Everything We Know About The Upcoming Star Trek Movies
Star Trek ranks among the greatest sci-fi franchises of all time. With the final frontier getting a lot of new focus and interesting development on CBS All Access in the last few years, fans now turn to attention back to the big screen where the series has had some huge highs & low lows in the past decade. The Kelvin Universe reboot of the franchise took off with a start in 2009 but has since sputtered out.
Multiple possible Star Trek film projects are in development, reflecting both the inherent possibilities of the franchise and the indecision about which direction to take it.
10 On Hold
A number of different Star Trek-related film projects are in active development at Paramount Pictures, though for the moment, Noah Hawley's personal project is on hold. The news came down recently that writer-director Noah Hawley had his Star Trek film paused. New Paramount motion picture group president Emma Watts is said to reassessing the entire film slate, trying to find the best way forward not just for this important franchise but the company's entire production slate.
9 Still A Priority
That said, the Star Trek franchise remains a priority for Paramount Pictures. This makes a ton of sense as it's one of Paramount's most enduring franchises, alongside Transformers and Mission: Impossible. Huge tentpole franchises are critical for any studio in a post-MCU world where IP is everything. Star Trek has never been as big as those films, or really much of its competition at the box office. A fair chunk of fandom argues Star Trek belongs on TV, but it's safe to say there will be Star Trek films for years to come.
8 Noah Hawley
There are at least three different Star Trek films in development, or at least were before the pause. The Noah Hawley film is perhaps the one fans know the most about. Noah Hawley intends to write and direct the film, bringing his successful and acclaimed track record into the beloved franchise. Hawley is the creator of Fargo and Legion at FX, as well as an author. With the film being put on hold at the moment, it's unclear if Hawley will remain on board, or move on to a different project given how in-demand he is.
7 Virus Storyline
Fans got a sliver of information about the Hawley film when news of its delay broke. Sources claimed one of the reasons the film was put on hold was due to its subject matter. The film is said to involve "a virus that wipes out vast parts of the known universe," which given the current state of affairs, is thought to be too much of an ask for audiences.
That said, it is high and grand Star Trek tradition to confront the major social issues of the era it takes place in. A story about a deadly virus would be in keeping with this.
6 A New Start?
The Hawley film is often referenced as being a 'standalone feature.' That could be mean a lot of different things these days. It is unclear whether or not the Hawley film would include the cast from the last three films. In 2009, J.J. Abrams rebooted the film franchise with the so-called Kelvin-timeline, a separate timeline that nevertheless has had major impacts on the traditional, Prime timeline in Star Trek: Picard. It's possible the Hawley film takes place in a brand-new timeline as well.
5 Kelvin Universe Returns?
One of the three Star Trek films in development does involve the Kelvin crew, including Chris Pine, Karl Urban, and John Cho. This film has been in some stage of active development since the last movie, 2016's Star Trek Beyond. Since then, salary negotiations, particularly with Pine, have slowed progress. Another bump in the road is that director S.J. Clarkson (known for The Defenders and Jessica Jones) left last year to pursue other projects. That put the film in turnaround, and it's unclear where it stands now.
4 The Fate Of Chekov?
One major wrinkle in the fate of the Kelvin-universe of films is the tragic passing of actor Anton Yelchin. Yelchin played Ensign Pavel Chekov in the new movies, but died in 2016 in an accident. Nothing concrete has ever been determined about the fate of Chekov in-universe. Would he be recast? Would Chekov be reassigned to another ship or station perhaps? The Star Trek franchise spans over five decades and has recast some of its characters several times. Still, this one is pretty sore.
3 The Return Of George Kirk?
At one point, the fourth Kelvin-film had a lot more clarity around it. Shortly after the release of Star Trek Beyond, it was announced the fourth film would feature the return of George Kirk, father of Captain Kirk. The Mighty Thor himself, Chris Hemsworth, played George Kirk in the 2009 Star Trek film.
It wasn't clear how George Kirk, who died in the 2009 movie, would return. Hemsworth reportedly turned the role because he didn't have faith in the story bringing the character back in an interesting way.
2 Quentin Tarantino
The third film in development is perhaps the most interesting. Quentin Tarantino, director of Kill Bill, Pulp Fiction, among others, has long expressed his fandom for Star Trek. In recent years, that fandom turned into active interest. A lot of speculation has been thrown around about the prospective film – it could be R-rated, it would involve some of the original cast – but the only thing that is certain at the moment is that he is not likely to direct. With the pause on new films, it's not clear the future of this movie.
1 TV Tie-In?
One possibility that emerges with the future of the film franchise links directly back to television. Paramount and CBS recently merged after a long and sometimes contentious split that separated the two in 2005. That potentially puts the reins of the movies and the CBS All Access endeavor in the same hands. Alex Kurtzman oversees the entire streaming slate and has stated he's not sure what role if any he'd have in the movies, but given the fact that's been involved in the recent movies and the television shows... it makes sense.About The Author