Pegg: Abrams Not Making Trek For Biz But For Love

Out promoting Run Fatboy Run, Simon Pegg continues taking Star Trek questions. Regarding the size of his role in the film, the actor tells AICN he worked on the film for five weeks and “the rough and tumble chirpy engineer from Linlithgow is very much in the film.” He also talked to AICN about Abrams approach to Trek and to EW about fan reaction to his casting.

From the AICN interview

Aint it Cool: Since you have a bigger part in this than you did in MISSION IMPOSSIBLE, was there any noticeable difference in how Abrams worked with you?
Simon Pegg: JJ is such a machine, you know? He has got so much energy and enthusiasm and he absolutely loves what he is doing and I think that the key thing that the STAR TREK fans out there, of which I am one, but even the more dedicated ones even, the key thing that they have to remember is the one person that I’m sure they would want to make the next STAR TREK film would be a STAR TREK fan and JJ is most certainly that.

He’s not making this because it’s a business opportunity or it’s a script that landed on his door step. This is something he really, really loves and wants to do and I can’t think of a better person to be at the helm of this project and that’s always reflected in his attitude on set. He is just an absolute… he’s a pitbull. He really is. He’s on it all of the time and kind of… you know there are people on a set to verify things so that nothing is overlooked… nothing out of the universe, because people are always going to be looking for that kind of stuff for whatever weird reason. In some respects there is an odd sense out there that people kind of want it to not be very good to justify that the odds are kind of reluctant that it even exists, but I just think that being a fan of the show and having seen it up close, I’m f—ing excited and I’m in it.

Aint it Cool: So he’s not “prequeling” it. He’s not going to crush the dreams and hopes of the fans?
Simon Pegg: Absolutely not and what is so exciting is what we are going to see is a STAR TREK movie with contemporary special effects in it. With the special effects that we are seeing now in cinema, that’s going to be applied to STAR TREK. ILM and these companies that can do amazing stuff… It’s going to be fantastic and we are going to see this universe realized more keenly than it ever has been before.

Much more from Pegg at AICN.

Pegg on reaction to him play Scotty
Entertainment Weekly also talked to Pegg…and also got around to Trek.

EW: Did you find the mixed reaction to your casting perplexing?
Pegg: Not at all. I completely understand it and I would have the same reactions myself. On one hand, there’s been really positive [responses]; on the other hand, people have said ”I don’t understand. Why is he playing Scotty?” I think people are worried that I’m going to undermine the franchise by being outwardly comic, which is absolutely fair enough. They’re fans of that series, and it’s very dear to them. I don’t begrudge anyone’s opinion in that respect. I would hope that I can put their minds at rest and tell them that I am approaching it with complete and utter dedication to the original series. James Doohan’s character was a wonderfully robust, rough-and-tumble, part genius/part street fighter. He’s a great character to play, and James played him with an enormous amount of sympathy, and I tried to approach the role like he did. Get the character and say, ”Okay, he works in outer space, he’s a physics genius and an engineer, and he comes from Linlithgow in northwest Scotland” — and not go out there and try to do an impersonation of James.

Pegg ticking off geek boxes
Collider also has a video interview with Pegg mostly about Run Fatboy, but he also notes how he is honored to be one of the nine actors who have done both Star Trek and Doctor Who.

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Decloaking . . .
OMG old guy slams it home again????

SWEET! Is it 2009 yet?

Great article. Very much what I like to hear.

As much as I like this guy, Pegg-news get booooooooring.
Let’s see more pictures, news from JJ, or even rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr-pictures of Zoe…. cmon give us something reaaaallyy interesting. What are the uniforms look like (not the cadet ones)?? cmon throw us a bone here!

The more I hear, the more I believe he is a great choice….

Decloaking. . .
To: J.J.’s Supreme Court: Being the genious’ that you guys are, I’m quite sure you realize by now that Mr. Pegg IS the best pitchman you have with the fans.
If I were in your shoes (and I wish I was), I’d keep Mr. Pegg front and center on this project through the opening weekend.
And thanks once again for helping us build confidence in your stewardship of our beloved Trek.

… I have this weird feeling that the team told us its going to be a reboot and a re-imagining, just to get us ready for the really minor changes that they did make. The spy photos and other things we’re hearing from interviews makes it seem so much more TOSy than they made it seem at first.

I would really like it if it could be May 8th 2009… like tomorrow…

Oh, and Pegg, you rock!

I agree with Sebi. Pegg is a great guy, a good choice for Scotty, and I like his interviews, but it’s getting a bit inflationary. No one else doing interviews?

This tells me that he’s got a firm grasp of the character of Scotty, he do just fine. Abrams know what he doing Nuff said.

I agree #4.

Alright, Let us hear from other people in this film. Pegg seems to be the spokesman!! This film is receiving such hype, I really think that JJ has got the fans by the (you know what!) This is one big set-up, I hope this film delivers everything they claim it will do!!

It would be nice if they can throw us a few more visual tidbits or something..After all, the fans got jerked from our 12/08 delivery. Why dont we all rally and sleep outside the theaters like the Star Wars fans did a month in advance??LOL! Just kidding.. Hey Pine seems to be under General Orders not to talk at all. C’mon guys! Is he going to be that good??


I think you might be onto something there…gives everyone time to get the ‘canon complaints’ out of their system, then by May they’ll begrudgingly attend and think ‘Oooooh, they didn’t really change it at all!’.

#7 trekkie 1415 you know the old saying a watched pot boils never boils the same holds true for a watched Calendar watching the time pass will make slower. Believe me I wish May 09 were here a lot quicker myself. see

#10 Batts I agree and Ive been saying the same thing myself show us a few film clips or photos from the set, just to keep us on the hook thats all we ask

The fact that actors promoting another movie – whether it’s “Run Fatboy Run” or “Charlie Bartlett” or whatever – get asked a lot of stuff about “Star Trek” is an indication of how much press interest there is in the new Trek film.

This is a good thing.

@15 – Dennis

Was just thinking the same thing…

As for us being tossed a bone….

The fact that there *has* been so little, emm “leakage” (I don’t like that term for some reason) has also piqued the curiosity of the mainstream press too it seems, so there is more being asked about the film, and more stone-walling and so more questions…

If I didn’t know better, I’d think JJ et al had planned it this way…

Simon Pegg is the most inspired casting in the whole cast, Quinto being the very close second. He’s going to rock.

I’m still nervous as hell, but I really have no concerns with Scotty, unlike just about everyone else.

That is great.

We need to hear more from Chris Pine. He has been quiet about the Star Trek movie lately.

15. trekee: “If I didn’t know better, I’d think JJ et al had planned it this way…”

Oh I have zero doubt he did. :)

I know we are all anxious, heck I jumped on those spy pics like a flea on a dog. BUT keep in mind that wonder feeds interest. By this time next year it will be a feeding frenzy by all indications.

And yes while I will be the first to look at spoilers….I really don’t want them. I want to be as surprised as possible.

#12 Anthony –

I understand what you’re saying. Regardless, as much as I enjoy reading Pegg’s great comments (And I say if they’re out there then bring ’em on), I agree with others that it would be nice to hear something from the others — especially Pine.

So anyone know if Pine has got any other movies in the Pipe? and when they’re being released?

I cannot. Freakin’. Wait.

When’s Comic Con, anyway?

I would like to see a full length trailer at that time or at least a full cast photo of all the principal cast “bridge crew” fully made up and in their costumes on the bridge set.

That, and only that, will make me really happy and it’ll give me a nice birthday treat this summer.

Otherwise, I’ll just get by with yanking shrubbery out of my overgrown yard this summer pretending that I’m working on a Klingon penal colony.

I cannot wait for this movie!!
As I get older, time goes faster. Since the announcement of this movie time has almost halted. Oh No!! I’m having tachion issues!
All this waiting and talking and being excited is just like when I was young. In the back seat of the car with dad driving the family from Greenwood, NS to Pictou, NS for the summer vacation. It took forever. This was before portable DVD players, even before Beta tapes. The only entertainment was avoiding my brothers fists or watching Moms and Dads cigarette smoke swirl in the breeze. This was even before I quit Sunday School because it ended at the same time Star Trek started on one of our 3 television channels. I always missed the first 10 minutes! AAAARRRGGHH!
So, anyhoooooo, waiting sucks.

“James Doohan’s character was a wonderfully robust, rough-and-tumble, part genius/part street fighter. He’s a great character to play, and James played him with an enormous amount of sympathy, and I tried to approach the role like he did.”

Ohhhh that makes me happy. That’s a lot of Scotty in just a few words.

Pegg is definitely doing a bang up job playing the spokesman for Abram and the movie. Having all the actors play spokes man is brilliant because its keeping it in the news, keep up the momentum. With time 400 plus days to movie premier they have to do something to keep people l interested till that time.They have at the same time done a good job of keeping certain things under wraps. the photos of the shuttle and controls and the uniform that gives us enough information but not to much at once. They have not exactly been to forth coming with certain key plot details and as exasperating as that has been, it make a certain amount of sense. Give away to much now and then there might be some loss of interest or worse if said storyline doesn’t meet with fan approval, then ther more headaches for Abram,the cast and the Studio. It’s a balancing act no matter how you slice it.

I’m looking forward to this new film and as I’ve tried to say on other posts on other articles, my fears have been put to rest a while ago. Let’s hope this new film is a huge success and that Star Trek gets a new surge of life. Let’s also hope that CBS listens.

I was initially very disappointed when Pegg was cast. But he has grown on me, even a year ahead of the film’s release! He is as respectful of Doohan and TOS in general as one could possibly hope, and … wow … he even knows what town Scotty’s from. I’ve always liked this guy’s comedy, now I am ready to give him his fair chance as our favorite Chief Engineer.

The photo on this page of Pegg is the MOST “Doohanish” photo of Pegg to date. I can almost see Scotty’s old TOS scowl in Pegg.

Great interview.

Thanks Anthony for pointing that out to everyone.

I think Pegg is GREAT casting. I’m getting my significant other ready for TREK mania for 2009 with lots of required reading and watching and made Hot Fuzz required watching. Before her take on Pegg was that she just couldnt see it. But after she was able to see how versatile and on point he was with both comedy and action. And also how he can so completely drop into a role.

he doesn’t just play himself and thats a wonderful quality.

I agree with #19
It seems that peg gets more then the rest. maybe he has more to say or more intervies or what ever. but pegg seems to be the one we hear more from.

Now. I dont know much of these people. and i hear alot of ‘i like what im hearing’ and such. but i cant help it. doesnt this apply to just about every project. dont we always hear how great somethings going to be by the people involved. ‘i love so and so, i love the pwople, i love working here. you people are going to like it… blah blah blah. and then when it airs. its not always that great as they made it out to be. it seems very rare for any one to speak out against anything in the project they are currently working on. or speaking out against the other people also working on it. ‘ i cant stand working with blank, or blank is hard to work with’. that kind of language usualy comes out after they’re done. So i dont believe any thing Pegg or any one else on this trek project has to say. Ill take it with a grain of salt and wait till I go to the movies.

can some help me understand the Scotty-street fighter thing. i never saw him that way. street fighter?

Pegg seems like he’ll nail the role of Doohan’s Scotty, but will he be only comic relief?
We also love Scotty on the bridge managing alien threats and visiting dignitaries with absolutely no aplomb or regard for anything but the “Captain’s Orders,” and always doing the right thing in the process. Well, K-7 was a wee bit of a mistake.

Another reason for hope that STXI is the real deal.

29: Trouble With Tribbles is the defining moment

Awesome interview!
Pegg’s going to be great!
Can’t wait for MAY!!!

#12 – – It should be obvious by now… But it’s not. :)

BTW, news on this film just keeps getting better and better.
They’re hiding the Enterprise well though. That is what I’d like too see the most. Then full uniform and cast pics, saving any video for the theater as to not get too spoiled. In reality I’m glad they’re making us wait for it all. The longer the better.

They’re hiding the _Enterprises_ well. Haven’t we heard that there will be multiple versions of the Big-E from different timelines?

Well, I’m thankful to finally hear something about Pegg. Lately it seems like it’s been just “Pine this” and “Pine that” and “here are all the photos of how the Enterprise looks” . I could hardly post here without having to read a leaked script. Nothing but plot-revealing, spoileriffic news.

I feel like I have already seen this movie. No, it’s probably just the beer.

Great article!

I think we’re all going to be pretty juiced!

Simon Pegg looks serious in that photo! That’s nice, for a change. I like him. He’s a good fit for Scotty, for sure!

Of all the actors cast at first glance Pegg worried me the most because he seemed the least like his predecessor in the role, but the more I read I think he might just be the most successful at nailing his part. For sure he’s got Doohan’s ability to be a nice guy down pat and I feel sure Doohan would be proud of that. Jimmy was such a nice guy and so tolerant and friendly with fans and I think Pegg has pegged that aspect of Doohan, so to speak.

I can’t imagine this film really feeling like “Star Trek” to me having so grown up on TOS, but I hope that Abrams makes it something positive for a new generation to get excited about.


I think Leonard’s presence is going to help a lot in getting us original fans in the moment. I hope so, anyways.

JMHO, as always.

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

Pegg demonstrates that the tightrope walk actually is possible. On the one hand, he speaks enthusiastically about XI and about JJ Abrams, and on the other hand he does show great respect for TOS and James Doohan. He’s the only one so far who was repeatedly willing to entirely credit the character he’s about to portray to the original actor, and to say that he, Pegg, will just be playing Scotty. Pegg also seems to be the only one who’s interested in doing a bit of background research himself, or he already has some knowledge about the role he‘ll play. I think, he’s the only one showing real awareness for this film’s and the role’s roots, and the legacy linked to it.

#40 –Iowagirl, let’s not give up on the others just yet. :)

I am still convinced that JJ Abrams was the best that could happen to the franchise… he will shoot the ultimate fan movie…

Well, I wouldn’t say Linlithgow is in Northwest Scotland. It’s more like in the West Lothians, which would be fairly south west. Everything below Aberdeenshire is south in my opinion.
Great person too. This Simon Pegg has a lovely personality. :)

#40 – I couldn’t disagree with with you more when you say
“Pegg also seems to be the only one who’s interested in doing a bit of background research himself”

He may have actually done the least.

He has stated in interviews that he has tried to avoid watching the series so he wouldn’t try and copy Doohan’s portrayal.

Yelchin for one has watched a lot of episodes to try and get into his character more.
Yelchin (along with Cho, Quinto and Saldana) were also fortunate enough to be able to meet the original actors themselves and get a personal insight into their characters. However I am sure meeting Chris Doohan was a big boost for Pegg.

I’ve seen in previous posts that you have some doubts about this film Iowagirl, but I am sensing that you are discrediting the other actors’ hard work on this project because you aren’t a fan of their previous films/shows.

I believe everyone on this film has put 110% into it.
Hopefully, come 2009, it will show.

nine actors who have done both Star Trek and Doctor Who.

Who are thos actors? and who did they play? in both series?


Gotta respectfully disagree with you there, Iowagirl. Quinto has the Grand Vulcan Master himself to inform his role as Young Spock.

And has been pointed out before, this movie takes place well before any of these characters become the well-loved icons we know so well, so I’m not sure that any episode-watching research is going to be particularly helpful to them.

JMHO, as always.

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

everything I hear from Mr. Pegg makes me think he is going to be great as Scotty. And I agree with #27, that look is the  Scotty scowl.(like at Amb. Fox or when in this week’s upcoming episode when the Dolman is dissing engineers)


Vulcanista, your pre-TOS argument surely is a justified one and I agree that their interaction must be a different one as they are being portrayed at a different stage in their lives, but I still think that watching some TOS is an important criterion as it will show the actors how the relationships they‘re about to portray in their beginnings will evolve.

Anyway, in my post 40 I was rather referring to the fact that Pegg imo is the only re-cast who doesn’t sound like citing an advertising text when talking about the film, or when referencing TOS or his predecessor. He said himself that he doesn’t watch the eps in order to not being tempted to copy Doohan, but having said that he’s showing great respect for his predecessor and talks more differentiatedly and with higher esteem about the role and the original actor than his colleagues do about theirs, imo. That’s why I think he’s more interested or has more background knowledge or is just more willing to express his respect. Quinto of course has an exceptional position with Nimoy by his side, but that didn’t keep him from sounding like an ad writer once in a while who himself didn’t have that much reasonable to say about the role. And Pine, well, he tried to give his interviews on the subject a personal touch, and we all know where that road went to…;-)

Pegg might know where Scotty is from but his geography of Scotland is poor. Linlithgow is in the central belt of Scotland approx 20 miles west of Edinburgh. They also have a snazzy little exhibit in a local museum of James Doohan memorabilia. Worth checking out

#48—-“And Pine, well, he tried to give his interviews on the subject a personal touch, and we all know where that road went to…;-)”

Except that many of us disagree about the worth and significance of “where that road went to”.

Like Anthony pointed out once again, we’ll hear more Trek-relevant statements out of the new cast once they are officially made available to comment on STXI. Up to now, all we get is the occasional answer to a reporter’s question about Star Trek during the actors’ appearances promoting other projects.

IMO, the only thing seperating Pegg and Pine in their commentary on their respective characters is the evidence that Pegg is a better media politician, and perhaps chooses his words more carefully thusfar, as not to offend fans who are looking for “nits to pick”.

Furthermore, isn’t this the same guy who offended you when he expressed admiration for Shatner’s Kirk (calling him his favorite), but then added the caveat that went something like, “…but I must ask the world to prepare for the wonder of Chris Pine”????

My dear Iowagirl, it seems you are warming up to a recast. I didn’t think you had it in you! LOL.