The next film in the Star Trek franchise, Star Trek 4, has been something of a long journey. The film, which would be the 14th in the overall franchise and the fourth in the reboot series, has been in development in one iteration or another since 2015 and while it seemed like we might be getting close to the film becoming reality when it was set for a December 2023 release date, Paramount removed the film from its release schedule earlier this year. But well before this point there were scrapped scripts and other ideas for Star Trek 4, including one that would have seen Chris Hemsworth return as George Kirk. Hemsworth ultimately dropped out of that project and now, he's opening up about why that version of things didn't work out.
In an appearance on the Happy Sad Confused podcast (via TrekMovie.com), Hemsworth explained that there were a few reasons why things didn't work out.
"It wasn't what I sort of where I was thinking it would have been or could have been," Hemsworth said. "I thought there would be, 'Okay, cool, let's figure that out and keep going.' And then I think everyone got busy and so on."
The scrapped script, written by The Rings of Power showrunners J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay, would have seen Captain James T. Kirk (Chris Pine) come face to face with his father (played by Hemsworth) through time travel. However, Hemsworth said that he's not sure it would work out so well now, 15 years after he first played George.
"It would be weird now to flash back to your father and 'why is he so much older than the first time when he died?'" Hemsworth said.
Where do plans for Star Trek 4 currently stand?
As of right now, Star Trek 4 is on hold for the foreseeable future. Paramount removed the film from its release calendar back in September and, prior to that, the film had lost its director. WandaVision director Matt Shakman was originally tapped to helm the project, but he later left to direct Fantastic Four for Marvel Studios.
"Matt Shakman is an incredibly talented filmmaker, and we regret the timing didn't align for him to direct our upcoming Star Trek film," Paramount Pictures said in a statement after Shakman's departure. "We are grateful for his many contributions, are excited about the creative vision of this next chapter and look forward to bringing it to audiences all around world."
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