'Star Trek XI' Not Just A Rehash Says AbramsBy T'Bonz
September 3, 2008 - 7:30 PM
While acknowledging Star Trek's past, Star Trek XI will not quite be what one would expect, according to Star Trek XI Director J.J. Abrams.
As reported by A.V. Club, while promoting his new show Fringe, due out in a week, J.J. Abrams had a bit to say about Star Trek XI and why he got involved with Star Trek. "Well, I was never the type of 'Star Trek' fan that had expectations or limits about what the 'right' version of a 'Star Trek' movie should be. But at the same time, one of the reasons I got involved with 'Star Trek' was because it has such devoted fans, so I felt it was critical to honor them and honor the series. I learned as much as I could about the show, and looked for help from Bob Orci, one of the creators of 'Fringe,' who was also one of the writers of Trek, and an avowed Trekker. He knows all the arcane details, so he was the one kind of keeping me honest on the set."
Although Abrams is aware of the devoted fans, Star Trek XI is not aimed solely at them. "Ultimately, though, I wasn't making this movie just for the dedicated fans. I was making the movie for fans of movies. The final product, I think, doesn't require any prior knowledge of the show 'Star Trek.' I mean, almost anyone, if you stopped them on the street and asked who Kirk and Spock are, they'd know. I think people will typically have some sense of those two guys. And then there are fans who know every episode and argue about what the 'Star Trek' canon is. This movie does acknowledge a world that has pre-existed off the screen for decades, but when you see it, it's not going to be quite what you'd expect, and definitely not just a rehash of things you've seen before. It's a very new take on the thing that it's also beholden to. It's a very interesting balance."
Abrams is also aware of the presence of Internet fans, as reported by Buddy TV. Abrams finds what is written online to be useful to him. "Yeah, I'm beholden to the audience, and the Internet is a great way to get a sense of what people hate and what they love and what they want more of or less of. It doesn't mean you follow it all the time, but if something resonates, you can't deny it. It's not a bad tool to have in your toolbox."
Although Abrams has become well-known to science fiction fans for his work on various science fiction projects, he is actually more drawn to the unusual story than to one that is strictly science fiction. "Doing 'Star Trek,' that really is science fiction. On 'Lost,' you can kind of argue it was a science fiction show, but we weren't open about that at the beginning. And then 'Alias' had a sci-fi bent from the beginning. 'Star Trek' is 'Star Trek,' you know what I mean? I don't regard the genre as much as I like stories that are often just a little bit off-center or weirder. That usually means some version of science fiction."