Will Roberto Orci Direct ‘Star Trek 3′?

Published 12 months ago by

Star Trek 3 Movie Cast Will Roberto Orci Direct Star Trek 3?

The busiest writing duo in Hollywood is set to part ways – with the news that Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman are splitting, amicably, in order to pursue individual projects as feature film directors. Founders of the K/O Paper Products production house, Orci and Kurtzman have been instrumental in writing and developing a number of fan-favorite big and small screen projects including: Transformers, Fringe, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (as well as the planned Venom spin-off movie), Alias, and Sleepy Hollow, among many others.

Still, one of their most celebrated (and divisive) efforts was the 2009 soft “reboot” of the Star Trek film series, in collaboration with director J.J. Abrams. While die-hard fans remain mixed on certain aspects of the relaunch, especially the depiction of a familiar villain in 2013′s sequel, Star Trek Into Darkness, there’s no doubt that Orci and Kurtzman were essential in reinvigorating the brand and making Star Trek “cool” outside of the Trekkie community. Once Abrams signed-on for directing duty in the Star Wars Galaxy Far, Far Away, Paramount Pictures was forced to begin the search for a new Star Trek 3 helmer and now, thanks to a new report, we’re getting word that Orci could be a frontrunner for the job.

At first many (albeit not all) Star Trek fans were holding out hope that Abrams would return to the director’s chair for Part 3 but as time wore on, and the filmmaker started to get increasingly immersed in Star Wars, it became obvious that Paramount Pictures would need to find a replacement. Plenty of names have been batted around, most recently Attack the Block‘s Joe Cornish; yet, in their announcement of the Orci/Kurtzman split, Variety asserts that Orci is a frontrunner to direct Star Trek 3.

star trek 3 screenwriters Will Roberto Orci Direct Star Trek 3?

According to the report, Abrams’ Bad Robot (along with David Ellison’s Skydance Productions) are pushing for Orci to be given the job – but Paramount Pictures remains unconvinced. Despite Orci’s solid track record in writing and producing, Paramount’s reluctance is understandable – since Star Trek 3 would mark Orci’s directorial debut. The writer is no stranger to movie production and has been on set for many of the films he’s produced and/or penned but the studio has a lot riding on the Star Trek brand. After Star Trek Into Darkness underperformed at the domestic box office, Paramount needs the follow-up to recapture the cross-demographic appeal of the 2009 reboot.

Ultimately, Star Trek Into Darkness earned more at the global box office than its predecessor but the studio would, without a doubt, like to see the next installment drive ticket sales (and profits) higher while also adding momentum for potential cross-medium projects (like an oft-rumored spin-off TV series). Even though Orci has established himself as a gifted storyteller – that’s a lot of pressure for a freshman director. It’s the same reason that Spider-Man series fans were surprised to hear that Kurtzman would direct the upcoming Venom solo movie – even after he’d already cut his directing teeth on 2012′s People Like Us.

star trek into darkness jj abrams Will Roberto Orci Direct Star Trek 3?

Traditionally, franchise blockbuster movies have been helmed by established filmmakers with a long-running list of high profile hits but studios have, recently, softened to this idea – placing creative, but largely untested, directors in charge of hundred-million dollar budgets (while surrounding them with a seasoned crew of experts to fill areas of inexperience). Among others examples, Jon M. Chu was put in charge of the live-action G.I. Joe movies, after several successful entries in the dance movie genre, and Gareth Edwards was hired to develop the Godzilla reboot, following his celebrated indie effort Monsters. As a result, the idea that Orci could helm Star Trek, after being an architect in several major (and highly profitable) franchises, doesn’t seem entirely far-fetched.

Sure, not every writer can direct (nor can every director write) but Hollywood is full of filmmakers that excel at both. In the past, writers have been expected to earn their stripes with indie fair to earn their way into the directorial big leagues – but what happens when an aspiring director is already among the industry’s most successful storytellers? In most cases, a studio would still test a would-be director’s mettle with a low-profile project – but what if that same writer was previously instrumental in reinvigorating a franchise that is now desperately in need of a director? With no confirmed helmer, a planned 2016 release for Star Trek 3, and three screenwriters (including Orci but not Kurtzman) working away on the script, Paramount might ultimately decide that Orci, who enjoys a close working relationship with the film’s producers (especially Abrams), might not be quite as risky as the studio’s heads first thought.

Star Trek 3 Director Bob Orci Will Roberto Orci Direct Star Trek 3?

After all, Orci knows the inner workings of this new Star Trek series and he’s familiar with the cast and crew, making the option of bringing in an entirely new helmer – even one with significant hands-on directorial experience – a bit risky as well (although in different ways). What Paramount will ultimately choose to do is, as far as we know, unclear – but it’s certainly interesting to see Orci’s name in the running.

Note: We reached out to Orci for a response to the news and, unsurprisingly, the filmmaker said that he could not offer an official comment at this time.

Regardless, fans of Kurtzman and Orci shouldn’t fret too much about the announcement that the pair will separate their efforts going forward – as they’ll still be working together, as producers, on a number of future TV efforts. Where the two writers go from here will be interesting to see, and while it’s unclear exactly how they’ll be splitting-up currently in development script work, with movies like Venom (and possibly Star Trek 3) as potential directorial vehicles, Kurtzman and Orci are still on the rise in Hollywood’s ranks.


More: Listen to the Screen Rant Podcast Interview with Roberto Orci


Star Trek 3 is currently aiming for a 2016 release date.

Follow me on Twitter @benkendrick for any future updates on Star Trek 3, as well as movie, TV, and gaming news.

Source: Variety

Follow Ben Kendrick on Twitter @benkendrick
Get our free email alerts on the topics and author of this article:


Post a Comment

GravatarWant to change your avatar?
Go to Gravatar.com and upload your own (we'll wait)!

 Rules: No profanity or personal attacks.
 Use a valid email address or risk being banned from commenting.

If your comment doesn't show up immediately, it may have been flagged for moderation. Please try refreshing the page first, then drop us a note and we'll retrieve it. Keep in mind that we do not allow external links in the comments.

  1. Seeing as how much I loved Into Darkness, I hope Orci gets his shot at mixing things up in Star Trek 3.

    • You are kidding, right? Into Darkness was yet another reason why Orci, Kurtzman, and Lindelof need to be drummed out of this business. Pronto.

      They only know how to make childish drivel, which Hollywood suits love because the scripts are easily digestible by the masses without thought or imagination.

  2. I’m glad that they are keeping it in the family. The feeling of the first two movies should carry on.

  3. so basically this entire article boils down to …… ???
    no confirmed information – for ANYTHING related a Star Trek 3 film and considering who long it took to make ST 2 (which really shouldn’t have taken so long considering all they did was alter the origin for Khan .. and make him a white guy, which still doesn’t make much sense – Naveen Andrews probably would have been an excellent choice

    anyways – all this article comes to is Roberto Orci WANTS to direct ST 3, not that anyone at Paramount has mentioned him (or anyone else) for consideration … for a film that doesn’t even yet have a script or a confirmed production schedule.

    with the past delays for part 2, ST 3 probably won’t even be released until 2018 or later.

    • The reason for the article was to inform readers that Orci may be in the running for the job. Before today, no one had previously mentioned his name.

      On top of that, it’s dismissive to say that no one is considering him – since both of the productions houses involved with the project are behind the idea. Yes, Paramount hasn’t announced anything – and could go with someone else – but that doesn’t mean there isn’t news here.

      If you don’t care about who might be in the running, that’s fine, but there are plenty of readers that like keeping up with these things – and, if absolutely nothing else, would want to hear that Orci and Kurtzman are no longer active writing partners.

      • People need to realize this isn’t CNN or some other large news network. Always looking for ways to criticize this great site.

        That said, although I wish by some miracle JJ could direct ST3, I have no issues with the prospect of Orci being director. Even with no directing credits, Orci has been a huge part of the team which shaped this reboot. He knows the mood and tone which Abrams set, so it would be great to keep the job within the creative team. I’ve always imagined a chance of Brad Bird if he finishes Tomorrowland soon enough.

  4. Not always can a writer become a good Director. The best example is David Goyer. He worked well in Blade II, with Guillermo del Toro at the helm. However, Blade III was a mess which killed the franchise. Guess who was the director? Yeah, you got it, Goyer.

    He even got into a legal battle with Mr. Snipes.

    I’d rather the studio have him write the Script and hire a proven director to lead the way.

  5. I hope Roberto Orci does get the Job as director because I like the way he thinks the dark and gritty dystopian feel of his writing I hope he does get the Job people may say him directing star trek is a mistake and star trek is not supposed to be that way and those people are what I like to call losers, dark and gritty is the name of the game today and it makes for enjoyable viewing.

  6. The first on ruined it. The second one was a bad, unnecessary rip off. JUST STOP, PLEASE!

    • You sound pathetic. Both Star Trek’s were great movies on their own, they didn’t have to be faithful to the series. And as for the second one being a rip off, only ONE scene ripped off Wrath of Khan, but because Khan was a villain you think it’s a rip off. You might as well say Wrath of Khan ripped off Space Seed.

      • Only one scene ripped off Wrath of Khan? I count at least two.

        I just wish that they had told an entirely new story.

    • Or you could just stop watching them and leave us our beloved movies?

  7. I hated Into Darkness and JJ with his obnoxious lens flare. I’m so happy to hear that he will no longer be attached. Can’t wait for this one. Hopefully it’ll be what they promised before Into Darkness, where we see the environment or the encountering an alien civilation as the adversary. Hopefully a philosophical message will be attached too.

  8. Yes. Stop it. End the alternate timeline. Let Orci and the rest of Bad Robot walk.

    Get a new person to helm the Trek spinoffs. Stick to canon, stick to tone. There are plenty of non-Kirk/Spock/McCoy stories to tell.

  9. This is a horrible, horrible, horrible idea. The best thing that could happen to Star Trek, at this point, is to have an entirely new (proven) director, and especially, especially, new writers.

    After Into Darkness, and Orci’s rather petty scuffle with disapproving fans, I do not thing that he should not be given the director’s chair.

    I hope that Paramount realizes that it’s possible to simultaneously make a better film, and make more money. And also, to make new films that are not retreads of past films.

  10. I’m no trekkie but I know its supposed to be about representing todays society via morally intriguing situations in the future… or something like that. So in the future don’t put genetically modified humans into missiles because it makes other genetically modified humans hang out with Klingons!

    Next up, The Phantom Menace 2 – Rise of the Hipster Jedi.. A Sequel to a blockbuster film.

  11. The Goyer comparison might be valid, especially since Orci is as hit or miss as a writer as Goyer.

  12. They’ve stripped away the ‘hard’ sci-fi aspect of Trek, a huge reason why people are into Trek, and just left behind something generic and disposable. I don’t really want them helming the next movie. Enjoy most of the characters but less ‘magic electronic looking devices’ being passed off as sci-fi content. The last two Treks were more like Star Wars than Star Trek.

  13. No. Worst choice possible for a director.

  14. Star Trek was never intended to be dark and gritty or dystopian. I’m so tired of that worn out dinosaur of a theme. Both films were intended to rip off the cash from the biggest franchise available when they couldn’t get their hands on Star Wars at the time. Nothing more than that. The original series, while flawed, had vision. A mostly positive vision. The new films is just another symptom of a modern day Hollywood that doesn’t have the ability or guts to create anything new for itself. It can only recreate a corrupt copy for profit. Dark and gritty can be good. But if that’s what you want, create it something new. Don’t trash a classic. If Abrams and Orci ever got b hold of Captain America they’ll have him as an undercover agent for Hydra. It’s time they stopped this nonsense!

    • there will be a new Star Trek tv series coming out in 2017 I hear but first they will have to finish off the movies JJ Abrams contract ends with star trek 13 thank god he will no longer prevent a new trek series finally Paramount and CBS will give Abrams the boot up his ass and tell him to take a hike then they will do a great new tv series Imagine what they can do today with today’s tec

  15. some of orci’s writing projects have not jibed with me but being a 3rd class star trek fan for a long time
    and when they did a soft reboot the way they did with star trek i ended being a big fan of the last
    two. they did not flush down the toliet the previous history. give orci a chance.

  16. It’s a risk for sure but I wouldn’t necessarily freak out if he did end up landing the gig. If he wants to get into directing he should probably shoot for something easier though.

  17. I would like to see Neill Blomkamp’s take on Star Trek. Won’t happen, but I loved District 9 and I think he’d be great at bringing the human element back to Star Trek without sacrificing the action.

  18. I love much of what they did with rebooting trek but the negatives are big mistakes.

    First they redid Wrath of Khan only they called Khan Nero and his wrath was directed at Spock. Then they followed it up by redoing Wrath of Khan, good lord what were they thinking.

    Not to mention an important plot device from Into Darkness is lifted right over into Spiderman.

    These guys have obvious talent but i don’t know if they think they are too cool for school that they cannot listen to some common sense. Get as far away from the Khan mould as possible.

  19. I will be interested to see where Star Trek 3 goes dramatically given that death was cured in ST 2.

  20. Cure immortality, would be my guess.

  21. We’re now calling this dude a genius because Khan had magic blood? I mean, that was the story, right? Khan had magic blood, apparently Peter Parker has magic blood too in the new Spider-Man mess.

    Me thinks the emporer is butt naked, possibly at one of those pool parties as well.

  22. Horrible idea! The third movie needs to build back the momentum of the 2009 that was lost with the half backed STID.

    This next one needs a big time, proven director to make sure that happens.

    The more material Orci & Kurtzman put out the lower their batting average becomes.

    Time for Paramount to find not only a new director but new writers – ones with SF background would be most welcome.

    • Yeah. They should totally hire a real sci-fi author to come up with a story worthy of the franchise name.

  23. I enjoyed the 2 Trek movies as sci-fi/action movies but not as Star Trek movies. The action and effects were first-rate but I cannot ignore the glaring errors the writers made in both movies. Kirk should not have been promoted so soon; Spock would never get involved with a cadet when he is an instructor; Starfleet security is not that incompetent; Klingons do not let invaders come into their space unchallenged; Khan was described as an East Indian in TOS before the crew even knew he was Khan Noonien Singh, so he should not have been a white Brit; and why would the Enterprise be underwater when they could have accomplished the same thing from orbit? I want them to keep the action and effects but I want back what made Trek special…..science fiction that made youngsters want to scientists and explorers.

    • This^ +9,001

    • spock never got involved with a cadet. the cadet was no longer his student

  24. Check out my Star Trek 4 Fancast: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls058272663/

  25. Thanks for calling Roberto Orci (one of the guys behind Bayformers and Cowboys & Aliens) a gifted storyteller. It made me laugh. Its like calling Justin Bieber a master composer like Ludwig van Beethoven.