Kirk may be installed as Captain of the Enterprise at the start of Star Trek Into Darkness, but that doesn't mean he's secure in that role, as some new plot hints make clear. Maybe Guardians of the Galaxy hasn't found its Star Lord after all. Joss Whedon and Patrick Stewart are excited for S.H.I.E.L.D. and X-Men: Days of Future Past, respectively, even if they can't say very much. Could Bubba Nosferatu still happen?
Spoilers from here on out!
Top image from Doctor Who.
We already saw some promo images for the upcoming Star Trek sequel from Empire Magazine, but now here's a new snippet of plot description:
With Earth under terrorist attack from Benedict Cumberbatch's ex-Starfleet employee John Harrison, Kirk is this time forced into a rash decision that breaks a critical Starfleet command, puts his crew in danger & costs him his captain's chair. Now out of uniform and dressed down in space civvies of black leather jackets and boots, our three heroes have separated from the Enterprise and headed off on a mission to try and rectify his mistake...
I imagine the "three heroes" is made clear in the original article, but it probably refers to Kirk, Spock, and Uhura, whom we see in the black leather jackets in the trailer. [Bleeding Cool]
Writer Damon Lindelof explains why the new timeline hasn't quite caught up yet to the time period of the original show:
Our crew is not necessarily caught up to where Kirk and Bones and Spock were, not even Chekov yet, when we first met them in the original series. So if you're going to do something you've got to do your homework... Our guiding principle was that there was a certain level of excitement in that if the first movie was to use Ms. Pac Man terminology, "they meet", the second intermission is going to be the falling in love part. The idea that the characters are all sort of getting to know each other, but don't know each other all that well yet. Certainly Kirk and Bones have a relationship because we established that they met each other and were fairly close all though the Academy. So those guys are tight, and were tight in the first and remain tight. But a lot of the others, especially now that Kirk is in command of these people as opposed to "I'm the insolent rabble-rouser running around the ship trying to tell everybody what I think they need to be doing." Now he's in charge. That was a very interesting dynamic to play with because, again, it wasn't something that we've seen before. The only Enterprise that were familiar with is where Kirk has been the Captain, nobody ever questions his judgment, he knows what he's doing and occasionally gets in trouble, but he has the trust and love of everybody under his command. But there was a phase that preceded that and that's the phase into which Into Darkness plays. So that's very exciting for us.
He also discusses the expanded role of 23rd century Earth in the sequel:
I don't want to get into percentages of how much takes place on Earth and how much takes place off Earth, suffice to say I think one of the things we felt a lot of people didn't know about Star Trek was that they didn't think that Star Trek was the future. You take something like Star Wars; Star Wars is not the future. It's a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away and Luke Skywalker is not a human being and isn't from the planet Earth. The idea in Star Trek, they are. They're in the 23rd century and these people are from Earth. The Earth needed to play more of a role in these movies, especially in the sense of giving the audience a degree of relatability. I think that in the same way that New York City becomes this anchor point for people in the Marvel movies; that's Spidey's stomping ground, that was the stomping ground for Tony Stark, that was the stomping ground for The Avengers, it's New York. We wanted to do the same thing with Earth in the Star Trek movies.
Finally, he discusses the inclusion of a younger, alternate timeline version of Kirk's old Wrath of Khan love interest Carol Marcus, as played by Alice Eve. Crucially, it sounds like there's no guarantee she'll follow her prime-timeline path and have an affair with Kirk:
It was an idea that, of all the ideas that we had about the sequel and the movie, having Carol in the second movie was something that we all agreed was a good idea. The follow up question is how are we going to use her? What role is she going to play? Is she going to be a love interest for Kirk or something else? And what would that something else be?... So we had to look at Carol as, as opposed to she's a new character that we want you to pay attention to, how can she interact with all those other guys in a way that doesn't take away from them, but enhances them?
There's a ton more at the link. [Collider]
Writer-director James Gunn wrote on his Facebook page that a recent Variety story contained a lot of inaccuracies — that being the article suggesting that onetime Chuck star Zachary Levi and Across the Universe's Jim Sturgess were finalists for the role of team leader Peter Quill, alias Star Lord. However, he has since also debunked subsequent articles that suggested his comments meant Levi and Sturgess aren't in contention for the role, so really it's anybody's guess just what's going on here. Most likely, there's still multiple actors in contention for the part of Star Lord, a decision isn't especially imminent, and Levi and/or Sturgess might still be in the mix, but then again one or both of them might not. I think that clears it all up quite nicely, really. More details at the link. [IGN]
The great Patrick Stewart offers another vague update on his return as Professor X for Bryan Singer's X-Men: First Class followup:
I'm very happy to report that Bryan Singer is coming back to direct the movie. I'm very happy that my lovely friend Ian McKellen is going to be with me. I don't know anyone else who is to be involved in the project. Maybe it's just the two of us! That would be a movie! Magneto and Xavier's conversations... I'm not being cute. That's all I know. Maybe once the holidays are over, more information will begin to come through. I have a vague idea of the time commitments, but I don't know where we're going to shoot. But I'm greatly looking forward to it.
While it's probably best to not hold out... well, any hope that the sequel to Don Coscarelli and Bruce Campbell's awesome Bubba Ho-tep will ever get made, potential star Paul Giamatti is still holding out hope:
When I first met Don, it was just through funny circumstances. We got together and he told me he had the idea for a sequel to that, and I read the script, which was great. I don't know how much I would want to give away about it, though. The part I would play would be Colonel Parker, who was Elvis' manager, and it was always a sinister relationship between the two of them, with how he had such control over him. The movie answers that question. It's a vampire movie, and that's part of how he has a hold over him. It's a fantastic script! It's different from the other one, but it's still all about aging and compromising yourself. The way Bubba Ho-Tep was about getting old, this one's about being middle-aged, in a great way. I hope that maybe we can still get it done ‘cause it's a really great script.
Joss Whedon offers some encouraging if rather cryptic words about his the S.H.I.E.L.D. pilot he's developing for ABC:
There's been enormous progress. We are trundling along, I can't share much. And by much I mean anything. I can say that "S.H.I.E.L.D" came together in a very organic way. And part of my taking "Avengers 2" was that I'd have the opportunity to work in the Marvel universe. I didn't exactly know I'd be running a TV show five minutes later.
On top of your commitment to Bellwether...
Yeah, but it's something I really believe in. Although,"Avengers" is the top of my list of exciting new things, "S.H.I.E.L.D." is really talking to me.
Rubicon and Medium actor Arliss Howard has been cast as Truman Burell, who is — and this is by far my favorite character the description ever — the governor of Louisiana who is "a good ol' boy politician [with] a major beef with vampires ever since his wife ran off with one, leaving him as a single father to their only daughter." Oh, and he's "politically savvy and perhaps overly ambitious, [and he] tends to let his personal aspirations overshadow his humanity", but really, it's the whole hates vampires because his wife ran off with one thing that's just amazing. [TV Line]
Here's a promo for the show's January return. [KSiteTV]
Showrunner Adam Horowitz revealed the titles of episodes fourteen and fifteen via Twitter:
Here's the official description for episode ten, "Torn and Frayed", which airs January 16:
CASTIEL MUST SAVE A FELLOW ANGEL - Naomi (guest star Amanda Tapping) tells Castiel (Misha Collins) that Crowley (guest star Mark Sheppard) is holding an angel captive and Castiel must rescue him before Crowley finds out their secrets. Castiel turns to Dean (Jensen Ackles) for help. Meanwhile, Sam (Jared Padalecki) meets with Amelia (guest star Liane Balaban) who asks him to make a choice: stay with her or leave and never contact her again.
Executive producer Julie Plec discusses the fallout of the death of Tyler's mother at the hands of Klaus:
Tyler's first order of business actually is to mourn. This is the last thing he ever expected that would happen, and the loss of his mom is a pretty powerful thing for him. When we come back we're going to see he's not actually doing so well. He's got some stuff to deal with before he's going to pull himself together.
Is it safe to say the cure is the last thing on his mind?
Oh yeah, for sure. He's if anything reeling and looking over his shoulder wondering if Klaus is there to chop his head off. Also, I'm sure [he's] trying to figure out if there's any move he can make or anything he can do to regain the upper hand against Klaus, although it looks pretty bleak. It's not without its solutions, but it ain't pretty.
How is the state of his relationship with Caroline?
It's currently a little bit tested because of the events of this episode, but thankfully they were able to make things right with each other before tragedy struck. Caroline's going to be more concerned about him when we come back and really want to reconnect with him and make him open up to her so that she can help him heal from this experience. Ultimately, both of them as we get deeper into the next chapter, will have to finally sort of face the Klaus problem head on and figure out what to do.
There's a bunch more at the link. [Hollywood]
Additional reporting by Amanda Yesilbas, Rob H. Dawson, and Charlie Jane Anders.