Chris Pine and Co-Screenwriter Alex Kurtzman Discuss Captain Kirk's Growth in Star Trek 2
06.30.12 by Ryan
The drama People Like Us was released this weekend and is a semi-Star Trek reunion between actor Chris Pine and Alex Kurtzman, who co-wrote the Star Trek reboot and makes his directorial debut with People Like Us. While doing press rounds for the movie, Kurtzman and Pine had to face tons of questions about the upcoming Star Trek 2, including ones about the sequel's villain, played by British actor Benedict Cumberbatch (BBC's Sherlock, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy), who is still unidentified and rumored to be Khan, mostly by Star Trek ravenous fanbase.
In a few recent interviews, both Kurtzman and Pine were asked about the evolution of Captain Kirk, who was finally validated as the ship's leader in the 2009 reboot. As Kurtzman told THR, Kirk and the rest of his crew still won't be the "well-oiled machine" of the original incarnation.
They’re not — the crew from the original series had gone on many, many journeys, they were a well-oiled machine in terms of how they function, and these characters are still figuring out who they are and who they are to each other. And I did not want to jump so far ahead that we missed a really important emotional connection to that transition for them.
Jim Kirk, for example, inherits the Enterprise at the end of Star Trek but that doesn’t mean he fully understands what it means to be Captain. It just means, oh, he has the Enterprise now — so now what? He’s never sent men and women to their deaths before, so what’s going to happen when that kind of question comes up for him?
While Kurtzman wouldn't talk about the villain directly, we'll assume that it's Cumberbatch's villain that delivers that question to Pine's Kirk. To that end, Pine recently told MTV that it is the sequel's villain that forces Kirk to grow.
It is structured so that the antagonist brings out all of the qualities in Kirk that need to happen in order for Kirk to grow. As you know from Benedict, just watching him, vocally, he's fascinating. He's got this deep resonate voice. He's a fascinating face. He's a lovely guy and just very smart. You want to see something firing in his brain, so he's not just a blood-dripping-from-the-fangs kind of bad guy. Benedict brings those kinds of smarts.
Star Trek 2 was written by Kurtzman, Roberto Orci and Damon Lindelof and will be again directed by J.J. Abrams. Pine's Kirk will reunite with Spock (Zachary Quinto), Bones (Karl Urban) and the rest of Enterprise crew along with newcomers Peter Weller (Robocop, Dexter) and Alice Eve (She's Out of My League).