Abrams On Connections & Differences With Other 'Trek'

By T'Bonz
December 16, 2008 - 8:59 PM

Following the recent news that Majel Barrett will be reprising her role as the computer voice for the new Trek film, director J.J. Abrams said this week that such guest appearances aren't simply meaningless cameos.

"I think what you'll see is there are -- both story-wise and performance-wise, visually and aurally -- many connections to what is familiar and what has come before," Abrams told MTV. "Which for the new fans of Star Trek, the newcomers to the world, will be irrelevant. But for those people who are fans and who hope for or expect certain familiar nods, they will undoubtedly get those."

Fans needing more confirmation that the new film is strongly connected to the rest of the Trek franchise need only pick up the upcoming Star Trek: Countdown comic series, which will not only feature the characters from Star Trek XI, but also TNG characters such as Picard and Data. "I think you just have to see that the key is this world, this universe, is not disconnected from whatís come before," Abrams told MTV in a separate interview about the comics.

Abrams also discussed the ways in which the new film will be different to previous Trek movies. "There's a level of relevance that I think is really because of the actors playing the part. I didn't want to just re-create or reset everything, I thought going back to those characters was important. [In previous films] when we met those characters, we met them pre-established. They'd already been working together, they already knew each other. They had this history. And for some reason, the origin of those relationships of those characters was something that probably would have helped me, at least, connect to them and understand why I should care about them and who they were."

"So on those fundamental levels, none of the movies have had that before. But on a much more practical level, Star Trek has never had the opportunity, nor the resources, to be realized in this way. Things like the ships and the battles and the planets and the chases and the action sequences ... and do them in a way that felt thrilling and terrifying and entertaining in a way that the show and the prior movies simply couldn't afford to do. I feel we were able to bring to life, in a way we've never seen before, what it is to be a member of Starfleet. And that's kind of cool."

For more from Abrams, check out the full interview at MTV.

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