It seems Simon Pegg has been on a bit of a controversial streak recently. Clearly, he thought he wasn't getting enough abuse from internet comment sections and wanted to kickstart the whole thing.
Earlier in the week, he released a bombshell by claiming the modern geek movement was bereft of real-world issues, resulting in a genre that had "infantized" large swaths of people. Now, he's claiming the upcoming Star Trek movie (currently tentatively titled Star Trek Beyond) could be less Star Trek-y than some might hope.
In an interview with The Radio Times, the Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz star explained why he was brought on to write the third edition of the rebooted franchise:
They had a script for Star Trek that wasn't really working for them. I think the studio was worried that it might have been a little too Star Trek-y.
The script he is referring to is most likely the one originally scribed by Roberto Orci, who was down to direct the project before Fast Five's Justin Lin was brought in. Why do they want a less Star Trek-y Star Trek? Well, it seems like Paramount think there's a lot more money to make out there. Pegg continued:
Avengers Assemble, which is a pretty nerdy, comic-book, supposedly niche thing, made $1.5 billion dollars. Star Trek: Into Darkness made half a billion, which is still brilliant. But it means that, according to the studio, there's still $1 billion worth of box office that don't go and see Star Trek. And they want to know why.
People don't see it being a fun, brightly coloured, Saturday night entertainment like the Avengers. [So they want to] make a western or a thriller or a heist movie, then populate that with Star Trek characters so it's more inclusive to an audience that might be a little bit reticent.
Of course, this is an incredibly cynical reason for choosing the creative direction of a film, but unfortunately, it is kind of how Hollywood blockbusters work. The more generic and 'accessible' you make a movie - the more money is is likely to make. Basically, make it into a generic action movie with some nice special effects, and the cash (including from foreign markets where the franchise's name has less pull) will come flooding in. Where does this leave the old school Star Trek fans? Well, probably a bit disappointed.
What's so interesting is that it seems Paramount thought Star Trek Into Darkness was already too 'Star Trek-y' and that's the reason it may not have reached The Avengers level of box office brilliance.
Personally, and I'm sure some Trekkie's will agree, I thought Star Trek Into Darkness wasn't Trek-y enough. Star Trek, and sci-fi in general, has the ability to address countless themes and topics, but Star Trek Into Darkness mostly seemed to involve people running around a spaceship and flipping various switches and MacGuffins with increasing intensity. Take out the Enterprise and the uniforms and it was hardly Star Trek at all.