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Now that the cycle is complete and Star Trek is on home video, it is appears it is time for the next cycle start up in earnest. In the last day their have been rumors running around the interweb that the Star Trek team are not only focusing on Khan for the sequel, but they are already settling on a specific actor, Nestor Carbonell. However, TrekMovie’s sources say it just isn’t so.
Of course discussion of the return (and recasting) of Khan Noonien Singh has been the focus for much of the talk regarding the Star Trek sequel. Khan, who appeared in the Star Trek: The Original Series episode "Space Seed" and the 1982 feature film Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, is probably Trek’s most famous bad guy, akin to Batman’s Joker. So it makes a sort of sense for Khan to appear in the Star Trek sequel, as Joker did in The Dark Knight (sequel to Batman Begins). In fact, the film makers (JJ Abrams, Bob Orci, etc.) have gone on record saying that Khan is a possibility. Co-writer Alex Kurtzman once said chances of Khan were "50/50."
And if you listen to the commentary on the Star Trek DVD and Blu-ray, producer Damon Lindelof states that they did consider putting in one of those ‘after the credits’ scenes that would have shown the Botany Bay floating in space; something Bob Orci has also talked about here at TrekMovie.com. Bob has made it clear that even though the new film sets out a new timeline, many things from the ‘prime timeline’ are still intact, including the Botany Bay.
Botany Bay from remastered "Space Seed"
The new wrinkle this week seems to have been kicked off by ComingSoon, which stated JJ Abrams and the Star Trek team "already have a favorite" to take over the role made famous by the late Ricardo Montalban. Coming Soon says that the team are looking at Nestor Carbonell, who plays Richard Alpert on JJ Abrams’ and Damon Lindelof’s Lost. Many other sites are now running with this rumor.
Nestor Carbonell as Richard Alpert in "Lost"
However, multiple sources have confirmed with TrekMovie that there has been no change on the decision regarding Khan. And for this week’s rumors, a trusted source tells TrekMovie that discussions of Carbonell being on some sort of short list is "total BS." Sources do confirm that Khan is still a possibility for the film, but that is not anything new.
In fact, the only name that members of the Trek ‘Supreme Court’ have discussed as a possible Khan is Javier Bardeem, the Oscar-winner from No Country for Old Men, although comments have mostly been stated in the hypothetical, as in "he would be cool", however, as noted, there are no talks yet regarding casting as there isn’t even a story, let alone a script for the Star Trek sequel.
This will not be the end of Khan rumors. If we think back to 2006 and 2007, there was a constant stream of casting rumors. Although the main crew has been locked down, we will see the same for the additional cast for the next Star Trek. As we did for the last film, TrekMovie will stick with what we can confirm.