Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Dean Parisot|
|Story by||David Howard|
|Music by||David Newman|
|Edited by||Don Zimmerman|
|Distributed by||DreamWorks Pictures|
|Box office||$90.7 million|
Galaxy Quest is a 1999 American science fiction comedy film directed by Dean Parisot and written by David Howard and Robert Gordon. A parody of and homage to science-fiction films and series, especially Star Trek and its fandom, the film stars Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, Tony Shalhoub, Sam Rockwell and Daryl Mitchell. It depicts the cast of a fictional defunct cult television series, Galaxy Quest, who are visited by actual aliens who think the series is an accurate documentary, and become involved in a very real intergalactic conflict.
The film was a modest box office success and positively received by critics: it won the Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation (an award won by the original Star Trek series in the 1960s) and the Nebula Award for Best Script. It was also nominated for 10 Saturn Awards, including Best Science Fiction Film and Best Director for Parisot, Best Actress for Weaver, and Best Supporting Actor for Rickman, with Allen winning Best Actor.
Several Star Trek cast and crew members praised the film. It was included in Reader's Digest's list of The Top 100+ Funniest Movies of All Time in 2012, and Star Trek fans voted it the seventh best Star Trek film of all time in 2013.
The cast members of the canceled 1980s space-adventure television series Galaxy Quest spend most of their days attending fan conventions and promotional appearances. Though the series' former lead star Jason Nesmith (Tim Allen) thrives on the attention, the other cast members resent him and, to varying degrees, the states of their careers.
At a convention, Jason is approached by a group calling themselves Thermians, led by Mathesar, who request his help. Believing he is being asked for a promotional appearance, he agrees to be picked up the next morning. Jason is hung over when he is picked up and does not grasp that he has been transported to a working re-creation of the bridge of the NSEA Protector, the starship from Galaxy Quest. Believing he has been called on to perform, he gives half-hearted orders as captain, directing them to attack his enemy General Sarris, temporarily defeating him. When the Thermians transport him back to Earth, he realizes the experience was real. He attempts to relate his adventure to the other cast members, but is rebuffed. When the Thermian Laliari appears and requests Jason's help again, he convinces the cast to join him.
Once aboard the Protector, the group learns that the Thermians received the broadcasts of Galaxy Quest and, having no understanding of fiction, mistook them for historical documentaries. Inspired by the crew's adventures, they restructured their society to reflect the show's virtues, and manufactured a functioning replica of the Protector. When the evil warlord Sarris attacks the ship, the group flees through a field of magnetic mines. Though they escape Sarris, the ship's power source, its beryllium sphere, is damaged. They detect beryllium on a nearby planet, and the humans travel to the surface to retrieve a new sphere. After a series of mishaps, they are successful, but in their absence Sarris seizes the Protector. Jason confesses to Sarris that he is not the ship's commander. When he shows Sarris the "historical documents" of Galaxy Quest, Sarris realizes they are fiction and forces Jason to explain them to a heartbroken Mathesar. Sarris orders the Protector's self-destruct mechanism to be activated and returns to his ship, leaving the others to die.
The humans formulate a plan to abort the self-destruct and defeat Sarris' men left on the ship. With the aid of a Galaxy Quest fan on Earth named Brandon – using a genuine Thermian communicator Jason had accidentally swapped for Brandon's prop – and his network of friends with intimate knowledge of the show, Jason and Gwen make their way to the ship's core and shut down the self-destruct sequence, while Alexander leads the Thermians in fighting back against Sarris' forces. The humans take back command of the Protector and fly to confront Sarris. With their renewed confidence in their abilities, the crew flies through the minefield again but evade the mines, causing them to drag behind the ship. They fly the Protector straight at Sarris' ship, then veer away at the last moment, so that Sarris flies into the mines and obliterates his own ship.
The Protector travels to Earth to return the humans home, but Sarris, who escaped his vessel's destruction, ambushes them and fatally wounds several crew members. Jason activates the "Omega 13", a secret superweapon on the Protector that had never been used and never had its capabilities explained. It causes a 13-second time warp to the past, giving Jason and Mathesar the chance to disarm Sarris before he attacks. The Protector's bridge splits from the main vessel to fly to Earth with the humans, while the main section departs with Mathesar leading the Thermians.
With Brandon acting as a beacon, the Protector bridge lands at the Galaxy Quest convention, crashing through walls and coming to a rest in the center of the main stage. As the humans emerge, Sarris revives to threaten them, but Jason shoots him, blasting him into atoms. The crowd naturally assumes this was all a massive display of special effects, and the cast basks in the adoration of Brandon, his pals, and their fans.
Some time later, Galaxy Quest is revived as a sequel series, Galaxy Quest: The Journey Continues, with the crew reprising their roles.
- Tim Allen as Jason Nesmith, who played Commander Peter Quincy Taggart, the commander of the NSEA Protector and main character of the series.
- Sigourney Weaver as Gwen DeMarco, who played Lieutenant Tawny Madison, the ship's communications officer and the only officer aboard who can give orders to the ship's computer.
- Alan Rickman as Alexander Dane, who played Dr. Lazarus, the ship's science officer and a member of the Mak'tar, an alien species known for their super intelligence and psionic powers.
- Tony Shalhoub as Fred Kwan, who played Tech Sergeant Chen, the ship's chief engineer.
- Sam Rockwell as Guy Fleegman, the cast's handler at conventions, who also played a "redshirt" (a short-lived minor character) in a single episode, simply referred to as "Crewman #6". In the revival at the end of the film, he gains a part as Security Chief "Roc" Ingersol.
- Daryl Mitchell as Tommy Webber, who played Lieutenant Laredo, a precocious child pilot.
- Corbin Bleu portrays a younger Laredo during the "original" TV series
- Enrico Colantoni as Mathesar, the leader of the Thermians.
- Robin Sachs as Roth'h'ar Sarris, the General leading the reptilian humanoids who seek to destroy the Thermians
- Patrick Breen as Quellek, a Thermian who forms a bond with Alexander Dane.
- Missi Pyle as Laliari, a Thermian and love interest for Fred.
- Jed Rees as Teb, a Thermian and Mathesar's second-in-command.
- Justin Long as Brandon, a dedicated fan of Galaxy Quest.
- Jeremy Howard as Kyle, Brandon's friend.
- Kaitlin Cullum as Katelyn, Brandon's friend
- Jonathan Feyer as Hollister, Brandon's friend
- Wayne Péré as Lathe, Sarris's second-in-command.
- Samuel Lloyd as Neru, a Thermian.
The original spec script by David Howard was titled Captain Starshine. Howard stated he got the idea while at an IMAX presentation, and while waiting for the show to start, one of the trailers for an upcoming "Americans In Space" film featured the voice of Leonard Nimoy, a leading actor from Star Trek. The trailer got Howard thinking about how the other Star Trek actors had become pigeonholed in these types of roles since the cancellation of Star Trek, and then came up with the idea of what if there were real aliens involved. From there, he considered the rest of his script "that, in a lot of ways, just wrote itself, because it just seemed so self-evident once the idea was there".
Producer Mark Johnson, who had a first look deal with DreamWorks, did not like Howard's script, but was still fascinated with its concept featuring space aliens who misconstrue old episodes of a television series. Johnson purchased the script and had Bob Gordon use its concept to create Galaxy Quest. A fan of Star Trek, Gordon was hesitant, believing Galaxy Quest "could be a great idea or it could be a terrible idea" and initially turned it down. Gordon had not read Captain Starshine until after the film's completion, but instead started from the premise of washed-up actors from a sci-fi series involved in a real alien situation. Gordon's initial scripts added elements of humor to Howard's script, such as the scraping of the Protector when leaving space dock. Gordon became more confident in his script when he completed the scene of Nesmith admitting to the Thermians the truth of the situation, which he felt he nailed. He submitted his first draft to DreamWorks in 1998, which was immediately greenlit.
Since early in the production, Mark Johnson wanted Dean Parisot, who had directed Home Fries, another film he produced, to direct Galaxy Quest; however, DreamWorks favored Harold Ramis because of his prior experience. Ramis was hired in November 1998, but departed in February 1999 because of casting difficulties. He wanted Alec Baldwin for the lead role, but Baldwin turned it down. Steve Martin and Kevin Kline were considered, though Kline turned it down for family reasons. Ramis did not agree with the casting of Tim Allen as Jason Nesmith, and Parisot took over as director within three weeks. Allen said that the version of the film pitched to him by Ramis and Katzenberg felt more like Spaceballs, in which they wanted an actor known for action to be doing comedy, rather than a comedian doing an action film. Sigourney Weaver, who had previously worked with Ramis on Ghostbusters, said that he wanted to cast actors that had not done any science fiction roles before, a choice she thought odd since veteran actors in this category would know what was humorous. After seeing the film, Ramis said he was ultimately impressed with Allen's performance.
Following Parisot's assignment as director, Allen was quickly cast for Nesmith. After he had been cast, Allen had to choose between Galaxy Quest and Bicentennial Man and chose the first, with his Bicentennial Man role going to Robin Williams. Allen said he was a big sci-fi fan and had hoped the role would launch a second part of his career as a sci-fi actor. Some of Allen's sci-fi knowledge influenced production: for example, when the crew is about to land on an alien planet, Allen brought up the issue about a potential breathable atmosphere with Johnson and Parisot, which became lines for Fleegman and Kwan in the movie. About his role, Allen said he based his performance on Yul Brynner's Ramesses II from the 1956 The Ten Commandments, more than that of William Shatner as Captain James Kirk from Star Trek.
Alan Rickman was selected to be Alexander Dane who played the alien Dr. Lazarus. Rickman had been interested in the part not so much for the sci-fi elements but because of its comedy. He said "I love comedy almost more than anything. This really is one of the funniest scripts I've read." and that "actors are probably the only professionals who send themselves up. We actually have a sense of humor about ourselves." While the original script had made Dane a ceremonial knight, Rickman suggested the title would be too much for the character, and this was dropped, though remained listed as "Sir Alex Dane" in the credits. Rickman also provided input into the prosthetic piece that Dane would use to play Lazarus, saying "it was important for it to be good enough to convince the aliens who believe we're the real thing, but also cheesy enough to imagine that it was something he applied himself". Rickman's sense of drama came into play during initial reads and script revisions. Rockwell said that Rickman "was very instrumental in making sure the script hit the dramatic notes, and everything had a strong logic and reason behind it". The scene where Dane, as Dr. Lazarus, gives a final speech to Quellek, played by Patrick Breen, heavily utilized Rickman's sense of drama to be powerfully emotional, according to Rockwell. Rickman's knowledge of drama played well off Allen's love of sci-fi, and while Rickman initially was annoyed with Allen's excitement over his role, eventually the whole cast bonded over the film. Dr. Lazarus' catchphrase "By Grabthar's Hammer" was written as a temp line in Gordon's script when filming started, with Gordon planning to find a less funny word than "Grabthar", but the line stuck as the production crew started using the line around their offices and printed t-shirts with the saying.
Weaver had loved the script since her first read while Ramis was director, stating "that great sort of Wizard of Oz story of these people feeling so incomplete in the beginning, and then during the course of this adventure, they come out almost like the heroes they pretended to be in the first place". She particularly loved the part of Madison: "to me she was what a lot of women feel like, including myself, in a Hollywood situation." In addition, she had long wanted to work with both Allen and Rickman. Once Parisot replaced Ramis, Weaver pushed on Parisot to cast her, insisting that Madison needed to be blonde and have large breasts to capture the humor of a sci-fi production, and was surprised when discovering she actually got the role. Weaver said that her role in Galaxy Quest was closer to "telling the truth about myself and science fiction" compared to her performance as Ripley in the Alien, given some of her personal insecurities. During filming, she wore a blonde wig (which she kept after production) and an enhanced bosom which many of the crew said made Weaver a totally new personality from what they had expected. Weaver often left shooting in the uniform and returned to her hotel to admire herself, saying that she "loved being a starlet".
Tony Shalhoub originally auditioned for Guy Fleegman, Sam Rockwell won the role, and Shalhoub was cast as Fred Kwan instead. Shalhoub and Parisot worked together to develop the Kwan character, loosely basing him on David Carradine as a non-Asian in an Asian role in Kung Fu. There had been an urban legend that Carradine had done that show frequently while under the influence of drugs, and while they could not directly carry that "stoner" implication into a PG-13 film, Shalhoub performed the role towards that direction, which Rockwell described as a "failed Scientologist". Shalhoub insisted that Kwan should always been shown eating to play towards the stoner stereotype.
Rockwell had initially considered declining the role after he was cast, as at the time he was looking at doing an independent work co-starring alongside Marisa Tomei and developing a more serious acting career, and that a comedic sci-fi role would not help towards that. Rockwell eventually recognized that several successful drama actors had done comedy roles early on, and Rockwell's friend Kevin Spacey convinced him to take the Galaxy Quest role. As such, he was the last of the main actors affirmed to be cast. Rockwell fashioned Fleegman after cowardly characters from other films, such as John Turturro's Bernie in Miller's Crossing, Bill Paxton's Private Hudson in Aliens, and Michael Keaton's "Blaze" in Night Shift. In some cases, Rockwell drank a lot of coffee before shots to help create his overexcitement and jitters associated with the character. The name of Rockwell's character, Guy Fleegman, is a homage to Guy Vardaman, a little-known Star Trek actor who worked extensively on Star Trek as either a stand-in or in minor roles. Rockwell and Shalhoub worked together in providing some improvisational aspects to their dialog, with Rockwell's Fleegman being the worrisome sort while Shalhoub's Kwan tackling the issue without concern.
Daryl Mitchell was approached by Parisot to audition for the role of Webber, since they both had worked together before on Home Fries, and Parisot felt the part was perfect for Mitchell. Mitchell said he took this assurance from Parisot as a safe bet, completed the audition, and won the part. David Alan Grier was the second choice for Webber.
Justin Long was cast as Brandon, and was Long's first feature-film role. Long had just completed work on a pilot for a television show under casting director Bonnie Zane, and she had suggested Long to her sister Debra Zane, the casting director for Galaxy Quest. Long said he was nervous auditioning as an unknown actor at the time, competing against Kieran Culkin, Eddie Kaye Thomas and Tom Everett Scott. Perisot had given Long a copy of Trekkies, a film about the Star Trek fandom, to help prepare for the character. Long based his character on a combination of Philip Seymour Hoffman's Scotty J. from Boogie Nights and the Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons. Paul Rudd auditioned for a role.
While casting for the Thermians, one of the first auditioned was Enrico Colantoni. Colantoni, before his audition, loved the script and spent time before the audition to develop the behavior he thought the Thermians should have. Parisot said that at the end of Colantoni's read, the actor offered a possible voice for what he thought the Thermians would sound like. Parisot immediately loved the voice and used it to establish the nature of the Thermians for the rest of the casting process. Colantoni led how the Thermians would act, which he called "happy Jehovah's Witnesses" taking everything in with "love and acceptance". Other actors cast for Thermians included Jed Rees and Rainn Wilson, his feature-film premiere. According to Debra Zane, finding an actress to play the role of Laliari was very hard, as they had "a difficult time finding a woman who could be Thermian in the same way as actors Enrico Colantoni, Rainn Wilson and Jed Rees". Ultimately, when she auditioned Missi Pyle, she was so impressed that she sent the audition tape directly to Parisot, with a note stating "If this is not Laliari, I will resign from the CSA." Steven Spielberg later asked for Laliari's role to be expanded after being impressed by her performance as well, which was developed into the romantic association with Kwan. Jennifer Coolidge was the second choice for the role.
As they cast the other Thermians, they started an "alien school" to help the actors learn how the Thermians would act and talk, helping the actors get the idea that the Thermians were "basically giant calamari hiding in human shape", according to Parisot. The walk was inspired by how the marionettes were articulated in the series Fireball XL5. Other idiosyncrasies of the Thermians were developed by the actors during this school, and several of their lines came from improvisation. Wilson's role as Lahnk was to have a larger presence in the film, but the actor was double-booked alongside a filming of an NBC pilot in New York City. He got a crash course on how to act like a Thermian from Colantoni, Rees, and Pyle, but still was nervous around the A-list actors leading the cast. Wilson said of a deleted scene, released with the film's home media involving Lahnk, was wisely cut given how nervous he was, flubbing his lines several times.
Linda DeScenna, production designer of the film, was interested in the project because it would not have the same aesthetics as other 1990s science fiction films, and "it didn't have to be real, hi-tech and vacuformed". DeScenna drew inspiration for the sets not only from Star Trek, but also from Buck Rogers, Battlestar Galactica, and Lost in Space. DeScenna had hoped to incorporate more essence of the reuse of props and set elements from these shows within the film, but the film didn't provide enough space for this. She used color theming to help distinguish the key elements of the film, with steam blue for the Thermians and the Protector, while Saris and his species were made to be a green tone that stood out against that. The design of the Thermian station was influenced by the works of artist Roger Dean, especially his cover art for the Yes live album Yessongs (1973).
The bulk of the film was shot in studios in Los Angeles. Scenes of the alien planet were filmed at Goblin Valley State Park in Utah. At the time, access to the park was partly by dirt road; fees paid by the production company were used to upgrade the entire access road to asphalt pavement. Other locations used in the film included the Stahl House as Nesmith's home, and the Hollywood Palladium for the fan conventions.
According to Weaver, Allen hectored her to sign a piece of the Nostromo, the spaceship from Alien, in which she had starred; she ultimately did, writing "Stolen by Tim Allen; Love, Sigourney Weaver," which she claims upset him greatly. During the period of filming, the entire cast attended a 20th-anniversary screening of Alien. After filming wrapped, Weaver kept the wig she wore for the role.
The film's visual effects were created by Industrial Light & Magic led by Bill George. A challenge in the CGI was making distinctions between scenes that were to be from the 1980s Galaxy Quest show which would have been done normally through practical effects, and the more realistic scenes for the contemporary actors. Various practical effects were also used, such as the "piglizard" creature that the crew transports onto the Protector.
After most production was done, Johnson said that DreamWorks were confused by the film, as it was not what they had expected from the script they greenlit, but pushed on post-production as they needed a film to go up against Columbia Pictures' Stuart Little. Among major cuts from DreamWorks was to bring the movie to a more family-friendly audience. The film originally received an "R" rating, according to Galaxy Quest producer Lindsey Collins and Weaver, before being recut. Shalhoub did not remember any darker version of the film. Gordon had not planned to write a "family friendly" film, and his initial script included mature scenes, such as DeMarco attempting to seduce aliens, and the crash of the escape pod into the convention hall decapitating several attendees.
During post-production, The Rugrats Movie from Paramount Pictures came out and was a box-office success. Dreamworks at that point pushed on the production to have a competing film for a younger age group as to try to compete with Rugrats. The film was edited and cut to bring the rating to a "PG", which required cutting of some of the better and funnier scenes in the film that could have survived if a "PG-13" rating had been targeted instead according to the cast and crew. In the aforementioned "chompers" scene, DeMarco's line "Well, screw that!" was dubbed over her original "Well, fuck that!" Weaver stated she purposely made her dubbed line stand out as a form of protest from her original line. Another cut scene to achieve the rating was seeing the crew's quarters on the Protector, which included Dr. Lazarus' quarters which Allen called a "proctologist's dream and nightmare". Several other scenes involving Dr. Lazarus were cut, as DreamWorks felt they were too kinky for the desired rating. Other scenes were added to provided what the studio felt was necessary continuity for the intended younger audience, such as showing the limo that Nesmith is taken to the Protector in "lifts off" from Earth.
In theaters, the first 20 minutes of the film were presented in a 1.85:1 aspect ratio, before changing to a wider 2.35:1 ratio when Nesmith looks out upon space as the Protector arrives at Thermia to maximize the effect on viewers. However, this caused some problems with projectionists at movie theaters when showing the film as they had not opened up the screen curtains far enough for the wider aspect ratio. Projectionists had to be told at later showings to prepare for this transition. David Newman composed the music score.
Before the release of the movie, a promotional mockumentary video titled Galaxy Quest: 20th Anniversary, The Journey Continues, aired on E!, presenting the Galaxy Quest television series as an actual cult series, and the upcoming film as a documentary about the making of the series, presenting it in a similar way to Star Trek; it featured fake interviews of the series' cast (portrayed by the actors of the actual film), "Questerians", and critics.
While these additional materials were made, DreamWorks devoted very little advertising to the film despite its placement near the Christmas season, which the cast and crew felt hurt the potential for the film. Unlike most films where the second and ongoing weekend box office takes decline, Galaxy Quest saw rising numbers over the first several weekends, and DreamWorks' Jeffrey Katzenberg apologized directly to Parisot for failing to market the film properly. Additionally, the primary trailer used for the film used a cut of the film before all the specific effects were complete, and Johnson felt that if the trailer had used the completed versions, it would have helped draw a larger audience.
Relation to Star Trek and other science fiction works
Galaxy Quest is an acknowledged homage to Star Trek; Perisot said "Part of the mission for me was to make a great 'Star Trek' episode." Gordon's original script was titled "Galaxy Quest: The Motion Picture" as a reference to the first feature Star Trek film, and elements like departing the space dock and the malfunctioning transporters were further nods to the film. The prefix of the Protector's registration number NTE-3120 ostensibly alludes to some sort of similar space federation, but in reality stands for "Not The Enterprise", according to visual effects co-supervisor Bill George  Perisot refuted claims that the rock monster that Nesmith was based on the rock monster that had been scripted for Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, but instead was more inspired by the Gorn that Kirk faces in the Star Trek episode "Arena".
This homage also extended to the original marketing of the movie, including a promotional website intentionally designed to look like a poorly constructed fan website, with "screen captures" and poor HTML coding. The homage even parodied the effect that Star Trek had on the social lives of its cast members, such as how Alexander Dane (played by Alan Rickman) has been typecast after his success on the Galaxy Quest television series; this reflects the lamentations of Leonard Nimoy, who had felt typecast after his performance as Spock.
Additionally, the time between the original Galaxy Quest series and its sequel, Galaxy Quest: The Journey Continues is 17 years, the same amount of time that elapsed between the original Star Trek series and Star Trek: The Next Generation.[original research?]
Other aspects of the film were homages to other seminal science fiction works. The Thermians' native planet, Klaatu Nebula, is a reference to the name of the alien visitor in the classic The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951). Quellek's line "I'm shot" was directly influenced by the same line from James Brolin's character in Westworld. The blue creatures on the alien planet were based on similar creatures in Barbarella. The "chompers" scene with Nesmith and DeMacro trying to reach the self-destruct abort button was inspired by a scene from the 1997 film Event Horizon involving whirring blades. The effects for the Omega 13 activation were inspired by the ending scene from Beneath the Planet of the Apes.
The film was financially successful. It earned US$7,012,630 in its opening weekend, and its total U.S. domestic tally stands at US$71,583,916; in total it has grossed US$90,683,916 worldwide.
Galaxy Quest received positive reviews from critics, both as a parody of Star Trek, and as a comedy film of its own. The New York Times's Lawrence Van Gelder called it "an amiable comedy that simultaneously manages to spoof these popular futuristic space adventures and replicate the very elements that have made them so durable". Roger Ebert praised the ability of the film to spoof the "illogic of the TV show". The Village Voice offered a lukewarm review, noting that "the many eight- to 11-year-olds in the audience seemed completely enthralled". Joe Leydon of Variety said that Galaxy Quest "remains light and bright as it races along, and never turns nasty or mean-spirited as it satirizes the cliches and cults of Star Trek".
Retrospective reviews for Galaxy Quest have been positive, as the film is considered to have held up over time. On Rotten Tomatoes, it received an approval rating of 89% based on 121 reviews and an average rating of 7.2/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Intelligent and humorous satire with an excellent cast; no previous Trekkie knowledge needed to enjoy this one." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 70 out of 100, based on 28 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews". Esquire's Matt Miller said in 2019 "the film absolutely holds up as one of the best sci-fi satires ever made—one that challenges our obsession with massive Hollywood franchises, the nature of fandom, and some of the more problematic cliches of the genre. But it does so with a self-aware empathy that makes it an enduring and lasting entry in not only science-fiction, but American film as a whole".
Acclaimed writer-director David Mamet, in his book Bambi vs. Godzilla: On the Nature, Purpose, and Practice of the Movie Business, included Galaxy Quest in a list of four "perfect" films, along with The Godfather, A Place in the Sun and Dodsworth.
|List of awards and nominations|
|Award||Date of ceremony||Category||Recipient(s)||Result|
|Amsterdam Fantastic Film Festival||April 13, 2000||Silver Scream Award||Dean Parisot||Won|
|Artios Awards||November 1, 2000||Best Casting for Feature Film, Comedy||Debra Zane||Nominated|
|Blockbuster Entertainment Awards||May 9, 2000||Favorite Actor – Comedy||Tim Allen||Nominated|
|Favorite Actress – Comedy||Sigourney Weaver||Nominated|
|Brussels International Festival of Fantastic Film||April 1, 2000||Silver Raven for Best Screenplay||David Howard||Won|
|Pegasus Audience Award||Dean Parisot||Won|
|Hochi Film Awards||December 27, 2001||Best Foreign Language Film||Dean Parisot||Won|
|Hugo Awards||September 4, 2001||Best Dramatic Presentation||Dean Parisot, David Howard and Robert Gordon||Won|
|Las Vegas Film Critics Society Awards||January 18, 2000||Best Visual Effects||Bill George||Nominated|
|Nebula Awards||April 28, 2001||Best Script||David Howard and Robert Gordon||Nominated|
|Saturn Awards||June 6, 2000||Best Science Fiction Film||Galaxy Quest||Nominated|
|Best Director||Dean Parisot||Nominated|
|Best Actor||Tim Allen||Won|
|Best Actress||Sigourney Weaver||Nominated|
|Best Supporting Actor||Alan Rickman||Nominated|
|Best Performance by a Younger Actor||Justin Long||Nominated|
|Best Music||David Newman||Nominated|
|Best Costume||Albert Wolsky||Nominated|
|Best Make-up||Stan Winston, Hallie D'Amore and Ve Neill||Nominated|
|Best Special Effects||Stan Winston, Bill George, Kim Bromley and Robert Stadd||Nominated|
|Teen Choice Awards||August 6, 2000||Choice Movie – Comedy||Galaxy Quest||Nominated|
Impact and legacy
The film proved quite popular with Star Trek fans. At the 2013 Star Trek Convention in Las Vegas, Galaxy Quest received enough support in a Star Trek Film Ranking to be included with the twelve Star Trek films that had been released at the time on the voting ballot. The fans at the convention ranked it the seventh best Star Trek film.
Harold Ramis, who was originally supposed to direct the film but left following disagreements over the casting choices, notably Allen as the lead, was ultimately impressed with Allen's performance. Tim Allen later said he and William Shatner were "now friends because of this movie".
Galaxy Quest predicted the growth and influence of media fandom in the years after its release. While fandoms like that for Star Trek existed at the time of the film, the size and scope presented by the fan conventions in the film had not been seen as much in 1999; since then, major fan conventions such as the San Diego Comic Con have become significant events that draw mainstream attention.The film also depicted fandoms using their numbers to influence production companies to revive cancelled works, such as with The Expanse, Veronica Mars, Arrested Development, and Twin Peaks. The film also captured some negative elements of modern fandom, such as leading actors continuously pestered by fans for intricate details of the work's fiction and other elements of the potentially toxic culture of online fan groups.
Reaction from Star Trek actors
Several actors who have had roles on various Star Trek television series and films have commented on Galaxy Quest in light of their own experiences with the franchise and its fandom.
I had originally not wanted to see [Galaxy Quest] because I heard that it was making fun of Star Trek and then Jonathan Frakes rang me up and said "You must not miss this movie! See it on a Saturday night in a full theatre." And I did and of course I found it was brilliant. Brilliant. No one laughed louder or longer in the cinema than I did, but the idea that the ship was saved and all of our heroes in that movie were saved simply by the fact that there were fans who did understand the scientific principles on which the ship worked was absolutely wonderful. And it was both funny and also touching in that it paid tribute to the dedication of these fans.
I've had flashbacks of Galaxy Quest at the many conventions I've gone to since the movie came out. I thought it was an absolute laugh-a-minute.
I thought it was very funny, and I thought the audience that they portrayed was totally real, but the actors that they were pretending to be were totally unrecognizable. Certainly I don't know what Tim Allen was doing. He seemed to be the head of a group of actors, and for the life of me I was trying to understand who he was imitating. The only one I recognized was the girl playing Nichelle Nichols.
I loved Galaxy Quest. I thought it was brilliant satire, not only of Trek, but of fandom in general. The only thing I wish they had done was cast me in it, and have me play a freaky fanboy who keeps screaming at the actor who played 'the kid' about how awful it was that there was a kid on the spaceship. Alas.
Yes, I have seen Galaxy Quest and no, it's not really like that.
I think it's a chillingly realistic documentary. [laughs] The details in it, I recognized every one of them. It is a powerful piece of documentary filmmaking. And I do believe that when we get kidnapped by aliens, it's going to be the genuine, true Star Trek fans who will save the day. ... I was rolling in the aisles. And [star] Tim Allen had that Shatner-esque swagger down pat. And I roared when the shirt came off, and [co-star] Sigourney [Weaver] rolls her eyes and says, "There goes that shirt again." ... How often did we hear that on the set? [Laughs]
The film was released by DreamWorks Home Entertainment on VHS and DVD on May 2, 2000. The DVD version included a 10-minute behind-the-scenes feature, cast and crew biographies and interviews, and deleted scenes. A special 10th anniversary deluxe edition was released on both DVD and Blu-ray by Paramount Home Entertainment on May 12, 2009; though they lacked the same features on the original DVD release, they included several new featurettes on the film's history, the cast, and the special effects used in the film's making, alongside the deleted scenes. For the film's 20th anniversary, a "Never Give Up, Never Surrender Edition" Blu-ray was released on November 5, 2019 featuring the same features as the 10th edition; a special steelbox Best Buy exclusive was released on September 17, 2019.
In 2008, IDW Publishing released a comic book sequel to the movie entitled Galaxy Quest: Global Warning. In January 2015, IDW launched an ongoing series set several years after the events of the film.
Proposed sequel or television series
Talks of a sequel have been going on since the film's release in 1999, but only began gaining traction in 2014 when Allen mentioned that there was a script. Stars Weaver and Rockwell mentioned they were interested in returning. However, Colantoni has said he would prefer for there not to be a sequel, lest it tarnish the characters from the first film. He said, "to make something up, just because we love those characters, and turn it into a sequel—then it becomes the awful sequel".
In April 2015, Paramount Television, along with the movie's co-writer Gordon, director Parisot, and executive producers Johnson and Bernstein, announced they were looking to develop a television series based on Galaxy Quest. The move was considered in a similar vein as Paramount's revivals of Minority Report and School of Rock as television series. In August 2015, it was announced that Amazon Studios would be developing it.
I'm not supposed to say anything — I'm speaking way out of turn here — but Galaxy Quest is really close to being resurrected in a very creative way. It's closer than I can tell you but I can't say more than that. The real kicker is that Alan now has to be left out. It's been a big shock on many levels.
Speaking to the Nerdist podcast in April 2016, Sam Rockwell revealed that the cast had been about ready to sign on for a follow up with Amazon, but Rickman's death, together with Allen's television schedule, had proved to be obstacles. He also said he believed Rickman's death meant the project would never happen.
However, the plans were revived in August 2017, with the announcement that Paul Scheer would be writing the series. Speaking to /Film, Scheer said that in his first drafts submitted to Amazon in November 2017 he wanted to create a serialized adventure that starts where the film ends, but leads into the cultural shift in Star Trek that has occurred since 1999; he said "I really wanted to capture the difference between the original cast of Star Trek and the J. J. Abrams cast of Star Trek." To that end, Scheer's initial scripts called for two separate cast sets that would come together by the end of the first season of the show, though he did not confirm if this included any of the original film's cast.
Following the dismissal of Amy Powell as president of Paramount Television in July 2018, Scheer said the Galaxy Quest series had been put on hold while Paramount's management was being re-established, but anticipated the show would continue forward after that. He also said they were making the series to allow the introduction of new characters while extending the setting, similar to what Star Wars: The Force Awakens did for A New Hope.
Never Surrender: A Galaxy Quest Documentary was produced by the web site Fandom in 2019 to celebrate the film's 20th anniversary. Titled after Captain Nesmith's catchphrase "Never give up, never surrender!", it features interviews with the movie's cast and crew, including Allen, Weaver, Rockwell, Shalhoub, Long, Pyle, Wilson, and Mitchell, along with director Parisot and writer Gordon, as well as celebrities including Wil Wheaton, Brent Spiner, Greg Berlanti, Paul Scheer, and Damon Lindelof, who have spoken of their love for the film. Initially premiering to a limited audience at the October 2019 New York Comic Con, it subsequently had a limited theatrical showing at about 600 screens through Fathom Events on November 26, 2019, which included a screening of deleted scenes as well as the debut of Screen Junkies' "Honest Trailer" for Galaxy Quest. The film was made available on various digital media services for purchase in December 2019.
- Fanboys – a comedy about Star Wars fans
- Free Enterprise – a comedy about Star Trek fans
- Trekkies – a documentary film about Star Trek convention attendees
- Three Amigos – a comedy about actors mistaken for their characters
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