X-Men's Simon Kinberg Is Working On The Next Star Trek Movie, But As A Fan, I Have Some Major Concerns

 Zefram Cochrane in Star Trek: First Contact.
Zefram Cochrane in Star Trek: First Contact.

A new Star Trek movie is on the way, and it has a familiar producer joining what already sounds like a wild project. Simon Kinberg, known for many projects including overseeing much of the X-Men franchise when it was with Fox, will be a producer on a new movie that will serve as a prequel story to Trek's prime timeline. The recent news has given me major concerns without even getting into the fact that First Contact is already the definitive prequel story.

As the resident Star Trek fan who recently reiterated I have zero interest in seeing Quentin Tarantino's movie brought to life, I'm now sharing my concerns for Simon Kinberg entering this franchise too. At the risk of sounding like an over-protective parent who thinks the new person dating their child is "bad news," here are some of the red flags I have with the news about this latest Trek movie arriving sometime in 2025.

La'an Noonien-Singh in Star Trek: Strange New Worlds on Paramount+
La'an Noonien-Singh in Star Trek: Strange New Worlds on Paramount+

Simon Kinberg Has Had Zero Involvement With The New Era Of Star Trek Television

The biggest detail about this new project is that according to Variety, it takes place in the main timeline shortly after First Contact. The "main timeline," otherwise known as the "prime timeline," hasn't been touched by the major Star Trek feature films for many years. Instead, the "Kelvin timeline" was created, providing a clear and distinct separation between the movie and television divisions of Star Trek.

Now it seems like Paramount is interested in once again bringing the Prime timeline to theaters, and yet it's not doing it by featuring Star Trek: Section 31 with Oscar winner Michelle Yeoh on the big screen. Instead, we're getting Simon Kinberg and a director from Andor on this new movie, neither of whom have been involved with the work on television since 2017.

When CinemaBlend spoke to Jonathan Frakes, he mentioned the separation between the Star Trek movie and television divisions. When they take place within separate universes, it's not really a big deal. However, when the canon is beholden to whatever this movie is about for upcoming Star Trek shows going forward, I'd like to know that Alex Kurtzman and others have some say in what's going on. Thus far, I haven't seen anything that states that, so I do have some fears based on that fact alone. The idea of someone potentially undoing the hard work of many with a wild movie that has to be acknowledged is very scary as a fan.

Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique in Dark Phoenix
Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique in Dark Phoenix

Simon Kinberg Produced Much Of X-Men's Movie Era, Which Struggled With Keeping Its Canon Consistent

There's no denying that were some great X-Men movies that Simon Kinberg played a part in, but there are also some others that weren't that great as well. Yes, he was the Days Of Future Past writer, but he also wrote The Last Stand, Apocalypse and Dark Phoenix. In the eyes of critics, he's behind a lot more misses for the X-Men than hits. This Trek movie is being written Toby Haynes, so one would reckon he won't have total control over the overall script as a producer.

What's worse is that the franchise as a whole during the Fox era had a lot of trouble keeping its continuity straight, which is what I fear most about Simon Kinberg making a movie set in Star Trek's prime timeline. Pretty much all of the positive things going on for this franchise at the moment exist in the prime timeline. Now we have this movie on the way that is set to detail the time after First Contact, which is one of the biggest cornerstones of the Star Trek lore.

Granted, I would think that there are some people in the know at Paramount who recognize this and have measures in place to ensure the movie doesn't go too far off the rails in any one direction. After all, who wants to make a movie that is so bad it potentially jeopardizes the shows as well? Obviously that's a bit of an alarmist take on my end, and it's a bit unfair to not even give this movie a fair shake with little information to go on. Still, there's no harm in being cautious, especially with a movie that has so much power.

Jonathan Frakes and Patrick Stewart look ahead with concern in Star Trek: First Contact.
Jonathan Frakes and Patrick Stewart look ahead with concern in Star Trek: First Contact.

The Next Major Star Trek Movie Needs To Be A Hit

When Star Trek hits at the box office, great things can happen. It was J.J. Abrams' 2009 Kelvin timeline movie that injected life into the stagnant franchise, which was struggling to find legs after Enterprise's cancellation. Now, it feels like we've entered a situation in which it's the opposite way around, and the success of the shows has encouraged the film division to try and draw on the popularity of the prime timeline.

This movie must be a hit, especially for those who want to see Star Trek continue to have a future in Hollywood. Sure, the franchise has survived box office bombs and poor reviews from critics in past releases, but there hasn't been a movie on screens in eight years. It's officially the longest gap between Trek movies, and that gap could be even longer if this new movie ends up being a poorly-reviewed flop at the box office.

All of this is to say that if the plan is for Paramount to bring in Simon Kinberg to oversee the future of Star Trek movies, I do hope that it ends up being something that truly gets this franchise up and rolling again in theaters. I also hope that this movie draws on some of the talent that has made the prime timeline such a success, but of course, only the biggest names put butts in seats when it comes to major motion pictures. I guess we'll see what the plan is as we get closer to the movie's arrival in 2025.

CinemaBlend will continue to track the development of the next Star Trek movie to hit theaters, as well as keep our fingers crossed that it is only destined for success. Continue to check in for more updates in the meantime, and fire up that Paramount+ subscription to see what all is going on in this new era of the franchise if you haven't already.