The upcoming third film in the rebooted, reenergized and retconned Star Trek series may have just set course with a title. Already rumored to be focusing more on the exploration aspect of the original TV show, the threequel is reportedly looking to thrill audiences under the auspices of the title, Star Trek Beyond. Could this really be the title under which the U.S.S. Enterprises once again heads into warp speed?
According to a report from TrekMovie, the title Star Trek Beyond was registered with the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America). The move seriously suggests that, barring the news of some mysterious spinoff movie that no one’s heard anything about, this will be the title for this latest entry in the current Star Trek franchise. However, the report makes this suggestion with a grain of salt, possibly designating the title as a decoy for this third film in the series, which will actually be the thirteenth, overall.
The questions surrounding the legitimacy of the title are well-warranted as J.J. Abrams’ production company, Bad Robot have proven to be coy with its reveals to the point of blatant, bald-faced lying. (Remember the "Benedict Khanberbatch" publicity fiasco?) Thus, the report’s hesitancy is understandable. However, the film, which will see Fast & Furious series director Justin Lin take the helm, is just over a year away and, likewise, it will definitely need to have its title locked-in for the geektacular season of reveals with San Diego Comic-Con mere months away in July. If, in fact, this title is simply some elaborate red herring, it certainly wouldn’t be a productive one, as far as promoting the film. That aspect certainly helps the veracity of the report.
As far as titles go, Star Trek Beyond might be woefully generic, but simultaneously could be seen as an expression of the film’s intentions. It’s especially helpful to consider the latter after the comments made by Simon Pegg, who is doing double duty playing Chief Engineer Montgomery Scott and co-writing the film with Doug Jung. Pegg has implied on more than one occasion that this film would be avoiding "post-modern" devices, carrying itself as more of a purist’s vehicle in regards to the original television series’ spirit of exploration of the unknown. In that sense, we could be seeing a departure from the wanton splash of CGI sequences, possibly replaced by more sublime space imagery.
When J.J. Abrams took the aging Star Trek franchise and gave it his repertory spin, it yielded the hugely-successful 2009 film that was chock full of action and intensity that proved more accessible for a broader range of moviegoing folks who didn’t take the time to learn Klingon. However, for hardcore Trekkies, the film didn’t reflect the pioneering spirit of the Star Trek they knew and loved. In fact, in Gene Roddenberry’s original pitch for the 1966-1969 show, he described his ship’s originally conceived captain, Robert April as "a space-age Captain Horatio Hornblower." In that same sense, we could be seeing Chris Pine’s Captain James T. Kirk finally putting in his time towards fulfilling the show’s doctrine to "explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man (one) has gone before."
Star Trek 3 (Star Trek Beyond?) could see the crew of the Enterprise engaging in star-charting, alongside Kirk’s obligatory array of salacious extra-terrestrial hook-ups, when it assumes standard orbit at theaters on July 8, 2016.