A Day in the Life of a Star Trek Director

6 Mar

Good morning, everyone.  Quiet on set, please.

No, put down that bat’leth.  We’re using it in next week’s episode, and I don’t need it getting lost among all those leola root props.

Ok, let’s look at what we’ve got on the docket today… Hmm… A scene in engineering and two on the bridge.  That means we’ve got a lot of technobabble today.  Let’s start with some vocal warm-ups.

What a to do to die today at a minute or two till two.  A thing distinctly hard to say but harder still to do.

Faster now.

Red leather yellow leather, aluminum linoleum, red leather yellow leather, aluminum linoleum.

All right.  To engineering.

I need six extras to stand around in the back.  I want stage chatter, but not too much.  You, the one in make-up already:   Look really concerned.  You, the tall one: look mad as hell.  You, the short one:  Act like a Maquis.

What do you mean what’s that supposed to mean?  Hell if I know.  I haven’t directed this before.  It’s what’s in the script.  Find your inner freedom fighter and channel it.

What?  Yeah, good idea.  Play the scene while mentally singing “Battle Hymn of the Republic.”  Nice.

All right, leads.  Find the x’s you’re supposed to stand on.

Yes.  I know there’s only one x.  Both of you stand on it.

Don’t bother with the logistics.  I want you both in the same spot.

Good scene, everybody.  Good take.  Let’s go on to the bridge.

All right.  I need four extras this time.  You with the hair: Pretend you don’t have hair.  You without the hair:  Pretend you do have hair.  Other two:  Pretend your dog just got run over, and the captain just bought you a new dog.

Ok, leads.  This is what I want you to do: Walk toward each other until your noses touch, then the one on stage left will step back half a step.  This is where I want you to play the scene.  I hope everyone brushed his or her teeth this morning.

Great scene, everybody.  Next we’ve got our other bridge scene.  The alien that comes on the viewscreen has twelve ears, and the rest of his face is a chin.  You will all act as if this is something you see every day, except you–guy with the earring–will raise an eyebrow.

Then Twelve Ears will come in off the turbolift.  Captain, I need you to sit in his lap when he sits down.

Where does he sit down?  Ha.  Yes.  Good question.  He will sit on that console, and you will sit on his knee.

No, no, no.  Don’t play the scene as though you’re in love with him.  Play it like you’re in love with everyone else and are using him to make everyone else jealous.

Yes… yes… good… good.  Touch him more.  Yes.

Great work.

Tomorrow we’ll tackle the holodeck scene, and I’ll need everyone to come in wearing bikinis.

Ok.  Who’s up for burgers?

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