You don’t normally associate NBC’s sitcom Parks and Recreation with science fiction. Sure, Adam Scott’s character Ben Wyatt is a total geek and has been known to expound on Star Wars, Star Trek, various comic book titles, and more, but outside of that, it’s pretty well rooted in the real world. You know, as much as any show on TV can be. As based in reality as it is, that’s not to say the gang from Pawnee, Indiana doesn’t have an eye on the future, and moving into their final season, they jump a few years beyond where we are now. And as you can see in this latest promo for the farewell season, it is a strange world indeed. We’ve also got a fun Parks and Recreation/Star Trek mash up if you’re interested in such a thing.
Yesterday we heard that there are five names on Paramount’s shortlist of directors they would like to take over the helm on Star Trek 3 now that Roberto Orci has been ousted. There are plusses and minuses to all of them, but now the motivation for the split between the studio and would-be first time director is coming into focus. A big part of the reason appears to be that Orci’s vision for the film didn’t jive with the shifting ideas the studio has about the picture, as they saw how successful Marvel was with Guardians of the Galaxy and want the next Trek adventure to be more like that.
Don’t get us wrong, we loved Guardians of the Galaxy, and it’s definitely the best attempt to make a Star Wars movie since Return of the Jedi, but it’s hard to imagine that aesthetic translating well to Star Trek. There’s plenty of action, but it’s not necessarily of the swashbuckling, serial-influenced sort, and while there’s humor in Trek, the sarcastic, smart ass silliness of Guardians would be really out of place (though Star-Lord does at times feel like a send up of Captain Kirk). And apparently Orci felt the same way.
It was an extremely controversial decision when Paramount gave Roberto Orci the director’s chair for the upcoming Star Trek 3. But it was nevertheless a genuine shock when the news broke recently that Orci would no longer be helming the sequel. With Orci sidelined, who would take up the baton to get the next Trek sequel across the finish line, ideally in time for a 2016 release timed to the franchise’s 50th anniversary? Apparently Paramount’s shortlist is now down to five potential directors: Rupert Wyatt, Morten Tyldum, Daniel Espinosa, Justin Lin, and Duncan Jones.
The names come from Deadline, who report that Rupert Wyatt is currently Paramount’s top choice, and that they have already taken meetings with him about the possibility. This wouldn’t be the first time Wyatt got to play in a beloved science fiction sandbox — he directed 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes, a flick that surprised many by proving to be far better than anybody had reason to expect from an Apes resurrection at this point. It was followed up by this past summer’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, directed by Matt Reeves, and the revived franchise is set to continue in a third film in 2016. Wyatt is a solid choice, if not an inspired one, but nor would he likely be a controversial hire, which might work as an olive branch to lure back Trek fans riled up by J.J. Abrams’ brand of Trek.
With Roberto Orci recently vacating the director’s chair on Star Trek 3, it leaves a big opening in a valuable franchise, and we expect that there will be a number of high profile filmmakers vying for the job. We’ve heard a few names mentioned as possibilities, but one director, and Star Trek veteran, has thrown his hat into the ring and is going hard for the job. This individual is none other than Jonathan Frakes, better known to some of you as Commander William T. Riker from Star Trek: The Next Generation. That certainly would be keeping it in the family.
Talking to KOMO News in Seattle, Frakes said that not only has he already reached out to Paramount Pictures, the home of the rebooted franchise, via his agent. Beyond that, he has also personally contacted producer, and director of the first two installments, J.J. Abrams.
There’s been a lot of talk about Star Trek 3 lately, especially with Roberto Orci leaving the director’s chair on the third installment of the rebooted franchise. We’ve also heard rumors that the plot of the film may have involved time travel, or at least some kind of time travel device. 15 months after going dark on the internet, Orci briefly reappeared to shed some light on his exit, his continued involvement in the Trek series, and those reports about the story.
Back in September of 2013, Orci went onto the forums at TrekMovie and got into it with some fans over disparaging comments about Star Trek Into Darkness. He apologized, but shortly thereafter deleted his Twitter account and hasn’t been seen much, or at all, online since. However, that changed the other day when he hit up the same website to respond to some questions about his leaving.
Have you always wondered what it would look like if Doctor Who and Star Trek came together? If that’s the case, then today is your lucky day, sort of, in a weird, roundabout, totally unofficial way. Former Time Lord Colin Baker is going to have a guest appearance on the fan made Trek series Star Trek Continues. Even in this unusual manner, it’s hard not to get excited about the collision of two such long-lived, iconic sci-fi franchises.
A crowdfunded series, Continues is the brainchild of a group of likeminded Trek fanatics that seeks to give the characters from the original series a chance they never got when the show was prematurely cancelled. In their way, they carry on the Enterprise’s five-year mission to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man has gone before. And Baker is set to show up on the fourth episode of the series.