With the a new Star Trek film opening soon and the franchise being 50 years old some fascinating bits of news have come out from a book about the series and the first six films with the original cast. Creator Gene Rodenberry had come up with a film treatment called, ‘The God thing’. This would have started off with all the cast having been promoted and on a break between missions but then getting back together for their latest mission about locating an alien that was threatening Earth but then it got………odd.
Director Richard A. Colla (“Battlestar Galactica”) was shown the treatment by Rodenberry and said,’ The Enterprise went off in search of that thing from outer space that was affecting everything. By the time they got into the alien’s presence, it manifested itself and said, ‘Do you know me?’ Kirk said, ‘No, I don’t know who you are.’ It said, ‘Strange, how could you not know who I am?’ So it shift-changed and became another image and said, ‘Do you know me?’ Kirk said, ‘No, who are you?’ It said, ‘Strange, how could you not know who I am?’ So it shift-changed and came up in the form of Christ the carpenter, and says, ‘Do you know me?’ and Kirk says, ‘Oh, now I know who you are.'”
And then it got bonkers…….Michael Jan Friedman, had been approached to write the novelization and was taken aback at what Rodenberry wanted next and said,’This was a unique opportunity to collaborate with him. But when I read the material, I was dismayed………… There was some mildly erotic, midlife-crisis stuff in there that didn’t serve any real purpose. (but) In the climactic scene, Kirk had a fistfight with an alien who had assumed the image of Jesus Christ. So Kirk was slugging it out on the bridge. With Jesus’
It seems that this was an idea that was understandably watered down for the end of the poorly received Star Trek 5 when the crew meet God.