In light of the big lawsuit over the Star Trek Fan Film “Axanar”, CBS & Paramount have come out with a list of regulations for Star Trek fan films that effectively kills the genre.
These were posted on StarTrek.com today, and are the rules people must follow to avoid being sued. Most of these rules will eliminate 99% of Star Trek fan films. You can read the full list at the link, but here are some of the big ones that kill fan films:
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.
This kills Star Trek New Voyages and any of the other popular “series”. Every fan film has to be a stand-alone story without any continuation. This right there kills most of the projects people are doing.
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.
Recreating elements of certain TOS episodes was a big part of most of the fan films out there.
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.
Instead of using their own costumes, now makers of fan films have to go and pay through the teeth for Anovos’ over-priced replicas. Most fan films can’t afford to spend $1,000 on a tunic they can make for $50.
The fan production must be a real â€œfanâ€ 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 Picturesâ€™ licensees.
This is directly focused on Axanar and other similar fan films that use actors who have appeared in previous Star Trek movies or episodes. Now that’s not allowed.
The fan production cannot be distributed in a physical format such as DVD or Blu-ray.
Again this is a direct result of Axanar.
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.
You can’t host the fan film on your YouTube channel if it’s monetized.
Fans have organized a petition to boycott all things Star Trek (including Star Trek: Beyond):
Boycott all things Star Trek until CBS and Paramount stop trying to destroy the franchise
I’ve never made or have been involved in a Star Trek fan film, but as a Star Trek fan I’ve recognized them as an extremely important thing to the fandom. They’ve helped keep Star Trek fandom alive in a time when a movie series isn’t connecting with long-time fans of the franchise, and there’s no television series on the air. With these new regulations, CBS/Paramount has effectively killed a major part of Star Trek fandom and taken a giant dump on the fans who kept the franchise alive long before they ever owned it.
Rest in Peace Star Trek, you’re now dead.