Simon Pegg’s New Film Opens Today – Actor Talks More Trek

How To Lose Friends & Alienate People, the new comedy starring Star Trek’s new Scotty (Simon Pegg) opens today. We have the final round-up of his Star Trek comments from his press tour, plus an update on his reviews and his ‘fight’ with Ricky Gervais.



Pegg on Trek

[Phoenix EastValley Tribune]

Q: Looking towards future projects, you’re in the upcoming “Star Trek” film, playing Scotty. That must have been quite the experience for a noted sci-fi fan like yourself.

Pegg: I never for a second took that lightly. I had a really good time doing that movie, it was phenomenal fun. I never once lost sight of what I was doing. … They’re beloved characters, that people feel like they own. I can understand a certain nervousness when people go off and do something with it. I think the fan fear that is out there for the new “Star Trek” is all about the fear that it might get broken. That really isn’t a concern.


I am a fan of the first ‘Star Trek,’ but I specifically stayed away from trying to do James Doohan (the original Scotty). We were all trying to be those characters and not the actors. So I concentrated on playing Montgomery Scott. ‘Star Trek’ is about the story.


Q: (reader question) How did it feel to be chosen for geek glory to play Scotty in the new Star Trek movie? 

Pegg: I thought you were going to ask, “Who the hell do you think you are?” I was thrilled, and I wasn’t surprised at the reaction. I understand that it’s a precious thing. You don’t want it in the hands of someone who a) doesn’t appreciate it or b) might seek to undermine it. Star Trek is a beloved story and is being treated as such. It’s being done very seriously. There’s no attempt to wink at the camera.

video of Pegg’s interview


I’ve been very out as an [Star Trek] enthusiast, because Spaced obviously pinned me as a geek. So it was amazing to be part of that whole universe. To be a grown man acting not just with Leonard Nimoy, but with that character who I’ve known since I was a child, is just mind-blowing.


Q: What did you do studying James Doohan’s Scotty that you took in your characterization and how do you tribute him in the film?

Pegg: I’m a fan of Star Trek, and I have all the home DVDs. I specifically stayed away from trying to do James, I tried to do Scotty. Because I figured, the film is not a parody in any way, we’re trying to be those characters, not those actors. Those actors picked up the script and said “Ok, he’s James [Tiberius] Kirk” or “He’s Montgomery Scott, born in Lithgow”–that’s how we had to approach the roles, because the story is not about the actors. James Doohan beautifully created a legendary character, a real sci-fi icon. He’s sort of sensitive and funny, tough, resilient, and clever. Sure, he thinks he’s the real captain of the ship, because he does all the dirty work. He’s where it matters. Kirk’s up there swingin’ around in his yellow top and Scotty’s down in the engine room with oily hands.

I got in touch with Chris Doohan, James’ son. In fact, he got in touch with me first, which was a relief because I was trying to find a way. And all I said was, “look, I’m just trying to give a performance that would make your dad proud.” Not to do James, but to do Scotty. And Chris is my assistant in one of the rooms on the ship. He was telling me that he’d been on set of “The Trouble with Tribbles” and dislodged, you know at the end where all the tribbles fall of Kirk. He and his brother and just knocked it open before they shot and FILLED the set with tribbles.

Pegg on Gervais controversy
There has been a mini-media storm in the UK between Simon Pegg and Ricky Gervais (the man who turned down a role, possibly as Scotty, in JJ Abrams Star Trek). In a radio intervirew Pegg called Gervais ‘an idiot’ and ‘fat’ in response to Gervais’ comments about the lack of good British cinema. However, on his MySpace blog, Pegg says that it was just a joke:


So apparently I have “slammed” Ricky Gervais in the press as being a “fat idiot”. Oh dear. Ricky’s comments about the British film industry were definitely a little unfair but whatever I said on Heart FM was intended in the spirit of mutual teasing that myself Ricky have always indulged in. I am not in a position to genuinely accuse anybody of being fat, or for that matter of being an idiot. Whatever public feud is subsequently encouraged/fueled/blown out of proportion as a result of this, it is entirely the doing of those gleefully stood around clapping their hands and shouting “fight”.

It is true however that we used to be lovers.


p.s. Ricky and I have laughed about this, although his initial response was “It’s glandular you cunt.”

Pegg’s new movie opens today to mixed reviews
How to Lose Friends & Alienate People starring Simon Pegg opens today. It is a comedy based on a true story (and book) about a Brit (played by Pegg) who moves to New York to work on a big magazine and gets involved in American celebrity culture. The film also features Kirsten Dunst as a co-worker, Jeff Bridges as the magazine editor and Megan Fox as a celebrity.

Reviews are decidedly mixed for the film. Yahoo Movies gives it an average critic rating of C+, however Pegg himself has garnered some good notices. The Miami Herald says Pegg was ‘an inspired choice’ to play the lead while Roger Ebert says he was ‘born to play’ the part. The SF Chronicle calls Pegg’s slapstick "hilarious" while Reelviews rates his performance as "brilliant." But it isn’t all good for Pegg, as the Chicago Reader notes: "Pegg has some good obnoxious moments, but he’s only a few movies away from becoming Dudley Moore." Of course if they remake Arthur, they know who to call.

Pegg as the obnoxious Young, in ‘Loose Friends’

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“How to lose friends and alienate people.”

I do that far too often.

And here’s how:


But in all seriousness, Pegg is a terrific actor and I cannot wait to see him in Trek. He was brilliant in Hot Fuzz, the first time I ever saw him, and I cannot wait to see more of him.

He will be an amazing Scotty that will do Doohan justice. Live long and prosper, Pegg.


“Simon Pegg is not imitating James Doohan!”

“Pegg says TREK XI is not a parody!”

“Pegg’s Scotty is a tribute to Doohan!”

“Pegg is a sci-fi geek!”

I mean, c’mon… how many times can we read the same interview over and over…?

I think he is a very funny and witty guy on and off the camera.

As a person, he won me over very early on after Trekmovie reported his sparring session with an L.A. reporter who seemed to get a kick out of belittling Star Trek and its fans. It was clear to me that he was personally offended, and wasn’t afraid to go at it with that particular interviewer.

Beyond that, I think he has a great attitude toward what he is being asked to do in this film.

#3—“…how many times can we read the same interview over and over…?”

At least as many times as this makes…. :)

Try to remember that those of us who are regular readers and posters may not be the only people who stumble on to this site. Someone may actually be reading about this for the first time. If you think about it, someone reading his/her first trekmovie article right now may be in the early stages of becoming a new regular visitor to this site.

I know it hurts, but it’s not all about you and me…at least not all of the time!


Journalists always ask the same questions, you always get the same answers.

U know the only reason we come back to this website 10 times a day is to just make sure, and then to double check and make sure we didn’t miss the release of the Star Trek trailer. Or maybe some new info on the day it will be released.


F5…. F5…..

#6—Of course.

I ran into my father’s brother recently, who introduced me to Star Trek as a kid in the 70’s. When I mentioned to him that I was excited about the new Star Trek movie. He looked at me– eyes wide open, and said, “What new Star Trek movie?”

When I explained to him that the co-creator of ‘Lost’ (which I knew was a show he and his wife watch regularly) was directing a new film about the origins of Kirk, Spock, and McCoy, etc., he wanted to know everthing I had heard about it.

I told him about

He started reading here earlier this week (or at least I got the impression he would waste no time). It wouldn’t surprise me if he was lurking about right now! He doesn’t know Simon Pegg from “Simon Says”…

He may very well be seeing these comments for the first time.

I check this site about 10 times a day. just enough to OCD diagnosys. ;)



As long as Pegg has a line akin to “Ay canna doo it, Capt’n, I canna reach the controls!”

Any references to Star Trek XII: So Very Tired float my boat :)

Can’t wait for the new movie!

talk talk talk, bloody talk….

hey paramount, how about throwing us a frickin’ bone here?

building buzz is one thing, generating resentment and alienation is quite another.

#13—-You’ll be there opening weekend just like me, no matter how “resentful” and “alienated” you claim to be now.

Like Bob told us in the latest ‘Fringe’ thread, you’ll get your ‘bone’ soon…and according to him, you won’t even have to wait until Christmas (which I thought we most likely would).

The point is for general interest to “peak” in the week of its release…not to set themselves up for anti-climactic crescendo by pre-maturely spilling some of the goods when the film is still 7.5 months out.

I thought we’d see a 4-5 month hype machine starting around Christmastime, but Orci’s latest comment may mean it will be closer to 6 months worth of more aggressive campaigning.

I wonder what we’ll see so soon.

“Pegg as the obnoxious Young, in ‘Loose Friends’”

Why oh why is the last picture captioned “loose”???
Especially when the first picture is the film’s poster where it’s spelled *correctly*???

Do you guys watch JJ Abram’s other TV show “loost” or something?

SPB I couldn’t agree more

Did you know Simon Pegg’s Scotty is a tribute to James Doohan?

#4 … I agree. Pegg does us proud, as fans, every time he does an interview. His love for TOS and its stars is very evident. I’m very much looking forward to his interpretation of the Miracle Worker!! :-)

#18—Hey, where ‘ya been? Your comments have been MIA for a little while.

I want to share this 8sec. clip from You Tube – I think ST fans will enjoy!!!

13. JWW –
“talk talk talk, bloody talk….
hey paramount, how about throwing us a frickin’ bone here?
building buzz is one thing, generating resentment and alienation is quite another.”

Give it a rest. What did you expect from this article? “Simon Pegg is out promoting his new film and surprise! He brought pictures of the new Enterprise from the Star Trek movie he stars in next year. And he has a few spoilers, too. Just because a bunch of folks have been whining so much over at!”

#19 … Like an Organian, I only intervene when necessary. But I’m always watching, so you watch yourself! :-)

#22—Well, don’t take a cue from them and disappear altogether…

Mongo has some loose friends. They in 69 forward.

This is the same stuff we have read in the past few days.

Just a different source.

We need fresh..not rehashed!

Oh this man understand Star Trek…

#6 Unless you’re interviewing William Shatner .

I watched TOS ‘Wolf in the Fold’ the other day. Wow, Pegg really does resemble the younger Doohan – apart from the hair.

#15 – Re: the typographical error of “Loose” when meant to print “Lose.” We live in a world of copious typos and other imperfections, dear Simon. Anthony et al. work stupendously hard to get us Trek news (even when there’s little of it to report) in a timely fashion on a near-daily basis.

As book-lover and doctoral-candidate in literature, typos in books that I fork over my hard-earned greenbacks for do piss me off — more than they should, I’m learning about myself. But this is the internet, the information is free to us, and life is way, way too short to let this sort of thing ruin your day. Let it go. You’ll live longer — or at least perhaps more happily.

Anthony and Co. — keep up the great work and keep us Trek-news-hungry wolves fed as best as all of you can. We appreciate all the hard work that you are doing for us, and you are all doing an excellent job reporting on an upcoming film that is under exceedingly tight warps. Or is that wraps? And is it the Navajos who purposefully weave an imperfection into their blankets to reflect the fact that NOTHING in this world is perfect? I may have that cultural collective wrong, but, hey, who’s perfect?

Why does it seem like there are about 5 movies like this each year?

30 – Because its Hollywood and it’s bone-dry of original ideas. In my sparse spare time I’m hard at work on scripts for both a re-remake-up-your own-imagining of “Planet of the Apes” and for “Doogie Howser: The Motion Picture.” ;)

31. Brett Campbell – October 4, 2008
“… Because its Hollywood and it’s bone-dry of original ideas…”

It’s not so much an absence of original ideas, as it is Hollywood’s myopic need for projects that are a *safe investment.*

So, they mutter, “Hey, it worked before. Let’s do it again.”

They’re allergic to stings from a buzzing nest of question marks — which original ideas tend to attract by the swarm.

DaveO — I sincerely hope that you are right and that that is indeed the case. I do think you are perhaps nearer the truth than I am.

These days, it’s the small independent films that take the greater risks.

Of course it is the same bloody interview! In addition to having the same questions tossed his way all the time, I’m sure there are three big letters keeping him from giving us anything meatier: N-D-A. I’m sure they all have a big non-disclosure agreement that would whip their a**es if they told us anything of note at this point.

Allow me to speak on the side of the “show us the Enterprise” camp. Although I will likely be horrfied at what I wil see, it would still be better than the hearing this same stuff over and over about “honoring what came before” and “not doing impressions” and yada, yada, yada. Tiresome.

I don’t expect to get a full shot of the Enterprise before the film opens.

What would Abrams have to gain by doing that, besides a slew of enemies on the internet who decide that he has insulted them before they even see the movie? Regardless of which direction it goes, one group or another will be displeased. It would be like going into battle without body armor.

I think we’ll get another partial shot soon, but we’ll have to wait and see the full shot within the context of the film. I could be wrong, but I think that is the ‘smart’ play. At least the ‘hounds’ and their reaction would be somewhat tempered by the chance that they actually liked the film.

Agreed. It is the same thing over and over again, and it’s always Quinto and Pegg too, I guess they’re the most famous of the new cast. I wouldn’t mind another teaser or some production stills or…or…well something! The movies a long way off and I want to stay inspired. Where’s the Trek Viral Campaign?

#37—“It is the same thing over and over again, and it’s always Quinto and Pegg too, I guess they’re the most famous of the new cast. ”

Actually, it is whoever is out promoting an immediate project. That’s why you aren’t hearing from Urban or Pine right now. Quinto has been on the heroes circuit, and occasionally answering a Trek question. Same for Pegg. If you pay attention to the article above, the interviews were really about his new movie that opened yesterday.

The actually campaign to hype STXI (or Zero) hasn’t begun yet. The movie doesn’t open until May.

“lose ” -NOT CANNON

36. Closettrekker –
“I don’t expect to get a full shot of the Enterprise before the film opens.
…I think we’ll get another partial shot soon, but we’ll have to wait and see the full shot within the context of the film. I could be wrong, but I think that is the ’smart’ play. ”

You may be right about that. JJ may tease us with bits and pieces of the E in the trailer and other promotional material. That kind of neck-craning to see the big mysterious object worked to great effect in Cloverfield and even in Jaws and Alien. I’m not saying we won’t see the E in all her glory clearly in the film but leading up to it JJ may chose to continue doing what was done in the teaser — whipping fans up into a frenzy.

As annoying as I find the “JUST SHOW US THE DAMN SHIP ALREADY!!!!!” crowd, these guys may get louder and more obnoxious over the next few months — as JJ strings them along, laughing all the way, I’m sure.

I think we’ll all be astounded when we finally do get that full reveal. Maybe the final release poster will reveal it in it’s entirety. They did a teaser poster for TMP that was just of the E (with tiny face-shots of the cast running along the bottom above the credits) — however, the image was inaccurately closer to the proposed Phase 2 Enterprise and not the one seen in the film.

haha… Pegg is a funny guy. He seems like the kind of actor who might have told someone to wank off if he was given the line, “I just pissed myself” (ala Fringe). I am very proud to have Pegg in ST and I hope his faith in it is rewarded by a great movie.

This is exactly right — “… the fan fear that is out there for the new ‘Star Trek’ is all about the fear that it might get broken.” It felt good to hear him say also, “That really isn’t a concern.” That’s what I needed to hear.

Each year there are about 20 romantic comedies, 5 re-re-remakes, 10 horror movies, and 1 Sci-Fi movie.

#40—Yeah, but TMP wasn’t cloaked in the secrecy that ‘Bad Robot’ is so adamant about in most everything they do.

TMP also had the benefit of a built-in reason for the difference between the TOS Enterprise and the one we eventually saw on the big screen. Abrams’ Star Trek may also have such “cause” (“anything which appears to violate canon will have a canon explanation”–Orci), but since the details of that reasoning may remain secret through the week of the opening, I think that the backlash (however premature) would potentially be much worse.

I think we will get cast photos, glimpses of parts of the Enterprise, and action-packed teasers that really hint to nothing coherent.

It should be alot of fun though!

I for one can’t wait to see the first real trailer for this movie showing how he talks.

44. mm3guy –
“I for one can’t wait to see the first real trailer for this movie showing how he talks.”

The trailer for “How To Lose Friends & Alienate People”? That’s already out. The movie opened yesterday.

Oh, you mean for *Star Trek*!! Hey, did you hear Simon Pegg’s Scotty is a tribute to James Doohan? I read that somewhere…

ouch, the movie tanks at the box office, only $460,000 from the opening day… what a desaster for MGM. :-(

I never go see movies like that. That’s one I’ll wait for on DVD or even directv.

Hi, I’m one of Mongo’s friends in 69 Forward. I let Mongo sleep off a drunk on my couch last night. I just got finished burning it. BAD MONGO!

Pegg’s movie title just might end up being my life’s motto.

I wonder if Pegg is a sci fi fan in real life? Or if he tried to impersonate Doohan?

Guess we’ll never know.

Jamie , I believe Simon is a trekkie !! From memory , I saw him many years ago when he started acting , and was interviewed on a Brit talk show . And he raved on about being an avid trekkie and having collectibles . Maybe Pascale and Team can check this out sometime ?!!!