Page B – ‘Star Trek’ movie man didn’t like original series 5/5/2009

J.J. Abrams

J.J. Abrams

NEW YORK, May 5, 2009 — J.J. Abrams, director of the new “Star Trek” movie that opened last month, didn’t even like the original “Star Trek” TV show, he told Charlie Rose on Rose’s talk show May 4.

“The thing about ‘Star Trek’ is [I] was never necessarily a fan of ‘Star Trek’ — [though] I’ve come to appreciate it, working on the movie, in the way that friends of mine did, often smart friends, who loved the show,” said Abrams, 42, the creator of TV shows such as “Lost,” “Fringe,” “Alias” and “Felicity.”

Abrams said he was more of a “Star Wars” fan.

“Well, ‘Star Wars’ gave you a way in,” Abrams said, explaining how “Star Wars” provided a background story for Luke Skywalker, rather than plunking the boy right down in an adventure setting with no explanation.  ” ‘Star Wars’ introduced this farm boy who is just in the middle of nowhere and suddenly he’s called to adventure . . . and you got to know someone who is then taken on an extraordinary adventure.”

On the other hand, he said, ” ‘Star Trek’ always had the characters in ‘extraordinary adventure mode’ [already]!”

Sitting across the table from Rose Monday was a dream come true for Abrams.

Really.  Abrams even said so after Rose asked him about his dreams (by which he meant ambitions).

“The ultimate dream really was, I’m not kidding, to be here,” Abrams said.  “I mean, to get to make a movie, to get to do something that —  when I was an 8 year-old kid, I was making Super 8 films on my parent’s camera, this is what I always wanted to do — and to be lucky enough and get a shot and get to do it and literally be sitting here talking to you about a movie [“Star Trek”] that I’ve got coming out is as surreal as it gets – really!”

Among other topics covered in the 30-minute conversation: the TV shows that influenced Abrams, what he (and his wife) thought of the “Sopranos” finale, and how “Lost” will end (he’s not telling).

“The thing about [a] mystery or a puzzle, or even a magic trick that’s being performed, is that you have to surrender to it,” Abrams said.  “You have to solve this thing, you have to get it on its terms.  It can’t be just your desire to know the answer right now!  So when people say to me, ‘How does “Lost” end?  Tell me!’  I always feel like they’re missing the point of what the show is because, yeah, I could tell you the ending, but isn’t the idea of it, isn’t the experience of it more important than the answer?”

“Lost” will be back next season, ABC confirmed to TV Howl today.

As for “The Sopranos,” Rose’s reason for asking about the show’s infamous finale was itself somewhat of a mystery since “The Sopranos” ended its run almost two years ago, in June 2007.  But he asked about it anyway.

In case you’ve been keeping track for two years of who liked the “Sopranos” finale and who didn’t, Abrams liked it.  “I thought it was actually very interesting and I loved the ambiguity of it,” Abrams said.  OK then.

Abrams also revealed that “The Twilight Zone” is his all-time favorite TV show, adding that he has long been an admirer of Rod Serling, who happens to be the hero of most, if not all, TV writers.

Contact Adam Buckman:


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