It’s been a while since we’ve heard much about What We Left Behind, the in-progress documentary focused on the history and legacy of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and this month series and documentary producer Ira Steven Behr spent some time discussing DS9 with the Comic Book Central podcast, where he shared a few thoughts about the doc, and when we may see it arrive.
One of the big questions about What We Left Behind has been about the participation of Avery Brooks (Captain Sisko), and Behr confirmed that there is still no expectations of new Brooks interview footage on this project, but that we will see some archival Brooks material in the final project.
Avery feels very strongly that he’s said everything he needs to say; he did [William Shatner’s] “The Captains” and “The Captains – Close Up,” and he doesn’t feel that he’ll bring anything to the table.
He’s said a couple of things to us that we’ve taken very seriously, in terms of widening the amount of people we talked to, in terms of finding things [for] the documentary so that it’s not just a talking-heads documentary. We’ve done over 100 hours of interviews, so there will be plenty of ‘talking heads,’ but plenty of other things beside that.
So I have his voice in my head, but he’s also in the doc – interviews from conventions from a few years ago – so Avery’s point of view will be represented.
Behr also reiterated his hopes that the documentary may lead to a full remastering of the Deep Space Nine television series, where he again shared his frustration with the current 480p presentation of the show — but he did not comment on any current use of HD footage in the project.
Here’s the thing: what I want to believe is that this documentary will get the show remastered in HD. That’s what I want; it’s what I’ve wanted since the beginning. I’ve never been happy with the DVDs, even back in the day I thought they were a little muddy. Especially the early seasons.
I have not watched — with the exception of the pilot, after Michael Piller passed away — a complete episode of Deep Space Nine since the show went off the air, because I said, ‘I’m not watching it until it gets remastered.’
Little did I know that I’d be waiting so long, especially doing this documentary when we’re talking to so many people about so many episodes, and I go, ‘Geez, I’d like to sit down and watch that episode, you know? But not gonna do it!’
Finally, Behr indicated his current expectation of when What We Left Behind may reach us, but cautioned that it’s still dependent on when all material is completed and approved.
The goal is to have the doc out for viewing by the fall, that’s what I would predict.
I never shot for any [specific date]; what I told [the team] from the start is that it’ll be done when it’s done, when I think it’s ready and finished. The fact is, once we started — look, this is all because of the IndieGogo campaign. The fans want something special, we have to give them something special.
This has to be an outlier documentary, just like the show as an outlier to the franchise. This should not feel like any other documentary about Star Trek. It’s gotta have it’s own voice, and we’re talking with everyone. We’re doing the writers’ room [feature], we’re doing all these things – and we’re doing some other stuff that we’ve been filming, which is going to be interesting and different.
So that’s all I care about… It’s a documentary, we’ll do it how we want to do it and we’ll do it ’til it’s done!
While we’re all hungry to see this awaited project — expected to include not only new and archival interviews, but also alternate takes, deleted scenes, and actor audition tapes unearthed from the CBS/Paramount archives — we’ll certainly be patient to make sure it’s the best it can be.
Backers of the Indiegogo campaign can see exclusive, periodic video updates on the official What We Left Behind website.
Keep checking back to TrekCore for more news on this exciting endeavor as it breaks!