Quentin Tarantino has been talking retirement recently, stating his intention to retire (from directing) at ten feature films. He has a project—relocated at Sony after splitting from his long-time producer, Harvey Weinstein, for obvious reasons—currently slated for 2019 that may or may not be about Charles Manson. That would be his ninth feature film, which leaves just one more movie before his supposed retirement. Which could be a Star Trek movie?
According to Deadline, QT pitched an idea to JJ Abrams, who has passed on instructions to set up a writer’s room to work out Tarantino’s pitch. Ideally, there is a viable project and Tarantino would direct with Abrams producing for Paramount, current managers of the Trek IP. This sounds nuts, but Tarantino has talked franchises before, and especially Star Trek, and he loves genre, so it’s not like he’s above directing sci-fi. I can totally see Quentin Tarantino directing a Star Trek movie, it’s exactly the kind of weird left-field thing he’d do.
Especially after he “retires” from making his own movies. Because here’s the thing—I don’t think Tarantino will ever stop making stuff, and I don’t think he’ll stop directing, but I do think he’ll divide his career into “his” stuff” and “everyone else’s” stuff. I can see him “quitting” after his tenth feature, and then coming back to make things in a more collaborative spirit than his Ten Features, the movies he wrote and directed himself. He may one day be done making “his” movies, but he can still make a movie for someone else, like a Star Trek movie, developed with JJ Abrams. Not an exclusive Tarantino movie, not special like his Ten Features, but something with his thumbprint. And why not Star Trek? QT is a huge nerd.
Last year Paramount announced an intention to make a fourth Trek with Chris Pine, one that would reunite him with Chris Hemsworth, who had a pre-Thor cameo in the 2009 reboot as Captain Kirk’s dad. But then Star Trek Beyond came out and underwhelmed, and that fourth installment seemed dead in the water. Exploring the possibilities of a Tarantino-led Trek project seems to drive another nail in the Pine/Hemsworth Trek project’s coffin. I highly doubt Tarantino’s idea has anything to do with the Abrams reboot, as Tarantino has always talked about Original Trek and the possibilities contained within Gene Roddenberry’s 1960’s television show. And since Beyond essentially failed, Paramount is probably fine with moving on to a fresh take, especially one from a singular artist like Tarantino. It’s just unfortunate that Star Trek is up for an overhaul just as Pine and Hemsworth emerge as the Top Chrises.