At one point, a Star Trek movie with Chris Pine and William Shatner playing separate versions of Captain James T. Kirk was a real possibility. After Leonard Nimoy reprised his role as Spock in 2009’s Star Trek reboot and its sequel Into Darkness, the fans were clamouring for Shatner to be handed a similar cameo in the next instalment, and the actor himself made no secret of his desire for this to happen.
Sadly, however, with the franchise’s immediate future on the big screen in limbo, the chances of a double Kirk offering featuring Pine and the man who made the role famous are looking slimmer by the day, but Shatner appears to have made his peace with that. Responding to a fan question on Twitter, the veteran actor admitted that such a project is unlikely to ever happen, and he was quick to assure Trekkies that he’s okay with it.
Probably not but I’m fine with that. https://t.co/SgeIpEqYMy
— William Shatner (@WilliamShatner) August 17, 2020
Although it would have been nice if they’d found a role for Shatner in 2016’s Star Trek Beyond, given that its launch coincided with the series’ 50th anniversary, it would have taken skilled writing to bring him back following his character’s death in Generations. Perhaps he could have played a Kirk from another timeline or a version that was resurrected using Borg technology, though?
In any case, Beyond‘s underperformance at the box office has cast doubt on whether we’ll even see Pine play Kirk again. Plans for a fourth entry in the rebooted series appear to be on hold, although talk of the long-mooted spinoff movie helmed by Quentin Tarantino seems to crop up from time to time.
No doubt there will be another Star Trek film at some point, regardless of whether Pine and co. reprise their roles, and the franchise is still going strong on the small screen, with Star Trek: Picard returning for another season and Star Trek: Discovery remaining popular. But for Shatner’s Kirk in the movies, Generations was likely the final frontier.