Game of Thrones mastermind George R.R. Martin may be riding high now, but it wasn’t always so. The writer recently revealed that early on in his career he was turned down for a job writing for Star Trek: The Next Generation.
While Martin was still years away from making his seminal work with the debut of his first entry in the novel series A Song of Ice and Fire that would go on to be the basis for HBO’s Game of Thrones, Martin was already an established, award winning science fiction writer, and had started to break into television as well, having worked on the 1980s reboot of The Twilight Zone.
But despite the wild success that was just around the corner, Martin did not manage to impress the producer of one of the biggest science fiction shows of all time. Per Trek Movie, while Martin was speaking at a workshop at UCSD’s Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination in May, he recalled a bewildering job interview he had to potentially join the writing staff of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
“I had an interview with Star Trek: The Next Generation for a possible job as a staff writer. I remember coming in to the office of this producer – who thankfully did not last long on the show and you can see why when I tell the story. He said “I don’t know who you are, can you tell me your credentials.” And I said “I am just coming off Twilight Zone where I worked for a while, but before that I wrote novels and short stories. I am primarily a science fiction writer.” And he said “Oh really, well Star Trek is not a science-fiction show, it is a people show.” I was fooled by the photon torpedoes and starships. I was misled. Needless to say I did not get that job.”
Martin seems fairly good humored about the incident, and while he charitably omitted the producer’s name, it was almost certainly Maurice Hurley. The infamously caustic Hurley oversaw Star Trek: The Next Generation’s first two, wildly uneven seasons before being replaced by Michael Piller, who oversaw the series’ classic later seasons. And while it all eventually worked out for both Martin and The Next Generation, it’s hard not to wonder about what sort of dark, violent, morally hazy stories Martin could have conjured for Captain Picard and the crew of the Enterprise.
Source: Trek Movie
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