HOLLYWOOD — Most of us certainly never have the opportunity to be a part of film history.
Former Huron Township resident Jerry Wible has those bragging rights. He played an extra in "Star Trek."
The 28-year-old aspiring actor had been living in LA for about six months when he said he "had heard about the casting call from one of the actor's Web sites that I check regularly for various gigs."
"It was really quite nondescript, just mentioning that they needed 'construction-type guys' for a project they were calling 'Corporate Headquarters,'" Wible said. "I had heard about this project needing 'construction-looking guys,' and had sent in my headshot and resume thinking 'Hey, I'm a construction-looking guy.'"
The scene in which the 1999 Huron High School graduate was involved was filmed early last summer.
"The filming took place by this power plant in the middle of nowhere. It was an actual working plant that was running at the time of filming and looks perfect as the construction site of something as big as the Enterprise," Wible said.
Back in March 2008, Wible allowed me to post this blog about his (at that point) upcoming part. (I had to keep it on the down-low for fear of being shot with a phaser — set on "kill.")
For more of what Wible has to say about the filming experience, seeing director JJ Abrams chillin' while everybody else on the set is in running around like the proverbial chickens (or like Klingons who have been taking a lickin' from the Enterprise), keep checking the Reflector for a feature story by yours truly.
For now, You'll have to make due with Wible's review/e-mail interview of the finished product:
CARY ASHBY: How does it feel to be part of a summer blockbuster? How will this improve your chances for more work (and possibly more extensive acting gigs) in Hollywood?
JERRY WIBLE: "I'm still excited to be a part of any film being made out here, but it's so much better when the final product is as enjoyable as 'Star Trek' is. Even with all the people that go into making a big budget movie (as evidenced by the hours of credits at the end), there's no guarantee that it will be a movie that anyone will like. They hire so many extras like me to stand in the background and help bring this world to life, and it's so refreshing when the world is fully created."
ASHBY: What did you think of "Star Trek" overall?
WIBLE: "I thought they did as good a job on this film as just about any action movie I've seen. In a lot of action movies, the storyline takes a backseat to explosions, but this did a very good job of keeping you thinking while you were on the edge of your seat. "I thoroughly enjoyed the aspects of reinvention, as well as showing the characters grow into themselves. Even though I'm not a big fan, I still know the famous quotes ('Live long and prosper,' 'Dammit Jim! I'm a doctor …,' etc.) that have been parodied and are a part of the pop culture. Even though the characters all got to say their catch-phrase, it never felt out of place or like they were pandering to the audience. I do have the general question for fanatics though: Was Kirk always hanging off a ledge? Overall, it was great."
ASHBY: What will the Trekkies and general public think of this film? Why?
WIBLE: "I don't see how they couldn't love it; it made me a fan. It's a huge undertaking anytime you're rewriting something that already has a huge fan base. If you go away from the established storylines (like 'X-Men 3'), you make fans cry blasphemy. If you go exactly as previously established (like the newer 'Psycho'), you make people say why bother. "JJ Abrams and team made a fantastic choice early on in the film to say that this won't be exactly like you remember and it makes sense with the plot line. I think they did a great job on this film, and I don't see how they could have done any better."
ASHBY: What would you like to see in a sequel? Where should J.J. Abrams go with the "Star Trek" universe? What should he avoid?
WIBLE: "I'm not familiar enough with the 'Star Trek' universe to know what is supposed to come next. I do think that the writers have shown amazing ability to come up with some great ideas, and I trust that whatever comes next will be great, even if I'm not in it."
Also: Don't forget about my preview of the soon-to-be infamous CSI "Star Trek" homage episode.