June 18, 2007
| by Rachel Cericola
Where no man has gone before? Hardly. Gary Reighn had the skills to create his own “Star Trek”-themed home theater. Tony Alleyne transformed his entire apartment to look exactly like “Voyager.”
How could anyone top the Trekkie-themed areas we’ve already seen? Well, Gary Sekulow found a way to add his own “Trek” twist.
Instead of creating a killer replica of his favorite era of the long running sci-fi show, Sekulow relied on real props to make theater magic. Back in 2006, Sekulow purchased two original “Star Trek” consoles in a Christie’s auction—the only “official” auction sanctioned by Paramount Pictures and the CBS network. Instead of storing his pricey purchases in a garage or glass case, he contacted Dennis Erskine of Atlanta’s Design Cinema Privee.
Design Cinema Privee was no stranger to theme theaters or Sekulow’s home. “We did his original theater many, many years ago and he invited us over to discuss this new challenge,” Erskine says. The room’s previous theme revolved around vintage animation, which is another of Sekulow’s passions.
Although Erskine and his company weren’t totally up on their “Trek” talk, Sekulow provided them with enough reference materials, movies and TV episodes to get the job done in about six months.
The sci-fi theme was born out of a few replicas and models that Sekulow had, but the Christie’s auction allowed him to purchase several “Star Trek” backlit graphic panels from “Star Trek: The Next Generation” and “Star Trek: Voyager,” which gave the theater authenticity.
While some may think Sekulow is just another geek gone wild, Erskine looks at his client as more of a collector. “He has been a fan since the original series in the ‘60s, but never has gone to a convention,” Erskine says. Really though … who needs a convention when you’ve got the original goods spanning multiple Starfleets?
For example, while some people have a favorite chair, Sekulow has the captain’s chair from “Star Trek: Enterprise” seasons 1 through 3. “This was Captain Archer’s (Scott Bakula) command chair — and one of only six Enterprise captains chairs during 40 years of TV and 10 movies,” says Erskine. That’s got to be cushy.
Sekulow also purchased the Ops and Conn consoles from the bridge of Enterprise E from the last three movies (“First Contact,” “Insurrection” and “Nemesis”). In case you don’t have your “Trek”-to-mortal dictionary handy, the Conn was used to change the ship’s speed and alter its destination point. Viewers might remember seeing Data (Brent Spiner) standing behind the Ops console, which could call up info on current and past missions, planets, people and pretty much everything else important to anyone in the Starfleet.
Other pieces include a computer display panel from the Operation Center from “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” and wall panels from “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” which were actually built for the last episode of “Enterprise.”
All of these “Trek” effects seem to leave little room for audio and video equipment, so Erskine installed everything behind a panel in a separate room — which is also outfitted in the theme.
“You walk into the room, and it feels like you are on a set of ‘Star Trek’,” says Erskine. “But turn down the lights and you are in a high-end home theater.”
Systems Design & Installation
Design Cinema Privee
Over the past 15 years, Rachel Cericola has covered entertainment, web and technology trends. Check her out at www.rachelcericola.com.