There has been one constant in science fiction for nearly 50 years now: the juggernaut that is the Star Trek franchise. The recent re-birth of the movies that began in 2009 (courtesy of director J.J. Abrams) is due for its third installment, this time with Justin Lin (Fast & Furious, Annapolis) sitting in the director's chair, while Abrams puts the finishing touches on Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
Star Trek Beyond, as the next Star Trek big screen adventure is now officially titled, was set to hit theaters in time for the 50 year anniversary, on the coveted Fourth of July opening weekend, specifically on July 6, 2016. Paramount Pictures has now made a slight shift to the film’s theatrical release date.
Star Trek Beyond is now set to arrive on July 22nd, 2016, where it's currently set to face-off with 20th Century Fox’s Ice Age: Collision Course, and Warner Bros./Guy Ritchie period action epic Knights of the Roundtable: King Arthur (starring Charlie Hunnam as Arthur). THR's sources are reporting that the move is meant to help Star Trek Beyond into IMAX theaters, since it previously would've been shut out by Warner Bros.' Tarzan (starring Alexander Skarsgård and Margot Robbie), as that film opens in IMAX theaters on July 1st of that month.
THR also reports that King Arthur could shift from its current July 22nd date, so that it can gain more showings in IMAX - a useful source of revenue for studios these day - rather than have to compete with Star Trek Beyond for IMAX screens. King Arthur is currently sandwiched between director Paul Feig's Ghostbusters reboot (which arrives July 15th) and Paul Greengrass' Bourne 5 starring Matt Damon (which arrives July 29th), so it's possible Ritchie's film will move up to take Star Trek Beyond's old date or move out of July altogether - if it moves at all, mind you.
Official Star Trek Beyond plot details are scarce to be found, but we have an idea of the direction Lin is taking with his Star Trek movie. The returning cast includes Chris Pine (Captain Kirk), Zachary Quinto (Mr. Spock), Simon Pegg (Scotty), Zoe Zaldana (Ohura), Karl Urban (Bones) and Anton Yelchin (Chekov), with the new addition of Idris Elba (Thor, Pacific Rim) as a villain being a major new addition to the franchise. Also onboard is Sofia Boutella (Kingsman: The Secret Service) - as a extraterrestrial that encounters the U.S.S. Enterprise's crew - and Lydia Wilson (Ripper Street) in an undisclosed role.
Doug Jung (Banshee, Big Love) co-wrote the Star Trek Beyond script alongside Pegg; this is both writers' first stab at a Star Trek movie, though Pegg's writing resume already includes films like Paul and Edgar Wright's Three Flavors Conetto film trilogy (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, The World's End). Paramount heads allegedly want the film to avoid alienating non-Trekkies too much (not be "too Star Trek-y," as Pegg put it), but at the same time Pegg has also said he, Jung, Lin, and their collaborators are will attempt to re-capture the original Star Trek series' sense of exploration and discovery with this movie.
Star Trek Beyond will warp into U.S. theaters on July 22nd, 2016.