True story: My partner and I once flew from Los Angeles to San Francisco by way of Las Vegas. We spent a grand total of twelve hours in Sin City, for the sole purpose of visiting Star Trek: The Experience. As much as I loved the rides and Quark’s Bar and the on-staff Klingon making fun of some poor guy who ordered a piña colada, the showcases of props were a highlight for me. Captain Picard’s family album. Jadzia Dax’s wedding dress. The torpedo capsule that brought Spock to the Genesis planet.
That place is gone now, and it makes me sad every time I think of it.
But take heart, fellow nerds, for if all goes well, the United Federation of Planets won’t be the only fictional universe to have its memorabilia put back on display. The New Starship Foundation is currently campaigning for the construction of a science fiction museum in Hollywood — and they’re dead serious about it. They’ve got an almost-funded Kickstarter (12 hours and counting!). They’ve got a board of directors made up of sci-fi producers, writers, and creators (including Ronald D. Moore, a name I imagine many of you recognize). And they’ve got a concept that I’m 100% on board with: combine a celebration of the fictional with factual STEM education. Considering that sci-fi and actual science have a deeply symbiotic relationship, I think that’s a spot-on approach.
For those unfamiliar with New Starship, their claim to fame is the crowdfunded rescue of an official replica of the Enterprise-D bridge that lay abandoned outside for five years. If the museum comes to be, the bridge would be one of its crown jewels. As for the rest of the exhibits, I’ll let their Kickstarter description speak for itself:
This will be the first museum in the world to exclusively show the history of sci-fi films, TV, art and literature through props, sets and costumes, as well as show advancements in space travel and teach Real Science through Science Fiction. It will be an interactive museum with fully immersive environments and touch screens that will incorporate old and new footage from actors, filmmakers and NASA astronauts and scientists, and will present both the fact and fiction of sci-fi…The museum will include exhibits from: Star Trek, Star Wars, Doctor Who, 2001, Alien, Metropolis, Thunderbirds, Firefly, Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica, Stargate, Blake’s 7, Ghostbusters, Farscape, The Time Machine, Godzilla, X-Men, Avengers, Superman, Planet of the Apes, Back to the Future, Day the Earth Stood Still, V, Batman, Six Million Dollar Man, Bionic Woman, Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers, as well as Fantasy like Lord of the Rings, Labyrinth, Legend, Munsters, Herbie the Love Bug, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Dark Crystal, Game of Thrones, Anime like Akira and Speed Racer, and anything else we can fit within our walls.
If their campaign is successful (which it’s looking like it might be), a “prototype version” of the museum would open in 2015. The museum would continue to be expanded and developed, with the goal of having the full museum complete in 2018. I am crossing all my fingers and toes.
Update: Eleven hours to go, and they made it! Huzzah!