If you’ve been holding out hope for a new Star Trek film, you should probably get ready for some bad news. Despite the popularity of the 21st century reboot, and ongoing discussion of a potential Quentin Tarantino film, it sounds like the franchise on a whole may be on an indefinite hiatus. Star Trek star Simon Pegg thinks there’s more than one reason why we won’t be getting any new movies -- but the biggest one is the lack of “Marvel money.”
Since 2009, there have been three entries into the Star Trek film franchise. There was 2009’s Star Trek, which grossed a respectable $385.6 million. The follow-up, Star Trek Into Darkness, saw a worldwide gross of $467.3 million -- again, not too shabby. The third movie, Star Trek Beyond, came out in 2016 and made $343.4 million. But if you ask Simon Pegg why Paramount Pictures doesn’t seem to be in a rush to offer up another installment, it sounds like the box office revenue just wasn’t quite enough (via GamesRadar+):
The fact is, Star Trek movies don’t make Marvel money. They make maybe $500 million at the most, and to make one now, on the scale they’ve set themselves, is $200 million. You have to make three times that to make a profit.
The unfortunate reality is that Simon Pegg may very well be right. Over the past few years, we’ve seen a resurgence in film franchises not only with the MCU, but also DCEU, Disney, and Star Wars. By comparison, for example, Avengers: Endgame and Captain Marvel easily crossed the billion dollar threshold last year. Even Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, which wasn’t exactly popular with fans, hit a billion dollar gross worldwide. Though the Star Trek films definitely proved to have a box office draw, they simply haven’t been on the same level.
Simon Pegg -- who played beloved engineer Scotty in Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness, and Star Trek Beyond -- does put some onus on the powers that be for not fully capturing the potential for revitalizing the franchise:
I don’t feel like the last one… They didn’t really take advantage of the 50th anniversary. The regimen at the time dropped the ball on the promo of the film.
But he also thinks that even if they were able to get a green light for another Star Trek installment, it might be difficult for the cast and crew to get on board following the tragic death of their co-star Anton Yelchin in 2016:
And we’ve lost momentum. I think losing Anton [Yelchin] was a huge blow to our little family, and our enthusiasm to do another one might have been affected by that. So I don’t know.