Earlier this week, we got the ridiculous report that Quentin Tarantino not only pitched a Star Trek movie, but that J.J. Abrams was allegedly drafting up a writers room alongside Tarantino to help bring it to life. A new report today claims that Tarantino’s Trek would boldly go where Star Trek movies have never gone before.
Deadline, who broke the initial news about the Tarantino Trek project, is now reporting that the project—if it actually makes it to the big screen, which is still a big hypothetical at this point—would be the first R-rated Star Trek movie, and that The Revenant screenwriter Mark L. Smith is the frontrunner to tackle the script for a project Tarantino is expected to potentially direct.
This is a relatively wild path for the Star Trek movie franchise to go down in a post-Beyond world, but it’s not like there isn’t precedent for it—this year’s Star Trek: Discovery, which drew controversy from fans for some scenes of violence and two characters using “fuck” as an expletive, was rated TV-MA, the equivalent of an R-rating for movies. Deadline’s report doesn’t indicate whether or not Tarantino’s idea leaned more toward a soft or hard R-rating, but it could just mean something similar in tone and mood to what Star Trek: Discovery did, rather than something involving blood-caked Starfleet Officers flinging salty language like photon torpedoes off the port bow.
But the fact that we can even get reports about an R-rated Quentin Tarantino Star Trek project goes to show just what a weird place the Star Trek brand is on the big screen after Beyond, which didn’t quite set the world on fire at the box office. Seemingly gone are the talks of an alleged continuation that would’ve seen Chris Hemsworth return as Captain Kirk’s long-dead father; instead, we now have utterly bizarre ideas like this one floating around the Trek universe—one that operates in uncertain times, at least on the silver screen.