Last summer, in the days and weeks leading up to the release of Star Trek Beyond, the third installment of the theatrical reboot series, a fourth movie was announced, with quite the surprising twist. Just days before Star Trek Beyond hit theaters, Paramount Pictures confirmed that Star Trek 4 is happening, with Chris Hemsworth set to reprise his role from the 2009 Star Trek adventure as George Kirk, the father of James Tiberius Kirk (Chris Pine). Since George died just as James was being born, father and son never had the chance to meet, until now. While it still remains unclear as to how this will happen, Chris Hemsworth knows that it will be amazing.
The last update we had on Star Trek 4 was in early December, when writer/star Simon Pegg teased that he had already started writing the script with his partner Doug Jung, who co-wrote the script for last year's Star Trek Beyond. During the Golden Globes red carpet last night, MTV caught up with Chris Hemsworth, who revealed that he has spoken to producer J.J. Abrams and heard his pitch on the story. Here's what he had to say below.
"I've spoken to J.J. Abrams, and he has an amazing pitch on the whole thing."
Unfortunately, the actor couldn't reveal much more than that. When asked how this reunion between the late George Kirk and the living James T. Kirk would happen, the actor could only say, "I honestly don't know." Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto were previously confirmed to return as Kirk and Spock, and with Simon Pegg working on the script, he'll most certainly be back to play Scotty as well. The rest of the main cast, Zoe Saldana (Uhura), Karl Urban (Bones) and John Cho (Sulu) are also expected to return. This sequel will be missing one beloved cast member, though, who isn't expected to be re-cast.
Just a few weeks before Star Trek Beyond hit theaters, a tragic and freak accident occurred that took the life of Anton Yelchin, who played Chekov in 2009's Star Trek, 2013's Star Trek Into Darkness and last summer's Star Trek Beyond. Producer J.J. Abrams confirmed that the studio will not re-cast another actor to play Chekov, although the producers aren't sure how to explain Chekov's absence in the new movie. At the time, J.J. Abrams said it was still too early to determine how the character's absence will be explained, but now with Simon Pegg and Doug Jung working on the script, perhaps a decision has been made about how the franchise will bid farewell to this character.
It hasn't been confirmed who will direct Star Trek 4 quite yet, but it's possible that Star Trek Beyond filmmaker Justin Lin could in fact return to the helm. Star Trek Beyond was a hit with critics, earning an impressive 84% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, but it fell quite short of both its predecessors at the box office. Star Trek Beyond earned $158.8 million at the domestic box office, and $343.4 million worldwide, from a massive $185 million budget. While those numbers are certainly solid, they're down from Star Trek's $257.7 million domestic and $385.6 million worldwide total, and Star Trek Into Darkness' $228.7 million domestic total and $467.3 million worldwide total. Star Trek Beyond also debuted in the midst of the franchise's 50th Anniversary, which started with the original Star Trek TV series that debuted in 1966.