were scanned as the basis for the new golden version. The credits have been recreated from scratch for 4K, and now have sparkles around the edge.
Vulcan has no moon, Miss Uhura
The original matte paint that showed night on Vulcan with visible moons has been replaced with a new digital matte paint that corrects the time of day to match the live shots and removes the moons that TOS has established that Vulcan n has not. Another new, more detailed digital cache has been created for the 4K version.
take me please
This photo of the office complex has been recomposed from the original elements (with a new starfield). A CG Shuttle Mod has been added to the lower left port.
The new shot replaces this random shot of an explosion with the stage ceiling visible. This blueprint has been recreated using an original optical VFX plate with new Enterprise CG and a different explosion from the 2001 version that reflects against the hull.
A nacelle was added to the original porthole for the 2001 version. The 2022 version removed the entire wall and replaced it with a new officer’s lounge window cover with a CG nacelle in view.
A new shot was created for the 2022 version, which provides continuity with the next shot where Spock has rings flying behind him before reaching the original rings. This new shot also shows the tunnel between the orifice and V’ger Island, possibly making the rings the entrance to the “imaging chamber” part.
V’ger comes out of the cloud
The original shot of the V’ger model approaching Earth has been replaced with a new CG shot of the cloud dissipating as the camera pans towards Earth. This plan has been recreated for the 2022 version.
A brand new exterior CG shot of the Enterprise going through the tunnel has been created. This plan has been recreated for the 2022 version.
The shot of the outside party coming out of the hatch to stand on the saucer has been replaced with a CG version of the same actions, almost perfectly up to the time of the original plate movements. Tiles now appear in front of them one at a time, animated on both to mimic the feeling of using animation techniques from the 70s in 2001. The 2022 version animates each frame.
V’ger must evolve
An almost 6 second addition was made showing the V’ger entity ascending, then imploding. This plan was recreated for the 2022 version, which puts the head of the ship rather than in profile.
I think I’m wearing your jacket, doctor
Originally, Spock and McCoy’s jackets were reversed in this photo. For the 2022 version, the bands on their arms were reversed to get rid of this continuity error.
A full comparison gallery with over 100 images and scans can be found on Google Photos.
In addition to his work on the various iterations of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Drew’s Star Wars Visual Comparisons blog also contains forensic analysis of the many versions of the original Star Wars trilogy.
Last chance to see on the big screen
Star Trek: The Movie returned to the big screen this week, with screenings on Sunday May 22, Monday May 23 and Wednesday May 25 by Fathom Events. Tickets are on sale now at fathomevents.com.
Here is the official Fathom Events trailer.
Find more Star Trek: The Motion Picture news on TrekMovie.com.