STAR TREK 3 Struggling With Directors and New Direction

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Only a few months ago Robert Orci, writer and producer of the first two movies in the Star Trek reboot-iverse (new word, just in time for Christmas), took over the directing helm of the franchise from J.J. Abrams (who’d moved over to a little known franchise called Star Trade Dispute or something) and spoke a bit about his vision for the three-quel. But just over a week ago he dematerialised from the directors chair with Edgar Wright rumoured to be his replacement. A popular campaign also teleported in to have long time Star Trek stalwart, First Officer William Riker actor turned director, Jonathan Frakes take charge; which he quite enthusiastically endorsed.

However it seems Paramount Pictures have a different idea. According to Deadline they’ve already met with Rupert Wyatt (Rise of the Planet of the Apes), while also talking to Morten Tyldum (The Imitation Game), Daniel Espinosa (Safe House), Justin Lin (Fast & Furious franchise) and Duncan Jones (Source Code). As per Indiewire Jones has already declared himself unavailable (he’s also working on the Warcraft movie), while Espinosa is working on a movie about the Boston marathon bombing and Lin is currently busy with season 2 of True Detective and then moving on to the next installment of Fast & Furious. Which would seem to mean a two-man race between Wyatt and Tyldum.

While there hasn’t been any official reason offered for Orci’s departure, including the standard “creative differences”, Badass Digest has heard a few rumblings that suggest it may have been just that. Apparently Orci was very unhappy with notes Paramount had made on his script, and that while Star Trek has now moved to a more action-orientated format the studio is pushing it towards a different direction again – to be more like Guardians of the Galaxy.

“I felt a great disturbance in the Force Federation, as if millions of voices Trekkies suddenly cried out in terror, and were suddenly silenced. I fear something terrible has happened.”

While the previous two Star Trek movies have performed well and were financial successes, they haven’t exactly set the world on fire in the way Guardians of the Galaxy has or been well-received by long-time fans of the franchise; and given how much time pressure the still-to-be-appointed director will be under to complete the movie it would be a marvel if they reach such heights. What made that movie so successful was the interplay and banter between disparate characters that gelled with well-executed action. Star Trek has to date shown the latter, but it hasn’t really demonstrated the former to any great degree with the characters generally being on the same page and fairly serious throughout. So that would be a big shift in how the characters are portrayed and could be a big gamble for the studio. One thing that could work in its favour would be locales – Guardians certainly took people to exotic places, and that’s something Star Trek could capitalise on if the movie stays true to Orci’s overall theme of being an exploration movie.

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Is the world ready for Kirk-Lord, Spock the Destroyer, Bones (who can only say “Damn it, Jim!”), Rocket Scot and Uhura, the deadliest communications officer in the whole galaxy?

 

Last Updated: December 18, 2014

Trevor Davies

I like pie, I think.

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