In the last week, screenwriter Lindsey Beer has been talking about her work on the latest Paramount Pictures Kelvin timeline follow-up to Star Trek Beyond but it turns out that isn’t the only Star Trek feature film she has worked on in the last few years. She’s now revealing some details of what it was like working with Quentin Tarantino on his proposed (and now defunct) R-rated Star Trek movie.
Inside Tarantino’s Trek writer’s room
In late 2017 Quentin Tarantino pitched an idea for a Star Trek movie to producer J.J. Abrams and Paramount jumped at the opportunity to work with the Oscar-winning writer/director. The film would have been R-rated and separate from Paramount’s planned “Star Trek 4” followup to Star Trek Beyond (which at that time was still the version that had Chris Hemsworth returning as George Kirk). In a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter, screenwriter Lindsey Beer reveals what it was like in Tarantino’s Trek writers room:
We got in there and he started with, “So what are your guys’ ideas for a movie?” and I think I went first. So he listened to us patiently and just kind of nodded his head, and then he took out his notebook and started talking for 20 minutes with lines of dialogue and passionate ideas that he’d already written. It wasn’t really a story yet; they were just random thoughts he had on a movie, but it was so passionate and so wonderful. And I laughed to myself and thought, “Well, why didn’t we start with that?”
Mark L. Smith (The Revenant) was eventually tapped as screenwriter. In the summer of 2019 Tarantino said Smith delivered a “cool” script, describing it as “Pulp Fiction in space.” However, by the end of the year, Tarantino said he was “steering away” from the project, which eventually fizzled out without the auteur’s direct involvement. Smith later revealed the film would include James T. Kirk as well as other familiar characters, and it would involve “gangsters.”
As for Lindsey Beer, she got some high praise from Tarantino for being “really good” in that writers’ room, and the experience actually led to her involvement in what is the latest Star Trek 4 project. Beer tells THR:
So that room was also the beginning of a very strong relationship with Bad Robot, and I’ve been brought in a few times on different iterations of Trek, most recently on Star Trek 4.
It’s curious that Beer mentions how she was brought in to work on multiple iterations of Trek, so it seems possible she may have also been involved in the Noah Hawley Star Trek project which was shelved in 2020. Beer was first revealed to be involved with the latest Star Trek 4 project in 2021 when Matt Shakman was tapped to direct. She later left to write and direct the new Paramount+ movie Pet Semetary: Bloodlines. Other screenwriters have been brought in since to work on subsequent drafts based on an idea that came from J.J. Abrams. Paramount is reportedly interested in fine-tuning the latest draft to get Star Trek 4 into pre-production soon.
Find more news and analysis on upcoming Star Trek feature films.