Let me say right off the bat that I think that Simon Pegg is AWESOME. Love the guy in every movie I've seen him in.
When I first heard of a "re-imagining" of Star Trek via a new movie my first reaction was one of cynicism. I'm a huge Star Trek fan, but pretty much everything Trek in the last 15 year has been awful (although the last season of Star Trek: Enterprise was finally starting to get decent). Since I first heard about the film, as more and more news and comments trickled out from J.J. Abrams, writers Robert Orci and Alex Kurtzman I went from cynical, to hopeful to optimistic on the project. As I've stated before, these guys are saying all the right things, somehow straddling the line between being faithful to the fans while also working to bring in a brand new bunch of people into the world of Trek.
But I'm not too sure about Simon Pegg playing Scotty.
His films haven't been monster hits in the U.S. so I suppose that makes him a bit of an unknown, which is good. But the guy has done nothing but comedies and seriously, not only does he look nothing like Montgomery Scott from the original Trek series, but he also looks much older than some of the other names that have been mentioned for the role. The latest name floated to play the role of Mr. Scott was Paul McGillion, who played Dr. Carson Beckett on Stargate: Atlantis. He looked much more like Scotty and although he's a year older than Pegg, he looks much younger. Although James Doohan (the original Scotty) was 10 years older than Shatner, he didn't look that much older.
On the flip side, Simon Pegg is indeed capable of playing a straight role. Although it was over the top, the closest you'll come to seeing him in a non-comedic role is in Hot Fuzz.
It was also revealed today that John Cho will be playing Mr. Sulu in the film. Cho is also a comedic actor who's appeared in Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle (which I haven't seen). Yes he's Korean and not Japanese, but as Peter at /Film mentions, Gene Roddenberry wanted an Asian actor for Sulu, not specifically a Japanese actor.
Am I wrong here? What do you think?
/Film was the first place I read the news so they get the nod.