Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)

Trek: The Lost Years is an unlicensed book about the time period between the end of Star Trek: The Original Series and Star Trek: The Motion Picture, describing the attempts to revitalize the Star Trek franchise. The main focus of the book was the Star Trek: Phase II project, though some mention was also made of Star Trek: Planet of the Titans.


From the back cover (1st edition, erroneously printed on the cover of another title, The Star Trek That Almost Was)
The episodes that were never made... every television series has story treatments and screenplays that are never aired. The reasons why they never reach the screen can differ, but they are always interesting. What is even more interesting is the glimpse into a Star Trek that could have been that these tales provide. And, of course, a look into the inner workings of the Star Trek creative staff. What did they like and what did they reject? This volume tells the tale!
From the back cover (3rd edition)
Star Trek has the largest fan following of any television show ever created. There are dozens of books covering every aspect of the history of the television series and the movies. Except for one time period – the lost years between the time the television series left the air and the day the first movie arrived in the theaters.
No book has ever detailed the incredible story of the second coming of Star Trek, the major attempt to revive the television series in the late '70s. Although new characters were created, an entire cast was signed, a creative crew was hired and scripts were written, not one episode was ever filmed. Just before shooting commenced, the decision was made to go with a feature film instead.
The story of this Star Trek that never was is one of creativity and backstabbing, heroism and tragedy... careful planning and last minute changes. The behind the scenes story was as exciting as any adventure ever filmed.
Author Edward Gross talked to all of the key players; from the story editor to the man that would have replaced Spock; he sorted through piles of production notes to learn the whole story. He presents the exciting events in very readable fashion and includes an analysis of the scripts and outlines that would have sent the Starship Enterprise and her crew on a whole new five year mission.
These are the adventures that could have happened if the feature films hadn't appeared instead. This is the lost chapter of Star Trek history, the complete tale of the lost years.

Excerpts of copyrighted sources are included for review purposes only, without any intention of infringement.


First edition
Third edition
  • Introduction
  • The End of the First Series
  • The Future Arrives: Syndication, Conventions and Animation
  • Roddenberry's Role: The Decision is Made – Let's Do a Movie
  • The Movie Falters: God Isn't Big Enough
  • The Space Shuttle Enterprise, Star Trek Fandom, It's Television
  • A TV Series is Born, the Team is Assembled, a Bible is Handed Down
  • The Original Cast is Rehired – With One Exception
  • New Characters Are Added to the Brew
  • Upgrading the Enterprise, First Writers Progress Report
  • Spock's Replacement: David Gautreaux is Xon
  • A New Writer's Status Report, the Two Hour Pilot
  • The Earliest Story Treatments
  • Rumblings of Discontent, Rewrites
  • More Scripts Come In, Vejur's Progress
  • End of a Dream
  • It's a Film: Everything Changes
  • Epilogue
  • Appendix: The Scripts

Background information

  • The book was an abridged reprint of the likewise unlicensed 1987 "File Magazine Special" Star Trek: The Lost Years book published under the Schuster & Schuster imprint, which itself was a greatly revised and enlarged edition of the equally unlicensed 1985 title The Star Trek That Never Was, authored by John Peel. That edition, published under the imprint Psi Fi Movie Press, only contained Phase II episode descriptions and was beefed out with non-related articles.
  • The subject matter of these titles was later covered in much more detail in the officially licensed reference book Star Trek Phase II: The Lost Series, released in 1997.

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