31st October 2000

Actress Claims She Was Victim Of Online Hoax

Chase Masterson, a regular on the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine series, has sued the online dating service, its parent company, Lycos, and several John Does after a bogus profile of her appeared on the dating service. In it the fake Masterson invited users of the site to spend a one-night stand with her and said she particularly wanted someone who could be "hard and dominant in more ways than one." Masterson said that Matchmaker refused to remove the offending message because she was not the one who posted it. She further claimed it attracted numerous lewd phone calls and faxes, putting her in fear for her life and safety.


Good afternoon, dear friends:

I am writing to alert you to a very important development in the life of THE SPECIALS. As you know, our first movie, is being released this Friday by Regent Entertainment (that's the company with the little man holding a sword as their logo and they're very cool people) and I'd like you, The Specials Fan Club Members, to be the first to see it and share some insight into what it's like to be a Special.


Friday, September 22, 2000
Regent Showcase
614 N. La Brea
(La Brea & Melrose Avenue)


Friday, September 22, 2000
AMC Empire 25
42nd Street
(between 7th & 8th Avenue)

Please know that I had a lot more screen time, but the filmmakers felt audiences would be intimidated by my great brilliance and decided to cut some of it down so you would not feel inferior. That's understandable, isn't it?

So go see it.and tell your friends. Unless you don't like it, in which case, keep it to yourself, please.

Very Specially Yours,
Mr. Smart
(who is not Roger Ebert, although some people confuse me with him)


Dear All,

I just want to say a quick hello and thanks again to all of you for your patience in the changes we've endured with the club. I have a special announcement to make.

I'm very happy to announce Stompy as the new official President of the club. As you all know, Stompy has been an absolutely indispensable support, as well as the creator of our club web-site, organizer, special projects creator, confidante and friend. It's with great pleasure that I'm making this long overdue announcement. Stompy, I appreciate you, for all that you do and all that you are-thank you for being here!!

I believe that, with this change, and with some of Stompy's new ideas about how to handle important business, especially fundraising, we'll breathe new life into the club and realize the capabilities that we have when we work together.

That's all for now. I'm very excited about this change. I'll write again soon and talk about getting back in the swing of truly making a difference for CBA.

Thank you, again, Stompy, for your thorough, creative & loving work, and for accepting the job as our new President. (My thanks also to Robin, his beautiful, giving, and very patient girlfriend!)

All my best to all of you & yours. Talk to you soon,

Frengi Family Floors Fantasticon
by Sandy Stone

This year's Fantasticon had an extra special treat as fans got to learn what happened to the Ferengi Rom and his family after he was picked to be the next Grand Nagus. "The Ferengi Family Hour" featured Max Grodenchik (Rom), Aron Eisenberg (Nog), Chase Masterson (Leeta) and Cecily Adams (Ishka, or "Moogie") reprising their roles from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (sans makeup or costumes). Also performing was Lolita Fatjo, pre-production coordinator for Star Trek: Voyager, who co-wrote the comedy sketch with Grodenchik.

They opened with a take-off on the "Addams Family" theme with lyrics such as "We really are determined, to be exciting not a sermon. If we fail, don't tell Rick Berman. Ferengi Family." After a couple of more musical parodies, Grodenchik came on stage with the voice of a TV announcer proclaiming, "Rom -- You've just been named Grand Nagus, head of the entire Ferengi Empire! What are you and your family going to do next?" Grodenchik then got into his Rom character, and after grinning and stuttering a bit, bellowed, "We're going to Disneylaaaaaaaand!"

In the play, Rom, Nog, Ishka and Leeta travel back in time to tour "the happiest place in the Alpha Quadrant," but in the park they get mistaken for actors in costume, and are forced to put on a show. After flopping with a song called "We're Ferengi After All," the troupe finds themselves playing out a story where Leeta gets caught up in a temporal anomaly, ending up in a strange place and realizing "I have a feeling I'm not on Bajor anymore." She is met by squeaky-voiced strangers who tell her to find Grand Nagus Rom, the wisest man in all of Nagusland, and to "Follow the Latinum Road." Along the way, Leeta encounters Nog, who laments, "If I Only Had the Height," and Ishka, singing "If I Only Had Some Clothes" (referring to the Ferengi custom of keeping females naked). The jokes, puns and parodies ran rampant throughout the show, including jabs at William Shatner and Kate Mulgrew, and a bizarre tribute to Armin Shimerman.

SCI-FI SWEETHEART CHASE MASTERSON WINS LEAD IN UPCOMING ACTION FEATURE In a surprise call while signing autographs at DragonCon, Chase Masterson landed the lead role in the summer-slated feature, "Lightning." Moments earlier, Chase had been given the DragonCon 2000 Fan Favorite Award. "We're delighted to get both pieces of news," said a spokesperson for Ms. Masterson, "Chase is truly excited about this role." As for her Fan Favorite Award, Chase smiled softly, "I'm honored that the fans are so enthusiastic, because I appreciate them, too, especially for the good causes we work on together. I'll take this opportunity to say that I'm working on a huge-scale charity project right now that will really touch a lot of lives. Stay tuned." Masterson is currently cutting an album of torch songs due out in early 2001. She was present at DragonCon to promote her upcoming online comic series, "Digi-Girl." "Lightning" is set for a first-quarter 2001 release.

07.20.00 Dispatch: FantastiCon Honors Star Trek Contributors

Star Trek dominated the evening as the FantastiCon science-fiction convention held its Gala Awards Dinner Friday night, honoring the producers, technicians and actors who have made significant contributions to the field of science-fiction TV and film.

This is the fifth year that FantastiCon has given out its Shooting Star Award and its highest honor, the Gene Roddenberry Award, in a celebrity-studded, $125-a-plate banquet. Proceeds from the event went to the Country House and Hospital run by the Motion Picture and Television Fund, a charity very close to convention founder William Campbell. Campbell is fondly remembered by Star Trek fans as the impish Trelane in "The Squire of Gothos" and the Klingon Koloth in the "The Trouble with Tribbles," a role he reprised for Star Trek: Deep Space Nine in "Blood Oath".

"The Shooting Star Award is presented to those who have made an extraordinary contribution over an extended period of time in various aspects of our genre," said William Schallert, the master of ceremonies for the evening. "Many Shooting Star awardees have made this contribution in more than one field, so it's a very significant honor." Schallert is Campbell's co-star from "The Trouble With Tribbles," playing Nilz Baris in that Original Series episode as well as the ST: DS9 take-off, "Trials and Tribble-ations." Schallert also played Varani in the ST: DS9 episode "Sanctuary," and is known for a plethora of other TV and film roles.

The banquet began with a tribute to John Colicos, Campbell's Klingon comrade who died March 6. Colicos was the first Klingon to appear on Star Trek, originating his character Kor in the Original Series episode "Errand of Mercy," and reprising the role in several episodes of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.

The entertainment portion of the evening included 11-year-old Scarlett Pomers (Naomi Wildman in Star Trek: Voyager), who charmed the audience with her stirring renditions of "When You Wish Upon a Star" and "God Bless America". Afterwards, Schallert told her, "You have more aplomb than anybody I've ever seen your age."

Max Grodenchik (Rom) presented the first Shooting Star Award to Lolita Fatjo, who was pre-production coordinator on Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: Voyager, as well as "Star Trek Generations" and "Star Trek: First Contact." Max made his presentation by reading a poem he wrote, starting out by saying, "I didn't quite know the best way to say praise; the truth is, that I could go on for days." In the poem, he lauded her efforts over 13 years to keep the production of the shows organized, particularly the coordination of script changes, and for being a "goodwill ambassador" at events such as this convention. Lolita accepted the award by saying, "It's been an incredible experience, not just working on the show, but meeting all the fans and being able to come to all these conventions and travel the world."

The next Shooting Star Award went to Ronald B. Moore, visual effects supervisor on ST: TNG and Voyager, as well as "Star Trek Generations" and a variety of other films and TV shows. The statue was presented by veteran Paramount producer A.C. Lyles. "I don't know of anybody who has contributed more to the special effects field, not only at Paramount but to the industry as a whole, than my good friend Ron Moore," Lyles said. In addition, Tracy Scoggins of Bablyon 5 fame read a letter from Dan Curry, visual effects producer on the various Star Trek series since 1987, who could not be in attendance. In the letter, Curry said, "Recognized by the Television Academy with two Emmy Awards, Ron Moore's work has been seen by and has affected the imagination of millions and millions of people around the world. It has become part of the contemporary mythos."

Campbell presented the next award to another fellow Klingon from "Blood Oath," Michael Ansara, saying, "As the apparently villainous but at all times honorable Captain Kang in the classic Star Trek 'Day of the Dove,' he helped reinvent the Klingon." Ansara accepted the award saying, "It's very touching to know that a character I once created is appreciated by so many."

Afterwards, Campbell related a story about joining Ansara and Colicos for "Blood Oath." "When they pulled us in after 27 years and said they wanted me to do Captain Koloth over again, and I found out I was going to be working with Kang and Kor, I was elated," Campbell said. "I thought we were going to wear the pajamas with the silver tunic and the pants and the black boots with the widow's peak and the little hairdo... When I asked the producer about this, he said, 'Oh no, you're gonna have the carbuncle, you're gonna have all of that stuff.' I said, 'Why?'" The audience laughed. Campbell continued, "I said, 'I thought we were the same old Klingons.' He said, 'Well, you are, but don't forget this is 140 years later.' So...the makeup was enough, but we had these tremendous costumes...and I had to fight with a bat'leth, which looked like a big can opener, but we learned to do all that stuff. I remember when we were sitting in those chairs very early in the morning, and they were making us up, and Mike looked over and he said, 'Bill, I just figured it out.' I said, 'What?' He said, 'They're trying to kill us.'"

Campbell used that story to segue into the next award. "I love saying all that because those costumes that we had were magnificent. What will people wear in the future? This is the question that Robert Blackman has to answer every day." Costume Designer Robert Blackman, twice an Emmy winner, "has designed and supervised the construction of everything from Cardassian uniforms to the feminine yet frightening outfits worn by the Klingon Duras sisters," Campbell said. Blackman was not present, however, and was to receive his statue at a later time.

Penny Juday, who has worked as the art department coordinator and production assistant on the last three Star Trek movies and is currently project coordinator for Star Trek: The Magazine, presented the next award, which was a secret to its recipient. She explained that when she sat down to write her introduction, she realized, "How do you write a speech about a man who has literally changed history?" She added, "When the show first came on the air...I was glued to the television set. My dad used to say something like, 'You think that ship's really out there, don't you?' And I would say, 'Yes I do, and sooner or later I'm gonna be on it.'"

"Perhaps not since the Wright Brothers has a flight so captured the imagination of the people," Juday concluded tearfully. "I give you Matt Jeffries, who designed the U.S.S. Enterprise." Matt Jeffries, art director on the Original Series, stepped up to accept his surprise award, and admitted, "I find it very difficult to comprehend, honestly, how design work that I did oh-so-many years ago has been accepted and continues to be accepted...and I'm kinda choked up."

Actress Anne Lockhart, who was honored with a Shooting Star Award herself two years ago, presented the last and highest award of the night. "Science-fiction inspires us, I think. It inspires us to imagine ourselves as the best we can be as humans, and to imagine a society with no boundaries and no race and where everything is possible, and we owe a great debt to the pioneers who have written the most inspirational stuff. Gene Roddenberry is certainly one of those great pioneers, and the award that I present to you tonight is the Roddenberry Award. Gene Roddenberry left some very large shoes to fill, and it's taken a number of people over the years to try and fill them. Michael Piller is filling those shoes."

In accepting his award, Michael Piller, who co-created Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: Voyager, related a story from his stint as a writer in the early days of Star Trek: The Next Generation. He had conceived a storyline involving Q, where the omnipotent character gives up his godlike powers and takes the Enterprise on a wild goose chase across the universe, but when he pitched the idea to Roddenberry, the series creator looked at him and asked, "What is it about?" Piller then reiterated the plot he just spelled out. But Roddenberry replied, "If you want to write a story about a god who has to face what it is like to be mortal for the first time, then write that story. That's a story that is about something."

"And at that moment, in Gene Roddenberry's office, I got it. I understood what Star Trek is about," Piller continued. "It wasn't just a job. I realized at that moment that I had an opportunity that writers dream of. That, in fact, I was given the opportunity to explore the human condition. And from that day forward it's the first question I ever ask myself when I write a script, and it's the first question I ask of writers who come in to pitch a story. What is it about?"

He emphasized that it has become increasingly more difficult for writers to remain true to principles like that, as the television and film industry are so strongly driven by box office grosses, ratings and "risk tolerance." "The moment we cross over and start writing our scripts hoping that they will bring in that 14-year-old boy opening night, with surefire elements that might bring a $100 million soon as we're thinking like that, we've lost everything that we are," Piller said. "And Gene Roddenberry knew that. He knew that 40 years ago when he fought the battles that we all know are legendary now about what the content of Star Trek was going to be. And it ultimately cost him his job. But it was because he fought that battle that Star Trek has lasted as long as it has, and it's why we're all here today. It's the battle that I think we all in the creative side should continue to fight, and we should ask every second, 'What is it about?'"

Other dignitaries attending the banquet included Chase Masterson (Leeta); Aron Eisenberg (Nog); Grace Lee Whitney (Janice Rand); Mark Allen Shepherd (Morn); Kurt Wetherill, Cody Wetherill, Marley McClean and Manu Intiraymi (the Borg children from Voyager).

Helping hand out the awards were a group of Klingon-costumed fans from the Empire Union, a club that holds Klingon-related conventions and performs charity work for the Motion Picture and Television Fund. Campbell complimented them by noting, "Their makeup is better than what I wore on the show!"

Further coverage of last weekend's FantastiCon is forthcoming. Check back with STARTREK.COM in the days ahead.

Story & Photos by Sandy Stone

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