Recently it was announced that Roberto Orci would no longer be directing the next installment of the Star Trek franchise, sending the project spinning into, oh, let’s just call it darkness. So, the Internet got to work doing what it does best: wildly tossing around the name of every single director in the galaxy. Now, Deadline reports that Paramount Pictures, J.J. Abrams, and Skydance Productions have narrowed down the list of potential helmers. Let’s take a look, shall we?
Candidate: Edgar Wright
Likelihood: Low. Despite Abrams’ refashioning the franchise into “Star Wars but not Star Wars,” and the fact that Wright was reportedly in the mix when we first announced Orci’s withdrawal, his name does not appear on Deadline’s most recent list. (Perhaps he’s had enough with corporate franchise entanglements?) That doesn’t bode well. Still, we’re including him here to fill the mandated “Edgar Wright” slot every list of possible franchise directors must contain.
Candidate: Rupert Wyatt
Likelihood: Somewhat high. Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes was far better than anyone expected it to be, and The Gambler is attracting some positive attention. Wyatt is currently very in demand, and also doesn’t have any other films lined up at the moment. That could augur well for his chances.
Candidate: Morten Tyldum
Likelihood: Moderately high. Tyldum is getting good notices for The Imitation Game (though the picture itself isn’t garnering as many rave reviews as star Benedict Cumberbatch), and also made Headhunters, which was awesome. However, he is currently attached to an adaptation of William Gibson’s Pattern Recognition, though given the early stage of that project, it doesn’t necessarily create a complication. Perhaps some Cumber-opinions from his recent star on participating in the franchise will be a deciding factor here.
Candidate: Daniel Espinosa
Likelihood: Low. Espinosa did the modestly-received Safe House with Denzel Washington, and recently wrapped the thriller Child 44 with Tom Hardy. But Espinosa has a potential schedule conflict in the form of Boston Strong, a film about the Boston marathon bombing and subsequent manhunt. If so, that likely takes him out of the running, given the rapidly approaching timeframe of the next Trek movie.
Candidate: Justin Lin
Likelihood: Moderate. Despite it being pushed back in favor of a new Matt Damon-Paul Greengrass Bourne outing, Lin’s next Jeremy Renner-led Bourne Legacy film is still going forward. There’s still a chance Lin could fit Star Trek 3 into his schedule, but he’s supposedly also being courted to return to wrap up the Fast & Furious franchise. You’d think spaceships trump cars, but who knows?
Candidate: Duncan Jones
Likelihood: Mega-Low. Jones is already deep into his Warcraft movie, which seems likely to consume his time and interest for most of the next year. Still, perhaps there’s some way he could simply travel back in time, over and over, until he makes the choice to direct Star Trek 3. That’s something we’d like to see.
Star Trek 3 is still scheduled for a 2016 release.