Ever since J.J. Abrams announced that he was taking the helm of Star Wars: Episode VII, the Wheel o’ Rumors has been spinning contiuously when it came to who would now direct the inevitable Star Trek 3. Maybe it would be G.I. Joe: Retaliation’s Jon Chu. Or maybe Attack the Block’s Joe Cornish? Say, maybe Brad Bird (The Incredibles) would fit the bill. Well, it turns out it’s none of them, and in fact it’s somebody we hadn’t even considered a serious contender until recently: frequent J.J. Abrams collaborator and nu-Trek co-screenwriter Roberto Orci. And Star Trek 3 will be his directorial debut, no less.
Variety reports that Paramount and Skydance Productions have slated Orci to direct Star Trek 3, which he was already co-writing with J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay (the latter two are also writing a Flash Gordon reboot). But not, it’s worth noting, with longtime writing partner Alex Kurtzman. Orci and Kurtzman, who had been working together since the syndicated days of Hercules and Xena, had risen to be one of the most successful partnerships in Hollywood, in terms of quantity if not quality. The pair helped launch not only the revived Star Trek franchise, but also the current incarnations of the Transformers and Spider-Man series as well. Kurtzman and Orci announced last month that they were amicably breaking up the band to work on separate projects.