Though it seemed like it was never going to happen when it was first announced, Quentin Tarantino’s Star Trek movie looks like it’s going somewhere as we’ve heard a lot about it lately. The filmmaker has stated repeatedly now that he’s committed to putting his own stamp on the classic sci-fi franchise and his latest word on the movie will be exciting for fans, as he’s confirmed that it’ll follow on from the continuity of recent films and take place in the Kelvin timeline.
At least, this is loosely the case. It’s not a surprise that the director doesn’t seem keen to rigidly stick to the canon established in the Chris Pine-led series that began with 2009’s reboot. When revealing this on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, Tarantino stressed that he doesn’t understand all the ins-and-outs of the timeline divergence and apparently has permission from J.J. Abrams to ignore it and do his own thing.
“Well, it’s an idea then we got together and talked it out and then we hired Mark Smith, who did [The] Revenant to write the script. I don’t know how much I can say. The one thing I can say is it would deal with the Chris Pine timeline. Now, I still don’t quite understand, and JJ [Abrams] can’t explain it to me, and my editor has tried to explain it to me and I still don’t get it…about something happened in the first movie that now kind of wiped the slate clean. I don’t buy that. I don’t like it. I don’t appreciate it. I don’t — f*** that…I want the whole series to have happened, it just hasn’t happened yet.
No, Benedict Cumberbatch or whatever his name is is not Khan, alright? Khan is Khan. And I told JJ, like, ‘I don’t understand this. I don’t like it.’ And then he was like, ‘Ignore it! Nobody likes it. I don’t understand it. Just do whatever you want. If you want it to happen the exact way it happens on the series it can.’”
If you’re wondering why his film will be set in the Kelvin timeline if he cares so little for the changes it makes to continuity, then Tarantino’s follow-up comments clarified that he does enjoy something about the new movies. Specifically, he’s a big fan of Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto’s performances as Kirk and Spock. In fact, it seems they’re what drew him to the franchise.
“The reason I was actually intrigued by the JJ Abrams version of it is because I thought Chris Pine did a fantastic job not just playing Capt. Kirk but playing William Shatner’s captain — he is William Shatner. He’s not just another guy, he’s William Shatner’s Capt. Kirk. And it’s literally, Zachary Quinto is literally Leonard Nimoy’s — because they both have the same scene together — he’s his Spock. They f******* nail it. They just nail it.”
We’d previously assumed that QT’s Star Trek would follow this continuity, as Quinto has voiced his interest in returning as Spock. Seeing as the director is such a fan of his, it sounds like he might get his wish. We’ve yet to see if Paramount can re-open negotiations with Pine, though, in order to get him back as Kirk. Maybe Tarantino will be able to swing it for him? Fingers crossed.