At the end of the press conference held today in Los Angeles for Star Trek Beyond, producer J.J. Abrams was asked about the possibility of a fourth film set in what is now called the Kelvin timeline. His response:
“Yes, and there’s something that hopefully we’re figurative minutes away from talking about. But the answer is 100 percent yes, and it’s incredibly exciting.”
Abrams’ answer seems to indicate that is confidence in the halls of Paramount about Star Trek Beyond’s box office chances, which of course will impact the development of a fourth movie. There has been speculation that Star Trek Beyond could be the end of this particular sequence, with the upcoming CBS TV show from Bryan Fuller keeping the Trek name in the public consciousness, but if Abrams is correct, there will be more big-screen Trek in addition to the new TV iteration.
Of course, a fourth film brings its own set of questions as well: will Justin Lin come back to direct? Will Simon Pegg and Doug Jung be asked to write again (let’s hope that’s a “yes,” based on this film)? And sadly, how will the filmmakers deal with recasting the role of Chekov in the aftermath of Anton Yelchin’s untimely passing?
Don’t expect an answer to any of those just yet, but if Abrams has anything to say about it, at least we know Star Trek 4 (or 14, if you prefer) will warp into theaters sometime in the next few years.
We’ll have more on Star Trek Beyond next week, including our interview with John Cho (Sulu). The movie opens on July 22.