A few days ago Paramount dropped a ton of news about upcoming shows and movies during an investor meeting, including the fact that the entire cast of its Star Trek reboot movie franchise was in talks with the studio to return for a fourth film. Well, that news came as a surprise to the actors and their agents according to THR. Its sources say that few, if any, of the regular cast knew an announcement was coming.
The main cast of the films — Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Simon Pegg, Karl Urban, Zoe Saldaña, John Cho — were all touted as in the process of coming on board for the fourth film, which would start shooting this year to meet a December 22, 2023, release date. J.J. Abrams said at the event, “We are thrilled to say that we are hard at work on a new Star Trek film that will be shooting by the end of the year that will be featuring our original cast.” It turns out the studio may have just been juicing up investors as apparently none of the actors were actually in advanced talks.
Early talks have reportedly begun with Chris Pine since Kirk is at the core of everything. Otherwise, none of the Star Trek reboot movie franchise actors knew that a fourth Star Trek announcement was coming, knew that they’d be part of that announcement, or knew that they’d be shooting a major motion picture before the end of the year. While that doesn’t exclude them from actually doing it, scheduling a cast like this with a bunch of very busy actors is difficult to say the least. Paramount boldly proclaiming it’s happening is pretty arrogant, and it could cost it in the end.
By announcing the cast as pretty much confirmed, Paramount has given up a ton of leverage in bargaining. The actors can push for higher pay because of this, and the film’s budget could really balloon. Paramount rolled the dice, though, because getting Star Trek going on the big screen is a huge deal for them. The franchise is the main reason that CBS All Access even survived long enough to become Paramount+, and the studio sees it as a tentpole for it, despite diminishing returns from the third film, Star Trek Beyond. They’ve been struggling so long to get the movie off the ground that they probably just wanted to make a big splash to see if that can actually do it.