Tuesday, January 26, 2010

'Star Trek 2' Will Focus on the Villain

With only a week to go before the Oscar nominations are announced, Star Trek seems less and less a candidate for one of the ten Best Picture slots. But there's still a good chance the film's script, by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, will be honored with a Best Adapted Screenplay nod. After all, the duo is nominated for a Writers Guild Award. But does it really matter what honors the first film receives? Aren't we all just looking forward to the future, interested about what the sequel will be like?

Yes, this is why we're ignoring the majority of what Orci and Kurtzman had to say at a WGA nominees screening of Star Trek last week in order to focus on what little tidbits of info they spilled about Star Trek 2 (or whatever it will be called). They don't seem to really know what the sequel will entail yet, so there wasn't much to divulge. Orci admitted they're still discussing whether or not the film should pick up directly after the first film or take place much later, for instance.

One thing that's for certain, however, is that it won't be a remake of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. Yet it will be similar to that much revered installment in that it will be concentrated on its villain. Check out the exact quote after the jump.

"I think sequels are very much about the villain," Kurtzman told their fellow screenwriters. "Because while [in the first one] the villain serves to bring the crew together, the second one I think has to be a true challenging of what that family is about. That is why Wrath of Khan was so amazing. Khan tested each one of them and ultimately asked for the ultimately sacrifice, and that is why that movie held up so well."

Kurtzman brought up Jeff Bridges' villain from the first Iron Man, recognizing that he wasn't of much significance because the movie was all about the superhero's origin. Of course, he could have said the same thing about Eric Bana's character in Star Trek given that viewers' biggest criticism with that film seemed to be its lack of a strong villain. Also, we have yet to see if Iron Man 2 will be more about Mickey Rourke's character than Tony Stark.

In any event, this theory on the writing of bad guys in franchises is interesting and promising for Star Trek 2. In addition to Wrath of Khan, I'm reminded of both The Dark Knight and Superman II in terms of sequels that are very much about their villains. But how many other sequels can you think of that went in this direction? I want to say the TV show Lost (which was created by Star Trek director J.J. Abrams) is almost relevant in the way it introduces the series' main villain in the second season, but that's a bit of a reach.

Star Trek 2 is already set to be released June 29, 2012.