Deadline is reporting that Oscar-winning writer and director Quentin Tarantino has “come up with a great idea for a Star Trek movie at Paramount,” and is making plans to develop it with producer J.J. Abrams. According to Deadline’s sources, Tarantino pitched a Star Trek story to Abrams, who presumably liked what he heard. They now plan to assemble a writers room, who will hear Tarantino’s treatment and start writing a script.
According to the report it’s possible that Tarantino could also direct the film if the project goes forward. However, he is currently in pre-production on his 9th feature film, 1969, which is due in theaters in the summer of 2019. The astuter has also recently confirmed that he plans to retire as a director after his 10th film.
Tarantino is known for directing his own original stories such as Kill Bill, Pulp Fiction, Reservoir Dogs, The Hateful Eight, and more. A Star Trek film would be his first foray into taking the reins of a pre-existing film franchise, although he has done so before on television with episodes of ER and CSI. It’s also questionable if he would want to make his final film as a director be the fourteenth entry in the Star Trek franchise.
Turning A Classic Episode Into A Movie?
This is not the first time Tarantino’s name has come up related to the Star Trek film franchise. As TrekMovie reported in September, Tarantino’s name entered the Trek sphere after his remarks on a Nerdist podcast in 2015 began recirculating around the web. More recently this September, the director told TMZ that “it would be worth having a meeting” about directing the next Star Trek film.
The director told Nerdist that, given the choice, he would prefer to direct a Star Trek film over Star Wars. He said he was a big fan of the original Star Trek series and liked the J.J. Abrams 2009 Star Trek film, but didn’t care for 2013’s Into Darkness follow-up. Tarantino noted that many classic Star Trek episodes could be “easily expanded” into a feature film, and he specifically mentioned the Next Generation episode “Yesterday’s Enterprise” as one that could work on the big screen. Although a fourth installment of the Star Trek film reboot would more than likely be set in the Kelvin universe, original series or even TNG stories could act as inspiration for a script.
This all calls into question of whether Tarantino would keep any elements developed by Abrams and others up to this point, including the idea of bringing back Chris Hemsworth to reprise his role as Jim Kirk’s father, a storyline pitched by Abrams around the premiere of Star Trek Beyond.
A Tarantino Film Not Yet In The Bag
While it is exciting that there is some momentum behind another Star Trek movie, it is worth keeping in mind that Tarantino’s story pitch is just that. Moving beyond this stage would require a great deal of work before Paramount would consider greenlighting the project.
Making things even more uncertain for another Star Trek film, Paramount recently announced that they have ended their financing deal with China’s Huahua Media, a deal intended to finance a quarter of the films that Paramount produced over the next three years. Huahua Media co-financed Star Trek Beyond in 2016. This means that the next Star Trek film might require a new source of funding before it could be greenlit.
If Paramount did move forward on another Star Trek film it is theoretically possible for a film to be produced in time to be released in the summer of 2019. However, the studio is already slated the next Terminator and another Transformers movie for that summer. Assuming they stick with summer releases, 2020 is the most likely target for the next Star Trek film, which would be four years after 2016’s Star Trek Beyond. A 2020 release could also preclude Tarantino as director as his next film is due in theaters in August 2019, which would create a significant overlap with any Trek film due the following summer.
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