Finding a Business: Star Trek Must Avoid the Marvel Trap | Movie theater

IIt is easy to imagine the horrified look on the faces of Hollywood VFX artists when Chris Pine recently said that he felt that Star Trek movies were spending a lot of money trying to emulate Marvel. No more spectacular scenery in the depths of space or on rich alien planets. There are no more giant budgets for special effects and lucrative months planning how to bring huge Federation space stations and Klingon warfare to the big screen in glorious ultra HD. Instead, Pine (who returns as Captain James T Kirk in an upcoming fourth Star Trek movie in the new remake) seemed to imagine a return to the low-budget vision of the future seen in the original series – or at least one that doesn’t cost much. megabucks.

“I always thought Star Trek should work in the smaller band,” Pine told Deadline. “You know, this is not a Marvel appeal. It’s like, let’s make the movie about the people who love this group of people, who love this story, who love Star Trek. Let’s make it for them and then, if people want to come to the party, great. “But make it at a price and make it so that if it makes half a billion dollars, that’s great.”

Pine added: “But we are operating in a system now that I do not know how much more we have if you have to spend $ 500 million on a movie to get… or even pay all kinds of people back. So, to make a billion, it’s like not having… brought your net in. That is, if I wore my business suit, I would do it, but I do not know where it is. “All of this is above my remuneration.”

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It’s definitely true that Star Trek has not gotten where it is today, spending huge budgets on high-end special effects. The original television series between 1966 and 1969 was known for its vision of cheap chips for the 23rd century, so much so that iPad-like handsets used by the Starship Enterprise crew relied on a child toy that is called the Magic Slate, with some lights added to make it look kosher.

Such cost-cutting shortcuts would be difficult to make in modern Hollywood – cheap effects can give a movie a bad name before the opening credits even come out. But Pine is right to suggest that the key to success in 2022 is not just to do what Marvel does. The basic formula of the Disney superhero epic – a huge, expensive fantasy show and plenty of well-written jokes – has often proved disastrous when other franchises have tried to borrow it.

DC’s “extended universe” never recovered after the Avengers’s Joss Whedon’s parachute’s studio after Zack Snyder left the Justice League in 2017, and some Star Wars fans hated The Last Jedi of the same year because obviously shine The Force. more fans and the historical past of the epic. It’s hard to tell if Tom Cruise’s monster movie, The Mummy, which was released around the same time, was a Marve-type action comedy, because the whole movie is such a devilish mess. But it would not be surprising to find out that someone involved (probably Cruz, who allegedly had conventional control over everything) thought that filling it with jokes and a cozy, ungodly atmosphere was a great way to tailor a classic monster story that is both creepy and gothic. as they come.

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Maintaining the true… Sofia Butella at Star Trek Beyond.
Maintaining the true… Sofia Butella at Star Trek Beyond. Photo: Paramount Pictures / Allstar

There have been some great science fiction films that were made relatively recently that neither cost the Vulcan planet to make nor tore such a hole in the thematic architecture for hardcore fans. Whedon’s Serenity, perhaps the closest thing to Star Wars that ever hit the big screen before JJ Abrams’ Star Trek movies, cost just $ 39 million (though in 2005). Neill Blomkamp’s District 9 had a budget of $ 30 million four years later, while Gareth Edwards’ Monsters cost a whopping $ 500,000 in 2010. These things can be done.

In addition, Star Trek hardcore fans shouted for a more cerebral vision on the big screen of the epic as a fan of the optimism and moral correctness of the Apollo era. The crash, bang, wallop of high-budget Abrams movies did not always go so well.

There is a training exercise in Star Trek legend known as Kobayashi Maru. It’s a win-win scenario, designed to test the resilience and ability of Starfleet recruits to stay calm in the face of impossible odds (of course Pine’s cheeky Kirk defeated him on his first big screen exit by reprogramming the entire system without the knowledge of his superiors).

Looking at Star Trek tickets in recent years, despite the generally strong reviews, you would think that Paramount was facing its own insurmountable challenge. The truth could not be more different than a Romulan and a Tribble: this is an epic that, in three episodes, is far from doomed. But if Pine is right and a simple budget adjustment for the next film helps speed up the series, the studio may at least consider continuing its mission of boldly going where no one else has gone; with a lower budget.

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