Love it or hate it, there’s no question that J.J. Abrams’ 2009 Star Trek put the venerable back in the limelight in a way it hadn’t been in the aftermath of Enterprise‘s 2005 finale. The new films have definitely got us all talking about Kirk, Spock, Dr. McCoy, and Sulu again, but could we someday see Abrams-ized versions of Picard, Riker, Data, and the rest?
In an interview with NBC 10 Philadelphia, former Riker Jonathan Frakes tossed out his thoughts about the Next Generation crew putting in an appearance in a future Star Trek movie. Although his idea would make sense, is the world ready for (new) Captain Kirk and (old) Captain Picard to appear on screen together again? Here’s Frakes:
I am very hopeful. I’m not sure where we would be – I happen to be a fan and a friend of J.J.’s and I think he’s rebooted the franchise in the most successful and wonderful way imaginable. And I’m really excited about the second movie. I think maybe some version of what they did with Leonard Nimoy in the first movie would be the way to go: they would pepper in one of us. I would imagine they’d start with Picard if they could. It would involve our usual time travel/quantum anomaly/black hole/some sci‑fi version of how we all get there.
How cool would that be? Obviously, the original Star Trek and The Next Generation take place in the same universe, so it could theoretically happen if time/dimensional travel is on the table for Abrams. This sort of thing has happened a number of times in the history, notably when the aforementioned Kirk and Picard joined forces in the first TNG film, 1994’s Generations.
One of the biggest surprises in Abrams’ first Star Trek film was the appearance of Leonard Nimoy as Spock. It was even more surprising that not only did he make an appearance with Zachary Quinto, he was actually a key part of the film’s narrative. It would be nice to see Shatner’s Kirk on screen with Chris Pine’s version, but that’s probably a pipe dream.