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MYTHBUSTERS: Debunking Three Misconceptions About Axanar Productions.

By March 16, 2016 Feature Stories

There is some confusion and a lot of myths about what we’re doing and how we’re doing it. Some of that confusion has been intentionally created by a certain set of detractors who, for whatever reason, would like to see AXANAR stopped and the dreams of over 13,000 donors and hundreds of thousands of fans dashed.  Ironically, most of those detractors are not donors but rather people who, for whatever reason, just don’t like us and feel entitled to interfere.

So, one of the best ways to deal with this intentional interference is to directly address some of the misleading statements and allegations these folks are making.  At their heart, there are good questions that need answers, so we’re happy to do it. And, please remember, you’re always encouraged to contact us if you have questions of your own.


Axanar Productions is operated as a non-profit corporation and we are currently working toward being recognized as a 501(c) 3 federally tax exempt non-profit entity.

Some people claim that the fact that we pay some staff a modest salary makes us for-profit.  That is not the case.  According to the IRS and every standard business practice, a non-profit can pay employees salaries.  Donors know about these expenses and almost unanimously approve of the expenditures as the donors have seen the tremendous amount of work that Alec, Diana and the team have done over the past 18 months.


There are two pieces of this myth that Axanar Production’s detractors try to conflate to support their argument.

The first part is whether or not Axanar Productions is a For-Profit studio. In this case, the word “studio” means a business venture focused on the development and production of TV, film and web content. As we explained above, that’s not the case.  Axanar Productions is entirely focused on making Star Trek fan films.  If Alec, Rob, Diana and the team want to make other films, those will be done through a separate production company as is standard business practice in Hollywood.

The second part relates to the physical facility Axanar Productions calls “home.” This is the rented warehouse we converted to a sound stage, which we like to call Ares Studios.  Just like Star Trek: New Voyages and Star Trek Continues, the other two big fan films, Axanar Productions has created a “studio” to shoot our film, store its sets, etc.  The cost of converting this space into a soundstage was a big piece of what we raised money for in the Axanar Kickstarter campaign.  Some of that money was also intended to cover the monthly rent of the space ($ 12,500 a month).

After AXANAR is produced, we will still have a roughly $ 250,000 liability on the books for two years’ rent.  Someone needs to pay that rent.

As a result, a small group of backers and fans have developed a plan to set up a separate company to take over the management of the sound stage, pay the rent and reimburse Axanar Productions for the cost of the build-out.  That company will assume the $250,000 liability for the remainder of the lease. To do that, the new company will need to be a for-profit entity and raise investment dollars for capital.

We consider this to be a win-win for everybody. The new entity will reimburse Axanar Productions all the money that was spent on upgrading the building and those funds will go into the production.

As the details get worked out, we’ll be sure to bring you up to speed.


In their filing, the plaintiffs have told us this is not about money, it is about copyright infringement.  The fact that Axanar has raised over $1 million, or is building out a warehouse to shoot in, or has paid those who have dedicated their lives for the past year and a half to making Axanar a reality, are not part of this suit.  Some people (fans and detractors) make assumptions as to why Paramount/CBS is suing Axanar and no one else.  Since we are the ones who are dealing with this lawsuit on a daily basis and know things the public does not, we can tell you quite simply, it isn’t about money.

As we have said, every time fans or “legal experts” have commented about this lawsuit, they have been wrong.  So please refrain from speculation.  I can guarantee you it won’t be as interesting or accurate as what is happening behind the scenes!

And as for us, we’ve made our desired outcome clear: we want see if there’s a way a mutual understanding between all parties can be reached that sufficiently addresses CBS and Paramount’s concerns and still allows Axanar Productions to tell the story 13,000 fans have asked us to produce by financially backing our efforts with PRELUDE TO AXANAR, the build-out of Ares Studios and the AXANAR feature film.

Join the discussion 59 Comments

  • You Have My Support!

  • Tanya Loser says:

    I understand the reasons for the response. and my response is this .
    1. I donated with the understanding that the money was to help support the build out, development of the facilities needed to make the film . And that once the film was made all other ” Fan Films wanting to utilize the studio ” would be allowed to do so buy paying only the power , footage ( per diam based) rental to cover building operating costs .

    2. I would for my donation receive certain ” PERKS” for that as a premium for the donation .

    3. Some of the moneys would be used to cover the current expenses of production .

    If this is What it is being used for .. i have no problems .

  • Glen Robertson says:

    Thank you Alec Peters & others for the clear explanation of events. Hopefully an amicable solution can be found for all parties involved.

  • Spence says:

    Thank you for the information. We’re I in a position to donate I would but alas, keeping the home front functional and in the black, (most of the time), consumes the vast majority of my resources. Best of Luke and thank you for your hard work and deduction to the dream that is Star Trek.
    Spence Cocherl

  • Bluntskull says:

    And my axe!

  • Rob MacLennan says:

    I wish that the people saying these things would just read the copious amounts of material you’ve already released on these matters. I also wish that some of the more agitated fans would stop attacking even supporters who are trying to make reasoned responses, rather than throwing insults and threats of embargo.

    • JR says:

      People don’t read. That’s the biggest problem. Anything that goes beyond 5 words is flamed as “too long, didn’t read” and then you get the same people spreading other people’s ignorant garbage all over the internet. But hey, if it’s been on Reddit or Wikipedia or XYZ Blog it must be true.

  • Cal Brown says:

    On behalf of all of the admins and members of the Star Trek Modelers Community we thank you for these points of clarification and for your amazing dedication and hard work to bring to us such amazing new adventures to support and enjoy.
    Thank you!

  • Bradleygt89 says:

    Thank you for sharing this, good points and well taken. This will be a good site to direct anyone who suggests contrary to the facts. #IStandWithAxanar

  • Michael says:

    The reason I support Axanar is simple – I love Star Trek. I have since I was a child watching it in the late 60s with my brother. Star Trek inspired me to pursue a career in Computer Programming, first by fostering a love for science, and second, forging a longing to go beyond perceived limitations. Star Trek is more than just a TV Show to me – it is integral to my culture & spirituality. I support Axanar because it is a labor of love – a tribute. A tribute as powerful and meaningful as any tribute to a hero or noble cause. I want Axanar to succeed. I need Axanar to succeed. Gene Rodenberry created something far beyond his initial plans or that of DESILU, NBC, Paramount or CBS. He gave life to something bigger than himself – bigger than all of us. He gave us something that has become part of America, and the world, and for that we are all richer.

  • you have my full support.

  • Steve Dixon says:

    Behind you 100%! See ya at Treklanta!

  • Robert says:

    Clarence Darrow said it best, “The truth is an absolute defense”.

  • Dratikus says:

    Excellent! When the Haters of Axanar Group (HAG), as I like to call them, started their campaign saying Axanar made a profit and that’s why they got sued , I answered them saying there was no profit. Of course they wouldn’t hear it and they started spamming my twitter account and web site with their anti-Axanar rhetoric. I bet they’re chewing Di lithium after reading this.
    LLAP \\//,

  • Joe says:

    I personally think Axanar. and the other fan made series are all we have left of the Heart of Trek .. I hope this works itself out and everyone continues in the right direction ..

  • Jose G says:

    Thank you for the clarification. It’s such a shame that some folks have misconstrued or mislead others. Axanar has done its part to be a good fan film.

    I just wish CBS & Paramount would sit down & negotiate a deal. Allow Axanar to stand. Make it a love letter to the fans, like Doctor Who’s Day of the Doctor special. Axanar can coexist with Beyond, the new TV show, & the other great fan films out there.

    I will even pay CBS & Paramount a modest fee if they allow Axanar to stand. $10, $20…

    There’s always room to haggle.


  • Colin Krapp says:

    Axanar continues to have my personal support and that of Star Trek Logs, where it is part of our mission to promote Trek fan productions without bias or drama. Looking forward to a happy outcome to the legal issues and the successful completion of the film.

  • Allen Shepard says:

    Thank you for stating this. The 501(c) makes a big difference.
    As I pass this along, I hope others do as well.
    Labor of love is noble work. Educating the many is wise. Star Trek made science fiction seem possible – not because it was easy. Because we could do it, figure it out.

  • Fernando says:

    Great points made. I continue to support Axanar and look forward to seeing the finished product soon.

  • Theodore Benton says:

    Good luck with the continuing the adventure. As someone who works in TV & Film & behind the scenes I’m so amazed by the attention to detail you can tell the money & love is on the screen I wish you all success. Big cheers looking forward to seeing it completed.

  • W Ted Jones says:

    I’m still with you, hope you get back to work on the film soon.
    Thanks for the update.

  • Edward says:

    Thanks for the clarification. I hope CBS/Paramount can understand that the fan’s want this Production made. The proof is in the pudding here. By the money donated, by the time and effort donated by the cast, crew and all the volunteers. People truly love Star Trek. CBS/Paramount this production is about to boldly go where no fan-made production has gone before. It’s only going to help further and foster more Star Trek interest. It’s totally Free advertisement for your brand.



  • Dave Weiss says:

    Saw the trailer.
    Fell in LUV !
    Best wishes !
    Hope all goes well.
    BTW, I think their actions are just a way to get some cheap publicity.

  • Hans Gonzalez says:

    Alec, you have been up front with how the money was being spent from the beginning. I , for one, have been impressed with how you and the rest of the production group have handled everything in a professional and business like manner.

    Anyone who has ever dealt closely with not-for-profit entities knows that unless designated as a strictly “VOLUNTEER” position, anyone who contributes time, energy, or goods to the effort is compensated to some degree. For the amount of time and energy y’all have put into Axanar, the compensation you’ve received has been pretty modest. I’ve got no contention with it.

    Still sitting on the sidelines with my big tub o’ popcorn…

  • Everett Kaser says:

    Alec: I’m one of the people that has posted, amongst other things, saying, “Of course, it’s about money!” By that, however, I was merely implying that money is what CBS/P is in business for, and they expect to make money from the Star Trek property, and violation of their copyrights could impact THEIR earning potential, so yes, they want to protect their copyrights. There are several reasons to want to protect your copyrights, but it’s USUALLY to protect the earning ability of the copyrighted works. So in that sense, it’s about the money. I was not implying that it was about the money that Axanar Productions/Studio is collecting or spending on the making of Axanar, nor that CBS/P is wanting money from Axanar Productions/Studio for the right to make Axanar, I have no way of knowing any of that except for what you’ve posted and their original filing with the court. Merely that, in the sense that they’re protecting their copyrights, it IS about money.

    I’m not trying to argue with you (you’re in a FAR better position than any of the rest of us to know what’s going on :-), just trying to explain what *I* meant. 🙂

  • It is always about money. Copyright protection is about money being diverted from the copyright owner that the owner wants coming to them. Sorry to disagree with you. I respect your opinion, so please don’t take my disagreement in a negative light.

    In the next day or two I will be donating. I want to be able to say I was the 13,001 donor.

    As for profit, I’ve seen a number of other non-profit orgs being criticized for having or being associated with a for profit company. Hmmm, you never see criticism for the lumberyard where you may buy materials for sets as being for profit. Those critics do not live in the real world. Sadly, their criticism does interfere with other non-profit orgs as well.

  • Sean Rice says:

    I think one reason that both CBS and Paramount mainly Paramount wish not to see this film made is that the makers of this film wish the vision of Gene Rodinberery return to the Star Trek Universe and keep the version of what J J Abram vision of Star Trek and also to keep the fans from having a say how this universe should look like.

  • Claude says:

    You have my total support for the project Axanar, I send my money to try to realize a dream. I cross the fingers.
    CBS/Paramount have a big oportunity to open a new way for business Axanar are the key !

    Bonne chance Alec !

  • Lee Benjamin says:

    Excellent post! I have followed Axanar to the point of reading all of the materials provided and listening to all the Axanar podcasts on Trek.FM. I have found everything to be clear and above-board. Best of luck in all endeavors.

    As an aside, thank you for introducing a new word into my vocabulary: conflate. 🙂


  • Brian Heite says:

    Alec, another detailed and accurate report on where we stand. I would respect your guidance and refrain from lawyering, although I would say most people think money=copyright=sales=CBS/Paramount only. If it is isn’t licensed, then it doesn’t happen. I think people miss the fact that for 40 years or so people have done fan films, art, books, magazines and who all knows what else. I have 3 bobble head dolls my wife got me over the last few years and none of them say “Copyright CBS/Paramount” or anything else (they do say “made in China” but that’s a different issue). The point I see is this has all been a muddy lake with everyone swimming in it and hoping to not bump into the shark. It would be nice if the shark at least laid out a set of clear rules that we could all swim by, and maybe which end of the pond they are in. The common thread is we all love Trek as you have produced it, and desire to see it fulfilled.
    On the topic of a separate company for profit, would a subscription program be in the offing? Look at StarCitizen and it’s situation. Or shares maybe….

  • Ed Straker says:

    Get a shareholder revolt against Viacom (owners of Paramount). That will help too!

  • Patrick Pony Boy Lusk says:

    I have in the last year retired my Facebook account because I don’t abide haters. Got tired of the occasional disgruntled Klingons lurking in most Facebook post I posted. So I don’t really have much of a public pool of Axanar to dive into anymore, but I still breath with relief that Axanar is going kick ass following this momentary pause of greatness. I have been, and always shall be your Axanerd!

  • Geoff McAviney says:

    Hi All,
    Could not all this legal suit just be a smokescreen for their embarrassment of not producing a new Tv series or possibly the movies they produced have been hit and miss since the original series ? Dare I say that the Axanar production shames them as it shows what can be done with a limited budget instead of the millions they have wasted on lavish productions of their own product.


    • Everett Kaser says:

      Geoff McAviney: I doubt very much that CBS/P are motivated by embarrassment. However, I would NOT be surprised at all if they’re motivated by competition (which is one of the things copyrights can prevent). Axanar WAS scheduled to be completed and released (I think) around the end of 2016, which is smack-dab in the middle of when Star Trek Beyond and the new Star Trek series were being released. Being an obviously high quality production (as seen in Prelude and the Vulcan scene), CBS/P were rightly concerned about Axanar coming out at that point in time and muddying the waters of their own releases. (Hence, again, I think the case is about money: their potential decreased earnings from THEIR releases). By the time this case is settled, even if Axanar gets to move forward, the release will have been pushed out beyond CBS/P’s new releases.

  • Kelly says:

    I am a huge Star Trek fan, I have been for most of my life. I have all of the Star Trek series and movies including the animation series on DVD and Blu-ray. I am not a big supporter of the new reboot franchise of Star Trek, although I have seen them and I do on them on blu-ray in so much that they are Star Trek. It is a bit like wanting Coke and getting new Coke …lol.
    I am of the opinion that fan based films such as this is the only source that hard-core Star Trek fans can turn to. Therefore I sincerely hope that this resolves itself, so that the Star Trek fan can benefit.
    The law however is the law… I am not prelude to any legal happenings in this case, however I have personally been involved in similar cases. And living more than 50+ years I am more than aware that life is not fair. Lawsuits such as this can be extremely difficult to win. Especially when you’re dealing with such big corporations as Paramount, and CBS.. They have the staying power, and the resources. They can keep the case tied up in court for years. Until the person in question is bankrupt.
    I do not know what capital that AXanar has to work with, but I do hope and wish you success in this unfortunate endeavor. The outcome if the case is lost would be that star trek would continue within the new imagined reboot concept. And I simply do not believe that that concept has the heart, and staying power that Gean Roddenberry’s envisioned Star Trek had. It would be a pity ….
    Best wishes !!

    • Pat H says:

      Luckily they have pro-bono legal support now. I hope that they are allowed to finish the movie one way or the other. I think that there will always be a hunger for more Star Trek material, and for the most part the official canon material (what used to be canon) was tightly controlled.

      I think if someone came up with a better quality soda, it would take away attention from the official brand(s).

  • Eric says:

    Hi Alec,

    Even though the lawsuit isn’t about the money, for studios isn’t it always about the money? lol. Because, if it isn’t about 1, 2, or 3, and it is just about CBS/P doing what they feel is right to protect their IP, then shouldn’t they be going after all of the shows? STC, Phase II, Renegades, Aurora, Starship Farragut, etc.

    Kind of odd that with all of these shows out there, they pick on the newest of the bunch.

    I wish you the best of luck. As a fan and a donor, I’d love to see Axanar made. I really hope something can be worked out.

  • Robert Donovan says:

    Thanks so much for this. I was a supporter before, I am a supporter now, and will be a supporter going forward. I don’t even really care about the perks. They are desirable, but I would probably have donated even had there been none. I was srawn into ‘Prelude and the Axanar story from the first trailer far more than I was for any of the J.J. films.

    CBS/Paramount has a huge opportunity here to observe that Star Wars fan films, even those that charge per view, have not hurt the returns on Star Wars VII and realize that Star Trek fans are every bit as passionate, loyal, and valuable potential friends to the Paramount Star Trek franchise as the Star Wars fans are to the Star Wars franchise. The word hidebound keeps floating to mind regarding CBS/Paramount’s attitude toward Axanar.

  • Zowie says:

    Thank you for publishing only the positive comments. I appreciate having a “safe space” to express my love for Axanar.

    • Shawn Phoenix says:

      Did it occur to you since this is a site much more frequented by Axanar fans then not, that perhaps these are all the comments? Or like the “legal experts” are you just assuming the foul play because you personally dont like the person/people behind Axanar and assume they must be censoring the bad?

    • Brian Heite says:

      Zowie, I assume you are thinking there might be some filtering because of the “awaiting moderation”? I do not believe Alec or anyone else would censor responses, it is just that I do not see any of the negative people wanting to post here, as it is mainly details about the production, status and whatever is impacting it. Naturally, they would have no interest in such “drivel”, so they would not post. If someone did post something negative, I am sure it would get a fair review, and if valid (i.e. not a rant, baseless accusation, emotional diatribe etc) it would be here. Since this is Axanar land, they do have every right to only publish what they want, but I would see them as being open and honest, including valid negative criticism. Keep in mind, we support Axanar, and have full faith in the team and appreciate what they do, these others have no such allegiance, so why would they come here in the first place? I think you meant well, it just didn’t come out quite clearly.

      • Alec Peters says:

        Actually, a very small number of detractors will post obnoxious and rude comments and we delete those. We simply will not tolerate immature and rude comments on our page. We always welcome questions and conversation that is respectful.

  • Rogerborg says:

    Since the suit is purely about copyright (and trademarks) that literally begs the question of why every other fan production hasn’t incurred the same ire. Why no cease and desist for Horizon, a feature length film that actually exists?

    Granted that’s a question for Paramount / CBS but I’m sure it’s one that Alec has asked.

  • MsMariel says:

    Non-profit status with the IRS makes an enormous difference. As for staff getting paid–Lutheran ministers get paid, staff in all non-profits get paid. “Non-profit” does not require a volunteer staff. This all seems to be about something other than money.
    Copyright? Why now? Why this?
    There are so many fan poductions of Star Trek stories out there; none sparked a barking, howling CBS/Paramount response like this.
    I do think the response now may be because Axanar looks better than the “official” Star Trek stories “coming to a theatre near you.”
    Star Trek Beyond’s trailer just stunned me: a little voice in my Star Trek saturated consciousness whispered, “WHAT? What?
    What is this cartoonish nonesense?!” (using slightly different diction).

    I support you fully. I wish there were a way I could make more difference than typing a comment on a blog.

  • Alan K. Chan says:

    Internet trolls suck! Let people do what they love and connect with/support what you gain pleasure from. Spewing hate only ruins someone else’s day and yours. I hope these haters find something to love one day. I’m going to steal a hashtag that a responder created to Justin Lin’s tweet. Axanar is #BeyondHate

  • Shawn Phoenix says:

    Thanks for the ammo Axanar! I have been confronting every “legal expert” I see trashing Axanar without having any of the facts. Having the information put so concisely makes it easier to shut these idiots down.

    • Charles Baxter says:

      So you would confront someone like myself who has seen all of the court documents that have been filed in the case? Now mind you i own my own business with over 120 employees and have various lawyers. So when I ask them about the case and they give me an opinion based on their knowledge of the law., how exactly do I “Not know any of the facts?”

      With all due respect intended.

      Editor’s Note: If readers have questions about AXANAR or PRELUDE TO AXANAR, this is the place to ask them. If people want to “debate” the merits of the current lawsuit involving CBS Studios, Paramount Pictures and Axanar Productions, you’ll need to find another – more neutral – venue. The fact of the matter is this: Axanar Productions wants to find a way to address the concerns held by CBS and Paramount with our production and still produce the story of AXANAR in a way that will please the over 10,000 financial donors who contributed money to see it made.

      Now Charles, while you may have your own business with lots of employees and various lawyers on retainer, that’s all really beside the point here. You’ve also claimed, in various Facebook groups, that you’re a lawyer for CBS, that Axanar Productions has “screwed over” several fans and that Diana, our fulfillment manager has told people who contacted our offices to ask about crowdfunding premiums to F**K OFF – none of which is true. So, with all due respect, please either contribute to the conversation in the terms outlined above or throw your rhetorical bombs elsewhere. Thank you.

      Mike Bawden – PR Director for Axanar Productions

  • Robert says:

    Look, I’m only in for $25 for the digital download of the completed movie so if CBS/P succeeds in shutting you guys down it’s not really a financial hit to me. But no words could describe how saddened, disappointed and angry I would be if this happens. Best of luck to Team Axanar.

  • Liv says:

    For Paramount’s latest try, claiming infringement of the Klingon language, they are trying to nail you because they believe no one else has really used it before. Go to Youtube and search for “Klingon Style”. Someone has most definitely used Klingon before as “fair use”.

    • James says:

      Copyright is a funny thing it can be aggressively protected or left to pick and choose the battles you want.

      Unfortunately the Klingon language is a copyright of CBS thus they can cracking down on it if they want.

      • Mike Bawden, PR Director says:

        Hi James,

        Thanks for coming to visit us here from our usual meeting spot on Facebook. (As an FYI, I made two slight changes to your post to fix a spelling error, so if it looks a little different, that’s why.)

        The case for copyrighting the Klingon language (or any invented language) isn’t quite as open-and-shut as you might think. Check out this article on the connection between Klingon and computer languages like Java and how the courts might rule a little differently than you might expect.

  • Sandy Greenberg says:

    [Editor’s Note: The author of this comment is Sandy Greenberg who is critical of Axanar Productions and our Executive Producer, Alec Peters. As he points out in this comment, Sandy was removed from the Axanar Fan Facebook Page. While he views the action taken by our moderators as being “booted” out of the group for asking questions, our moderators have explained to me that it was Sandy’s unwillingness to accept the answers provided and further antagonization that got him banned.

    In the interest of furthering dialog between those who support Axanar Productions and those who don’t, I think it’s important to allow dissenting voices to be heard. Any factual/accuracy issues will be noted in bracketed italics (like this note). For a general understanding of the “rules” I’m using to moderate this and every post, please click here. Thanks, Mike]

    Speaking as someone who WAS a donor and was unceremoniously booted out for asking respectful questions, I’d like to debunk the debunking with facts I found myself.

    1. Axanar Productions a registered for profit company in California.
    [Axanar Productions is registered with the state of California as an S-Corporation. We are also operating as a California Non-Profit Corporation which is the first step towards achieving registration with the IRS as a federally tax-exempt non-profit corporation (commonly referred to as a 501(c)(3)).]

    Most people aren’t saying the movie is going to make a profit, but the company is. [Not sure where Sandy is getting his information to make this claim. He doesn’t have access to Axanar Production’s month-to-month financials or he would realize that the assertion the company is making a profit is wrong.]

    “Working” toward non-profit is very different than actually being one. There are very strict rules to follow and documentation to provide.
    [In fact, Sandy is right about the difficulty in achieving 501(c)(3) status with the IRS. Star Trek Continues just accomplished that and we tip our hat to them. We still have quite a ways to go, but are committed to getting there.]

    Are these docs available?
    [By documentation, I assume Sandy means financial documentation required to pass muster with the IRS on a 501(c)(3) application. Frankly, Axanar Productions is still working on completing all of the requirements to allow us to apply for the status, so the short answer is “no.” Will we provide the general public with access to that documentation once it’s completed? The short answer to that question is also “no.” We will publicly disclose only the information required by code or statute.]

    Have their books been audited by an outside party?
    [Again, this is pretty vague, but I assume Sandy is asking about Axanar Production’s financial statements and the review that the IRS typically does as part of its process to determine whether or not an organization should be granted tax-exempt status. Axanar Production’s application for 501(c)(3) status has not been filed yet, so no audit has been performed. More to the point, this question seems to misinterpret the use and outcome of such an IRS review. More on that later.]

    2.In several documents and podcasts the Axanar team have produced they state very clearly that the facilities will be used for other “for profit” ventures in the future. From the feature Kickstarter campaign page:

    “This [studio] will be the permanent home of Axanar Productions and allow us to do more than just Axanar, from other adventures in the Star Trek universe and beyond. David Gerrold (author of ‘The Trouble with Tribbles’) is already lined up to shoot his sci-fi series, Running Dark, here.”
    [Again, exactly what Sandy’s point is isn’t completely clear. From the date of our second Kickstarter, the plan for Ares Studio (the warehouse Axanar Productions rents and has converted into a soundstage) was that it would be rented out to other productions after AXANAR was shot. The revenue from that rent would help cover the operating costs of the facility as well as provide additional revenues to Axanar Productions for future projects – possibly even more Star Trek fan films. As outlined in the “Mythbusters” post, though, Axanar Productions has now been approached by an independent group of private investors interested in acquiring the assets of the soundstage and running it as an independent business. There are many, many details that need to be worked out in order for that to happen, though, so much of the speculation by Sandy and others is unfounded and unwarranted.]

    3. The lawsuit is (at least in part) about money. Page 41 of the amended complaint states:

    “62. On information and belief, Defendants enjoy a direct financial benefit from the preparation, duplication, and distribution of the infringing Axanar Works.”
    [While Sandy’s quote from the amended complaint filed by CBS and Paramount is correct, his conclusion (that the lawsuit is – at least in part – about money) is his assumption not a stated fact by either of the plaintiffs. The fact is, the “money angle” can be a distraction for people who are trying to follow this case. The lawsuit is a copyright infringement lawsuit, first and foremost. CBS and Paramount have some concerns about the use of the Star Trek IP – enough, in their mind, to warrant going right to a lawsuit rather than talking to Axanar Productions directly about those concerns. Our stated goal, from day one, is to find a way to sit down with CBS and Paramount, hear what their concerns are and then see if there’s a way we can make the changes necessary to allow the story of AXANAR to be shared with Star Trek fans around the world (including the 10,000+ fans who gave us money through Kickstarter and Indiegogo to get the film made).

    It’s safe to say that Sandy Greenberg is not a fan of Axanar Productions or Alec Peters. In fact, the final paragraph he posted is rather accusatory which is why I’ve redacted it.]

  • KingOfSunsetTown says:

    There’s been a lot of accusation and anger towards Alec Peters and other Axanar people from That Facebook Group and much of it focuses on the way people have been treated. You’ve been accused of not accepting criticism and of always telling people you’re right AND YET my personal experience on That Facebook Group has been the very same treatment attributed to Peters et al.

    There’s definitely a hidden agenda behind that group, it’s run by too many people who benefit from the Axanar story running and running i.e. hits to their respective websites.

    The Axanar team are accused of creating an ‘echo-chamber’ despite the FB group being EXACTLY that. The Axanar team are accused of hammering down on dissent but my experience in that group is that that is exactly what happens there. It’s subtle, no deleting of threads but the people behind it or members of their cabal will argue and argue you down until you give up your point. Eventually if you don’t give up your point of view, you’ll be told ‘guys can you take this off-line’. Aah, free speech.

    I’ll be upfront, I haven’t donated (but I enjoyed Prelude) so I’m not on any particular ‘side’ but I hope my point of view has some worth here. It certainly didn’t in the FB group.

    • Mike Bawden, PR Director says:

      Thanks so much for the kind words.

      Over the past week, I’ve been trying to actively engage some of those people who are angry and stand against Alec and Axanar Productions. In many cases, they have some good questions that should be answered – but only in an environment where we can have non-confrontational exchanges of ideas and opinions. Hopefully this will be one of those places.

      With your support and the support of other like-minded fans, I’m confident we can get there.

      Thanks again,


  • Bob says:


    I am glad you update us on the current legal situation periodically. From my perspective, speculation (captain) is pointless when you have maybe 3 pieces of a 1000 piece puzzle. Little hard to guess what the picture really is. I leave this in the capable hands of the Axanar team et al. From some earlier comments from other blog logs, I’m not against Paramount but I am FOR AXANAR. Once this is settled amicably, (positive reinforcement), will the fundraiser(s) be restored/renewed? I still have a Blu-ray to secure. 🙂 I was going to donate again when the lawsuit slammed into my email.

    Antsy for Axanar.

    • Mike Bawden, PR Director says:

      Hi Bob,

      Thanks for your support.

      We’re hoping to find a way to meet the concerns of Paramount and CBS head-on and work out a way to get back into production on AXANAR as soon as possible. Once we’ve got a plan worked out, you and the rest of our backers will be among the first to know.

      Trust us, we want nothing more than to be able to get that AXANAR Blu-Ray to you, as soon as possible!



  • Brian Heite says:

    One of the things I see happening is a reflection of the turmoil we see in our politics. You make an accusation, and then the other has to defend it, or it is assumed true. Sandy Greenburg seemed to just keep finding something to use as a hot button topic, and that seems to also filter through all the other media I see. Sometimes Axanar gets a good fair presentation, but this undertone of implied wrongness, is almost become a tool of dissent. I am of a mind if people do not want to support it, fine: Go Away. I appreciate your allowing such things here, it shows you want to have a factual, clear discussion, but when someone grabs “page 41 item 62” to indict the whole team and project, and in a twisted way at that, it just nullifies the whole discussion. Not to belabor the legal aspects but I believe in both copyright, and reasonable ownership of what you have created, for sure, but Star Trek has grown, mainly due to the huge fan base and fan efforts, and has moved beyond just a specific property. That concept seems to have eluded everyone who wants to hammer Axanar as a specific issue, and ignore the fact this has been a n ongoing phenomenon for 30 years, that has far exceeded the copyrighted framework. Some agreement should be reached to ensure proper dues is paid to the framework, and proper recognition to the original work of the Axanar specific universe that you folks have created. Thats it, in my simple world…Thanks for stepping up to tend the Axanar garden.

  • Rich Ambroson says:

    I stand with Axanar!

    I will NOT pay to see any CBS/Paramount products (and didn’t care for what JJ Abrams did in the first place) unless those entities drop their suit and the full Axanar film is allowed to be produced and shown online.

  • Sebastian S. says:

    Thank you very much for this clarification. I have followed the lawsuit for quite some time, especially since as a backer, I would find it a damn shame if it drags out unnecessarily long and suffocates the production.
    The legal status of Ares Studios was something that was always unclear and to me and is I think the only aspect of the production where the critics may have a point (something that made me uneasy, to say the least). On the other hand, from what I have heard of the lawsuit, it always struck me that there was no mention of the studio whatsoever. Therefore to read black on white how the situation looks to you is a great relieve. Since it is only about the copyright, the odds of an amiable agreement are rising in my mind.
    I look forward to hear of the outcome.

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