While William Shatner will forever be the actor most associated with the role of Captain James T. Kirk in Star Trek, Chris Pine did an excellent job of filling Shatner's shoes as a younger Kirk in the 2009 Star Trek film. The Star Trek movie series has been on hiatus for a long time, but several filmmakers have shown interest in putting their own spin on a movie in the franchise. In an interview, Pine expressed interest in making the next Star Trek movie with Quentin Tarantino.
"You know, I haven't [read a script]. I really, in terms of the Star Trek of it all, I wish I knew anything. I'm quite literally one of the last people ever to find out. So, I haven't read that script, I don't know where it is in development, I haven't read the Noah Hawley script, I have no idea what's happening in Star Trek land. But I love the character, I love the universe, I love my friends in it, you know, to have a Quentin take on it would be tremendously interesting and entertaining. You know, look, whatever happens, if I come back or not, it's a great universe, it deserves to have a future, and I hope that is the case."
There are many memorable characters associated with Star Trek, but the lead duo of Kirk and Spock have come to define the franchise for most fans. The Revenent screenwriter Mark L. Smith was chosen to help develop Tarantino's Star Trek script when the project was still in the works. Smith has confirmed during an interview that Tarantino's intention had been to allow Kirk to take center stage in the narrative.
"I love Picard. And Kirk is always just so fun. Tarantino and I had so much fun with him, because Kirk is just William Shatner, y'know? It's like: you're not sure who is who, so you can kinda lean into that! Because you watch Chris Pine and he's playing Kirk, but he's also playing William Shatner a touch."
Unfortunately, a film that showcases Tarantino's take on Star Trek does not seem to be getting made any time soon, as the franchise expands in other directions. If the project was to ever get restarted, Quentin Tarantino would surely be happy to have the chance to work with Pine in the role of Kirk, since the filmmaker has expressed his love for the actor freely in the past.
"I think one of the things that's exciting about [2010's Unstoppable] is I am a huge Chris Pine fan," said Tarantino. "Now, to me, of the actors of his age, he's hands down my favorite - of that group, of that era, of those guys. Hands down, my favorite. When I saw him in the 'Star Trek' movie as Captain Kirk I thought he was making this movie. I mean I'm all aboard. And then it was so exciting to see him in 'Unstoppable' to get the Tony Scott treatment. He needed that to make him a movie star in my eyes. He's filmed like a movie star and he looks it. He soaks in those colors, that lighting, those costumes. He completely holds his own against Denzel [Washington]. That's what he needed to make himself a movie star."