J.J. Abrams, the director behind the 2009 Star Trek reboot, says Romulan antagonist Nero, portrayed by Eric Bana, fell short of his potential. In hindsight, the filmmaker feels like Nero came across as a stylized caricature rather than a deeply angered individual. Abrams made the revelation in the oral history book The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years: From The Next Generation to J. J. Abrams.
Needed More Character Development
In an excerpt via Slash Film, Abrams expressed his regret, stating that he wished he had given Eric Bana more to work with regarding character development. “Our first Star Trek movie was, if anything, an exercise in perfection of casting,” he said. “April Webster and Alyssa Weisberg helped us find the absolutely perfect actors.””I’m proud of its telling and humor, but of course only see what’s wrong with it. Among other things, I wish we had given Eric Bana a bit more to do other than be full of rage, given that he is such a fine actor,” Abrams continued about 2009’s Star Trek. Instead, Nero’s lines were mostly clichés reminiscent of old action movies.
Eric Bana Doesn’t Regret Taking The Role
This included lines like “I want Spock dead now!” and “I would rather die in agony than accept assistance from you!” Despite the character’s profound anger over the destruction of his planet, Eric Bana’s portrayal offers little beyond unbridled fury. Interestingly, Bana harbors no regrets about his time on Star Trek. He viewed Nero as a character with understandable motivations and relatable qualities.
Challenging With Casting
Additionally, casting for the Star Trek reboot was a challenge for Abrams. The film was set in the early days of the USS Enterprise crew, requiring young actors to step into iconic roles while honoring the spirit of the original series. The ensemble cast, including Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, John Cho, Simon Pegg, and Anton Yelchin, did a great job of reinventing the beloved characters.
Who Is Nero?
Eric Bana, known for his ability to create a brash and gruff demeanor, seemed like an excellent choice to embody the villainous Romulan Nero. Abrams’ Star Trek movie features an alternate timeline known as the Kelvin Timeline and was the eleventh film in the franchise. The story revolves around James T. Kirk and Spock, exploring their backgrounds and time at Starfleet Academy.The plot also involves a time-traveling Romulan named Nero (Eric Bana), who seeks revenge against Spock (Zachary Quinto) for the destruction of his home world, Romulus. Star Trek received positive reviews from critics and audiences, who praised its fresh take on the classic characters, engaging storyline, and impressive visual effects.
The Kelvin Timeline
The film successfully introduced Star Trek to a new generation of viewers while appealing to longtime fans. The success of the 2009 movie led to the creation of two sequels, Star Trek Into Darkness in 2013 and Star Trek Beyond in 2016, both of which continued the story in the Kelvin Timeline. The film also reinvigorated interest in the franchise, contributing to its popularity in other media.
Eric Bana After Star Trek
After portraying Nero in the 2009 Star Trek film, Eric Bana continued to diversify his career with roles in various genres. He starred opposite Rachel McAdams in The Time Traveler’s Wife and showcased his comedic talent in Judd Apatow’s Funny People. His versatility was evident in films like Hanna, where he played a former CIA Operative, and legal thriller, Closed Circuit.Eric Bana contributed to the war film Lone Survivor in 2013, and the 2014 supernatural horror Deliver Us from Evil. His upcoming projects include Berlin Nobody, written and directed by Jordan Scott. Bana will reprise his role as Aaron Falk in Force of Nature: The Dry 2 from director Robert Connolly.