Many Star Trek fans noticed something of a tonal shift in the rebooted film series from Star Trek Into Darkness to Star Trek Beyond. It turns out, they may be able to thank themselves for that movement.
Simon Pegg co-wrote Star Trek Beyond and plays Montgomery Scott in the Kelvin timeline of Star Trek movies. Speaking to JoBlo, Pegg admits that he and writing partner Doug Jung listened to how fans felt about Star Trek Into Darkness, felt they had a point, and set about making things right.
“The thing with Beyond, I think the time is sort of born that out in terms of its popularity and the constant feedback I get from the Star Trek community, which seems very grateful, and that's who we... 'Cause I felt they were done a slight disservice, maybe, with Into Darkness, 'cause it was quite... It was divisive, I think.”
“Divisive” is certainly one word to describe it. While critics and general audiences liked the film just fine based on the Rotten Tomatoes score, but Star Trek fans were turned off by its reinterpretation of the events of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan for the Kelvin timeline, which many felt was either too obvious or too clever for its own good.
“And so Doug and I tried to sort of pull it back to almost a giant episode was our agreement that we came up with,” Pegg said.
Star Trek Beyond definitely had a more high adventure feel than Star Trek Into Darkness with little in terms of references to past Star Trek stories.
While Star Trek Beyond didn’t perform as well as Paramount Pictures may have liked, the studio is finally pushing ahead with Star Trek 4 with SJ Clarkson directing.
“[T]here's so much more to do with those characters,” Pegg said. “I'm very excited about SJ Clarkson being hired. JJ emailed us about that just before it was announced. Everybody was so excited. I think Zach [Quinto]’s actually worked with her. I've seen
Pegg previously clarified that he and Jung are not writing the script for Star Trek 4.
"Doug [Jung] and I were never going to write the fourth [Star Trek]," Pegg said in a previous interview. "That was never the deal. Doug and I are doing something together at Bad Robot, which I probably can't talk about just yet. So, [J.D.] Payne and [Patrick] McKay, who wrote the abortive third [Star Trek] script with the previous director [Roberto Orci], they are writing a fourth one. That as far as I knew was the kind of [Chris] Hemsworth thing. That is as much as I know.”
The first three Kelvin timeline Star Trek movies - Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness, and Star Trek Beyond - are all available now on home media. Star Trek 4 still does not have a production start or release date.