At the Klingon Trial (original script)

70   Tight on Kirk’s eyes. Jump back to reveal – vfx

     The Klingon empire in all its barbaric splendor A cavernous stadium arranged in circlular tiers cut from jagged stone. A place from a bygone age, of savage and awesome beauth. Something between a circus and a cathedral….turned for the occasion into a gigantic courtroom with thousands of spectators, screaming: “Kirk! Kirk! Kirk!” Many in the audience hold spears with lighted heads.

Kirk and McCoy in the dock, stand in the bottom at the very center of the circle, surrounded by a Klingon audience in rising tiers, while hooded Klingon judges sit invisible in a darkened dugout. (One judge is an albino.) Chang wears the prosecutor’s mantle. In the audience is President Azetbur and her advisers. The trial is being broadcast and special cameras abound.

Near Kirk and McCoy sits their young, eager Klingon defense attorney. Kirk keeps his cool thoughout, though McCoy tends to steam. The rules are different. Attorneys are empowered to ask their witnesses a question at any time, and to mix this up with statements and charges.

The proceedings begin in subtitled Klingon. Kirk and McCoy wear headphones. When they speak, a translator converts to Klingon.

As Chang gets going, we zoom into his mouth and he converts to english… the judges gavel is a grotesque nailed glove.

Chang: The State will show that Enterprise fired on Kronos One without provocation, the Chancellor and his advisers having been lulled into a false sense of security with an invitation to a state dinner aboard Captain Kirk’s vessel at 1930 hours that same evening. (Turns to Kirk) Do you deny all this?

The mob howls “Kirk!”, as the Judge gavels.

Judge: The Prisoner will respond. Kirk: I don’t deny we invited them to dinner.

71   Angle on Chancellor Azetbur

Chang: Were you drunk at that dinner, Captain?

72   Int. President’s UFP’s office – Day

72   The President and his advisers, including Sarek, watch

vfx  the proceedings unhappily onscreen. Translator’s voice over.

Kirk: What? Chang: Isn’t it a fact that you served Romulan ale, a beverage illegal in the Federation because of its overwhelming potency? Kirk: The drink was served.

The Commander in Chief and President wince.

72   Continued

Commander in Chief: This is a damned show trial.

73   Int. klingon courtroom – Day

Chang: And you still maintain your ship did not fire on Kronos One? Would you have known if she had? Come now, Captain. the record clearly shows there were no other ships in the sector.

Kirk: There….were no other ships in the sector.

Chang: Did you have occasion to refer to your ship’s data banks during that night? Kirk: I checked the data banks, yes. Chang: And what did they tell you? Kirk  (Reluctant) That we fired two Photon Torpedoes. But…..

The mob howls.

Chang: The witness is excused, for the time being.

Chang whirls off as the Judge gavels.

74   Int. Klingon Courtroom – Day

One of President Gorkons Guards is on the stand, he is missing an arm.

Guard: After the first hit, we lost our gravitational field, I found myself weightless and unable to function. Then 2 Starfleet crewmen came walking towards us.

75   Widen to reveal we are watching aboard Enterprise.

Spock, et al, are receiving the transmission on their main visual display. They watch in silence.

Translator’s voice.

Defense Attorney: Perhaps they merely wore Starfleet uniforms…. Chang: I move that remark be stricken as purely speculative…. Judge: So ordered. Colonel Worf, we are interested in facts, not theories. Defense Attorney: If the gravitatinal field was not functioning, how could these men have been walking? Guard: They appeared to be wearing magnetic boots.

Murmur. The Defense Attorney wishes he hadn’t asked.

Spock: Gravity boots…..

76   Int. Klingon Courtroom – Day

Chang: They fired on you? Guard: With Starfleet issue phasers. They dashed into the Chancellor’s stateroom, we could hear more phaser fire, then they went back the way they’d come.

Chang: Towards the transporter room? Guard: Yes, Sir.

Swish pan to CU Sulu

77   Int. Bridge, U.S.S. Excelsior

77   Continued

Sulu and his crew are watching the trial on their visual display as well.

78   Int. Klingon Courtroom – Day

Chang: Doctor McCoy, what is your current medical status? McCoy: Aside from a touch of arthritis, I’d say pretty good.

Sulu has to smile. Chang is not amused, waits.

McCoy (continuing) For 27 years I have been Ships Surgeon and later Chief Medical Officer aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise. In three months, I’m due to stand down. Chang: Stand…..? McCoy: Retire.

Chang (soft) Ah. I believe you also consumed Romulan ale at the officers mess on the night in question, Doctor? Defense Attorney: Objection! Judge: Sustained. McCoy  (angry) We all did. But that doesn’t mean….. Judge: General Chang, come to the point or abandon this line of inquiry.

Chang: Was Chancellor Gorkon alive when you first examined him? McCoy: Barely.

78   Continued

Chang: Have you saved patients as “barely” alive as he was?

President Azetbur flinches at the memory.

McCoy: I didn’t have the knowledge of Klingon anatomy I needed. Chang: You say you are due for retirement. May I ask: Do your hands shake? Defense Attorney: Objection! Judge: Overruled. McCoy

I was nervous. Chang: You were incompetent! Whether deliberately, or as a result of age, combined with drink, this court will determine. McCoy: I tried to save him! I was desperate to save him! He was the last best hope in the universe for real peace. Chang: The Chacellor herself will testify that the defendant’s hands shook!

79   Int. UFP President’s office.

79   The President, et al, watch unhappily


80   Int. Klingon Courtroom – Day

Chang: And now, we come to the architect of this tragic affair, Captain James Tiberius Kirk. I put it to you, Captain, that you were seeking revenge for the death of your son!

80   Continued

Kirk: That isn’t true…..! Chang: That, either as an instrument of Federation policy, or acting on your

own drunken initiative, you and your fellow conspirators, crippled Kronos One, and cold-bloodedly

assassinated the Chancellor of the High Council. Then, you and Doctor McCoy went aboard to make certain the job was complete. Defense Attorney: Objection: Captain Kirk has not been identified as the assassin. Judge: Sustained. Chang: I offer into the record the following excerpt from Captain Kirk’s personal log. He signals. Kirk’s voice stills the room.

Kirk’s voice: I have never trusted Klingons, and never will. I have never been able to forgive them for the murder of my boy…..

An explosive babble fills the court. The Judge pounds his glove for order….quick reaction shots:

81   The Enterprise

82   The President’s Office

83   The Excelsior – then back to the courtroom

84   Int. Courtroom – Day

Chang: Are those your words? Kirk: Yes.

84   Continued

Chang: Spoken by you? Kirk: Yes. Chang: Louder, please. We cannot hear you. Kirk  (firmer) Those words WERE spoken by me.

85   Int. Bridge, U.S.S. Excelsior

85   Sulu is speaking confidentially to his communications

vfx  officer. On screen behind them, the trial continues.

Sulu: Send to commander Enterprise: “We stand ready to assist you. Captian Sulu, U.S.S. Excelsior.” Attach our co-ordinates. Communications officer: Is that wise, sir? I mean, given their situation- (off Sulu’s look) Aye, Sir!

He leaves. Sulu looks up at the screen, unhappily.

85A  Courtroom

Defense Attorney: Objection, your honors. My clients’ political views are not on trial here.

86   Int. Enterprise Bridge

86   The trial is on several monitor BG. Spock, next to

vfx  Uhura.

Uhura: Sulu’s giving us his position and telling us he’s standing by….. Spock (unhappy) He’s placing himself in a most awkward situation……

86   Continued

Chang (V.O.) On the contrary, Captain Kirk’s views and motives are at the heart of this matter. This officers record shows the accused to be an insubordinate, unprincipled career opportunist, with a history of violating the chain of command when it suited him.

87   Int. Klingon Courtroom – Day

Chang  (continuing) Indeed the record will show that Captain Kirk was once “Admiral” Kirk and that Admiral Kirk was broken for taking matters into his own hands in defiance of regulations and the law. Do you deny you were demoted on these charges, Captain? DO NOT WAIT FOR THE TRANSLATION, ANSWER ME NOW!!! Defense Attorney: Don’t answer – objection! Judge: Objection overruled. The Prisoner will answer the question. KirkI cannot deny it.  Chang: You were demoted….. Kirk: Yes. Chang: For insubordination. Kirk: I have on occasion disobeyed orders. Chang: And were you obeying or disobeying orders the night you arranged the assassination of Chancellor Gorkon?

87   Continued

Defense Attorney  (overlapping) I Object! Kirk  (overlapping) I was unaware of the assassination until I boarded his ship! Chang  (overlapping) You deny Enterprise fired on Kronos One? Kirk: Well, I…..

Chang  (overlapping) You deny that your men beamed aboard Kronos One, and shot the Chancellor?

Kirk: I cannot confirm or deny actions which I did not witness. Chang: Captain Kirk, are you aware that under Federation law, the Captain of a Starship is considered responsible for the actions of his men? Kirk: I am. Chang: So, if it should prove members of your crew did in fact carry out such an assassination? McCoy: Jim! They’re setting us up! Your honors, I protest! Judge: The defendant will be silent! Captain Kirk, you will answer the question. Kirk (heavily) As Captain, I am responsible for the conduct of the crew under my command.

87   Continued

Chang: Your honors, the State rests.

An excited babble. Kirk and McCoy turn to their attorney.

McCoy: Is it our turn, now? Defense Attorney  (grim) According to Klingon law, both sides present their cases at the same time, we have had our turn!

On McCoys and Kirks reaction. The Judges nailed fist crashes down with a flurry of sparks.

Judge: It is the judgement of this court that the defendants are guilty as charged.

Sensation in court. A booming chant “Koom, Koom!!” as all the light spears are pointed at Kirk and McCoy. Chang is stone-faced, again, the horrible gauntlet.

Judge: Captian James T. Kirk, Doctor Leonard McCoy…..

They face the Judges’ box. Intercut this moment with

88   Int. Enterprise Bridge – Day

 Spocks face – What has he done?

89   Int. Klingon Courtroom

Judge: Have either of you anything to say before this court passes sentence?

Kirk and McCoy look at each other.

McCoy (simply) We were framed. Defense Attorney: (Rises passionately) I wish to note for the record that the evidence against my clients is entirely circumstantial. I beg the court to consider this when framing its sentence. Judge   (beat) So noted. In the interests of amity for the forthcoming peace talks, the sentence of death is commuted. (the crowd roars) It is the judgement of this courtthat without possibility of reprieve or parole, you be taken from this place to the Dilithium mines on the Penthe asteroid, there to spend the rest of your natural lives.

Off Kirks and McCoys reactions.


Second Star to the Right (1991) HD

201 Int. Enterprise Bridge

All watch.

McCoy: By God, that’s a big ship Scotty: Not so big as her Captain, I think. Kirk: Time we got underway ourselves, gentlemen. (stretches)Once again, we’ve saved civilization as we know it. McCoy: And the good news is they’re not going to prosecute! Kirk: (sighs) To be – Spock: Or not to be – McCoy:  That’s the question – Chekov: Course heading, Captain? Kirk (smiles) Second star to the right, and straight on till morning…..

202 Ext. Space

VFXA The battered Enterprise makes way.

Kirk’s voice over: Captian’s log, U.S.S. Enterprise, Stardate 8769.24. This is the final cruise of the Starship Enterprise under my command. This ship and her history will shortly become the care of a new generation. To them and their posterity we will commit our future. They will continue the voyages we have begun, and journey to all the undiscovered countries, boldly going where no man….where no one has gone before…

202 – VFX The signature William Shatner scrawls across the screen, still featuring the moving starfield. then Leonard Nimoy’s, then Deforest Kelley’s, James Doohan’s, George Takei’s, Walter Koenig’s, Nichelle Nichols’…one by one

The signatures grow smaller and smaller as the galaxy races by, and they disappear into the distance.

Roll end credits

Two Kirks (1991) HD


127  Later – Ext. ice desert ridge – night.

The ridge in darkness. They arrive. exhausted. The brute takes a stick out of its clothes, breaks it in half. It glows brightly like a neon flare. He tosses it in the middle of the area and if forms a kind of fire, throwing shadows all around. Otherwise it’s dark. There is some heat.

McCoy: Would you mind explaing that little trick you do? Martia’s voice: I’m a Chameloid. That’s why we’re such good smugglers. Kirk: I’ve heard of Chameloids, “shape-shifters”, I thought you were mythical. Martia’s voice: Give a girl a chance, Captain.

The brute smiles at him.

127  And before his eyes, becomes the enticing Martia again


Martia: It takes a lot of effort. McCoy: I don’t wonder. Stop me if I’m wrong, but do we really have any way of knowing if this is the real you? Martia  (smiles at Kirk) I thought I would assume a pleasing shape.  (beat)  We’re outside the shield. Now it’s your turn, Kirk. Kirk: If you say so.

Wham! He slugs Martia on the jaw, she goes down, her mouth running green blood.

McCoy: ARE YOU CRAZY? Kirk: She didn’t need our help getting anywhere….where did she get these convenient clothes? And don’t tell me that flare is standard prison issue…..

127  Martia sits, rubbing her mouth….and changing


Kirk  (continuing) It’s to let them know where we are. Ask her what she’s getting in return.

The brute gets up, rubbing his bleeding mouth, now the blood is blue!

Martia’s voice: A full pardon – which doesn’t cover this…. McCoy: uh oh!

Kirk and the brute circle each other, Kirk’s chains clanking….. Kirk: An accident wasn’t good enough…. Martia’s voice: Good enough for one. Two would look suspicious. Killed while attempting escape, now that’s convincing for both!

127 The fight is on. Problem is, Martia keeps changing

VFXC shapes…Kirk grabs him, holds him tight…

127 And he wriggles free as a miniature person…tries

VFXD to run off, but McCoy grabs it, and they fall rolling in the snow….

127  It comes up an exact copy of James T. Kirk!


Martia’s voice: Surprise!

He smashes McCoy and leaps to face his double… Kirk: Your friends are late…. Martia’s voice: They’ll be here…..

More fighting between Kirk and “Kirk”, they clinch.

Kirk: I can’t believe I kissed you. “Kirk”: Must have been your lifelong ambition!

The fight goes on!

128  Int. Officer’s mess, U.S.S. Enterprise

Deserted. Scotty, exhausted, is quietly having a cup of coffee and checking off places searched on a table map. He runs a finger around his collar. It’s warm in here. Perplexed, he puts his hand over the vent. Nothing coming out. Something’s blocking it. Scotty commences to remove the vent cover. Not easy. As he continues his efforts, he is unaware of the two crewmen we met the night of the banquet, watching. They remain concealed, pull knives….one wants to go for scotty. The other holds him back. Scotty removes the vent cover and pulls out what’s been blocking the air circulation: two violet-stained Starfleet uniforms, with names on them…. Excited by his discovery, Scotty looks around, replaces the vent cover, and hurries out with the uniforms.

129  Int. Enterprise corridors – THRU

131 The crewmen follow surreptitiously, camer tracking after Scotty through the labyrinthine corridors…

132  Ext Rura Penthe campsite – Night

The two kirks are still slugging it out as McCoy starts to come around.

Kirk: Isn’t it about time you became something else? Martia’s voice: I like it here….

Gripping each other, they roll right into A large and terrifying muzzle. A jackal-mastiff on a leash. Both Kirks spring apart… They are surrounded by a dozen fur garbed Klingon guards with weapons. Several have leashed jackal-mastiffs. And the commandant, who walks forward.

Kirk (thinks fast) What took you so long? Martia’s voice: Kill him! He’s the one!! Kirk: Not me, idiot….HIM!

132  The Commandant appears briefly confused, then

VFXA zaps the fake Kirk, who dies horribly, as McCoy  watches. Kirk sighs.

Commandant  (smiles) No witnesses….

He aims at Kirk and McCoy.

McCoy  (conversational) Damned clever, if you ask me…. Kirk  (agrees) Killed trying to escape…it’s a classic… Commandant: That’s what he wanted…. Kirk: Who? Who wants us killed? Commandant: Why not tell you?  His name is…..

132  Suddenly Kirk and McCoy dematerialize!


Kirk’s voice fading: SONOVABITCH!!

As the Klingons rake the area with disruptor fire!

133  Int. Enterprise transporter room

133  Kirk and McCoy rematerialize to where Spock

VFXA and Chekov await them, with heavy weather blankets, which they don gratefully. They look scarcely recognizable. Spock and Chekov are appalled.

Kirk’s rising  (continuing) Dammit! Dammit all to hell!!! Jesus Christ, couldn’t you wait two seconds before…..

VFXB – Chekov produces a phaser and burns open their chains. Spock is deeply moved to see Kirk again, though Kirk is too busy swearing as his chains are cut off to notice…. Spock: Captain? Kirk: He was just about to explain the whole damned….. Uhura: Who? Chekov: You want to go back…? McCoy (hasty) ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!

Speaking Klingon (1991) HD

Students: This is a section of the original production script for Star Trek 6. Note how it differs from the final production clip.

120A Int. Klingon listening post

Grimy, underfunded and undermanned. God knows what forsaken place this is. Rocks and lit by scopes. A sleepy Klingon dozes before his scanners. A bottle in front of him tells the story. Suddenly a blip. He forces himself into alert attention.

120B His POV

On the scope a beeping dot…he frowns, hits a switch.

Sleepy Klingon (Subtitled Klingon) What ship is that? Over….

An interminable pause. Now a Second Klingon sit next to the first. What’s going on? Voice filtered  (Subtitled Klingon) We art thy freighter…Ursva. Six weeks out of ….Kronos….Over….. Second Klingon  (Subtitled Klingon) Whither are you bound, over….

Another long pause. They squint at the delay.

121  Omitted

122  Int. Enterprise Bridge.

Uhura and company are frantically paging throught old Klingon glossaries, manuals and dictionaries.

 Uhura  (Subtitled Klingon) We art delivering food….things and….supplies to Rura Penthe….over…..


Klingon voice filtered (Subtitled) Don’t catch any bugs!

The voice laughs raucously. Spock gestures. Uhura returns the laugh….over and out. They look at each other.

Those Were Not His Knees (1991) HD

Students: This is a section of metascript with only the dialog presented. In this assignment you redo this section in standard script form. Remember: You don’t have to describe every single camera angle and action! Directors (and script reviewers) are really annoyed at this. Use brief narrative for action. Only specify camera shots when absolutely necessary.

MCCOY: You’ve got him, Jim! You’ve got him where you want him! You alright, Jim? KIRK: Yeah. WOMAN: They’ll respect you now. KIRK: That’s a comfort. I was lucky that thing had knees. WOMAN: That was not his knee. Not everybody keeps their genitals in the same place, Captain. KIRK: Is that what you wanna tell them?

He’s Planning His Escape (1991) HD

Students: Watch the clip and compare the Meta-script below with the original production script that follows:

1. What significant change was made in the action of the this scene? What are the galley personell doing?

2. The conversation between Spock and Scotty is quite different. Describe the difference.

3. How would you have written this scene? Explain why.

Pay particular attention to the complex dolly and trucking movement of the camera as Spock enters and makes his round of the galley.

Meta-script of this clip of Star Trek 6 :

SPOCK: Any progress? MARIS: None. We have a crew of 300 turning their own quarters inside-out. But the killers might still be among them. Surely, they have disposed of these boots by now. Would it have not been logical to have left them on board Con-ship? SPOCK: Even logic must give way to physics. Gravity had not been restored by the time they escaped. Without the boots, they would have floated off the Klingon transporter pads. CHEKOV: Why not simply vaporize them. MARIS: Like this? At ease. As you know, Commander Checkov no one can fire an unauthorized phaser aboard a starship. Suppose, when they returned, they threw the boots into the refuse. SPOCK: I’m having the refuse searched. If my surmise is correct, those boots will cling to the killer’s necks like a pair of Tiberian bats. They could not make their escape without them nor could they simply throw them out the window. We’ll see. Those boots are here, somewhere. UHURA: Did someone fire off a phaser? CHEKOV: Alright, it’s nothing, it’s nothing. Mr. Spock, Starfleet is screeming for us to return to port. SCOTTY: Who fired that…? SPOCK: Ah..Mr. Scott. I understand you’re having difficulty with the warp-drive. How much time do you require for repair? SCOTTY: There’s nothing wrong with the bloody things! SPOCK: Mr. Scott, if we return to Space-dock, the assassins will surely find a way to dispose of their incriminating footwear. And we will never see the Captain or Dr. McCoy alive, again. SCOTTY: Could take weeks, sir! SPOCK: Thank you, Mr. Scott. Well, Maris, please inform Star-fleet Command our warp-drive is inoperative. MARIS: A lie? SPOCK: An error. UHURA: Do you understand, we have lost all contact with the Captain and Dr. McCoy. SPOCK: Yes. At the moment they are surrounded by a magnetic shield. However, if I know the Captain, by this time he is deep into planning his escape.

Original Production Script of the above clip:

  92   Int. Galley, U.S.S. Enterprise

     Under Lt. Valeris’s watchful eye, crewmen are taking the

     kitchen apart. All sorts of dishes and cutlery litter

     the place. Spock, Scotty and Chekov enter.


               Any progress?

                         Lt. Valeris

               We’ve got a crew of three hundred

               turning the own quarters inside

               out, but the killers may be among

               them. Surely they’ve disposed of

               these boots by now. Wouldn’t it

               have been logical to leave them on

               Gorkon’s ship?


               Even logic must give way to

               physics. Gravity hadn’t been

               restored by the time they escaped.

               Without their boots, they would not

               have stayed on the Klingon

               transporter pads.

                         Chekov  (mimes with his finger)

               Why not simply vaporize them?

                         Lt. Valeris

               Like this?

     She whips out her phaser and fires, incinerating a pot.

     Alarms and claxons howl! Chekov covers his ears.

                         Lt. Valeris

               As you know, sir, no one can fire

               an unauthorized phaser aboard a


     She switches off the alarm and has another thought:

                         Lt. Valeris

               Suppose when they returned, they

               threw the boots into the garbage?

92   Continued


               I’m having the garbage searched.

               If my surmise is correct, those

               boots will cling to the killers

               necks like Tiberian bats. They

               couldn’t make their escape without

               them, nor can they simply throw

               them out a window for all to see.

               No, they’re here. Somewhere!

     Uhura comes into the galley, Stepping over pots and

     pans. She is not happy.


               Did someone shoot off a phaser,

               Mr. Spock?

     He turns.

                         Uhura  (continuing)

               I’ve pulled out my – ah, wooden shoe

               and Starfleet is screaming for us

               to return to port!


               Mr. Scott, any progress on

               repairing our warp drive?


               There’s nothing wrong with the


     Spock coughs hard.


               …….Could take weeks, Sir!


               Thank you, Mr. Scott. Were we to

               return to spacedock, the killers

               would surely manage to dispose of

               their incriminating footwear.

                     (turns to Uhura)

               Please report our situtation to


                         Lt. Valeris

               A lie?


               An error.

92   Continued


               I’ll tell them someone threw a

               gravity boot into it!

     Angle on Spock

     Reacting. He looks at Lt. Valeris

                         Lt. Valeris

               Right, a gravity boot in the warp


     She goes off, shaking her head.


               You understand that we have lost

               all contact with Captain Kirk….?


               At present, he’s surrounded by a

               magnetic shield. If my calculations

               are correct, he should be deep into

               his escape planning by this time.

93   Int. Rura Penthe penal colony.

     Kirk gets hit in the face. It’s already bloody. It’s

     a prison fight. Kirk and an alien are surrounded by

     prisoners who are sneering and jeering.

A Klingon Trial (1991) HD

PROSECUTOR: Are you aware, that as the captain of a starship you are required to be responsible for the actions of your men? KIRK: I am. PROSECUTOR: And if it should be proved that members of your crew did in fact carry out such an assassination? MCCOY: Jim they’re setting us up! MCCOY: Your honor!! JUDGE: Silence! Captain Kirk, you will answer the question. KIRK:As captain, I am responsible of the conduct of the crew under my command. Your honors, the defence rests. SULU: Seth to Commander Enterprise. Is Jeff ready to assist you? Captain Sulu, USS Excelsior. JUDGE: It is the determination of this court, the prisoners are guilty as charged. WORF: I wish to note for the record, that the evidence against my clients is entirely circumstantial. I beg for the court to consider this in pronouncing its sentence. JUDGE: So noted. Captain James T. Kirk, Dr. Leonard McCoy. In the interest of fostering amnity to the forthcoming peace talks, the sentence of death is commuted. It is the judgment of this court that without possibility of reprieve or parole you’ll be taken from this place to the dilithium mines on the penal asteroid Altura-pectay, there to spend the rest of your natural lives…