While doing press interviews for an upcoming film, Simon Pegg gave some details about how he landed the screenwriting gig for the next Star Trek movie, and what he hopes to bring to it. More after the jump.
Collider’s Christina Radish spoke to Simon Pegg while the actor/screenwriter was doing press junket interviews for his upcoming film Kill Me Three Times. He spoke on a variety of topics, including his involvement as co-screenwriter of the next Star Trek film. While he doesn’t divulge any plot details or casting decisions, it is the most information we have gotten about the film since the production shakeup last fall.
After describing the process of writing the third film as “terrifying”, Pegg discusses the roundabout way he got the job:
Me and Bryan Burk, who’s one of the producers at Bad Robot, have worked together on a bunch of stuff. We were sitting around, talking about the direction the next film was gonna go in. They were thinking, “Maybe we should go back to the drawing board, a little bit, with the screenplay.” Bryan and I would just sit around and talk, and we’d get excited. And then, Bryan was like, “Do you want to write it then?” It was a difficult decision. I hemmed and hawed about it, a little bit, because it felt like a big responsibility. I owe J.J. [Abrams] and Bryan an awful amount. I love those guys. I want to do right by them, so I felt like I should man up and do it.
He goes on to say that the script needs to be finished by June, and that he and co-screenwriter Doug Jung are under pressure to have it ready:
…the timeframe we’re working in is extremely tight. It means we’re having to come up with the goods. We can’t be lazy about it. We can’t procrastinate. We have to come up with the stuff because the production is hammering on the door saying, “When can we build this? What are we gonna we build? Who is in it?” I don’t know! Let’s right it and we’ll find out. It’s an interesting process.
About taking care with the source material and finding the right tone:
I have to abide by certain rules and do right by the original series, and not be too post-modern with it and not be too aware of itself. I have to try to take on the spirit of the show, rather than fill it with stuff that people will just go, “Oh, yeah, that’s from episode something or other.” It’s more than that.
He talks more about Trek, his experience making Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, his visit to the set of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and more, which can be found here.
It’s more about spirit. It’s very easy these days, in the kind of post-modern era, to get bogged down in self referentiality or thinking, “Oh let’s put Harry Mudd in.” In a way I felt like if anything — and I really, really am very proud of Into Darkness — but I feel like the thing that for me was kind of jolting was that it kind of wanted to embrace itself a little too much, rather than take off and do what Star Trek did, which is to go off into the depths of the galaxy. It was about referencing not only a previous film but also kind of hanging onto the coast of Earth a little bit. So for me it’s now about the spirit of adventure and exploration and also, in modern terms, just how would that be for people, to be away for that amount of time and that kind of stuff. We’re trying to evolve the story at the same time as not letting it go.