Here's what Tarantino's 'Star Trek' movie could be based on

Hanna Flint
·Contributor
Chris Pine and Zoe Saldana shine in ‘Star Trek Beyond,’ a worthy chapter of the iconic sci-fi franchise
Chris Pine and Zoe Saldana shine in ‘Star Trek Beyond,’ a worthy chapter of the iconic sci-fi franchise

Quentin Tarantino has only made one movie that isn’t based on his own original material (Jackie Brown) but that could soon change with the news that he’s pitched a Star Trek film to JJ Abrams.

According to Deadline, the celebrated director took the idea to Paramount after raising it with Abrams, who is currently working on Star Wars: Episode IX, and the plan is to bring together a team of writers to bring it to life.

No one really knows yet what the idea Tarantino has for a new Star Trek movie, but he shared a few thoughts in the past while chatting on the Nerdist podcast, where he suggested a couple of episodes could be given the feature length treatment.

“You could take some of the classic Star Trek episodes and easily expand them to 90 minutes or more, and really do some amazing amazing stuff.,” he said in 2015. “The obvious one would be ‘City on the Edge of Forever’ but everyone goes to that, and there’s a reason everyone goes to that. It’s one of the great stories, one of the great time travel stories.”

City on the Edge of Forever

Joan Collins, Leonard Nimoy, and William Shatner in <i>Star Trek: The Original Series</i> episode <i>‘The City on the Edge of Forever’</i> (CBS)
Joan Collins, Leonard Nimoy, and William Shatner in Star Trek: The Original Series episode ‘The City on the Edge of Forever’ (CBS)

City on the Edge of Forever’ was the penultimate episode of the original Star Trek’s first season, starring William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy. It followed Captain Kirk and Spock’s journey back in time to Depression-era New York to correct the changes made by Doctor Leonard McCoy (DeForest Kelley) during his own time travel trip. However, Kirk is faced with a tough dilemma; after falling in love with Edith Keeler (Joan Collins) he must choose whether to let her die in order to save his future.

Time travel is clearly a favoured narrative concept for Tarantino as his second episode suggestion also follows a similar theme, though this time it appeared in season three of Star Trek: The Next Generation.

‘Yesterday’s Enterprise’

“One of the best episodes ever written was for Next Generation – and I like Generation – which is the one written by a fan [Yesterday’s Enterprise],” he explained. “They are responding to a distress call from an Enterprise ship that was protecting a Klingon ship that was being attacked by a bunch of Romulans.

Picard faces a dilemma in <i>Star Trek: The Next Generation</i> episode <i>‘Yesterday’s Enterprise’</i> (CBS)
Picard faces a dilemma in Star Trek: The Next Generation episode ‘Yesterday’s Enterprise’ (CBS)

“I think that is one of the great space stories but the way it dealt with the mythology and that actually could bear a two hour treatment.”

At the time, Star Trek had an open submission policy for would-be writers to submit speculative-scripts for consideration. Trent Christopher Ganino’s interested the team and it ended up getting re-written by him and script coordinator Eric Stillwell as well as some of the show’s staff writers.

The story followed the Enterprise-D (captained by Sir Patrick Stewart’s Jean Luc Picard) as they came upon another ship from their fleet, Enterprise-C, which had been destroyed two decades earlier. The Enterprise-C had travelled through a temporal rift which caused significant changes to Enterprise-D’s timeline. They are forced to decide whether to allow the ship and its crew to survive or send them back through the rift towards their death in order to protect their own timeline.

Now Tarantino has said he is a fan of the first Star Trek film of the reboot series, which featured Chris Hemsworth as Kirk’s father. George Kirk died at the beginning of the 2009 film when he evacuated the crew, and his pregnant wife, to crash into the enemy Romulan ship.

If you swapped the Enterprise-C for the USS Kelvin it would certainly make for a heart-wrenching storyline that would see Chris Pine’s Kirk faced with the decision to save his father’s life or allow history to run its original course.

There’s already talk of Hemsworth returning for the fourth film in the franchise so ‘Yesterday’s Enterprise’ could become tomorrow’s ‘Star Trek’ movie.


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