Saturday 8 August 2020

Paramount considering where to go next with Star Trek movies

It seems Paramount are taking a fresh look at their Star Trek movie options. According to Deadline, the new President of Motion Picture Group At Paramount, Emma Watts is apparently considering what path is best to take, in a hope of revitalising the movie wing of the franchise. Deadline's reporting of reveals new details of previously announced projects in development, and where they currently stand as prospects.

What Deadline have a feel of, is that while Paramount see some of the scripts they have in the works as good potential spin-offs - Working as stand-alones akin to Logan next to the wider X-Men franchise - They feel a need to first revitalise a core movie franchise, and to build on that.

As such one possibility would be to bring back the Kelvin timeline crew, and Deadline even seem to suggest the story featuring Kirk's dad, played by Chris Hemsworth, might still be a possibility, despite the issues around cast contracts and costs that kicked it into the long grass previously. But maybe they could just work to bring the Kelvin crew back in another tale - I would favour this route myself, as I'd really like to see that crew carry on as the main movie branch of Trek long into the future; it would be fun to see how they age differently to the originals, and good to have the movie world of Trek seem a distinct series in itself.

The most recent reported path to a new film was one to be written and directed by Noah Hawley. This newest project was seen as the front-runner after other ideas had been dropped. But is now "on pause" itself, at least in part because the story would apparently focus on a deadly virus, which might not be the route they want to go down in the current environment. This was apparently to feature a new cast - I think, assuming it was done sensitively, reflecting on current events, a medical story would be a refreshing change of direction for the movies, giving something other than a singular bad-guy to deal with.

A third prospect still under consideration is the idea from Quentin Tarantino, scripted by Mark L. Smith. Tarantino seems to have moved away from potentially directing this, but the script remains an option. Deadline say this is "based on an episode of the classic Star Trek series that takes place largely earthbound in a 30s gangster setting"; so surely a take on A Piece of the Action? - This sounds the least interesting to me, what with it side stepping the more sci-fi elements of Trek, and maybe being more like a remake than something new.

What I find really encouraging overall in these updates, is that Paramount want Star Trek to be a big franchise for them, and can see that working with both a core series and spin-offs. Maybe we could, in time, see all these projects continue on? And more. Apparently the decisions on where to go next will be landed upon in the next few weeks. So maybe we'll have more news quite soon.

What I want from the next movie, is this generation's The Voyage Home. Something that can get a wide audience into Trek, and something that makes a meaningful reflection on real issues in the world. And what I really really want Trek to do is go all out for addressing climate change and the ecological crisis, something is has been sourly lacking reflection on in every iteration of the franchise; The Voyage Home being one of the rare times Trek has dipped into environmental issues.

For previous Star Trek movie updates, check back through my movies tag.

And thanks to the ever useful TrekCore, whose image galleries supplies the illustrations for this piece.

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