Memory Alpha
Memory Alpha
20 Questions with J.J. Abrams.jpg

Jeffrey Jacob "J.J." Abrams (born June 27, 1966) is an Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning American film and television producer, writer, actor, composer, director, and founder of Bad Robot Productions. Abrams collaborated with producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director Michael Bay on the summer 1998 blockbuster, Armageddon. He also created and executive-produced ABC's Alias and is co-creator (with Damon Lindelof) and executive producer of Lost. He made his feature directorial debut in 2006 with Mission: Impossible III, starring Tom Cruise. He is also directing the upcoming film, Star Trek. His partnership with Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof continues to grow with the duo producing Star Trek together and also writing and producing an adaptation of Stephen King's The Dark Tower series of novels. Abrams' work in Sci-Fi has earned him recognition by TV Week as one of the most important creators in the genre today.

Read more about J.J. here!


Ever wondered what goes into making a ground-breaking movie, where the director gets his inspiration from, or what J.J. Abrams has up his sleeve next? Now is your chance to find out! We've set up an interview with science fiction legend and famed Star Trek director J.J. Abrams, and we will be asking your questions!

With the help of Memory Alpha admins Jörg and Shran, we will select twenty (20) of the best questions that you provide, and send them to J.J. at the end of the month! If your question is selected, you'll have a chance to win some exclusive Star Trek-related swag. For legal mumbo jumbo, click here.

So, what are you waiting for? Be sure to get your questions in by Sunday, April 19th so you don't miss your opportunity to grill one of the greatest innovators in science fiction today!

Update: The answers to the winning questions can be found here.

How it works

  • Simple! Just submit your question in the box below by 12:00 PM UTC April 19th, 2009.
  • Wikia and Memory Alpha Wiki admins Jorg and Shran will review all questions.
  • Wikia will send J.J. 20 selected questions.
  • Prizes may be awarded if your question is chosen. Watch this spot for details.
  • While anyone can ask a question, and only one, (anonymous IPs are hard to contact Tongue.gif), only those with a verified email account are eligible for swag.
  • Your question followed by J.J's answer will be posted on the wiki.
  • Remember that some people that edit Memory Alpha are trying to avoid spoilers, and also remember that the questions should be relevant to Memory Alpha, a Star Trek encyclopedia.

Alright! Here are the fifteen questions that were sent to J.J. Abrams:

  1. Did the vast Trek canon help or hurt your work to make this film? — 31dot 20:57, 9 April 2009 (UTC)
  2. What made you decide to go with a Classic era film as opposed to say a Deep Space Nine / Voyager / Enterprise film and if this is successful might you look towards those series for a movie? — Morder 21:45, 9 April 2009 (UTC)
  3. The animated Star Trek series has had a loose relationship with official canon over the years. Does the film feature any elements that originated in the animated series, perhaps helping solidify its place in canon? — Tim Thomason 04:51, 10 April 2009 (UTC)
  4. The original series had very tactile interfaces for the controls - utilizing levers, knobs, and buttons at each station on the ship. Later series and movies evolved into a more modern "touchscreen" sort of interface. Can you maintain that feel of the original series controls and still present those devices as futuristic now that our culture has taken great strides towards more modern touchscreen devices? — Joshg 19:34, 10 April 2009 (UTC)
  5. Did your passions for more Earth-bound series, such as The Twilight Zone and The X-Files, influence your work on this movie at all and, if so, how? — Defiant 20:18, 10 April 2009 (UTC)
  6. Existing Star Trek fans have a deep love for the minutiae of the established Star Trek universe, but the goal of the new movie is to appeal to a broader audience that doesn't care about "canon" and similar fannish concerns. In making Star Trek for a new generation, how have you balanced the needs of the few (existing fans) and the needs of the many (the larger audience, who we hope will become fans in the future)? — Josiah Rowe 21:19, 10 April 2009 (UTC)
  7. When rebooting a franchise, fans of the original tend to be alienated due the attempt to draw new fans in; how did you address this when making this film? — Henshin86 23:53, 10 April 2009 (UTC)
  8. Being that this is a movie that involves time travel, if you could go back in time and change one aspect of this film, what would it be? — JerryJoe216 02:56, 12 April 2009 (UTC)
  9. What was it like directing Leonard Nimoy? Is there any direction you can give to someone who has played a character for so long, or do you just let him decide what is best for the character in each scene? — Jonzam 04:57, 12 April 2009 (UTC)
  10. What TOS character do you think you relate to the most and why? — Anakin138
  11. How extensively did the Supreme Court (you, Burk, Kurtzman, Lindelof, and Orci) and the rest of the creative crew make use of MA to write and produce this film? Do you consider MA an authoritative source? — Figmillenium 01:50, 13 April 2009 (UTC)
  12. If you could revisit ONE episode of the Original Series to re-do with the current cast, which one? The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk).
  13. Do you think that the original TV show, with its Cold War and UN parallels, and its US segregation/Civil Rights allusions (i.e. first interracial kiss on TV) has outlived its relevance in today's more modern, and accepting society and therefore was harder to reference in the movie, if at all? — Zidel333 03:51, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
  14. The new movie seems to focus on building iconic characters while telling an exciting action story. It looks like a blast, but a great part of the charm of Star Trek has always come from the sense that the universe is a vast, largely unexplored place, with new discoveries at every turn. Do you think this atmosphere of exploration and adventure made it into the film, or can we look forward to it in potential sequels? — Vicarhelmet 04:24, 16 April 2009 (UTC)
  15. Did the lack of success from the previous film(s) have any bearing (or create any limitations) on the production and direction of this film from the studio? If so, were these concerns reflected through input given by Berman and Braga, or did they simply step back and allow the current team take the reigns? — Alan 09:42, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

...and here are five honorable mentions. They were picked by us, and are, together with the previous fifteen questions, still in the running for the prize. They were not sent to J.J. Abrams, however:

  1. Memory Alpha is a Trek encyclopedia, and we would really like to ask you specific questions about things in the film we might write articles about, but of course we haven't seen the film yet. Will you please give us a second interview after the film is released? — bp 19:09, 9 April 2009 (UTC)
  2. When you hear the words "Star Trek", what are the first things that pop into your head? Have these ideas changed from before you started work on Star Trek to now? And have they influenced the film in anyway? — WormholeAlien 19:17, 10 April 2009 (UTC)
  3. During the early stages of production, the Writers' Guild Strike was happening. You had mentioned that this stopped you from making some on-the-spot changes that would have enhanced the story. How much was the final cut of the movie ultimately affected by the Writers' Strike? — VH2 06:35, 12 April 2009 (UTC)
  4. If you visited Memory Alpha, you may have come across one of the many "Unnamed X" articles where we try to collect and list all the characters / species / ... that haven't ever been named by the producers. Of the past films, only some of the background species used in Star Trek: The Motion Picture and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home have been named (and subsequently been sold as action figures ;)), whereas nearly every alien from the Star Wars movies has a name and background story, including even the whole bunch of aliens seen in the famous Cantina scene! Obviously, it is much more fun for all involved to have a name for every alien, or starship, or planet. So, can you provide names for some or all of these, after the release? Especially, can you give us the name of the character played by Randy Pausch? — Cid Highwind 20:40, 15 April 2009 (UTC)
  5. The past few years have seen a number of popular franchise reboots and remakes. With everything from Batman to James Bond getting 'jump-started,' were there any that were especially useful to you to drawn on in terms of storytelling? Were there any missteps other creators made that you vowed to avoid at all costs? — Le_Ted

We'll let everyone know as soon as we receive word about J.J.'s answers and the winning question, randomly picked by Wikia (more about the prize later). Congratulations to all the winners! — Jörg 18:44, 23 April 2009 (UTC)