Star Trek Guide

Predicting When Star Trek 4 Will Actually Release

Paramount has confirmed that Star Trek4(set in J.J. Abrams's Kelvin timeline) will actually be happening, but there is no word yet on when the film will be released. The franchise has been in limbo ever since the lackluster box-office performance of Star Trek Beyond. Although Star Trek Beyond was a critical success, the film lost an estimated $50 million. In a world dominated by big-budget superhero movies, many people were left wondering if the Star Trek franchise still carried enough popularity to warrant another Hollywood entry.

Predicting when the next Star Trek film will hit theatres is difficult, as it is hard to assess how behind production really is. Paramount's originally planned fourth entry would have entered production earlier this year, but the project encountered numerous set-backs before it was put on hiatus in January. The studio has since announced that Star Trek 4 is back in development, with Noah Hawley set to write and direct. Given how little information has been made public about it, it's safe to assume that the Hawley-led project is still in its early stages of development.

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Hawley’s proposed film will see Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, and Zoe Saldana reprise their roles. Unfortunately, fans expecting to board the Starship Enterprise before the end of 2020 will have to settle for the TV series Star Trek: Discoveryand the much-anticipated Star Trek: Picard. Hawley is presumably preoccupied with producing the fourth season of his black-comedy Fargo, which began filming in October, and is expected to be released some time in 2020. If the time he has taken perfecting Fargo is any indication, Hawley is not likely to rush the development of Star Trek 4. Being that it is a blockbuster, Star Trek 4 will probably follow the same pattern of its predecessors: all three of those movies were released in either May or July of their respective years. A 2022 release date isn't impossible, it's just unlikely; a much more realistic estimate puts Stark Trek 4's release date in the summer of 2023.

The original story planned for Star Trek 4 would have reunited Chris Pine’s Captain Kirk with his father, played by Chris Hemsworth (thanks to time-travel). Both of those actors’s profiles have grown quite a bit since 2016, and negotiations with the pair fell apart roughly two years ago. Director S.J. Clarkson was attached to the project before leaving shortly after the aforementioned conflict. Quentin Tarantino has spoken out on numerous occasions about his script for a Star Trek film, which may or may not be R-rated; however, it looks like this film, if it happens, will be in addition to the sequel being penned by Hawley.

Star Trek Beyond was plagued with similar production issues. Its script endured multiple revisions (starting in 2013 and ending in 2015) before the film’s release in 2016. Star Trek Beyond's writer, Simon Pegg, has said that the movie underperformed due to poor marketing — it was rushed. The movie’s revival correlates with Star Trek's resurgence on TV. Both Star Trek: Discovery and the upcoming Star Trek: Picard have drawn a reinvigorated amount of attention to Star Trek. These shows will extend the franchise's shelf-life and give Paramount time to suitably market one of its biggest blockbusters in Star Trek 4.