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Sunday, August 14, 2016

Touring the Star Trek Sets at Retro Film Studios in Ticonderoga, New York

Adam wanted to share one of his passions with us.  He bought Eric and me tickets for the second Trekonderoga Pop-Culture Convention.

Adam & Eric in front of
Retro Film Studios in
Ticonderoga, New York.

The studio, located in the former Family Dollar Store, is now providing tours of this replica of the Star Trek sets, under a CBS Consumer Products license, as they were constructed at Desilu Studios.

James Cawley is the head of
Retro Film Studios.

James is an avid Star Trek fan and collector of items from the original series.  He worked as an intern under costume designer William Ware Theiss on Star Trek The Next Generation. After the series ended, he returned to upstate New York, started a not for profit company and has worked tirelessly to build accurate sets, written scrips, produced, directed and has acted in some Star Trek New Voyages episodes.  CBS and Paramount allow fan created shows to be made, as long as they don't turn a profit.

Eric, Adam & I are part of
a group of six waiting for
the blue doors to open &
for our tour to begin.

Star Trek creator, Gene Roddenberry, shopped his series concept around in Hollywood in 1964. Several studios turned him down.  Desilu Studios liked the concept and contracted with Roddenberry to make a pilot for them, followed by the first season of the show.  The rest, as they say, is history.

Our tour guide, Bruce,
brings us to the

I notice that the top of the Transporter is not finished.  Filming the crew transporting must be framed closely to ensured that the unfinished top isn't seen in any film sequences.

This is the replica of the
original Star Trek
Transporter Console.

Eric & Adam inspect the Vital 
Signs Monitor. above one of the
 beds in the Sickbay's Infirmary.

Doctor McCoy's Office

The Doctor's Specimen Analyzer
& his Medical Pad

This circular conduit will
become the Enterprise's
Decompression Chamber.

The finished Chamber will look
like the one in this photo. 

How do James and the people he works with do such a painstaking job of recreating the interior of the original Star Trek Enterprise?

Star Trek the Next Generation
Costume Designer, William Ware
Theisis, gave James a copy of the
ship's blueprints.

We take in the details of

The replica Vulcan Lute at the end of the table was recently added.   Mr. Spock played his lute while Uhuru sang in Charlie X.

Captain Kirk's Office

The wall hangings precisely match the ones on the Star Trek film set as does the gold chest on the ledge.

Captain Kirk's Bedroom

Change a few props, and this becomes First Officer Spock's bedroom. 

An unfinished access area.

James and the work crew are working hard to finish every detail for the growing number of visitors coming from all over the world to see this recreation of Star Trek's film sets.

The original Star Trek sets had
unnamed features.

This is a Jefferies Tube, named for the first time in Star Trek the Next Generation

The Engineering Section
is up ahead.

It's Engineering Officer
Montgomery Scott's realm.

Everyone on the tour admires
this set's details.

An unfinished Engineering
Control Panel & Work 

A member of our tour
group admires the
 retractable chamber.

These two consoles are from
the StarGate SG-1 set.

This is a prized acquisition.

Adam gets a shot of me in
 front of the Warp Core.

 Next stop... The Bridge

 While Bruce describes aspects of The Bridge, I walk across the set to take this picture.
 A photographer sets up shots while our tour spends time here.

As our tour comes to an end,
Bruce shows us this Desilu
Camera on its wheeled stand
& a set light.

These items take up a lot of room in any set.  It's a good thing that they have three walls, allowing space for equipment and the film crew.  The curved hallway is crowded during filming.  I think that timing is important in that narrow setting to get the feeling of continuous motion as the crew "move" from one part of the ship to another.

A recreation of Gene Roddenberry's
desk at Desilu Studio. 

A copy of a congratulatory
note from Lucille Ball 
to Gene.

Desilu Studios was very supportive of the fledgling Star Trek series.

Star Trek fans will recognize these
props used in the filming of 
Star Trek New Voyages.

Eric, Adam and I thank Bruce for our tour.  We are paying close attention to the Trekonderoga Schedule to get the most we can from our day.

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