Tag Archives: Zoe Saldana

Weekend Outlook: Star Trek Beyond

What does this weekend look like for new releases? Two more sequels crash upon theaters this weekend and while they may not be total busts, both are probably going to fall short of the previous installments in their respective series. Star Trek Beyond and Ice Age: Collision Course represent the 21st and 22nd wide release sequels this year. Only four of them (Finding DoryCaptain America: Civil War, The Purge: Election Year and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice) have been able to outperform their franchise predecessor at the box office. Also opening this weekend is the new PG-13 thriller Lights Out from producer James Wan.

Star Trek Beyond

The third film in the rebooted franchise. It makes me nervous that there is no J.J. Abrams. Instead, it is being helmed by Justin Lin (Fast & Furious) although he wasn’t even the original choice. The original reboot of the series in 2009 was great and it enabled us to explore this world with a new reimagined cast. Because they had a blank slate to work with, I was a bit disappointed that Into Darkness was essentially a remake of Wrath of Khan. It was an acceptable remake, but I’m hoping we don’t see whales in Beyond. Regardless, I think it will easily end up on the top of the charts this weekend after Secret Life of Pets snuck past Ghostbusters to lead the box office for a second week in a row.

Ice Age: Collision Course

This weekend’s second sequel is likely going to fall short of second place in the weekend as it goes head to head with an original property in The Secret Life of Pets. I don’t like to hate on films, but this Ice Age series needs to go extinct. Interestingly, no Ice Age film has ever opened below $41 million. But this is the fifth in the series, sequels have not fared well so far this year, and we have had a very strong season of animation which I don’t think will help. I think it will be very close, but Pets will freeze Ice Age in 3rd place this weekend.

Lights Out

The final wide release is one that I won’t be watching unless it is a matinee showing. I’m not a huge fan of horror films but anything with James Wan’s name attached seems to have a leg up on the competition. Lights Out looks scary and with a budget of less than $5 million, I think it is safe to say that Lights Out will be in the green after one weekend in theaters. It won’t be enough to compete with Ghostbusters in its second weekend, but I think a respectable $15 million showing is very likely since it is doing well critically and there is no other genre competition right now.

How do you think these movies are going to do? My predictions are below. I’d love to hear what you are watching this weekend, even if you are just binge watching  Stranger Things on Netflix.

  • Star Trek Beyond – $60 Million
  • The Secret Life of Pets – $27 Million
  • Ice Age: Collision Course – $26 Million
  • Ghostbusters – $24 Million
  • Lights Out – $15 Million

Saldana and Quinto Talk Star Trek Beyond

After 2013’s Star Trek Into Darkness was criticized for leaning too heavily on fan service and references to previous Trek films, this summer’s Star Trek Beyond is shaping up to be something different. This time around, the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise are in the midst of their five year journey through space, where they encounter a new adversary in Krall (Idris Elba). This villain could potentially be the most menacing threat Captain Kirk (Chris Pine) and his friends have faced yet, seeing that Krall vehemently opposes the ideals of the Federation and everything it stands for.

Not only does this sound like a refreshing change-of-pace after two largely Earth bound stories, the setup also allows director Justin Lin to place the characters in situations we haven’t seen them in yet. Crashing and trying to survive on an alien planet is tough in it of itself, but being out in space for so long is sure to take a mental toll as well. According to stars Zachary Quinto and Zoe Saldana, who play Spock and Uhura, respectively, the Enterprise crew is going to be pushed in ways unlike anything else before.

Speaking with EW, Saldana offered her thoughts on the state of the crew collectively and how the adversity they find themselves in poses a tremendous challenge:

“We’re tired, we need time off, we’ve been working non-stop, and it’s become like a machine where you kind of forget about yourself, but you need to go back home and nurture yourself and rest. Life has a different journey for us, and instead of us having to go out and aid another population, another planet that has been the target of violence, we are the target, so this is very different. We are tested at the craziest level and not just our lives are tested, but our characters and our relationships are tested.”

It will be interesting to see how the relationships evolve over the course of Beyond. Based on the trailers, it seems as if once the Enterprise crashes, the characters are scattered across the planet and end up working in pairs to get back together. For instance, Spock is working with Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy (Karl Urban), while Scotty (Simon Pegg) finds a new ally in the alien Jaylah (Sofia Boutella). Quinto told EW that the characters spend time with “unusual compatriots,” which will most likely lead to fascinating dynamics and interactions. Fans know that Spock and Bones are opposites, but they find a new appreciation for each other as they persevere through the obstacles. The Enterprise crew already had great chemistry, but those friendships will possibly be stronger after Beyond.

Arguably, Spock will be going through the most in this third film. In his interview, Quinto addressed Spock’s inner turmoil as he’s torn between his “Starfleet obligations and Vulcan roots”:

“[He is] in this existential moment in his life and at a crossroads between his obligation to his Starfleet and his Vulcan roots. His planet was destroyed and they’re rebuilding, and he’s trying to figure out where his energy is best directed to help other people. He comes into a new awareness of his own mortality for a number of reasons, and there’s a lot of stuff that he’s trying to figure out in this film. By the end, I think he realizes the best path for himself moving forward.”


The second trailer for Beyond hinted at an intriguing character arc for Kirk, but Spock will have plenty of rich material of his own. Throughout the rebooted series, the character has always been trying to balance the two sides of his life. This includes his ongoing romance with Uhura. Quinto mentioned that Spock is wondering if he should be with a Vulcan, and Uhura “recognizes” his doubts. The two “want each other to be happy, to be fulfilled, to serve their purpose, and to realize their potential.” The actor obviously wouldn’t elaborate further, but Spock and Uhura could be going through some serious changes as they look to discover the best path for them to follow.

With Lin at the helm, Beyond was always going to have exciting action set pieces, but these comments from Quinto and Saldana indicate that there will be a lot of substance to compliment the style. The movie promises to be a deconstruction of the classic sci-fi property and convey the best of the Original Series, so there are a variety of angles for the filmmakers to explore. As Paramount plans a Star Trek 4, they could very well have a winner that will reinvigorate enthusiasm audiences have for Star Trek.

Star Trek Beyond hits U.S. theaters July 22, 2016.

Source: EW