OMG: J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek to be Influenced by Star Wars!

Ever since the new Star Trek movie was moved from Christmas 2008 to May 2009, we haven’t heard much about it outside of a few random comments from the Hollywood elite (ie. Kevin Smith) who were granted a top secret sneak peek. I guess that’s probably a good thing, since too much hype too early on can definitely hurt a movie. However, recently the writers of Star Trek, Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, have been making the P.R. rounds in order to help promote their new TV series Fringe and the movie Eagle Eye (which they worked as producers on). Lucky for us, they were also able to sit down with Wired to offer up a little bit of Trek talk. But be warned: what they have to say just might be enough to turn your world upside down!

Throughout the interview it’s clear that the duo are huge fans of Star Trek (Kurtzman may even have the same phone as Reed Farrington), but as for J.J. Abrams himself… not so much. Here’s where it gets a little bit iffy: Abrams actually prefers Star Wars to Star Trek! What’s more, they actually admit that they set out to bring a Star Wars feel to the Star Trek universe. Sacrilege! Here’s what Orci had to say about it:

“It’s controversial to even mention Star Wars and Star Trek in the same sentence, but Alex said, ‘We have to bring more Star Wars into Star Trek.’… Original Star Wars. I want to feel the space, I want to feel speed and I want to feel all the things that can become a little bit lost when Star Trek becomes very stately.”

Do they realize that they just alienated half of their target audience?! Okay, I’m only kidding (sort of). The whole point of this new movie is to re-invent the franchise, and maybe a little more swashbuckling action is just what Star Trek needs. On the flip side, however, Kurtzman goes on to point out that Star Trek space battles are more akin to submarine warfare, which is kind of cool in its own way. Personally I enjoy both Star Wars and Star Trek, and both for different reasons. Let’s just hope they don’t completely obliterate those differences. (At the very least, based on previous statements, we know this info will make Reed a happy camper.)

  • When he says bringing Star Wars into Star Trek, I think he should say, bringing in the fun and adventure of the original series back to Star Trek.

  • paul, I love the Original Series (OS), but even I have to admit that there wasn’t much fun and adventure in it. The OS had the occasional fun episodes like The Trouble with Tribbles and A Piece of the Action (gangster planet). But the humour was mainly forced throughout the OS, with Bones and Kirk needling Spock. The limited budget made it kind of hard to have much adventure. Adventure was limited to fist fights and chases on papier-mache planets.

    As for bringing Star Wars into Star Trek, Deep Space Nine (DS9) had the Defiant which maneuvred like the Millenium Falcon. DS9 had the Star Wars like space battles with the Empire-like Dominion, but dealt with the ramifications of war, something that the Star Wars movies do not deal with.

    I think Star Wars needs a little saving right now after the lacklustre performance of Clone Wars. They should have Darth Vader and the Empire discover the Star Trek universe through a tear in hyper/warp space in a Star Trek vs. Star Wars movie. And get Paul W.S. Anderson to direct!

  • Star Trek blows dead bears.

  • Hugo

    Do we really need another Star Trek? Beating another dead horse!

  • Star Trek is one of the few american entertainment inventions worth fighting for. If only they had gotten artists to create this new movie rather than the people who wrote Transformers, my heart and morals would be completely behind this. As it stands, all that I have heard seems like marketing, and the people behind this seem more concerned that they will get an audience, than they seem concerned that they will give the audience what it needs to get.

  • stevie_boy

    Totally agree with Reed Farrington. The various Star Trek series are so different in their own right that I find it hard to even lump them together into one doughy, homogenous mass that apparently “needs more Star Wars”

    Unfortunately with the recent (and awful) Enterprise series, Star Trek more than ever has the stereotype of being tame, boring and political. Unlike previous Trek movies, hardcore fans of the franchise are hopefully only going to make a minority of the audience. Simplifying, and adding more swashbuckling fun to 09 Star Trek can only be a good thing

  • I say let Abrams make Star Trek as Star Wars-ish as he wants. Star Wars doesn’t feel like Star Wars anymore, so some other property might as well capitalize on it.

  • Star Trek is not a dead horse! But if it was, it might blow a dead bear (in animal heaven). (Yeah, I know. Jay doesn’t think I’m funny either.)

    It took a Star Trek post from Sean to get Henrik commenting again.

    Star Trek is a commercial entity rather than an artistic endeavour nowadays. There was a time when you couldn’t make contemporary social comments on dramatic television without cloaking the story in the guise of science-fiction. (Battlestar Galactica clearly shows that it’s still possible to have artistic integrity in a science-fiction show, though.)

    Henrik, if Abrams and company were concerned only about getting an audience, then why didn’t they hire well-known movie stars for the primary roles? Or were they simply following the Hollywood mentality of hiring unknowns for the well-known primary roles established by other actors, and major stars for the new or lesser-known secondary roles?

    I wonder if J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek does poorly at the box-office, then how long will it take before someone tries again? Personally, I think it’s a mistake to try to broaden Star Trek’s appeal. Only a small percentage of the population will ever “get it.” Perhaps that’s an elitist thing to say, but it’s what I believe.

    (Man, I should save this material for my Treknobabble column. (Honestly, Henrik, that wasn’t an intentional plug to get an audience.))

  • “Star Wars doesn’t feel like Star Wars anymore, so some other property might as well capitalize on it.”

    Great comment, Rian!

  • Yes, we need another star trek. The trekies are again and it’s embarrassing seeing 50+ year old fogies dressed up like Klingons. Bring on the reboot for a new generation of young trekkies.

  • I think they didn’t hire totally well-known actors because most of the heavy-hitters would be too old and – much more importantly – too expensive.

  • Greg

    There’s a new Star Trek movie coming?

  • swarez

    The actors they chose for the roles are very well known actors but just not A-List movie stars.

    I’ve enjoyed the ST movies far more than the series, I loved First Contact and I truly love Star Trek The Movie, such a great fucking film.