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With the whole director controversy finally cleared up by the official announcement of ‘Lost’ creator J.J. Abrams as the director, it looks like Star Trek XI is hitting warp ten. Casting news is heating up, with all kinds of exciting speculation about where the re-energizing of Trek is headed.

The really big question left to be solved, aside from the plot, is who will Abrams cast to play his younger versions of the Enterprise crew. IGN claims to have the real scoop on who will be playing the new movie’s big three. The big three, for non-TOS fans, is Kirk, Spock, and McCoy who, in the original show and the movies, really get most of the screen time. It’s not just screen time in question though, the relationship between the three of them is really what drove the whole show. Most of the early rumors about the plot have concerned Kirk and Spock, but unless they’re trashing the entire history of one of the world’s most popular franchises, McCoy is just as important.

So to no one’s surprise, IGN claims Matt Damon is indeed talking to Paramount about playing Captain Kirk. He’s long been rumored as Abrams’ first choice for the part. Now that the script is finished and JJ is set to direct, this would be the time to bring him in for a pitch. Damon has the right build, the right look, and he’s a brilliant actor. Perfect choice.

For the role of Spock, rumor has it that King Kong and Hollywoodland star Adrien Brody is in play. Again, Brody has the right look for the part and he’s another great actor. He’ll never be Nimoy, but if we’re going to replace an icon let’s do the best we can. You can’t go wrong with Brody for a part like this.

For McCoy, another perfect name is being tossed around. IGN says Paramount is talking to Gary Sinise for the role of Doctor “Bones” McCoy. Sinise is a little older than Damon or Brody, which is ideal since McCoy was the older of the big three. He’s also got a great southern accent, critical since a big part of McCoy’s persona was that of a down home southern gentleman. Imagine Sinise drawling out “I’m a doctor, not a bricklayer!” in your head, and you’ll see what a great fit he is.

Those three are supposed to be pretty close to getting cast. IGN also mentions Daniel Dae Kim, who plays Jin on ‘Lost’, as a contender for the role of Sulu. Then there’s Last King of Scotland’s James McAvoy whose name has been floating around in connection with the role of Chief Engineer Montgomery Scott. He may still be the frontrunner for that, or it could be that he’s the most high profile actor of the right age with a Scottish accent and so fans have sort of latched on to him. Hard to tell at this point.

Even if only half of those actors actually end up in the film, it’s an absolutely brilliant, beyond expectations cast for a franchise that many regarded as being all but dead just a few months ago. Any franchise with Matt Damon, Adrien Brody, and Gary Sinise fronting it is far from dead.