Terry Matalas and Dave Blass didn’t just want an on-screen reunion of the Star Trek: The Next Generation on their new Picard show — they wanted the behind the scenes crew back as well. In a new interview with IndieWire, Matalas and Blass describe how they got set builders, concept designers, and “about a dozen” other craftspeople who worked on other Star Trek series to come onto Picard.
“Worf gets a brand new weapon, and rather than having some guy do it, it’s like, ‘No, let’s call Dan Curry, who designed the [Klingon weapon] bat’leth, and let’s get him to create it because he has a relationship with Michael,” explained Blass. Consistently what occured was an update to old designs, taking inspiration from unexpected places within the massive franchise and showing them in new ways.
Todd A. Marks, a computer and video playback specialist, also helped update the LCARS computer interfaces on the bridge. Previously, the displays had just been screens covered in decals that lit up. Now, actual animations could be put in, updating the pastel pop of light to a high-tech interface. IndieWire reports that the Shrike — the ship used by the rogue changelings lead by Vadic that chases Picard and the Titan through much of season 3 — was inspired by knife designer Gil Hibben’s work. Specifically Tom Hardy’s character, Shinzon, from Star Trek: Nemesis, who used a pronged bloodletting knife.
Lastly, Matalas and Blass had to recreate the Enterprise-D bridge set, from colour matching and repaiting precise flaws to exact proportions and carpeting, in a massive effort that that took over three months of work. This was only made more difficult because no part of the original set was intact. All Blass had to use was original blueprints and “records of changes made to the set from season to season of the original show.” The idea here wasn’t to engage in fan service, but rather “accuracy.” Judging by all the details, Matalas and Blass certainly did their homework.
Star Trek: Picard Season 3 was the final season of Picard. All episodes have aired and are available to watch on Paramount+.
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