Red Shirted Trekkie Gets Dying Wish Granted From JJ Abrams (UPDATED: 1/6/12)

In Star Trek lore, the “Red Shirt” was a symbol of being marked for death. If you were wearing a red star fleet uniform and ventured out on an away mission chances are you weren’t coming back. And for one Star Trek fan named Dan this was unfortunately going to be his final mission. Geek culture comes with an immense anticipation for films typically from the moment they are announced but we all have a subconscious expectation that we’ll actually live to see them.

Battling two forms of cancer during the last three years, doctors informed Dan that time has become the most precious of commodities. So when Dan and his wife went to an IMAX screening and didn’t see the nine-minute Star Trek Into Darkness preview playing elsewhere in the country, you can imagine the immense disappointment. But that wasn’t the end to this journey.

A friend of Dan’s perhaps inspired by the plot of the movie “Fanboys” took to reddit for a call to action, asking if there was anyone who could assist him in putting the entire film in front of Dan before the cancer could do what cancer does.

The message got to Paramount and JJ Abrams, who immediately began assembling what they had into a working cut. Into Darkness isn’t finished; doesn’t even come out until May 17th of this year. No one was expecting Abrams’ team to deliver a cut to anybody, let alone a fan. Not long ago, Dan’s wife went back to the reddit post to share the following:

“Hi everyone, it’s Daniel’s wife, we are of course sworn to secrecy, BUT we are officially allowed to say we saw it and we enjoyed it IMMENSELY as a film and as a gesture…We were so touched when [Abrams] was concerned that we wouldn’t 100% enjoy the screening as it’s still being worked on……. Be assured we enjoyed it 110%!” 

So there you have it. It’s only January and we already have our first Star Trek Into Darkness review. And it’s the best one any of us are likely to read. No commentary, no nitpicking, just a dying man and his wife enjoying an opportunity beyond their imaginations.

If he can’t live long, at least Trekkie Dan can prosper from the decency and goodwill of some kind individuals.

UPDATE (1/6/12):

The New York Asian Film Festival reports that Daniel Craft, who was granted a dying wish to view an early cut of Star Trek Into Darkness, passed away last night. The festival, who is run by Subway Cinema which Craft worked for, posted the following:

Last night around 10:15pm, Dan Craft, who has been a member of Subway Cinema since 2004, passed away. His wife and brother were with him when he went, and he wasn’t in any pain. He’d been a bit loopy for a few days as his liver failed and toxins built up in his blood, and on Thursday his wife asked him if he needed to go to the bathroom. “I’m going…” he proclaimed, “Into the future.”
See you there, Dan.

Dan Craft: 1971 – 2013

We miss you.

For those of us who are going to make it to May, Paramount has released some new still images from the film to keep our insane jealousy at bay.

Jon is Pop Focal's resident nerd. An expert in movie and video game knowledge and a collector of things that clutter up the offices. A former radio and TV personality who brings a very different attitude to the Pop Focal network.

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