The news that die-hard Star Trek fan Simon Pegg — who played Scotty in Star Trek and Star Trek Into Darkness — would be writing the third film’s script came as a relief to fans who weren’t too pleased with the second film. Plus, there was the whole matter of losing J.J. Abrams to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and replacement director Roberto Orci to his having never directed anything before.
Then came word that Justin Lin, the director of four Fast & Furious films, would take command of the starship Enterprise for its third outing. Needless to say, the Internet’s response was a mix of collective sighs and typical rage.
Never fear, for if Deadline’s recent interview with Lin is any indication, Star Trek Beyond just might be the best “Nu Trek” yet. First, there’s the matter of how much the original series means to Lin:
“Growing up, my parents had this little fish and chips restaurant in Anaheim in the shadows of Disneyland, and they didn’t close until 9 PM. As a family, we didn’t eat dinner until 10 PM, and we would watch the original Star Trek every night at 11. My dad worked 364 days a year, only took Thanksgiving off, and from age 8 to 18, the only time I could hang out with my parents was by staying late. And every night, it was Star Trek on Channel 13 in L.A. That was my childhood. All my friends were Star Wars kids but I didn’t go to the movies, so I was the Star Trek kid.”
And then there’s the ever-so-delicate shade thrown Abrams’ way regarding the first two “Nu Trek” films:
“As great as JJ’s films were, there’s still a lot to be mined from these characters….They haven’t really gone on their five-year mission, so what we experienced in the TV show hasn’t been touched on yet. That sets up an opportunity for exploration and the deeper you go, the more you are examining humanity. Those are the things that I absorbed as a kid and hope to tap into and embrace and celebrate. By the time this movie comes out, Star Trek will have been around for 50 years….It’s all new and fresh….The Klingons, Romulans and other species are great, but it’s time to go further. It has been fun to focus on creating whole new worlds and species.”
Anyone who has the balls to insult J.J. Abrams, however direct or indirect it may be, gets my vote for the Star Trek director’s chair. Good on you, Lin.