BREAKING: Official Star Trek Fan Film Guidelines Announced By CBS, Paramount

As a result of the lawsuit between CBS and Paramount and Star Trek fan film studio Axanar Productions, the former two studios have released an official list of fan film guidelines.

The list of guidelines include 10 rules fan film productions must follow. CBS and Paramount state they will not “object to, or take legal action against Star Trek fan productions that are non-professional and amateur and meet the…requirements.”

“Throughout the years, many of you have expressed your love for the franchise through creative endeavors such as fan films. So today, we want to show our appreciation by bringing fan films back to their roots,” states the studios’ press release.

The guidelines, in part, place a time limit on productions, and do not allow such productions to include the name “Star Trek” except in a subtitle labeling the fan film as “A Star Trek fan production.” The requirements also forbids the use of bootleg items or imitations in place of official, commercially available merchandise. Additionally, there is an in-depth description of what it means to have “non-commercial” production, another requirement of fan films.

The full, detailed list of guidelines can be found below.

Axanar Productions and its head, Alec Peters, were sued by Paramount late last year for violating Star Trek intellectual copyright laws while filming the studio’s fan films, Prelude to Axanar and its sequel, Axanar. The case is still set for trial, even after J.J Abrams and Star Trek Beyond director Justin Lin voiced their support for Axanar and said that the lawsuit was “going away.” Although the lawsuit’s discovery process will continue as scheduled, settlement talks are said to still be in progress. As it stands, the trial is set for January 2017.

CBS and Paramount Pictures are big believers in reasonable fan fiction and fan creativity, and, in particular, want amateur fan filmmakers to showcase their passion for Star Trek.  Therefore, CBS and Paramount Pictures will not object to, or take legal action against, Star Trek fan productions that are non-professional and amateur and meet the following guidelines.

Guidelines for Avoiding Objections:

  1. The fan production must be less than 15 minutes for a single self-contained story, or no more than 2 segments, episodes or parts, not to exceed 30 minutes total, with no additional seasons, episodes, parts, sequels or remakes.
  2. The title of the fan production or any parts cannot include the name “Star Trek.” However, the title must contain a subtitle with the phrase: “A STAR TREK FAN PRODUCTION” in plain typeface. The fan production cannot use the term “official” in either its title or subtitle or in any marketing, promotions or social media for the fan production.
  3. The content in the fan production must be original, not reproductions, recreations or clips from any Star Trek production. If non-Star Trek third party content is used, all necessary permissions for any third party content should be obtained in writing.
  4. If the fan production uses commercially-available Star Trek uniforms, accessories, toys and props, these items must be official merchandise and not bootleg items or imitations of such commercially available products.
  5. The fan production must be a real “fan” production, i.e., creators, actors and all other participants must be amateurs, cannot be compensated for their services, and cannot be currently or previously employed on any Star Trek series, films, production of DVDs or with any of CBS or Paramount Pictures’ licensees.
  6. The fan production must be non-commercial:
    • CBS and Paramount Pictures do not object to limited fundraising for the creation of a fan production, whether 1 or 2 segments and consistent with these guidelines, so long as the total amount does not exceed $50,000, including all platform fees, and when the $50,000 goal is reached, all fundraising must cease.
    • The fan production must only be exhibited or distributed on a no-charge basis and/or shared via streaming services without generating revenue.
    • The fan production cannot be distributed in a physical format such as DVD or Blu-ray.
    • The fan production cannot be used to derive advertising revenue including, but not limited to, through for example, the use of pre or post-roll advertising, click-through advertising banners, that is associated with the fan production.
    • No unlicensed Star Trek-related or fan production-related merchandise or services can be offered for sale or given away as premiums, perks or rewards or in connection with the fan production fundraising.
    • The fan production cannot derive revenue by selling or licensing fan-created production sets, props or costumes.
  7. The fan production must be family friendly and suitable for public presentation. Videos must not include profanity, nudity, obscenity, pornography, depictions of drugs, alcohol, tobacco, or any harmful or illegal activity, or any material that is offensive, fraudulent, defamatory, libelous, disparaging, sexually explicit, threatening, hateful, or any other inappropriate content. The content of the fan production cannot violate any individual’s right of privacy.
  8. The fan production must display the following disclaimer in the on-screen credits of the fan productions and on any marketing material including the fan production website or page hosting the fan production:“Star Trek and all related marks, logos and characters are solely owned by CBS Studios Inc. This fan production is not endorsed by, sponsored by, nor affiliated with CBS, Paramount Pictures, or any other Star Trek franchise, and is a non-commercial fan-made film intended for recreational use.  No commercial exhibition or distribution is permitted. No alleged independent rights will be asserted against CBS or Paramount Pictures.”
  9. Creators of fan productions must not seek to register their works, nor any elements of the works, under copyright or trademark law.
  10. Fan productions cannot create or imply any association or endorsement by CBS or Paramount Pictures.

CBS and Paramount Pictures reserve the right to revise, revoke and/or withdraw these guidelines at any time in their own discretion. These guidelines are not a license and do not constitute approval or authorization of any fan productions or a waiver of any rights that CBS or Paramount Pictures may have with respect to fan fiction created outside of these guidelines.

photo: Star Trek: New Voyages

via StarTrek.com

Kyle Hadyniak

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At 22 years old, Kyle Hadyniak has been a lifelong Star Trek fan. A graduate student at the University of Maine, Kyle spends his time either doing school work, playing music, reading history, or studying a replica of the Enterprise-E he has above his desk.

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  • Michael Graef

    A sad day for fan productions.

  • SRLY ?! It’s must be a joke, CBS & Paramount are killing the Star Trek universe… Well done guys… Instead of learning from the fan films, they continues with this stupid alternate universe…

    • LRO

      These guidelines are very generous. They don’t have to allow fan films AT ALL. And if you want to blame someone for killing fan films, look no further than Axanar and their shameless campaign to leverage C/P’s IP for personal financial gain.

      • You work for Paramount, it’s not possible to be so dumb.
        The Fan Films made Star Trek alive when Paramount doesn’t give a shit, when Paramount said to Bryan Singer “Get off with your Star Trek movie”, so please…

        • Goregrinder

          It doesn’t matter if Paramount gives a shit or not. The point of this is to protect their IP from other people making money from it. It would be no different if you started your own movie franchise, became successful, and then I came along and started making my fan version of your movies, but charged money for my version of the movie and merch.

          Basically, I would be making money off your idea, without paying you any sort of royalty or compensation. CBS/Paramount are just financially protecting their product. Does it suck for fan films as we know it? Yeah, of course. But this has always been a gray area, and at least now we know where fan films stand in the Star Trek world, at least legally.

          Besides, they aren’t killing fan films, you can still make them. There are just established guidelines you have to film now, if you do choose to make them.

          • Rad4Cap

            “they aren’t killing fan films”

            Yes they are. They have every right to do so, since it is their property – but they are spitting in the face of those who made their property so valuable in the first place.

        • LRO

          Your tone isn’t very conducive to a discussion, but I’ll explain my position in more detail.

          I love fan films. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be lamenting their death. I love STC, I enjoy some of New Voyages, and I thought Prelude to Axanar was decent. Unfortunately, we won’t be seeing them anymore because of one individual’s excesses. Alec Peters ran a Kickstarter using the Star Trek IP in order to develop a for-profit studio, as well as paid himself a salary to work on the movie. His merchandising also got out of control. Oh, and he repeatedly said that Axanar wasn’t a fan film. Rather, it was the “first fully professional, independent Star Trek film.”

          Fan films are great; I’m really going to miss them. This is truly the end of an era. But you can’t blame CBS/Paramount for putting firm parameters on fans’ legal rights to use their intellectual property. Axanar exploited their historic generosity.

          • Rad4Cap

            “we won’t be seeing them anymore because of one individual’s excesses”

            Your logic is flawed. If this were just about one individual, the guidelines would have been quite different.

            Nor did Peters do anything others before him had not done

            http://www.denofgeek.com/tv/star-trek/19418/star-trek-phase-ii-the-first-professional-fan-film

            “World Enough and Time director Marc Zicree … tells us that World Enough and Time was produced with the full co-operation and knowledge of Paramount and CBS (from “Business Affairs on down”), that he was given directorial advice by no less than J.J. Abrams while shooting the show and that several key personnel were paid for their involvement – including George Takei, and Zicree himself. The show had many professional crew members on board, hired by Zicree’s own production company, including a professional editor, Chris Cronin, who worked at industry rates. He lists a couple dozen more cast and crew members, each with extensive working credentials, some with Emmy and other awards to their names. He also mentions that a day of shooting actually took place on the Universal lot.

            This ultimately begs the question we began with; is Star Trek: Phase II/New Voyages the first professional fan film? When your free, web released movie uses copyrighted characters, but is endorsed by CBS and Paramount; when it features fans in acting roles alongside Trek alumni; when amateur producers rub shoulders with directors who worked on Deep Space Nine and The Next Generation – where do you draw the line?” – 2008

            CBS/Paramount has answered the question raised, not by Peters, but by NUMEROUS fan productions. And it is NOT a good answer. Any number of different answers could have been provided – which would protect C/P’s copyrights etc and ALSO helped the fan films to flourish. C/P instead chose to target them for destruction. C/P are responsible for that action – not Peters, not Crowley, not Russ, etc.. Trying to blame any of them for the choices made by C/P is scapegoating.

          • LRO

            Saying Peters didn’t do anything that hadn’t been done before does not make it true.

            – No other production built a for-profit studio with Kickstarter money raised using the Star Trek IP.
            – No other executive producer paid themselves a salary to work on his/her production.
            – No other production repeatedly said it wasn’t a fan film.
            – No other production created an online store to sell Star Trek coffee, Star Trek model kits, etc.

            These are plain facts.

          • Rad4Cap

            “These are plain facts”

            Given that the article I posted (from 2008) contradicts most of that, no they are not facts at all. But it is obvious you are not here for any other reason than to attack Peters. Certainly seeking some way that rights could be protected AND fan productions like Peters, AND Crawley, AND Russ et all could still proceed is NOT something you have the SLIGHTEST interest in.

            Hate is ugly. It definitely isn’t Trek.

            Good Bye and Good Riddance to you.

            BLOCKED

          • LRO

            The article you posted doesn’t contradict any of what I said. I’d suggest you provide exact quotes, except that I know it’s not possible.

            I find it strange that Axanar defenders talk about critics as ugly haters when their own tone is so angry and taciturn. I don’t need to resort to name-calling to make my points, which are all objectively, verifiably true.

            I’m sorry that you’re so upset. It is indeed sad that the golden age of Trek fan films is over. However, this isn’t the big bad corporation smothering “the little guy.” Still, though, you’re free to believe what you want; that’s your right.

            Take care. Best of luck in your future endeavors.

          • ericphillips

            I know Zicree personally, and the help he got was because he knows those individuals personally- his friends- as he has been in the biz for years. What he did no do is draw a salary or make a dime off the production, pay anyone for their work, or fund his own studio on donations.

          • Rad4Cap

            “What he did no do is draw a salary or make a dime off the production,
            pay anyone for their work, or fund his own studio on donations.”

            Funny. That’s not what Zicree himself stated publicly:

            “He tells us that World Enough and Time was produced with the
            full co-operation and knowledge of Paramount and CBS (from “Business Affairs on down”), that he was given directorial advice by no less than J.J. Abrams while shooting the show and that several key personnel were paid for their involvement – including George Takei, and Zicree himself. The show had many professional crew members on board, hired by Zicree’s own production company, including a professional editor, Chris Cronin, who worked at industry rates. He lists a couple dozen more cast and crew members, each with extensive working credentials, some with Emmy and other awards to their names. He also mentions that a day of shooting actually took place on the Universal lot.”

            Read more: http://www.denofgeek.com/tv/star-trek/19418/star-trek-phase-ii-the-first-professional-fan-film#ixzz4Co21uts5

      • Joseph Heston

        You consider 15 minutes _generous_? That’s only enough time for a trailer.

        • LRO

          It’s 30 minutes, actually. And, yes, it’s very generous to let fans use intellectual property they don’t own in this way. The fact that fans are allowed to crowd-fund to the tune of $50,000 after the crap Axanar pulled is remarkably kind.

  • Several productions have already called it quits. Others are just finishing their productions that they already started and then will close as well.
    Star Wars doesn’t seem to have this issue, in fact, THEY HOLD AWARDS for the best fan film productions! It doesn’t seem to be harming them, financial-wise especially. So why be a KILLJOY, CBS/Paramount?!
    On the 50th Anniversary of Star Trek no less?!
    THANKS FOR NOTHING!

    • IndyCarFan

      What should one expect from the pathetic CBS/P? They are idiots, they have NEVER acted responsible with the franchise. I am so done with Trek! It is dead in my eyes!

    • Goregrinder

      Because Star Wars is a billion dollar franchise, while Star Trek is still just a multi million dollar franchise. There is a big difference between the two IP’s, and it appears CBS/Paramount want to make sure that ANY money that is made off of any form of Trek, goes to them.

      They still promote fan films, they just don’t want you making money off them. And just because Disney does one thing, doesn’t mean all other studios have to follow suit. CBS/Paramount could have said “NO MORE FAN FILMS” and legally went after every single production company that made a fan film in the past few years, and took all of them to court for copyright infringement. They totally and legally could have done that…but they didn’t.

      Basically, all they said was: The line must be drawn here! This far, no further!

      • “just a multi-million dollar franchise”??? Uh, NO.
        Try FOUR BILLION-DOLLAR franchise as of 2006 according to CNBC ( and that was BEFORE the reboot movies )
        These fan productions were designed to be non-profit and not money-makers (any money collected goes into to production and not in their pockets – THAT was ALWAYS understood by these fan film makers), and CBS/Paramount never “promoted fan films”, where did you get THAT idea?
        CBS/Paramount now wants to micromanage the situation to the point that it isn’t a “labor of love” anymore, which was the fan productions were ALL ABOUT!
        (And spare me the Picard quote from First Contact. That was cheesy and pathetic)
        http://trekmovie.com/2006/08/21/cnbc-trek-worth-4bparamount-frakes-spiner-brooks-talk-trek-bling/

    • LRO

      It’s ironic that you say that. Guess what the guidelines are for the Star Wars fan film contest? The film can only be FIVE MINUTES long… ten less than the rules announced for Star Trek.

      I say again: CBS/Paramount graciously let New Voyages, Star Trek Continues, and many other productions operate with restriction… as long as they weren’t making a profit. Axanar openly expressed their intentions to make a profit. Using Kickstarter money raised off the Star Trek IP, they built a for-profit studio. The executive producer also paid himself a salary.

      It’s incredibly disappointing that NV, STC, and many other productions may be forced to disband. But let’s not pretend that CBS and Paramount are being unreasonable. They’re protecting their IP (in a way that’s still very generous, frankly) after one individual/production exploited their historic tolerance of fan expression.

      • Jcursiolf

        The 5 minutes rule is to be elegible to the award. There is no movement from Disney/Lucasfilm against movies that have 10, 20 or more minutes. The only downside of a longer fan film is that it won’t receive any award. There are also other rules regarding soundtrack and stuff like that, but those are also just to make the movie elegible or not.

        Some of the rules from CBS/Paramount do make sense. Some of them, however, are designed specifically to avoid fanfilms. Even agreeing that the Axanar guy f**ked up, they using a grenade to kill one ant.

        • These are the guidelines Alec Peters asked for. They are the guidelines David Gerrold specifically asked for. They are what Axanar’s lawyers were pushing for. Well, guess what? They got them. Don’t like it? Take it up with Alec Peters.

        • Jayson Deare

          Just because they don’t do anything about it doesn’t mean they allow it if someone raised a million dollars for an independent Star Wars production or were producing fan series like Continues and New Voyages I am sure Disney would be suing right now as most works are short one offs they don’t need to do anything.

    • Jayson Deare

      The official Lucas film guidelines limit all fan films in the contest to 5 minutes and also all licenses to your work are transferred to Lucasfilm these guidelines are actually less limiting than Lucasfilms

      • Rad4Cap

        “in the contest” being the KEY point. Lucas does NOT place a limit on ANY and ALL films like C/P. So you are completely WRONG. These guidelines are FAR more “draconian” than anything Lucas has told all their fans – because it is NOT limited to just submissions for a particular award.

        • Jayson Deare

          Go read the Disney Terms of use replying to all of their properties Marvel, ESPN, Star Wars etc. If you think that they will allow someone to crowd fund hundreds of thousands of dollars for a fan film. Star Wars fan films as labors of love are tolerated on shoe string budgets by fans for fans no external fund raising involved.

          Lucasfilm has never allowed an ongoing series like Star Trek Continues and New Voyages and now under Disney will continue that policy.

          If you don’t think that Disney would use its contest guidelines as an example of general guidelines in a lawsuit then….

          You want to make something with friends that are talented fine. Star Trek was the same way till crowd funding became the norm.

          • Rad4Cap

            “Go read the Disney Terms of use replying to all of their properties Marvel, ESPN, Star Wars etc.”

            Non-sequitur. Your claim was that “the official Lucas film guidelines” are “actually less limiting than Lucasfilms”. As demonstrated, that claim is NOT true. All your hand-waving doesn’t change that fact.

            If you want to make a DIFFERENT claim – as you are now trying to do – go right ahead. It doesn’t change the falsehood of the original claim.

            So rant all you like, you claim was wrong.

          • Jayson Deare

            Okay then I will say this Disney’s official terms are you can’t use shit outside the contest so way worse than Star Trek’s have fun ranting and picking apart people’s comments to look more intelligent on the Internet!

          • Rad4Cap

            Apparently Jayson feels the need to attack the people who point out the errors of his claims. As a famous someone would say, “That is highly illogical.”

            As to the rest, one need merely do a google search of all the Star Wars fan films released just this year which don’t meet the Lucasfilm guidelines or the supposed “Disney official terms” to see the assertions being made are mere hyperbole.

            One is left wondering WHY individuals like Jayson are so ENTHUSIASTIC in their defense of these “draconian” guidelines. They hurt, not help or foster, the fan film community.

            It’s almost as if Jayson and his fellow travelers are not here in support of that community at all.

      • Jcursiolf

        “In the contest”. If you want to make a 40 minutes fanfilm you can. And the licenses being transferred to them should be quite obvious as they own the licenses to Star Wars.

        Point in case here is not that CBS/Paramount are wrong. They are not. I’m talking about relationship with the fandom. CBS/Paramount says “do it in under 15 minutes or we will sue you” while Disney/Lucasfilm says “do it in under 5 minutes and you may win an award”.

        • Jayson Deare

          There are no official rules for fan films other than the contest rules. Right now they are tolerant of low budget non crowd funded productions. Star Wars fandom has been far more respectful of keeping things by fans for fans if you look at fan film budgets etc. If you make something Star Wars that’s 40 minutes or 10 or whatever they can sue you if they feel like it.

          • Jcursiolf

            They certainly can, but they haven’t. And I agree that the fandom of Star Wars is more respectful. However, by making an award (that goes back at least 10 years), they make fans interested in making fan films under their rules without having to go to justice. Thus, they gather the fans that are interested in fan films around them and make a good relationship with them.

          • Botany Cameos

            “They can, but they haven’t”.

            Neither had CBS/Paramount.

            They only sued Axanar because of the money issue, but they never went after the others before. Axanar ruined it. 🙁

  • Gregg Birdsong

    Damn I was looking forward to Axanar

  • Sam Anders

    Be clear…CBS/P didn’t kill fan films. Axanar and Alec Peters did. They pissed in the sandbox.

    • CBS & Paramount doesn’t give a shit of ST for a decade, when the fan films continues to extand the universe…

      • Botany Cameos

        The things axanar fanboys will say are amazing! lmao

        > “CBS & Paramount doesn’t give a shit of ST for a decade”

        In the past decade they have done more for Trek than anyone had in decades!

        As a long time TOS fan (who enjoyed the other incarnations of Trek since then, but missed the feeling of TOS, the characters, and the kind of mix of interesting plot + entertaining fun that TOS had in a better manner than later Trek), I’m delighted with what they are currently doing for Trek.

        But of course, brainwashed axamarines can’t see any of it, they are busy constantly pretending any new Trek is bad, so talking to you is a waste of time.

    • Rad4Cap

      No. Even if one agrees that Peters was wrong – ie pissed in the sandbox – banning essentially EVERYONE from the sandbox and specifically TARGETING people OTHER than Peters is C/P’s doing and their doing ALONE.

      You are blaming the bathwater for the parent throwing out the baby with that bathwater. That is NOT logical.

  • Rad4Cap

    In other words: “We really want your work to SUCK. Happy 50th Anniversary! Go see our movie!”

    • Alec Peters’ work did suck. After more than a million dollars, and years of bringing in donations, they didn’t even have a cast for the film set aside. Even now, there’s no cast, as some of them have left after issues with Peters, most notably Tony Todd. Go on, though, I’m sure that’s not the bow of the ship sinking. It’s just the sea being jealous of the size of your vessel.

  • Rad4Cap

    This is no different than the government saying “Okay, we won’t ban guns. We’ll just tax them at $10,000 a piece and only allow them to hold one bullet.” The result is the SAME as banning them.

    This is nothing but a completely CYNICAL attempt to destroy fan productions while PRETENDING they are ‘allowing’ them.

    • Actually, it’s quite different. Almost in every way it’s different. Also, all caps on words don’t make them extra true. It makes you look like a fervent cult member, honestly.

  • JB

    And I thought that the proposed rules were onerous–they were, without question, strangling in comparison to many other published guidelines–but this is a joke. At this point there’s little choice but to hope that Axanar moves forward and can break the back of these regulations because I can’t see much good coming from a production made within the gallows–I mean framework of these guidelines.

    • Rad4Cap

      “I can’t see much good coming from a production made within the gallows–I mean framework of these guidelines”

      That’s a feature, not a bug.

    • These guidelines exist specifically because of Axanar. They took honey from a swarm of bees. When the bees became angry, they swatted at them. Now they’re upset because the bees are stinging. Well, everyone gets stung when a swarm of bees is enraged by one asshole who can’t control how much of someone else’s honey he takes. Especially when he turns around and sells that honey as his own.

      • JB

        I wouldn’t let CBS and Paramount off the hook so easily. They are not an unintelligent creature like bees. You look at the guidelines comma several of them are specifically aiming at other fan productions, not Axanar. Among the sentient creatures of the galaxy what they are doing looks much more like settling some scores and using Axanar, though arguably guilty of some excesses, as a scape goat.

        • Rad4Cap

          “I wouldn’t let CBS and Paramount off the hook so easily.”

          I’ve blocked Dragon and a couple others. They aren’t here to support the Trek community. They are here SOLELY to spew their bile at Peters. That Trek fans have been hurt by C/P’s guidelines is something they simply do not give a damn about – as some have said explicitly (ex “anything that hurts Peters makes me happy”).

          Theirs is not they spirit or character of Star Trek. They simply have hate in their hearts and want to infect everyone else with it.

  • Arron Bubba Ratcliff

    Well Good job Alec peters and Axanar you turds have ruined Trek fan films.that greedy talent less hack i hope he gets boils in places that shouldn’t be mentioned in public.I thought the guidelines Peters proposed stunk.I guess all that mattered to him was getting the 1.5 million from fans to make his studio.i am so ticked off right now at peters and CBS/Paramount. I hope the New Trek Series on CBS all Access bombs.Matter of fact I’m canceling my subscription.Hmmm i wonder if i can gather enough local fans to boycott the new trek movie.

    • Goregrinder

      You probably might, but good luck. I know I won’t be boycotting the new Trek movies. I like all Trek.

    • Planetary

      Go ahead and boycott. I’ve been listening to fans “boycotting” nuTrek for the last several years. The movies made a shit ton of money without them and I’m sure Beyond will do just fine without them this time around as well.

      • Botany Cameos

        The more the extreme fringe of the fandom behaves like crazy cultists and calls for boycotts over ridiculous nonsense, the more the copyright owners feel divorced of them and feel less need to listen to what they want, so their alienating behavior is counterproductive at best.

        Meanwhile, the public at large as well as all of us fans (the real ones who actually care about the franchise and enjoy Trek as a whole) continue greatly enjoying the new movies, and the money to keep the franchise alive keeps pouring in.

  • Frank Fradella

    “The requirements also forbids the use of bootleg items or imitations in place of official, commercially available merchandise.” Not true. Read it again. It says that if you’re going to use commercially available products, they must be legit. It says nothing about creating your own.

  • These guidelines are terrible and ridiculous. The “Star Trek Continues” people have always played fair with CBS/Paramount and have never made any money off of Star Trek … and CBS/Paramount treats them like this.

    I HAD been excited about the new series that was going to debut on
    CBS in 2017, but these guidelines have left such a bad taste in my mouth that now I’m not sure that I’ll subscribe after all.

    Way to kill my love, Paramount!

    • Planetary

      And I’m sure if you asked the “Star Trek Continues” people, (you know, the people Alec Peters threw under the bus) they’d be laying the blame for all of this squarely on Alec Peters.

      • Alec Peters and Axanar are the ones who made guidelines necessary, but CBS and Paramount could simply have stated that fan productions were not permitted to make money off of the films. Such a rule would have scuttled Axanar while still letting the Star Trek Continues and Star
        Trek New Voyages people do their thing.

        So, yes, I DO blame CBS and Paramount, because shutting down Axanar didn’t require limiting fan productions to 15-minute episodes or limiting series to two episodes.

        • Planetary

          Paramount did what they had to do to prevent the next jack ass with delusions of grandeur from trying to make a living off their property. They left things nice and gray, and respectable people respected that. Let one production get away with it, and others will try the same. You don’t negotiate with hostage takers for the same reason.

  • Milo

    Copyright laws need to change. Under the 1909 law, in about two years this would have been a non-issue as TOS would have been in the public domain. Instead we have the 1978 law and it’s extension from 1998 so that franchises like Star Trek, Mickey Mouse, Superman, etc, never go into the public domain. That’s not how it’s suppose to work!

    Star Trek itself has certainly benefited from the public domain over the years and it’s time that it joins those same works it’s ripped off of. Contact your elected representatives and tell them not to pass then next proposed extension for 2018! Let things go into the public domain like they were meant to!

    • Rad4Cap

      No. The issue isn’t a problem with Copyright laws. It’s with people being complete jerks about what is their property. There are any number of ways this situation could have been resolved to the benefit of and satisfaction of all involved. But they chose not to – as is their right. What that choice tells us, however, is how little they respect the fans who have made their property valuable.

      • You’re right. Axanar shouldn’t have claimed to be making the first fully independent Star Trek film with property that wasn’t theirs. Live and learn.

        • Rad4Cap

          Yes, they should have been one of MANY to make fully independent Star Trek EPISODES with property that wasn’t theirs. LOL

          It is truly astounding how many people are not here because they love Star Trek but because they hate Peters.

          Good Riddance.

          • So you’ll block me, too, because that doesn’t indicate your inability to respond to valid criticism.

          • LRO

            This has gotten to the level of performance art. It’s difficult to believe that a post like Rad4Cap’s could be genuine.

            No matter how politely or logically you lay out the facts of the situation, Axanar supporters’ response is essentially: “You’re a hater and you should die.”

            Actually, that’s starting to make a little sense. If Axanar, which was to be a collection of CGI space battles loosely connected by shouted dialogue, is supposedly “real Star Trek,” then the tone of Alex’s supporters makes sense. In their minds, wrath and vengeance constitute “Gene’s vision.”

          • Shouty dialogue is the best Star Trek dialogue.

          • Planetary

            “No matter how politely or logically you lay out the facts of the
            situation, Axanar supporters’ response is essentially: “You’re a hater
            and you should die.”

            That or “You’re a CBS employee”. Joseph McCarthy would’ve loved these guys.

  • RIP Fan productions. All because of the fear of success of Axanar.

    • All because Axanar stole property that wasn’t theirs, and paid themselves for the privilege. Be angry, but also be correct.

  • Soren Chartier

    Nothing like fully biting off the hand that feeds you and keeps your constantly near death franchise alive. This is sorely limiting and an insult to many top notch fan film producers mainly the biggest two of James Cawley and Star Trek Continues. This literally kills my interest in trek and have been a lifelong fan since TOS. After this I think a boycott is in order.

    • The hand that feeds CBS/Paramount paid hundreds of millions of dollars for the last Star Trek film. The $1.5 million raised by Axanar hasn’t even produced a two hour fan film, oh, I mean, independent production that uses someone else’s IP.

      • Soren Chartier

        Why punish an entire sea of fandom for one production that decided to take it to deep space? I wouldn’t exactly call the new rules “fair sentencing”.

        • That’s the thing, it isn’t a punishment. By all rights, CBS/Paramount could shut the lid on all productions, and sue them into oblivion, the law would be on their side, and rightfully so. Instead, they made the guidelines that some of the more outspoken, vocal fans of Axanar (and Axanar itself, along with their lawyers) demanded.

          Well, they got those guidelines, and they’re more generous than what people making Star Wars fan films get. If you don’t like them, talk to David Gerrold, who openly stated years ago that he felt Star Trek should have guidelines like Star Wars. Well, CBS/Paramount went and made those guidelines, though they made them a little more lenient than Lucas/Disney did for the SW franchise.

          Remember, you’re playing in CBS/Paramount’s sandbox. It’s their property, and so if they see people making money off the back of their property, they have every right to shut that down. Axanar was making money. Peters was personally profiting from it. Instead of killing every fan production for breaking the unspoken rule of “don’t sell anything, don’t make a profit, don’t pay yourself,” they restricted things.

          They may eventually ease up, but for right now their response is very reasonable for a major corporation who caught someone profiting off of their work.

          • Soren Chartier

            They were are already taking Alec Peters to court, or so I thought, as it was apparently dropped as of a few weeks ago in favor of laying out these new rules. Again, why throw the baby out with the bath water? There are others, such as James Cawley’s STPII and Star Trek Continues, both of whom have done really great work and were just starting to take off after having invested A LOT into their sets and productions..(as was a small group Pacific 201 which had a lot of promise too) But with Axanar crossing the line, now everyone, fans included, get to suffer. In a word, it’s just shitty. Certainly CBS could have been a little more fair handed.

            I’m 45 and have been a life long fan starting with TOS. I understand and get the IP issue and how fan films need to be kept in check but when a studio is already raking in mega-millions and has for the last 45+ years I just don’t see how a few small productions hurt them as it invigorates the fan base as well creates new fans. I wasn’t even very excited about Trek until these new fan films started to actually produce pro-worthy episodes. It made me want to go see the movies, buy official merch, etc, etc. IT HELPED CBS. And IMO the Abrams “twilight-verse” has been bad enough to endure so it’s been nice to see people with true Trek in them keep the original spirit alive.

            CBS is totally missing the big picture all in the name of the almighty dollar and if they would relax the reigns a little they would see that they would in fact have much more to gain with both money and more fans over the long run by imposing some reasonable rules. I mean 15 minute episodes and $50k limits? Really? Give me a break. They simply can’t see the forest for the trees!!!! It should at least be 30 min per episode and allow at least a 1 part / 2 part episode for every 10 episodes and maybe put a cap of 50 episodes total per group or maybe 100 for more die-hard professional groups such as STPII and STC. 15 minutes? It’s like why even bother.

            And it’s not exactly like there are a ton of people out doing this stuff anyway! And it’s not like they are going to make money hand over fist when it takes a huge team to pull off a good one hour episode. Both camps have been lucky to crank out one every six damn months so tell me who’s getting rich there?

            In my opinion dedicated fans are doing this for their great love of Star Trek nothing more and CBS should not only respect it, they should be flattered and thankful, yet it’s obvious THEY AREN’T.. And if Alec Peters was making Axanar for personal net gain then sue him and hang him out to dry. And let everyone else keep the dream of good Star Trek alive.

            Gene Roddenberry is rolling over in his grave! Fans are so much more than just a body who buys a movie ticket!!!!

          • Arron Bubba Ratcliff

            Soren The case is still on going. it has not been settled or dismissed.it’s in the discovery phase.The sad thing is Peters and his lawyer were pushing for guidelines as part of their counter suit. Well they got guidelines all right.All of which Axanar fails to meet lol

          • It hasn’t been dropped. The lawsuit is still going. Quite frankly, it seems they relaxed the reins too much, as Axanar is a prime example of this. CBS told them to stop, and Axanar refused. This could have been over already, if Axanar would have backed down. Instead, they pushed back, and they openly stated they would continue production. Alec Peters and Robert Meyer Burnett taunted CBS openly.

            Up until this point, STC, Renegades, all the other productions were being casually ignored, save for a few directives here and there (you can’t do this or that). Axanar made the loudest noise, so that’s where CBS directed their attention. Axanar demanded guidelines, and so CBS gave them. What rules do you hand down to your screaming, petulant child? Hard ones.

            The hope is that their behavior will change. These are behavior modification rules. No more $1 million kickstarters, no more Star Trek alumni causing brand dilution, especially in a year with a new film and a new TV series coming out.

            These were reasonable steps CBS/P took. We may not like them, but there they are. Maybe in the future CBS/P will relax them, but for now, they have to show who is in control of the IP.

            Still, in all of this, watch how Axanar behaves. Watch what they do. Robert Meyer Burnett has already talked about making the whole film anyway. His response to CBS/P’s announcement was to quote the Kirk line “the word is no. I am therefore going anyway.”

            That may work in the movies, but not in real life. Axanar seems like they won’t rest until they’re either allowed to make a business on top of CBS/P’s property, or until they get all fan films shut down permanently.

          • sherry

            you should think twice and think again

            about what you just said when paramount and CBS

            made these rules and take a hard good look

            no one can make a movie from it

          • Including the fan productions making movies with it? Perhaps you should let them know they’re doing it wrong. 😉

          • Planetary

            Well they are suing him and hanging him out to dry. They’re also going to make sure that there will be no other Alec Peters stealing their property. Also, Gene Roddenberry is not rolling over in his grave. Roddenberry was a greedy bastard who did this: http://mentalfloss.com/article/28895/star-trek-theme-song-has-lyrics

            If Roddenberry were alive today, he’d be leading the charge AGAINST Alec Peters.

          • Soren Chartier

            Reminds me of the TOS episode “A Piece of the Action” lol. And I do think a charge against Peters was warranted, no matter who leads it. IP should most certainly be respected but having let the smaller productions exist for so long, it’s still a big slap in the face to have the rug pulled out from under them so forcefully. Again, 15 minutes is a joke. All this is going to do is turn away a whole generation of fans, myself included.

          • Rad4Cap

            I’ve blocked Dragon and a couple others here. Their frenetic posting is NOT in support the Trek community. They are here SOLELY to spew their bile at Peters (and anyone who doesn’t join in their spiteful rage). That Trek fans have been hurt by C/P’s guidelines is something they simply do NOT give a DAMN about – as some have said explicitly (ex “anything that hurts Peters makes me happy”).

            Theirs is NOT they spirit or character of Star Trek. They simply have hate in their hearts and (like the Borg) want to infect -actual- Trek fans with it.

  • Trent

    Time to boycott .

    At least for me ,
    They don’t give a crap about the fans

    This Anniversary fu-k you, to the fans who make films is the final straw

    Blaming this on Axanar is getting ridiculous ,

    you don’t throw out the entire barrel because one apple might be going bad { I say might be because Axanar NEVER GOT MADE}

    • Rad4Cap

      “Blaming this on Axanar is getting ridiculous ,you don’t throw out the entire barrel because one apple might be going bad”

      I pointed out elsewhere that even IF everything said about Peters is true, blaming Peters for the guidelines created by C/P is like blaming the bathwater for the PARENT choosing to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

      It is simply irrational. But those that mindlessly attack Peters are not interested in the Trek community of fans. They don’t want to see it prosper. They simply want Peters to fail – and then gleefully stomp on his grave. They don’t give a DAMN about what C/P has done here to the fan community.

      They are not here posting in love of Trek, but in hatred of Peters.

      In other words, they betray the principles OF Star Trek.

  • dcforeman

    This is the message of Star Trek. A community of different people coming together to make something greater than the whole. That’s the foundation of the Federation. Now, a bunch of people get together, croudfund the feature film we WISH paramount would make. And instead of jumping on this, investing in it, helping make what is effectively FREE content. Paramount and CBS do their best to stamp it out. I mean, they want to make money right? Axanar has brought them a FREE audience. It has self funded itself meaning no investment required from the studio. The studio as owners could easily use this movie to push the new 2017, and Beyond movie. Or they could slap in on the official Star Trek website with adverts. They could take the movie, sell it on DVD / Blu-ray. They could do a whole Fan Made section on their websites, their paid for streaming services. They could do any number of things to make a profit, and at zero investment. They could help us CELEBRATE Star Trek, instead they are putting on their giant boots and stamping on the fires of the community as much as possible.

    All CBS/ Paramount need is a simple rule. If you make it with the Star Trek brand. We have the right to sell it.

    They are all so short sighted it sickens me.

  • Captain Torpedo
  • ericphillips

    Thank you Alec Peters for ruining it for everyone.

  • sherry

    I would like to fight Paramount and CBS about these rules

    we want sequels we love Star Trek we need more time to make the movie

    we want a beginning, middle and an end

    do you agree or disagree

    We also need more time to do to it in

  • sherry

    Who wants too fight CBS or Paramount for fan films,

    1 The fan production must be less than 15 minutes for a single self-contained story, or no more than 2 segments, episodes or parts, not to exceed 30 minutes total, with no additional seasons, episodes, parts, sequels or remakes.

    do you agree or disagree

    2 The title of the fan production or any parts cannot include the name “Star Trek.” However, the title must contain a subtitle with the phrase: “A STAR TREK FAN PRODUCTION” in plain typeface. The fan production cannot use the term “official” in either its title or subtitle or in any marketing, promotions or social media for the fan production.

    do you agree or disagree

    3 The content in the fan production must be original, not reproductions, recreations or clips from any Star Trek production. If non-Star Trek third party content is used, all necessary permissions for any third party content should be obtained in writing.

    do you agree or disagree

    4 if the fan production uses commercially-available Star Trek uniforms, accessories, toys and props, these items must be official merchandise and not bootleg items or imitations of such commercially available products.

    do you agree or disagree

    5 The fan production must be a real “fan” production, i.e., creators, actors and all other participants must be amateurs, cannot be compensated for their services, and cannot be currently or previously employed on any Star Trek series, films, production of DVDs or with any of CBS or Paramount Pictures’ licensees.

    do you agree or disagree

    6 The fan production must be non-commercial

    * CBS and Paramount Pictures do not object to limited fundraising for the creation of a fan production, whether 1 or 2 segments and consistent with these guidelines, so long as the total amount does not exceed $50,000, including all platform fees, and when the $50,000 goal is reached, all fundraising must cease.

    do you agree or disagree

    *The fan production must only be exhibited or distributed on a no-charge basis and/or shared via streaming services without generating revenue.

    do you agree or disagree

    * The fan production cannot be distributed in a physical format such as DVD or Blu-ray.

    do you agree or disagree

    The fan production cannot be used to derive advertising revenue including, but not limited to, through for example, the use of pre or post-roll advertising, click-through advertising banners, that is associated with the fan production.

    do you agree or disagree

    *No unlicensed Star Trek-related or fan production-related merchandise or services can be offered for sale or given away as premiums, perks or rewards or in connection with the fan production fundraising

    do you agree or disagree

    * The fan production cannot derive revenue by selling or licensing fan-created production sets, props or costumes.

    do you agree or disagree

    7 The fan production must be family friendly and suitable for public presentation. Videos must not include profanity, nudity, obscenity, pornography, depictions of drugs, alcohol, tobacco, or any harmful or illegal activity, or any material that is offensive, fraudulent, defamatory, libelous, disparaging, sexually explicit, threatening, hateful, or any other inappropriate content. The content of the fan production cannot violate any individual’s right of privacy.

    do you agree or disagree

    8 The fan production must display the following disclaimer in the on-screen credits of the fan productions and on any marketing material including the fan production website or page hosting the fan production:”Star Trek and all related marks, logos and characters are solely owned by CBS Studios Inc. This fan production is not endorsed by, sponsored by, nor affiliated with CBS, Paramount Pictures, or any other Star Trek franchise, and is a non-commercial fan-made film intended for recreational use. No commercial exhibition or distribution is permitted. No alleged independent rights will be asserted against CBS or Paramount Pictures.”

    do you agree or disagree

    9 Creators of fan productions must not seek to register their works, nor any elements of the works, under copyright or trademark law

    do you agree or disagree

    10 Fan productions cannot create or imply any association or endorsement by CBS or Paramount Pictures.

    CBS and Paramount Pictures reserve the right to revise, revoke and/or withdraw these guidelines at any time in their own discretion. These guidelines are not a license and do not constitute approval or authorization of any fan productions or a waiver of any rights that CBS or Paramount Pictures may have with respect to fan fiction created outside of these guidelin

    do you agree or disagree

  • fish

    Who wants too fight CBS or Paramount for fan films,

    1 The fan production must be less than 15 minutes for a single self-contained story, or no more than 2 segments, episodes or parts, not to exceed 30 minutes total, with no additional seasons, episodes, parts, sequels or remakes.

    do you agree or disagree

    2 The title of the fan production or any parts cannot include the name “Star Trek.” However, the title must contain a subtitle with the phrase: “A STAR TREK FAN PRODUCTION” in plain typeface. The fan production cannot use the term “official” in either its title or subtitle or in any marketing, promotions or social media for the fan production.

    do you agree or disagree

    3 The content in the fan production must be original, not reproductions, recreations or clips from any Star Trek production. If non-Star Trek third party content is used, all necessary permissions for any third party content should be obtained in writing.

    do you agree or disagree

    4 if the fan production uses commercially-available Star Trek uniforms, accessories, toys and props, these items must be official merchandise and not bootleg items or imitations of such commercially available products.

    do you agree or disagree

    5 The fan production must be a real “fan” production, i.e., creators, actors and all other participants must be amateurs, cannot be compensated for their services, and cannot be currently or previously employed on any Star Trek series, films, production of DVDs or with any of CBS or Paramount Pictures’ licensees.

    do you agree or disagree

    6 The fan production must be non-commercial

    * CBS and Paramount Pictures do not object to limited fundraising for the creation of a fan production, whether 1 or 2 segments and consistent with these guidelines, so long as the total amount does not exceed $50,000, including all platform fees, and when the $50,000 goal is reached, all fundraising must cease.

    do you agree or disagree

    *The fan production must only be exhibited or distributed on a no-charge basis and/or shared via streaming services without generating revenue.

    do you agree or disagree

    * The fan production cannot be distributed in a physical format such as DVD or Blu-ray.

    do you agree or disagree

    The fan production cannot be used to derive advertising revenue including, but not limited to, through for example, the use of pre or post-roll advertising, click-through advertising banners, that is associated with the fan production.

    do you agree or disagree

    *No unlicensed Star Trek-related or fan production-related merchandise or services can be offered for sale or given away as premiums, perks or rewards or in connection with the fan production fundraising

    do you agree or disagree

    * The fan production cannot derive revenue by selling or licensing fan-created production sets, props or costumes.

    do you agree or disagree

    7 The fan production must be family friendly and suitable for public presentation. Videos must not include profanity, nudity, obscenity, pornography, depictions of drugs, alcohol, tobacco, or any harmful or illegal activity, or any material that is offensive, fraudulent, defamatory, libelous, disparaging, sexually explicit, threatening, hateful, or any other inappropriate content. The content of the fan production cannot violate any individual’s right of privacy.

    do you agree or disagree

    8 The fan production must display the following disclaimer in the on-screen credits of the fan productions and on any marketing material including the fan production website or page hosting the fan production:”Star Trek and all related marks, logos and characters are solely owned by CBS Studios Inc. This fan production is not endorsed by, sponsored by, nor affiliated with CBS, Paramount Pictures, or any other Star Trek franchise, and is a non-commercial fan-made film intended for recreational use. No commercial exhibition or distribution is permitted. No alleged independent rights will be asserted against CBS or Paramount Pictures.”

    do you agree or disagree

    9 Creators of fan productions must not seek to register their works, nor any elements of the works, under copyright or trademark law

    do you agree or disagree

    10 Fan productions cannot create or imply any association or endorsement by CBS or Paramount Pictures.

    CBS and Paramount Pictures reserve the right to revise, revoke and/or withdraw these guidelines at any time in their own discretion. These guidelines are not a license and do not constitute approval or authorization of any fan productions or a waiver of any rights that CBS or Paramount Pictures may have with respect to fan fiction created outside of these guidelin

    do you agree or disagree