Quentin Tarantino Likes Star Trek More Than Star Wars Because William Shatner's in It

Quentin Tarantino’s 9th feature film, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, is hitting theaters next week, but the Internet is already abuzz over the director’s potential follow-up project: a Rated-R Star Trek film he’s dubbed “Pulp Fiction in space.” During a recent interview with Deadline, Tarantino talked about his love of Star Trek and explained why he prefers it to Star Wars. When it comes down to it, there’s one thing Trek has that Wars doesn’t: William Shatner.

“I’m a big fan of the show Star Trek. I really like it a lot, but my portal into that show is William Shatner," he explained. "I love William Shatner on Star Trek. I love his performance as James T. Kirk. That is my connection. That is my umbilical cord. It’s why I like Star Trek more than Star Wars, because William Shatner’s not in Star Wars. I think it’s one of the greatest performances in the history of episodic television, of a series lead, and rightly so, because very few series leads have ever gotten the opportunity to play all the different wild, crazy things. ‘The Enemy Within’ alone.”

The director added, “So that’s why I actually really was so taken with J.J. Abrams’ first reboot and how fantastic I thought Chris Pine channeled William Shatner. He didn’t go a serious actor-y way. He said, well no, I’m going to do my own thing. He’s playing the William Shatner version of Kirk and he’s doing a fantastic job at it. I mean perfect, frankly. And [Zachary] Quinto is perfect as Spock. Those two guys, they f***king got it.”

Tarantino also recently teased that the Star Trek film could be his last. Previously, the director said he would stop at 10 films, but many fans have wondered if Star Trek would count since it won't technically be a Tarantino original. The director addressed the question in a recent CinemaBlend interview:

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“I guess I do have a loophole, [if] the idea was to throw a loophole into it,” he shared. “Which would be [to go], ‘Uhhh, I guess Star Trek doesn't count. I can do Star Trek … but naturally, I would end on an original.’ But the idea of doing 10 isn't to come up with a loophole. I actually think, if I was going to do Star Trek, I should commit to it. It's my last movie. There should be nothing left-handed about it. I don't know if I'm going to do that, but that might happen.”

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood hits theaters on July 26th.