"The truth is that my focus has been so much on finishing 'Super 8.'"
That's essentially been J.J. Abrams stock answer to any and all who ask about the status of "Star Trek 2," the follow-up to the franchise he rebooted to critical acclaim and big box-office bucks in 2009. While Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman and Damon Lindelof had been hired to script the sequel, the project wouldn't be able to kick into high gear until Abrams wrapped up "Super 8."
Now, though, we've reached that point, as Abrams himself told us on Tuesday (June 15) to chat about the $35.5 million "Super 8" opening. And while he's working closely with Orci, Lindelof and Kutzman on the story, he admitted "Trek 2" might end up missing the June 29, 2012 release date that Paramount Pictures announced last year.
"I would say it's not an impossibility to do it, but the studio agrees the most important thing is that the movie be good," Abrams told us. "No one wants to make something that makes its date but isn't necessarily worth your time. I want to make sure that whatever we do and whenever it comes out that it's something that people will have a great time watching."
A key component of that enjoyment factor will be the film's central villain. For 2009's "Trek," Abrams & Co. created a new baddie to face off against James T. Kirk and his pals. This time around, the filmmakers are considering both established villains and new faces. "We've been discussing everything," he said. "The most important thing is how do we do something that we get excited about and that is worthy of the audience."
Of course, at this point Abrams hasn't officially signed on to helm the sequel. While he doesn't want to see anyone else plop into the director's chair, he's holding off on a decision. "Without even knowing what the story is, part of me feels jealous of anyone else who gets to work with those actors—such an amazing group of actors," he said. "But I also want to make sure I know what it is I'm being asked to direct before I do it. We're working on the story and getting there. I'm very excited about what they've come up with so far."
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