Zachary Quinto: Star Trek 4 Script Being Written, Probably Not Interested In ‘Discovery’ Cameo

We are coming up on the one year anniversary of Star Trek Beyond and it looks like there may be a little bit of news on the status of the next film in the franchise. Today Zachary Quinto (Spock) participated in a Facebook Live chat with Entertainment Tonight to promote his involvement with the World Wildlife Fund and Tiger Beer and their project to protect endangered tigers. The subject of the next Star Trek movie also came up, and here is the exchange:

E.T.: I have to get a Star Trek update from you

Quinto: If I had one I would give it.

E.T: So J.J. [Abrams] announced last summer that a fourth movie was a go. So is there anything?

Quinto: I’m expecting that to be true, but it’s a process. It’s always this way. It’s like, “Yes, we’re going to do it!” But then there are many steps in that process – writing a script being primary among them – and I know that’s what they’re working on now. I think we’re all really excited to go back and we’ll do that whenever the phone rings and it’s J.J. on the other end. But yeah, it is a process. There is years between the first few movies – I think four years between the first two and three between the second and the third. So we are kind of on track. It was two years ago we shot the last one and it came out last year so I feel we are still in the strike zone.

In April Quinto also said that a script was being worked on but made news mostly for commenting that there were “no guarantees” another Star Trek film would be made. His comments today seemed to be more optimistic.

Karl Urban (McCoy) and Zachary Quinto (Spock) in Star Trek Beyond

Karl Urban (McCoy) and Zachary Quinto (Spock) in Star Trek Beyond

Probably not interested in Discovery cameo

The subject of the new CBS All Access show Star Trek: Discovery came up as well. Quinto noted he wasn’t following the “inner machinations” of news on the show but he was aware that Bryan Fuller was formerly involved. The ET host then asked if Quinto would be interested appearing on the show:

E.T.: If they were to reach out to you to do a cameo would you do it?

Quinto: I don’t know, probably not. I don’t think so. It is such a unique experience and such a unique character and I feel like I wouldn’t know how to…I don’t know. Who knows? But I am excited to see it. I am happy that they are doing it and it is an incredible universe. There is an endless combination of possibilities of stories and characters. I don’t feel like they will need me. They will be able to create an opulent world of much drama on their own.

The nuance of a cameo from Kelvin timeline Spock in Prime timeline Discovery wasn’t discussed.

You can watch the full Quinto ET Facebook Live event below.

New Paramount CEO (briefly) mentions Star Trek

Paramount’s new CEO Jim Gianopulos recently gave his first major interview to The Hollywood Reporter and the subject of franchises came up. Here is the exchange:

THR: Film has become a business of haves and have-nots. Some studios have reliable franchises, some don’t. How do you turn this studio into a “have” with what you’ve got?

Gianopulos: We have people, money, resources, global distribution and the reach of almost four billion people that Viacom touches around the world. If you can’t make that work, something’s not right. There is a great executive team here and a lot of very talented and dedicated people who want to win and who, despite disappointments at the box office, have a great sense of purpose, direction and talent. You harness that and look at areas where it can be improved or augmented or expanded. I don’t make any prejudgments. I’m just getting to know everybody.

THR: But you don’t have many franchises.

Gianopulos: Yes and no. There’s Star Trek, Mission: Impossible and Transformers. The last Mission was one of the most successful and critically acclaimed of all the films. And we’re now making the next one, which has every appearance of being even bigger. There are plenty of opportunities to mine the library and to mine the relationship with our ongoing partner Hasbro. There’s a lot of IP here.

Gianopulos also talked up the studio’s relationship with [Star Trek] producer J.J. Abrams, whose Bad Robot Productions also handles the Mission: Impossible films, and said that he had personally sorted out the studio’s Chinese financing problems that we reported in our last Paramount business update.

While it was only the briefest of mentions of Star Trek, this is the first time that the new CEO has ever talked about the franchise. Gianopulos’ lumping Trek in with Mission: Impossible and Transformers as the three major franchises for the studio echoes a similar sentiment from the CEO of Viacom (Paramount’s parent company) back in March. So even with Star Trek Beyond coming in below expectations in 2016, the corporate brass still consider Trek to be one of their key tentpoles. It’s especially significant that Gianopulos has Star Trek on his list because when he was brought in to turn Paramount around, he was reportedly given significant leeway and greenlight authority.

For the past five years, Paramount has released one film from each big franchise (Trek, Transformers and Mission) every summer. The big tentpole this summer is the fifth Transformers film, which has brought in $ 1/2 billion in three weeks (but may actually end up under-performing compared to the last Transformers film). Next summer will bring the sixth Mission: Impossible film along with a Bumblebee spin-off of Transformers, and Paramount has already said they plan to release another Transformers film in 2019. While a new Star Trek film was announced in 2016, it wasn’t given a date or even a year.

If Paramount decides to move forward with a new Star Trek feature and continue the pattern, then the next Trek film could fall in the summer of 2020. This four year gap between films would (as noted by Quinto above) be on track to match the gap between Abrams’ first and second Trek features. If Paramount decided they didn’t want to do three summers in a row with a Transformers film, then a Star Trek film in 2019 is theoretically possible, but a lot of things would have to get locked down around the end of the year – notably a script, a director, a budget, and the actors’ schedules.

Paramount summer tentpoles from 2013-2107

Stay glued to for all news, whispers and more about the future or Star Trek movies. You can keep tabs on all updates on the next movie via our Star Trek XIV category.



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