The end was nigh. Creation Entertainment's Official 45th Anniversary Star Trek Convention went out with a bang -- a bunch of them, actually -- on Sunday, with mega-guest after mega-guest taking the stage... sometimes together. And, once again it started early and ended late. StarTrek.com was there from beginning to finish, and here's a look at some of what we witnessed.
Early risers attended a Classic Star Trek Breakfast at 7 a.m., with fans joined at their tables by Nichelle Nichols, George Takei, Grace Lee Whitney, Lee Delano, Charlie Brill and Steve Marlo. The guests spent a few minutes at each table, greeting fans and spinning quick stories. Of course, there was no rushing George Takei, who gave everyone their money's worth.
In the secondary room, 8 a.m. brought with it a screening of the brilliant TNG episode "The Inner Light." And at 9 a.m., Morgan Gendel, who wrote the episode, talked with fans. Subsequent guests in the secondary theater included Daniel Stewart (Yes, Patrick's son, who played Young Batai in "The Inner Light") and Alexander Enberg.
At 9:30, William Shatner sat down to sign autographs. No one signs faster than Shatner, but he also looked to be having fun, smiling and joking and thanking each and every fan. Over in another room at the same time, Takei and John Cho posed with fans for photo ops. Steve, a fan from Australia, said, "This is great. I love both of these guys. I'd love to do more of these, like Shatner and Pine or Nimoy and Quinto. I hope it's the start of something.
Grace Lee Whitney arrived on stage at 11 a.m., taking questions from Adam Malin, Creation's co-CEO, and also from fans. At one point she recounted that TOS was so low-budget and so low-tech that, years later, being on the bridge set for one of the TOS features prompted her old friend Majel Barrett to say, "I think this thing can fly!" Whitney also talked about being raped, her years abusing alcohol and her decades of sobriety.
James Darren's appearance at 12 noon elicited cheers from fans, many of whom caught his concert the previous night. The music heralding his arrival was the DS9 theme. Once it stopped, Darren cracked, "What no one knows is that's me playing the French horn." Also at 12, in the secondary room, Robin Curtis fielded questions about her appearances as Saavik in Star Trek III and IV, and also about her TNG guest shots as Talera in "Gambit, I & II." She looked and sounded great, and spent an hour signing more than 150 autographs after her time on stage ended.
1 o'clock arrived and with it came the convention's multi-part highlight. Sir Patrick Stewart took the stage for 30 minutes, then was joined by Kate Mulgrew and William Shatner. Then, Stewart departed, leaving Shatner and Mulgrew for several minutes. And, finally, Mulgrew enjoyed a half-hour of solo time, followed by Shatner, who also flew solo for 30 minutes. Among the highlights, Stewart told of an interesting fan encounter that just happened a few days ago. A young man asked a woman to marry him, a request he made in front of Stewart and with Stewart's blessing. Stewart described the scene as sweet, romantic, lovely. "I felt so privileged to be there and to witness this," he said. "I took their hands and said... 'Engaged!'" When Mulgrew and Shatner joined Stewart on stage, Shatner grabbed Mulgrew's butt, which became a rumming joke. "Do you feel the tone in the room changing?" Stewart asked. Shatner took note of the crowd of about 5,000 people. "This is the biggest crowd I have seen, possibly ever," he marveled. Mulgrew grinned and said, "And the best." Shatner clarified a miconception that he'd been offered the chance to direct Generations. "I was never offered the job to direct it," he said. "I guess they saw Star Trek V." At one point, when Stewart thought he was supposed to exit, he said, "I thought I was supposed to leave you two alone." Mulgrew, after enduring several butt jokes, shouted, "No! Don't leave me alone!
At 3:20, Garrett Wang stepped on stage to introduce John Cho and then George Takei for their Sulu Summit. Gotta say, this was cool. Takei described the two reasons why this convention held special meaning for him. "One, Star Trek is 45... and the other thing is I'm young again. Sulu is young again in the form of John." Takei pointed out that Cho was born 3 years after TOS was axed. Cho, meanwhile, described Takei as a personal hero. "I grew up thrilled to see an Asian face on TV." They then swapped several stories and heaped praise on one another. Sulu seems to be in good hands.
And the fun continued from there. David Warner -- who appeared in Star Trek V and Star Trek VI and on TNG -- pleased the crowd with anecdotes about his experiences. After he finished, the one and only Nichelle Nichols charmed everyone, spreading the love and carrying the torch by sharing familiar stories for the impressive number of young fans on hand.
And though Nichols' appearance essentially concluded the festivities, on and on it went, with dealers selling their wares in the dealers' room, fans lining up for photo ops and autographs and more. New friends exchanged phone numbers and emails. People raced to take photos with fans in funky costumes. And many people could be found signing up for Creation's 2012 Convention.
Don't forget to see many of the amazing costumes from this weekend's convention. Click here to vote for your favorites.
Missed out on all the action this weekend? The recordings of all 2011 Las Vegas Star Trek Convention Live streaming shows are now available!
Please go to http://www.tvoop.com/channel/2080-star-trek
Under the viewing pane, you will see a row of recordings. Using the blue arrows, you may scroll to the left or right to find your show(s). To watch or purchase a recording, click on that recording. If you have previously bought a ticket for a show, you should not need to activate your ticket again, However, if needed, please make sure you use the ticket number issued for that specific show. If you wish to buy a new show, please click on "Buy Ticket" and follow the instructions.