Last week we ran a story highlighting the lengths Star Trek Into Darknesss director went to keep the identity of Benedict Cumberbatch's villain a secret, and how difficult it must be these days to keep any plot twists and spoilers under wraps.
Plot spoilers and crazy rumors are not solely a product of the internet age though, as die-hard fans have been obsessing over their favorite movie franchises and characters for years. One one such conduit for this fevered speculation was science-fiction film magazine Starlog, which used to be the one-stop geeky shop for all things sci-fi rumors and plot spoilers. Back in 1982 the mag ran a story about Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan that contained a massive plot spoiler about the death of Spock and that actor had been the one to instigate the downfall of the neck-pinching Vulcan. Nimoy was suitably unimpressed by the accusation and sent this open letter to Starlog:
In the November issue you report that the death of Spock was 'brought about by Leonard Nimoy’s request'.
In your January issue you reiterated the same report and then you quoted 'Star Trek II' executive producer Harve Bennett as saying '… Nimoy did not insist on killing the character as a prerequisite to his appearing in the second film.'
I was not contacted for a statement, but here it is: Harve Bennett was right, you were wrong …… twice.
Yours for more accurate journalism,
Boom! That is how you lay the verbal smack down. I like to imagine Nimoy sat in his palatial home in front of a roaring fire, writing the letter on parchment with a quill, before sealing it with wax embossed with "Live Long and Prosper."
This fascinating story comes from Huff Post, who've listed loads of Starlog's plot spoilers from over the years. A lot of them concern the Star Wars franchise so go and check them out to get a glimpse of how guys dealt in speculation and rumor before the internet arrived. It was surely a more innocent time back then.