While there has always been a friendly rivalry between Star Wars fans and Star Trek fans, the two science fiction franchises will become indirect cousins when Star Trek Into Darkness director J.J. Abrams brings Star Wars: Episode VII to a new generation of eager movie-goers and science fiction fans. In 2009, Abrams made a very Star Wars-like film with his Star Trek reboot, so it seems absolutely fitting that he’d get a chance to sit in the director’s chair for an actual Star Wars film with Episode VII. But his involvement isn’t the first indirect crossover or influence between the two titanic genre franchises.
Aside from both being science fiction and sharing the word “Star” in their titles, Star Wars creator George Lucas feels that both franchises are closely related. As reported in Hero Complex, the documentary Trek Nation, which was released on DVD yesterday, includes George Lucas talking about why Star Wars “stood on the shoulders” of Star Trek when it was first released in 1977. Lucas contends that Star Trek played a very important role in his space opera, and why the film was ultimately successful with general audiences around the world. Lucas says: