This is not exactly the name that we expected to hear connected to the writing job on Star Trek 3, but it could be awesome. It is being reported that, now that Justin Lin has taken over as director, Simon Pegg will co-write the script with Doug Jung.
Though he’s most recognized for his efforts in front of the camera, Pegg has an impressive resume as a writer as well. His highest profile work is obviously with Edgar Wright on the Three Flavours trilogy—Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and The World’s End, though their collaboration goes all the way back to Spaced—but he also wrote Paul, Run, Fat Boy, Run, and many more. Deadline reports that Pegg, who already plays Scotty in the revamped franchise, steps into the role after Roberto Orci was ousted as his duties as writer and director in the wake of disagreements with Paramount over the direction of the film.
Jung is most known as the creator of the TNT cop series Dark Blue, though his writing credits also include Banshee on Cinemax and Confidence. He also wrote an unproduced script called Diamond for Bad Robot and Paramount, which, according to this report, is how he landed the Star Trek 3 job.
There’s still no word on what the story will look like, but with Pegg working on the script I think it’s safe to assume that Scotty has now taken over command of the Enterprise and her crew, and that the franchise has gone to drastically different places than we expected. Okay, probably not, but a guy can dream, can’t he?
One of the reasons given for the split between Orci, who was a key player in the previous films and was slated to make his directorial debut with Star Trek 3, and Paramount is because the studio saw the success of Guardians of the Galaxy and wanted the new film to look more like that. Orci wasn’t down, and the two sides split. While it’s unclear if it was mutual or not, it doesn’t sound like this was Orci’s first choice, but we don’t really know.
Now that Pegg is handling the scripting duties, at least in part, it’s easy to figure that there is going to be more of his trademark sarcastic sense of humor involved. While that’s not exactly Guardians style, it’s closer to that than the studio would have gotten with Orci in charge. Regardless of that, hopefully what we’ve heard about a potential plot still holds true and Star Trek 3 picks up with the crew far, far from Earth, in the middle of their five-year mission. For Star Trek movies, the first two spent way too much time on Earth for our liking.
Star Trek 3 is slated to start filming in Vancouver in April, and a July 8, 2016 release date has already been scheduled to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the franchise.
What do you think? Is Pegg the right man for the job, or do you wish they’d gone a different direction?