Star Trek ‘origin’ film reportedly in the works

Star Trek Into Darkness
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Another new Star Trek film is in development – reportedly an origin story – while Star Trek 4 is apparently still said to be alive and well.

Only yesterday we learned from Jean-Luc Picard himself that a Picard movie is apparently in the works. According to Patrick Stewart, the esteemed actor who embodies Picard, the film would be a final outing for the beloved character who has most recently appeared in a multi-season TV show that has developed his post-Next Generation story.

Given that Paramount always seems to have several Star Trek projects cooking at the same time, it’s unsurprising to hear that there’s more on the way too. It’s been announced that Andor director Toby Haynes is on board to direct and Seth Grahame-Smith has written the script for a Trek film that will act as an origin story that will expand the ‘Kelvin timeline’ universe.

According to Deadline, who broke the story, the film will be set ‘decades before’ JJ Abrams 2009 film that (kind of) rebooted the Star Trek universe and created the Kelvin timeline of films. That all sounds interesting enough, and Haynes sounds like a smart choice given that everything about Andor smacks of smart, absorbing sci-fi – though there is of course an elephant in the room.

Read more: The five-year mission to make a sequel to Star Trek Beyond

Adding a tangential project to a franchise that can’t seem to get its next mainline film into production is a move we’ve seen before from studios and frankly, it rarely turns out well. Even if the film turns out to be a valuable addition to a series, it just reminds fans that they aren’t watching the film that they really want to see: the next proper instalment in the series.

When it comes to development hell, Star Trek 4 has suffered through more woes than most franchise films stuck in traction. It has lost directors, its stars have dismissed it and mocked its supposed existence and we’ve also seen its development blighted by empty promises, pay disputes and long periods of radio silence.

The project was first announced in 2016 and yet it still seems no closer to fruition. However, along with announcing the existence of this new ‘origin’ film, Paramount has promised once more that the film is still on its way and will mark the ‘final chapter’ for Chris Pine and his crew. Given that we’ve already waited seven years and seem no closer to cameras rolling, we’ll see how that goes.

Elsewhere in Trek news this week, director Justin Lin has discussed why the making of Star Trek Beyond was so ‘intense’. It’s quite a story.

Podcast: Star Trek Into Darkness (2013) and Beethoven (1992)

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