Chris Pine Says ‘Star Trek Into Darkness’ Sees Kirk ‘Earn’ His Command

Published 2 years ago by , Updated February 15th, 2014 at 4:28 pm,

Star Trek Into Darkness Chris Pine Chris Pine Says Star Trek Into Darkness Sees Kirk Earn His Command

Sci-fi fans have marked their calendars by now for the first look at Star Trek Into Darkness (coming to IMAX theaters this December). It’s unlikely that the preview will finally reveal the mysterious villain opposing Kirk and the rest of the Enterprise crew, but at this point we’ll settle for anything.

While Chris Pine was on hand to promote Rise of the Guardians in London this week, questions concerning the brash captain of the USS Enterprise predictably arose. Pine’s comments didn’t address the most nagging questions, but they do hint at the growth his character will undergo in the sequel, and what fans can expect from Benedict Cumberbatch‘s performance.

Unsurprisingly, Pine reiterated the cast-wide claims of Star Trek 2 being bigger and bolder than its predecessor, both in terms of the story being plotted by Kurtzman and Orci and the scale of the action sequences. With introductions and bickering now out of the way, the stage is set to get into real character development.

As far as Kirk is concerned, it sounds like the events and conflict of Into Darkness will put the young captain’s abilities to the test:

“Kirk is fun because he is a brash, cocky, bull-headed kind of guy. I think the journey he goes on in this new film is a lot about – the first one was about getting the chair and the second one is about earning it. And I think that’s a big part of his journey.”

star trek sequel chris pine Chris Pine Says Star Trek Into Darkness Sees Kirk Earn His Command

There’s no question that James T. Kirk proved his merits (and likability) in the previous mission, but taking down a pack of vengeful Romulans required guts and courage, not necessarily leadership. If the story for the sequel is focused on galvonizing the crew around Kirk (while serving to further differentiate this series from the original TV show), then audiences can look forward to a story that has gone largely untold.

A hero is only as strong as the villains he faces, of course, and the producers have covered their bases on that front. Signing an actor as universally praised as Bendedict Cumberbatch stacks the odds in the movie’s favor, even if the details of his character are still a complete mystery. Pine didn’t confirm or deny the rumors surrounding Cumberbatch’s role, but did speak to the benefits of having Kirk tested by such an accomplished actor:

“I’ve been so fortunate, Benedict is an incredible talent. He’s did some work in the new ‘Trek’ that I think will blow people away.

“There’s one scene in it that’s like, you know… in all kinds of heavy science fiction there’s got to be the exposition scene where it’s like, what the hell’s going on? It’s a really, really, really hard scene. Not for me, for Benedict – and watching him handle that and to make something that I think, on paper, could have been a death trap for an actor and to see how he [deals with it]…

“I think, also, I know that he did Frankenstein. I never got a chance to see it, but his sense of body and voice… he has great command of his instrument or whatever the hell you want to call it. He’s formidable as an actor and as a character in the story. He’s formidable. He’s a great actor.”

Star Trek Into Darkness Cumberbatch Quinto Chris Pine Says Star Trek Into Darkness Sees Kirk Earn His Command

Anyone familiar with Cumberbatch knows he’s no slouch when handed expansive monologues or encyclopedic information – his performance as Sherlock Holmes was largely based on bringing stuffy knowledge to life. Regardless of who the thespian will be playing, or how dark the story gets, it looks like fans have one heck of a face-off to look forward to.

It was Bones (Karl Urban) himself who explained that keeping some plot twists and characters a secret until the fans are sitting in the theaters has its merits, and as much as we hate to, we’re inclined to agree. That was the approach taken for the original reboot, and the results spoke for themselves. That’s little comfort, but it’ll have to do for the moment.

What storylines do you hope to see for each of the Enterprise’s crew members? Will Cumberbatch automatically take the series to a new height, or is it the good guys that you’re most looking forward to revisiting?

Star Trek 2 will be out in theaters on May 17th, 2013.


Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

Source: TrekMovie

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  1. Star Trek is a nice bonus on top of all the superhero movies we’re getting next year. Very excited to see it :)

  2. I agree man can’t wait for this one

  3. I loved the first film and was always going to see into Darkness but as Cumberbatch is onboard its fair to say I’ll be seeing this many many times. There’s no finer actor working today so it will be a huge treat to see what he’ll do with the role.

    I hope Pegg has toned down his role as that was the one jarring thing in the first film.

  4. now that you mention it…

    Kirk in the first movie didnt really earn his command. He cleverly wiggled his way up the later on the first mission and proved great leadership. He was strong and bold but that was really the first mission of a 3rd year star fleet student who has repeatedly show disrespect for the academy and his fellow officer. He was lucky he was such good friends with Captain Pike to relinquish command of the most sophisticated star ship in the fleet to him. Otherwise, i’d imagine he being promoted to Captain but given a lesser, more standard ship after the events of the movie.

    Anyway. I loved the first one, and the more i hear about the next one, the more i’m confident this will live up to the hype

    • I was abou to post almost the exact same thing. I’ll admit i never watched the show, but in the original movies Kirk is always lucky, but he is also a highly intelligent captain whose boldness, smarts, and luck make him the best captain in the fleet. I wanna see those qualities more in the new one

      • The original show is on Netflix.

        Don’t have Netflix you say? $8 IS a lot of money to pay for access to a huge video library. /sarcasm

    • Every September. US Navy selects 50 Enlisted Person E-5 and for the Seaman to Admirial Program.

      It allows an Elisted Person to become a ranking officer.

      Now lets put Star Trek into perspective. Kirk, 3 Year Cadet, then all of sudden Captain.

      Enlisted person have become Battlefield Commissioned Officers. Officers are not trained in how to me a Captain, Captains are already in the person. I have known Captains who have never commanded, and Captains who do not know how to command the respect of their crews. There are Captains who take risk, to acheive the goal. Kirk did what he had to do, take charge and save the day. He already knew a planet was destroyed, and he knew Earth was next, so damn orders and he did what he thought and knew what was the right thing to do.

      Captains often have to make the hard decisions, I speaking as a Captain in the United States Coastguard, I have had to give, or take orders for the benefit and safety of my crews, and I have pushed the envelopes between obeying and disobeying orders to save lives. That is the Make up that Military looks for, Captains who take chances with in reason to save or prevent the loss of life.

    • When you (and your crew) save the earth from being destroyed and the human race from extinction, you can pretty much write your own ticket.

  5. Yep, I know what DVD will be on my wish list for Christmas 2013.

  6. mmm Chris Pine’s bulge in tight fitting Star Trek uniform…yummy ;)

    • daryl hannah? ^^^?

  7. I just hope they take this in a less familiar direction. The stories are approaching staleness…

    • “the stories are approaching staleness.”

      “stories” plural? there’s only been one movie, and it wasn’t stale. clarification please?

  8. I am there to see the Ship and the crew, everything else is gravy.

  9. As frustrating as the lack of info about this movie is-especially with it just over six months away-you gotta give abrams and co. some credit for actually managing to keep stuff secret in this day and age…

    • When you know you have a good product, you do not have to sell it.

      • All I heard was Star Trek and 2013, I was sold.

        • Kahless, you are such a tramp for giving in that fast :)

          • Well, Kahless took out his met’leth and dared me to say I’m not going. I don’t know about you but I wouldn’t try to disappoint a Klingon. :-P

            • running now! :O

  10. This should be awesome.

  11. When the timeline branched so did huge parts of Kirk’s history and therefore his attitude. What Pine describes is the 2 hour version of a guy developed over 7 movies, 3 tv seasons, a bunch of books, comics, and a cartoon. The difference is so huge there’s no point in even comparing the two of them. New Kirk is such a drastic abbreviation that you can’t even discuss him in the context of the Star Trek universe and New Fans don’t even care to try. At the end of the day the Abrams movies will be like Nolan’s Batman trilogy; just another iteration of something timeless that the general audience forgets and the hardcore fans debate or sniff at. So good luck Chris with “Kirk” and have fun, Cumberbatch. It should be a real hoot while it lasts.

    • Haha like the name. Do you come in and just do a whatever comment on something you think won’t last or get off the ground?

  12. I’ll tell you what I want to see: The Enterprise crew seeking out new life and new civilizations! Boldly going where no one has gone before! Haven’t seen that in a Star Trek movie since Star Trek V (unless you count Kirk and Picard visiting the Nexus). Villain fights are great, but this isn’t Star *Wars*; it’s Star *Trek*.

    • zooming around space looking for new people to meet, without a villain or conflict, makes for a HUGE SNOOZE FEST in a movie. That stuff is more fitting for a TV series, where some episodes can be about characters in their lives, some can be about “ooh lets save this dying space whale,” and some can be about “AW s*** THE BORG ARE HERE.” In a film you have 2 hours to make a compelling story arc, the structuring is completely different from a series

      • Which is EXACTLY why Star Trek belongs on TV and has never been well suited to the big screen. Not that the occasional movie can’t be made for epic story arcs but only a couple of the Star Trek movies have been worth watching imho.

    • I tend to agree, but when you look at the Star Trek movies’ success, Star Trek: The Motion Picture was greeted largely with yawns while Star Trek II was hailed as the best in the series. So the villain model for these movies was cemented long ago.

      I feel that the Star Trek universe is so large that they could tell many different kinds of stories, all with large, sweeping scopes, and none involving arch villains (some baddies are always welcome, though). But thought-provoking science fiction for Star Trek will probably be relegated to television.

  13. One of my favorite parts about “Star Trek” was Bones’ grumpy sarcasm, Karl Urban really captured the essence of the character. His screen time was pretty limited in the first film, so I look forward to seeing more of him.

    • I agree with you completely. When that sarcasm was aimed at Spock and they both sniped at each other with Kirk smirking in the middle of them? Soooo much fun to watch.

      That was the best part about TOS; the characters and how they interacted with each other was what the focus was. Sure, the catchphrase was ‘to explore new worlds and new civilisations’. But what drew people in were the relationships between the characters, particularly Kirk, Spock and McCoy. Those three almost always beamed down together and although they seem to be going the route of a more ensemble cast in this new universe, I hope they don’t change that formula.

      I know that nowadays they’re trying to make things a lot more equal, but for all that is good and Holy they had better not replace Bones with Uhura.
      I can understand doing that on movie posters and advertisements in order to draw viewers in, but if they do it in the story it WILL NOT go down well. I like Uhura and love her being portrayed as more of a badass (and I surprisingly don’t mind the whole Spock/Uhura thing either), but I won’t be happy if they sacrifice Bones’ place next to Kirk and Spock in order to do so.

  14. I loved the movie, the cast itself works well, and you have to remember that because of the changed events of the first movie, we can take these characters and story in a whole different way, giving us opportunity to see things we never would before

  15. You’re forgetting one thing. What does God need with a starship?

    • He needs to use it to fly very far away from Star Trek 5! :D


  16. I’m really looking forward to Star Trek: Into Darkness. I love Star Trek and was introduced to the Star Trek saga as an adolescent by my father, and I still enjoy watching Star Trek TOS (The Original Series and Star Trek The Next Generation. Star Trek Enterprise on SyFy Channel is another that I also enjoy watching as well. I definitely agree that Benedict Cumberbatch is a great classy actor and look forward to seeing what his role will be opposite the heroes aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise.

    Chris Pine is perfect in the role of Captain Kirk and I’m impressed with the means he uses to bring out the almost ‘Han Solo-ish’ nature of Kirk that didn’t really come through in the original show but is only hinted at in a few episodes, although we do know that Kirk had a certain affinity for women. Zachary Quinto takes Mr. Spock to an all new level of “cool” in his level-headedness and morally strong portrayal of Spock in the first film. Zoe Saldana certainly adds spunk, depth and a nice dollop of sweet and spiciness to the role of Starfeet’s leading lady Uhura who has always been a favorite of mine ever since I watched the TOS episode “Mirror, Mirror”. Additionally, it is my opinion that Uhura is a double-edged sword in that she is not only a good and strong role model for young girls, but also children of color be they Asian, Afro-American or Hispanic.

    • Mirror, Mirror? YOU are away from your post, mister! :D


  17. I don’t really care one way or the other about Cumberbatch, but I would like more focus on the supporting characters. Some decent screentime and an actual storyline for McCoy would be especially appreciated. Maybe a few more female characters too (Chapel? Rand?).

    • I’m looking forward to more McCoy as well, but I don’t consider him a “supporting” character. He’s one of the 3 main protagonists. They just didn’t focus on him as much for the 1st film simply because the driving force (Kirk and Spock’s relationship as friends) needed to be established, and didn’t leave much screen time for Bones.

      • @Ken

        Bones is vital to Kirk and Spock. Irrational, impulsive and “Damn the orders” of Kirk.

        Logic and reasoning, Understanding, Investigate. Of Spock

        McCoy…Brings the elements that combined Kirk and Spock to make them work together as one. Faith, Trust, Attitude, compassion, and the fact he not afraid to say what is on his mind, is what McCoy brings to the table.

        • Yes, all of those things are correct.

          Why are you addressing your post to me? It’s almost phrased in such a way that you didn’t think I knew any of that or something?

          • Nope, did not think you didnt know about McCoy.

            I worded it wrong, should have said, I agree with you Ken, and then added my comment.

            and it is easier to address someone who makes a strong comment.

        • Yes, all of those things are correct.

          Why are you addressing your post to me? It almost sounds you didn’t think I knew any of that or something?

  18. I feel bothered by Pine’s wording of things a bit as it seems to imply that he didn’t “earn” the chair in the first film.

    Shouldn’t he have said “The first film was about Kirk earning the chair and the second about him proving he has what it takes to keep it?”

    • Getting your butt into the captain’s chair doesn’t mean you’ve earned it. Think of a president or ceo (or whatever other example you might like), they still have to prove themselves to the people in their organization (and to themselves) that they can do what needs to be done.

      • It’s not like we haven’t seen some crappy Captains. Styles? Harriman?



  19. @DarkElfa

    Look at it more this way. He save Earth, he got the bad guy, he got command of the Enterprise, but to himself, he will always be His Fathers Son, remember in the normal time line, his father lived to see him assume command of the Enterprise.

    Kirk to himself, might think he has done nothing to warrant command of the Enterprise, he has yet that defining moment, despite what others think of him, he has to prove to himself.

    When I received my first command, I knew I earned it, but I felt I had to prove I belong there, same with Kirk.

  20. When going for Command. They asked me what makes a Captain.

    I responded with the following.

    Captains are either promoted or they are forged. They are either going to graduate and rise through the ranks, or they are going to have command thrust upon them.

    Anyone Can be a Captain and be promoted to said Rank, but the difference are in the few that will become Captains because it is what they are meant to do, lead and to have their crew follow them into battle, and the Captain’s job is to make sure all go in, and all come home.

  21. I’m guessing he’s going to playing an evil scientist. That would explain his dialogue and the reference to Frankenstein.

    • I’m not sure what Cumberbatch’s villain role will be (could be a scientist after all) but the reference to Frankenstein was merely used an example of Cumberbatch’s acting skills. I wish I could’ve seen the play myself, I love Danny Boyle plays.

  22. Beding a trekkie of long experience (1975), I enjoyed the new movie and also the characters in it. In the TOS episode “the court martial”, Kirk said to Spock that he might have better luck beating his next Captain at Chess so proving that Emotion + Brains beats Logic everytime. That’s how he became Captain and I enjoyed every minute of when he took down Spock. Happy times are here again next May!! HFTC.

  23. Very excited about this movie I’m really pleased with all of the secrecy surrounding it – will be a nice change to go into the cinema with major plot points still to be revealed!!

    I wonder how many Star Trek movies there will be in this JJ Abrams series. I hope we get 4 or 5!

  24. Why do so many people insist on comparing the original movies with the new one, the television series with the film series, the novels with “canon”. I have an idea, why don’t we appreciate each iteration of one of the greatest sci-fi franchises of all time for what they are and leave it at that.

    • I tend to agree; although I think the Death Star wouldn’t stand a chance against the Enterprise. 8-)

  25. To me this john Harrison could be just his own bad guy that will lead into the third movie

    In the last scene he says something like “Kirk, at this moment our glorious leader approaches and with him, over 200 of my kind attend, all willing to die for his glory. My only regret in failing to you, is that I but only had one life to sacrifice for our beloved Khan”