ByEleanor Tremeer, writer at
MP staff. I talk about Star Wars a lot. Sometimes I'm paid for it. More ramblings on Twitter @ExtraTremeerial
Eleanor Tremeer

Star Trek Beyond has still got 9 months to go until its release, but it's already shaping up to be a very interesting film. After J.J. Abrams and Roberto Orci left the franchise, many fans were pleased to hear that nerd god Simon Pegg was penning the new script. Justin Lin, director of [Fast & Furious 6](tag:37143) and Star Trek 3, has also stated his longtime love for the Star Trek shows, and both creators are excited to express their respect for Trek in Beyond.

The casting is also very exciting: we've got most of the main cast returning (still no word on Alice Eve's Carol Marcus though), as well as new characters portrayed by Sofia Boutella, Lydia Wilson, and of course Idris Elba. Elba is a fantastic addition to the cast, having wowed audiences as Heimdall in Thor and stolen the show as Stacker Pentecost in Pacific Rim. His appearance in the latest Omaze charity videos do imply he's going to have a big role in the plot, but what role will that be?

Kirk Has Finally Met His Match

Idris Elba's role was shrouded in mystery from the start, with many speculating that he would play a captain to rival Kirk. This was fed by the recent charity video which pitted Elba and Chris Pine against each other in a humorous parody of their celebrity status. Check it out!

"Not to blow the plot... I'm the new Captain Kirk. Did you not know that?"

Of course, this was just a joke, but playing the two actors off as rivals was a nice nod to the idea that the characters would be rivals in the film. This idea was debunked however, when Simon Pegg revealed that Elba would indeed play the villain of the piece... and he's NOT a Klingon. Pegg was quick to dispell the other rumours that had been circulating around Elba's role.

This comes as disappointing news to fans of the shows who had hoped to see one of Trek's most iconic alien races well represented in the new films. Casually thrown in as a cliche barbarous race by Abrams in Star Trek Into Darkness, the Klingons have yet to be explored properly by the reboot films. With a complex culture and tangled history with Starfleet, the Klingons are much loved among Trek fans.

Especially Worf: Trek's longest running character.
Especially Worf: Trek's longest running character.

After Abrams paid homage to the original film Wrath Of Khan, many people were wondering if Star Trek 3 would emulate another popular film, The Undiscovered Country, which saw the Federation and the Klingon Empire finally bash out a treaty that positioned the Klingons as tenuous allies. But this is part of the intricate political plots of the TV shows and original films, and the creators of Star Trek: Beyond have already stated they want to get back to the spirit of adventure and frontierism, as the next film will follow the crew of the Enterprise on their five year mission.

"It’s all new and fresh. The Klingons, Romulans and other species are great, but it’s time to go further. It has been fun to focus on creating whole new worlds and species."

So Idris Elba will play either a human or an as yet unseen alien, and considering the Enterprise is now going where no-one (no Earthling, really) has gone before, the odds are that he'll be an alien. And not a particularly friendly one at that...

Elba's Villainous Turn

Having mostly played good guys, it'll be great to see Elba get his teeth into a less straightforward, more nefarious character.

Will Elba's villain be unsettlingly charming?
Will Elba's villain be unsettlingly charming?

After Benedict Cumberbatch's creepy and cerebral Khan, hopefully Idris Elba will shake things up a bit and portray a charismatic and engaging villain. Simon Pegg has high hopes that the character will be a hit, and has assured fans that we won't get any repetition with Elba's antagonist.

"It’s a really interesting, complex character. What we don’t want to do is have the same kind of villain with the same motivation."

So what kind of villain will Idris Elba be? Considering Star Trek Beyond is looking to create new aliens and wholly original characters, it's difficult to speculate about who Elba will portray. But here's our top pics for Beyond's antagonist...

  • Space Pirate Captain: this way, we'd get a new alien race, as well as a nice counter to Starfleet's squeaky clean explorers. Charismatic and roguish, Elba's brigand Captain could still act as a rival to Kirk, earning the Enterprise crew's trust before betraying them. Sofia Boutella's enigmatic alien has already hinted that the crew will be working with some other explorers, and a collaboration-turned-sour plot is always fun (heist movie, anyone?)

  • Suave, James Bond-style villain: Idris Elba has long been a contender for the next 007, so let's see him crack out that smooth style in Star Trek 3! And thanks to the 20s-esque mobster planet in the TOS episode A Piece Of The Action, we already have a setting that emulates early Bond movies...

  • Imposing and Godlike: there are plenty of incredibly powerful beings in the Trek universe, and they often love to play havoc with the Enterprise's missions. Thanks to Thor, we know that Idris Elba has that godly persona down, and it would be great for the crew to face a being with an ego even bigger than Kirk's! (Imagine Kirk vs Q... Now this I would love to see.)

Whatever character Elba ends up playing, there's no doubt he'll do a fantastic job. So do you have a favoured villain from TOS or the other Trek shows that you'd love to see Elba play? Let us know in the comments, or write your own post!


Should there be more Trek films after Beyond?


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