Smith, Grunberg and Wright Talk About Star Trek

The world has to wait until next May to see the new Star Trek movie, but it it appears that if you are a friend of JJ Abrams you may have already seen it. In the last week a number of people in the ‘circle of trust’ have been talking about the new Star Trek movie, including Kevin Smith, Greg Grunberg, and Edgar Wright. See below for what they have to say.


Smith: Star Trek has gusto
Although he started being evasive, Kevin Smith has become a bit of an unofficial spokesperson for Star Trek. His latest ‘review’ comes from an interview with Collider. Here are some excerpts [language warning]:

Q: Why does Star Trek work?
KS: Star Trek works in a way where you’re sitting there going, I can’t believe this works. I remember when they announced it, I felt like look, it’s one thing to introduce a whole new cast of characters. It’s another thing if you’re going to take the original characters, have other people play them, and do a Muppet Babies version of Star Trek. But it fucking works like gangbusters. The credit goes to JJ and his writers, but definitely to the cast. They pull it off. Chris Pine, who plays Captain Kirk in the movie, does not do a William Shatner impression, but, at the same time, he’s unmistakably Captain Kirk. He just brings all the brio, the gusto, everything about Kirk except Shatner’s deliver to bear on the character. It doesn’t disavow anything that’s gone before. It lives side by side with everything that’s gone before in Star Trek lore, in the movies, and the TV show. He did a great, great job. It’s totally a fun movie.

Q: How was Simon Pegg as Scotty?
KS: Simon Pegg was good. I don’t want to spoil too much because they made me sign an NDA as well. But he’s not right front and center right away. He comes into the movie later. I’m not going to compare it to Blues Brothers, but it’s definitely a bringing the band back together even though they’ve never been together movie. So the characters come in slowly. Slowly they bring in character by character. And Scotty’s the last one they bring in. But he’s pitch perfect.

see Collider for the rest

Is Grunberg in?
Greg Grunberg is JJ Abrams best friend and has popped up in some kind of role in almost every JJ Abrams production. So is he in the new Star Trek? IESB posed the question to him and Grunberg acted very coy, and kept mugging and saying "he can’t talk about it." Watch the video to judge for yourself [another language warning]. has confirmed that Grunberg did not shoot a scene during principal photography. Apparently there was a part for him but his schedule did not allow. However, sources will not confirm or deny that Grunberg worked his way into the movie during post-production. 

Wright is lucky too
If you missed the mention in our Sci-Fi roundup, Simon Pegg’s buddy and collaborator Edgar Wright also seems to have seen the movie. Here is what he wrote on his myspace blog

I am a lucky bastard…
Yesterday I saw a film that does not get released until next summer.
I can’t say much more than that, except that it delivers all the goods sorely lacking from a certain trio of prequels.

Exciting stuff.
That is all.

Abrams talking about Smith and Pegg
Speaking about Pegg, if you didn’t catch this last week, MTV has a bonus video of JJ Abrams being asked about why Kevin Smith saw the movie and he also talks about how he showed Simon Pegg part of the film and it made him weep.






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I’m seriously wishing JJ was my best friend right about now.

Such language!

That’s it, I really am beginning to think Nimoy’s Spock does a (another?) swansong, dying as a result of preserving the past… All the talk about the emotional story, EW’s claim that fans will cry heresy etc. I dunno but, I am getting majorly amped for this! Bring on Nov. 14 then May 2k9!

When I saw the pictures of the bridge of the ship, I wasn’t too sure that this movie will work. But after reading this, I feel a bit better. This is a big risk for Paramount to make.

“I can’t say much more than that, except that it delivers all the goods sorely lacking from a certain trio of prequels.”

Lucas got pwned! Let the flame wars begin…

how do i become jj’s bff?

Oh no – pleaso No – not again.


“It’s totally a fun movie.”

YES, YES, YES. Thank you!! Trek will be fun again.

jesus, who HASN’T seen this movie???

probably for free, too…

They didnt do stuff like this with the first 10 movies. I think this is all very lame, because I’ve seen nothing. I mean if there’s anyone who deserves to see it now, its me. This really upsets me. These guys aren’t worthy. What are you doing to my Star Trek, Sir JJ™??




When Edgar Wright actually makes a real film and stops pretending to be a filmmaker, he’ll probably be less ready to criticise George Lucas in EVERY SINGLE INTERVIEW OR PUBLIC APPEARANCE. It really is tiresome. Know what George was making when he was 33 – Star Wars. When he was 29 – American Graffiti. And what have you been doing at that age – PASTICHE after PASTICHE after PASTICHE. Filled with references to OTHER PEOPLE’S FILMS. The reason why – because George actually has studied other things, he’s studied world mythology and made that the basis for an extraordinary set of films. What about you Edgar? The most wondrous moment in your life was when you saw A New Hope. The biggest crisis was when you saw The Phantom Menace. That’s why you can’t make a real film. When you do, maybe I’ll listen when you continually attack one of the most important figures in the history of cinema.

As far as Star Trek goes, this all sounds pretty good.

If it weren’t for Star Trek, there’d have been no Star Wars. If not for Star Wars, there’d be no movie Star Trek. Paramount Studios would have folded, as would have 20th Century Fox without these films. It’s the most incestuous time-looping co-dependent pair of franchises in the universe.

to paraphrase Lucas and Shatner: It’s only a movie. Get over it. Andget out of my way when I’m going to buy my tickets!

Now I can go back to my drooling anticipation of seeing The Trailer before Quantum of Solace next month…

The Star Wars prequels weren’t THAT bad IMHO… Vader putting on the suit in III was killer.


You have to MacGuyver him.

You need a black 1ft x1ft box with a big “?” mark painted on it. Place in the box one unused stick of chewing gum, a handful of skittles, a used Obama ’08 campaign button, a half-eaten Macintosh apple, white smoke from a burnt coconut, 1 cup of sand.

Mail it to him and tell him he can never open it, but if he can correctly guess it’s contents you will grace him with your presense at a Star Trek prescreening. Then utterly lie to him and tell him he got it exactly right the first time he guesses even though you know he’s completely wrong when he guesses M&M’s instead of Skittles.

There you go! You’re his BFF and you get to see the movie anytime you want.

People that havent seen the new Star Trek,,,,

top of the list..

ME !!

Sweet!!! Though the film is just gearing up for its promotional phase, you know they wouldn’t ask Smith about it if he didn’t like the movie.
When he doesn’t like something, he fires on all thrusters!
Like that he mentions the crew assembly format, like TMP.

Grunberg is most likely being added as a picture on a viewscreen.

So the crew are introduced gradually, and not in one scene.

It seems as though the events of the film gradually builds the crew we know and love.

A gradual transition between Pike’s crew and Kirk’s crew, I suspect.

I really hope it is as much fun as Kevin Smith claims.

I am going to see this movie no matter what!

Out of all the interviews we’ve seen from people attached to the film attempting to describe it without giving anything away, this quote from Kevin Smith is by far the best and funniest I have seen:

“It’s another thing if you’re going to take the original characters, have other people play them, and do a Muppet Babies version of Star Trek”

He also seems to imply, that no matter how difficult it may seem to us for this type of re-invention to stay true to canon, it somehow, unbelievably does…

12. Major coolness. Seems as though Abrams, despite NOT being a Trekker, has made a movie that the complete nutcases among us (self included) might actually like. Surely it’s good news that a fanboy like Kevin Smith had such a great reaction.

Though I confess I’m wracking my brain over what that “heresy” might be. Must be something in the Enterprise backstory. Pike??

Let’s bring the band back together… may 2009

why isnt it 2009 yet!!!????!??!?!

gad damn it jim!

Has Shatner seen it yet? I heard he was good friends with JJ.


LOVE the fact that Pegg is such a geek that he cried when seeing the trailer. I know I will…

What it all comes down to is story and characterization. I think we all from time to time scrutinize Trek too much: what came before, how this looks, how it was done then etc. But if we’d all emulate the best of our favorite crew(s) we would go in embracing the changes as well as what is familiar! ‘Heresy’ be darned, Trek Lives!!

yay its super special awsome!

seriously though I’m happy so far.. just don’t screw up the look of the enterprise and we should be good.. canon be damned!!

whoa.. talk about timing…

The Star Wars prequels were OK… the problem with them wasn’t really *them*, it was the success and originality of the original trilogy.

When the original trilogy came out, they were revolutionary – no one had seen special effects like that before, and the storyline was something that nobody had even imagined before (well, not strictly true – a lot of it is based on Japanese mythology, but ‘cos its set in a sci-fi context, nobody noticed).

When the new trilogy came out, everyone expected them to be just as original and revolutionary. And Lucas tried to deliver in the same way as last time – by pushing the boat out on the special effects. Unfortunately, he ended up with three films that looked more like computer games than films. They have none of the grittiness or reality of the original three.

But yes – the Vader mask scene in Episode III made it all worthwhile! Let’s just hope that the same mistakes aren’t made again with Trek, but by the sound of things, everything’s going to be wicked cool!

I first suspected this movie would be good when I saw the teaser at the cinema and my cousin (avid non-Trekkie – thinks its geeky) turned to me and said ‘that looks really good! What do you know about it?’ When I told her that it had Eric Bana, Karl Urban and Chris Pine in it, she was very pleased.

That’s the thing with this film! It’s not really hit mainstream media yet – although its starting to filter through – but non-Trekkies are starting to get really interested in it!

It’s interesting to note that he definitely did bring a trailer of some sort to Comic-Con this summer.


Lucas peaked with Empire, which he didn’t direct.

He is important in the annals of cinema as a driver of studio profitability and a perspicacious view of the value of merchandizing rights. He created Star Wars.

His apparent knowledge of classical epic storytelling didn’t rescue the crap prequel trilogy, nor did it seem to affect the brainless wonder of Crystal Skull, which he is known to have dumbed down for general consumption. Now, Star Wars is a cartoon on cable. Good riddance.

While I haven’t made any films, I

Re: 29, Agreed… My greatest hope is that this flick brings Trek more level in the entertainment playing field, as well as phasering the socks off us! I know I will love it! (Props to Yoda kicking butt in the prequels too!)

the star was prequels couldve been much better if:

less CG….more physical FX and sets

no Jar Jar

Anakin had been in his 20s in Ep 1 and Christan Bale had been cast instead of ‘Mannequin’ Skywalker Hayden Christian (hey they got the wrong Christian LOL)…Audiences wouldve been more emotionally involved had Anakin been played by the same actor in the 3 films…plus by a better actor…..whenever i watch the Bale/Neeson mentoring scenes in Batman Begins (particulaly the sword fight on the ice) i cant help but think how great stuff like that wouldve been in the Star Wars prequels…:(

also maybe had Attack of the Clones as Ep I – with Phantom just flashback and references – and Ep II had been all out Clone Wars (although not that essiential…Phantom wouldve prob worked fine up Anakin had been older and no Jar Jar)

they bring in character by character.


These new comments are making me feel a ton better. When I saw that pic of the bridge I was a bit dubious, but i couldn’t pass a hard comment like that.

Maybe Mr Grunberg is playing Admiral Parkman and trying to read the minds of the crew


Agree — people who have been lucky enough to see movie should keep their traps shut.

Notice that although all of them are gushing about the film in vague terms, such as “it works,” they never really say HOW it works. And they certainly never touch on how much the film fits in with the rest of established Star Trek.

Me want to see movie.

As long as it’s fun as Revenge of the Sith.

36: If for no other reason that the rest of us want to poke them with pitchforks until they give DETAILS….

I think Edgar Wright is talking about Wolverine.

The one thing I hope want to know from someone who has seen the film is how well does the chemestry between Kirk, Spock and Bones work. Is the bond really there, or is it the forced “oh we’re supposed to have this emotional bond” between a certain young Jedi and his closest associates in the aformentioned prequels.

TNG and the later shows were ensemble pieces. Everyone, even Harry Kim, got their own episode. TOS was about the guy in the center seat and his two buddies in blue.

Does that translate into the new movie? Tell me that, and then don’t spoil TOO much over the next 6 months or so.

I’m betting that the “heresy” is that Captain Christopher Pike will DIE!!!! I don’t know why, I just get that feeling due to this time travel thing, and that will explain a few things (including the redesigned look of the big E herself). Perhaps “Old Spock” knows that Pike is better off sacrificing himself in a heroic way that changes history, including his very own fate. Maybe Pike dies as an even bigger hero and it sets a whole new set of events into place. Ya never know!!!!


Mr. Orci,

You haven’t even seen your own movie yet? That’s too bad.

Wasn’t this movie supposed to be like Star Wars? Don’t slame SW in the same breath when you admit you’re trying to copy it.

#36-Am I even remotely in the right ballpark, or is it a hockey rink, instead? LOL

Just a couple of notes:

1) I get the idea that the ‘heresy’ is in the beginning, where it has been said that something happens against ‘canon’, probably as a result of Nero’s interference.

2) I’m still getting the ‘Friends in Space’ feeling from this, where everyone knows everyone else from the beginning (I LIKE Capt. Terrell’s comment in WoK: “I’ve never even MET Adm. Kirk.”). It appears that McCoy is part of the crew from the begining and there is neither Bryce or Gary Mitchell at all. It even may be that Kirk and McCoy are cadets together and there goes the age difference. (Idea I JUST had- maybe THIS is the ‘Heresy’?? And perhaps the uniforms we see in the one shot are this movie’s versions of the old Pike-era ones.)

3) Maybe Grunberg’s cameo is a voice-over? BTW, is there any word on Majel doing the computer voices again?

Another guess I make is that the scene where Chekov is found to be subspace googling Orion women in Tribble bikinis was cut… J/k, heh.

Some people likes Spiderman II or superman returns too….

Sorry I will have to see it to believe it, and have in mind i will be extremely strict and will not do any favors when grading this.

They have a legendary movie on their hands, legendary characters, and a sci fi background were you could do anything.

I am expecting near perfection… if its anything else.. I will yawn.

I want to be amazed. I have gone to too many blockbuster movies, thinking GESH I could write a better story than THAT! Ok Im a genius, but these guys are being payed millions to think of something good!

PS. there is nothing like a die hard TOS fan. I also think all other star trek series or movies without the original cast were stupid and degraded the spirit and zest of the TOS series. Especially DS9 boldly staying put in one location in Space… what a disgrace!

#49 Spocks Brain

“I also think all other star trek series or movies without the original cast were stupid and degraded the spirit and zest of the TOS series. Especially DS9 boldly staying put in one location in Space… what a disgrace!”

And yet DS9 was the most innovative and intriguing of the Trek shows and definitely a great show. Funny how that works. :) (That said, TNG is still my favorite.)