Why do we love real-life friendships among filmmakers? From the Oscars fascination with Michelle Williams and Busy Phillips to this past week’s love-fest from the cast of Buffy the Vampire Slayer on the show’s 20th anniversary, there’s something about these friendships that make their projects more endearing. And for the past decade-plus, no two people have quite demonstrated that bond quite like Nick Frost and Simon Pegg. Whether it’s their Cornetto Trilogy (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, At World’s End) or their side projects (Paul), Frost and Pegg’s bond has made great movies somehow just a little bit better.
In the midst of a dreary summer for blockbusters, Star Trek Beyond was a light in the darkness, returning the rebooted franchise to the fun, funny, and exciting roots of its 2009 predecessor. But even a cast as professional and talented as this one made plenty of mistakes, the best of which are preserved forever in the newly released Star Trek Beyond blooper reel.
Star Trek Beyond was one of the highlights of 2016’s slow summer blockbuster season, providing us all with a healthy dose of going boldly just in time for the original show’s 50th anniversary. But before all the action-packed mayhem that takes up most of the second half of the film, Beyond has a few quieter moments that show the crew of the Enterprise in more personal moments.
The entire marketing campaign and dialogue around Star Trek Into Darkness — not to mention most of the runtime of the actual movie — was about the mysterious identity of its villain. Who was this guy Benedict Cumberbatch is playing? Was he an old character from an earlier movie? Could he be Khan? Oh, no, he’s “John Harrison.” Wait, who the hell is John Harrison? Why all the secrecy around a nobody named John Harrison? Are we sure he’s not Khan? No, J.J. Abrams insisted he wasn’t Khan and he wouldn’t straight-up lie to our whoops no never mind he straight-up lied, he’s Khan.
It’s been a while since the crew of the Starship Enterprise visited a strange new world in search of new life and civilizations. The Star Trek of television was full of strange new worlds; the Enterprise seemed to discover one every single week. The Trek movies, so focused on special effects, violence, and intricate revenge plots, have frequently strayed from Trek’s original mission. And while there’s plenty of action and excitement in Star Trek Beyond, there’s also a clear attempt to return this series to its core principles: Exploration, diplomacy, teamwork, and the hope for a better tomorrow. After the missteps of the punishingly bleak and the unfortunately rehashy Star Trek Into Darkness, it’s a necessary and welcome course correction; a Star Trek back into the light.
This week brought some great news for the future of diversity in Hollywood. John Cho announced his ‘Star Trek Beyond’ character, Hikaru Sulu, would be revealed as gay in the upcoming movie. But sadly not everyone was thrilled about it.
Ready Player One was always meant to be a movie. With a plot that centers on millenial nostalgia for early ’90s video games, movies, and television shows, and a thoroughly likable group of characters, Ready Player One has been on many science-fiction fans’ most anticipated movie list since the movie rights were optioned. And on Friday, screenwriter Zak Penn posted on Twitter that production on the Steven Spielberg-led film adaptation had finally begun.
It is interesting that, given a reboot could theoretically go off in any direction it chooses, that the relaunched Star Trek has begun to repeat events from the first Star Trek movie series. Star Trek Into Darkness was essentially a revisitation of The Wrath of Khan; the movie not only reintroduced the title character, it also flip-flopped the famous end of Wrath of Khan where Spock dies saving the Enterprise. (This time around it was Captain Kirk who made the ultimate sacrifice ... for about 8 minutes, and then he got better.) Certainly the circumstances of the film are very different, but Star Trek Beyond shares one crucial ingredient with Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, namely the destruction of the Starship Enterprise, and the shipwrecking of its crew on a distant alien planet.
Following last weekend’s debut of that great new trailer for Star Trek Beyond, Paramount has released a whole bunch of official stills from the upcoming sequel. The images offer new looks at Sofia Boutella’s alien character, along with Chris Pine’s Captain Kirk, Zachary Quinto’s Spock and Simon Pegg’s Scotty (and that little rascal Keenser) — speaking of which, Pegg has also offered some details on that mysterious space station you may have spotted in the most recent trailer.
Austin Powers director Jay Roach recently said that he’s still discussing ideas for another sequel with Mike Myers, who hasn’t appeared in a live-action film since 2009’s Inglourious Basterds. Perhaps coincidentally, today brings word that Myers is returning to the big screen for Terminal, a new thriller starring Simon Pegg and Margot Robbie.