On Tuesday night (UK time) JJ Abrams and his cast came to the London gala premiere of Star Trek, the final stop on their global tour before coming back to the states. TrekMovie was there every step of the day and has a full report from the premiere and the press conference. Plus we have a summary of the first reviews coming from the UK.
Star Trek in the UK
by TrekMovie UK correspondents Ronan O’Flaherty and David Wineman
The tour finally has landed. After two weeks of going around the globe, the gala premiere tour reached London on Monday. JJ Abrams and his and team delivered an excellent evening of entertainment, proving that even after a tiring tour; they can still get excited about the movie. If the turn out for the premiere is any indication of how successful the movie may be, then the future really has begun. Below is a report from the big events of the day.
London Blue Carpet – VIDEO
TrekMovie had a chance to chance to talk to JJ Abrams and many of the stars on video:
- JJ Abrams talks to us about the new movie and is number 12 on the cards?
- Zachary Quinto talked about how he brought his own style to the Spock character.
- Simon Pegg, at his home premiere talks Scotty and is he up for number 12, also says ‘hell yeah’ the new Star Trek breaks the ‘odd numbered curse’
- John Cho took time to talk to us about the background to his Sulu character and his influences.
- Eric Bana talked to us about playing the bad guy and what research he had to do for the movie.
- Finally Zoe Saldana talked to us about how Nichelle Nichols played a role in her interpretation of the character.
Of course TrekMovie was not the only media outlet on the blue carpet. All the major UK players were there, here are a couple of videos from Sky.
Pictures from the Blue Carpet
Slideshow of some pictures from the Blue Carpet
UK Premiere – mini-review – crowd loves it
As the film rolled the audience settled in to watch the new movie unfold. So as to not spoil the movie, let’s say that it is amazing. A stunning piece of work so well crafted and delivered by the team on both sides of the camera. As the credits rolled, the applause went up around the cinema – the crowd seemed to be taken in by every minute of the film.
UK Press conference VIDEO
Before the premiere, JJ Abrams and his team held a press conference. TrekMovie was there, but SkyTV had the exclusive video rights. However, the people at Sky were kind enough to send over the embed code for their video, here it is
UK Press conference Part 1
UK Press Conference Part 2
Lots of good stuff in the UK press conference, but, here is a bit from Simon Pegg (who admits to being a ‘nerd’ and fan of Trek since he was nine) on what is in the movie for Trek fans:
…if you are a Star Trek fan, there is a lot in it for you. There is a level of conversation between viewer and film and if you do know Star Trek you will get lots of little bits and pieces and feel spoken to and acknowledged as well. It is an important fan base. They are dedicated, they love their stuff and it is an important thing. And what JJ has miraculously managed to achieve with this — there are lots of people in the past when you try to appeal to the fanbase and a new viewership, it is a very hard balance to strike — and I think this nails it completely. You can watch this and not know anything about the existing history and love it for the sheer adventure – the human story and ideas of it. But if you do know it, and you see that the surface of Vulcan looks a little bit like Vasquez Rocks from the episode "Arena" — nerd — fantastic! It just nails it. I am very proud of it
Reviews are in – UK critics love Star Trek
The first wave of reviews have come in from the UK, and they are (almost entirely) positive about this new Star Trek. Here are some quotes:
…if anyone could have a decent crack at resurrecting Star Trek – one of television and cinema’s longest running franchises – it could be worse than self-confessed fan, Lost creator JJ Abrams.
But does he manage it?
Well, the answer is a pretty simple one. Yes. Star Trek is a decent film that does exactly what it says on the tin. It’s big, flashy and action packed with impressive special effects. Kids will enjoy it and the snappy dialogue provides enough laughs for mum and dad.
Like many people, I yawned at the thought of yet another attempt to breathe life into a series that seemed finished, after the pompous, pointless and all too aptly named Star Trek: Nemesis in 2002.
The original cast had long gone, and the ideas had dried up. Why try to reanimate a corpse?
The short answer is that J.J. Abrams had come up with a tremendous idea, inspired no doubt by the success of Batman Begins and Casino Royale, both of which had reinvigorated tired franchises by recasting and going back to basics.
With countless spine-tingling action sequences, a perfect recreation of Vulcan and a script full of loving nods to its forebears, Abrams has made the continuing missions of the Starship Enterprise one that millions will be eager to follow. [rating 8/10]
Just when you thought that the Star Trek phenomenon had truly run its course, along comes J. J. Abrams’s stunning prequel to resuscitate the most enduring franchise in sci-fi history. The past five decades have produced five television series and ten films — not all of them successful — so veteran Trekkers had no right to expect such a dazzling and beautiful rebirth. [rating 5/5]
Throughout, Abrams and his writers Robert Orci and Alex Kurtzman adhere to the three driving forces of Roddenberry’s series: action, character, and smuggled-in, high-minded morality. The pace rarely lets up, and when it does, midway through, the story starts to look thin. Everyone jabbers about falling through black holes and “red matter” until the fighting and the whipcrack dialogue crank up again.
In a way, Star Trek is this year’s Iron Man. Both were superbly cast, full of great character interaction and genuine humanity. But the pair were also seriously hampered by badly conceived storylines and humdrum action sequences (remember Tony Stark’s rubbish fight with Ironmonger at the end of the film?) that stops them joining the likes of Jaws, Star Wars and Independence Day in the annuls of truly great summer films.
The great thing about both Iron Man and Trek, however, is that they lay the groundwork for (what we hope will be) mind-blowing second installments. By the end of Star Trek, we have a (mostly) brilliantly cast crew in place on the bridge of the Enterprise. For Star Trek 2 (or should that be 12?) here’s hoping a strong new adversary returns to threaten the Federation (wouldn’t Klingons or The Borg be awesome?) — then perhaps Abrams’ promise of genuinely exciting space adventure will be fully realised. [rating 3.5/5]
– IGN UK
Bottom Line: J.J. Abrams gives the Starship Enterprise all it’s got, and it’s more than enough.
– THR (reporting from UK – first trade review of Star Trek)
Ross loves it
UK film critic and popular TV presenter Jonathan Ross was also at the premiere. He has not done a formal review but he did tweet "Best Star Trek film EVER!" and "Pegg was fantastic. Nailed it!". Ross also attended the after-party where he sent in this photo…
According to Ross, Pegg wore nothing under the Kilt
Even more UK video coverage
- BBC Simon Pegg UK Blue Carpet
- BBC: Quinto and Pine UK junket
- Press Association: Quinto, Pine, Saldana UK Junket
More TrekMovie Star Trek World Tour coverage
TrekMovie has been covering each stop on the world gala tour for JJ Abrams and his Star Trek team, with our own team on the spot when possible. Here is a summary of articles so far:
- Sydney Australia premiere [Australia fan Q&A Video]
- New Zealand premiere
- Kuwait showing to troops
- Moscow premiere
- Paris press conference
- Berlin premiere + Berlin press conference
- Madrid press conference
NEXT STOP: USA
JJ and his crew are now done with their globe trotting and headed back to the states. There will be a press junket next weekend (TrekMovie will be there) and a gala premiere on the 30th (TrekMovie will be there too). So stay tuned to the only website covering the JJ Abrams Star Trek world tour stop-by-stop.
Photos and video (except where noted) by Ronan O’Flaherty and David Wineman for TrekMovie.com