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Star Trek: Animated - Give me a status report, Lt. Arex: Where are the DVDs?

Posted by David Lambert
As we approach the rumored March 15th release date that IGN and other websites discussed a while back, we have been getting lots of e-mail from fans wanting to know more about the DVDs for Star Trek: The Animated Series. A few months ago I talked to Paramount and verified that they had nothing to do with a release, and that made sense considering that the original news that DVDs were in-the-works came from "Tribbles" writer David Gerrold. I interviewed Gerrold last Summer, and he said that he had been contacted to record extras, and that the company interested in his participation was not Paramount, but the folks at Columbia House instead.

Now has posted an article basically re-iterating that Paramount was definitely not putting out any Star Trek: The Animated Series DVDs, and which quoted me as saying that these would come from Columbia House instead. They also remarked that I was unable to verify the release plans with Columbia House.

Let me clear a few things up about that: I do not have any contacts at Columbia House. One reason has never included Columbia House offerings among our TV-on-DVD release listings is because they simply aren't interested in communicating with us and providing detailed information about their releases or upcoming plans (the only way for us to determine the contents was to join the club and pay regular price to find out the contents of the discs; frankly, we can't afford that for every Columbia House release). So my *only* call on this matter was to a normal Columbia House customer service rep, and I stated I was interesting in joining the club on the basis of rumors that Star Trek: The Animated Series was going to be put out by Columbia House in 2005. The agent who answered said they knew nothing about it, sorry I can't help you, and that was that.

In light of today's Trekweb story, I got back with Mr. David Gerrold and asked him if he ever recorded extras for Star Trek: The Animated Series DVDs. He was very nice to take the time to answer me quickly, and told me that nothing was ever recorded, and that he never heard from Columbia House beyond the initial inquiry. He does not know the status of this release, or indeed if there is still going to be one.

It's also quite possible that we all jumped the gun with our early reports that this was coming; perhaps Columbia House was just feeling Gerrold out about participation, in order to put a proposal together and take it to the rights-holders (which probably is only Paramount, despite discussion that U.K.'s Entertainment Rights may hold a piece of this due to their ownership of Filmation's properties: there are exceptions to their ownership, and every indication is that Star Trek: The Animated Series is among those exceptions).

It's equally possible that this release is indeed coming, that extras were cancelled (explaining why Gerrold never received a follow-up call), and that Columbia House will simply pop it out onto their offerings to club members whenever they're ready. With them, you never know...there's not any advance notice.

Right now I recommend that the best attitude is to forget about it and stop worrying over it, and then if something good happens then you'll have a reason to paint a big smile on your face. If we ever find out anything solid, we'll report on it, of course. But for now, Scotty, disengage the warp engines. Sulu, bring the Enterprise to a full stop, and M'Ress, tell the crew to stand by.

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