At the end of June, producer/screenwriter Damon Lindelof indicated his post-Lost vacation had come to an end and that he was diving head first into writing duties on Star Trek 2. Free from the time restraints a weekly television show imposed, he was able to join Star Trek scribes Alex Kurtzman and Robert Orci on a full-time basis.
Kurtzman and Orci previously revealed that they had settled on a front-runner for Star Trek 2’s villain and that the antagonist would play a larger role in the story. Although the duo claimed to be open to the idea of using Khan, the villain’s identity has yet to be confirmed.
Production is still a year away, so details are understandably sparse - but like a kid trying to sneak a peek at his Christmas presents, Star Trek fans are desperate for any hints the filmmakers can throw their way.
Lindelof was happy to drop one when E! recently caught up with him at a pre-Emmys party. He indicated that The Dark Knight has served as an inspiration for their approach to Star Trek 2:
"We're looking at a movie like The Dark Knight, which went one step beyond Batman Begins… It was really about something, and at the same time it was a superhero movie. We don't want to abandon all the things that made the first movie work...but we also really want the movie to thematically resonate."
Let’s take a moment to relax a little bit and take solace in the fact that Lindelof is speaking about the film’s content and not its aesthetics. Blockbuster franchises always seem to feel that "going darker" is the only way to stay relevant and I think that’s an incredibly tired attitude.
Star Trek director J.J. Abrams once stated that his film stood “in stark contrast” to The Dark Knight and I’m pleased to hear that examining what made Christopher Nolan’s sequel so successful doesn’t seem to include conversations about de-saturating Star Trek 2’s palette. Rather, it sounds like he’s talking about crafting a film that transcends its genre and stereotypes.
Lindelof’s comment should appease fans - particularly the die-hard Trekkers who felt the quasi-reboot was a little heavy on style and light on substance in comparison to past Star Trek films.
As a life-long fan, I thought Star Trek was unbelievably successful with what it set out to do. It took a franchise that was on its last legs and made it feel accessible and fresh to a general audience. Now that they’ve established a connection between that audience and the film’s characters, they’re free to start incorporating all of the complex moral and spiritual dilemmas Star Trek’s past incarnations were known for.
In fact, I thought the film did such an admirable job of reinventing the property and standing on its own that I’d almost hate to see them go back and recycle a villain like Khan. I know he’s the most memorable and formidable opponent in Star Trek mythology, but why invite comparisons to the most beloved entry in the franchise?
On the other hand, if anyone can prove me wrong it’s Kurtzman, Orci and Lindelof. I initially thought recasting Kirk, Spock, and all the other iconic roles was a terrible idea and Star Trek wound up being one of my favorite films that year.
We'll keep you updated on both the storyline and villain for Star Trek 2. Be sure to stay up to date be following us on Twitter: @screenrant.