22 May 2024

STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS, London Press Conference – 2nd May, 2013


Star Trek Into Darkness (2013), the latest instalment in what must rank as one of television and film’s longest running Sci-fi franchises, is quite literally out of this world. So it was only fitting that the location for today’s London press conference was the futuristic setting of the London City Hall. Gathered together, ahead on tonight’s world premier in Leicester Square, was a virtual galaxy of stellar stars including Benedict Cumberbatch, Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoë Saldana, Alice Eve, Simon Pegg, Karl Urban and John Cho, along with director J. J. Abrams, producers Bryan Burke and Damon Lindelof and writers Robert Orci and Alex Kurtzman.

First off the assembled press were eager to know what attracted the cast and crew to become involved with something as iconic as Star Trek. “I wasn’t a fan of the original Star Trek,” admitted Abrams. “But as soon as I got in contact with the writers and the rest of the team for Star Trek (2009) it began to become exciting.” Saldana also revealed that her interest in the show was relatively recent. “I was more of a Star Wars fan and always thought that Star Trek was a show for older people. However my mum had watched the original show, so when I became involved I felt humbled to be part of something which she had loved.

The methods in which they found inspiration for their characters was something focused on by several cast members. Cumberbatch, whose well known for several iconic fictional characters including Sherlock Holmes on TV, explained that bringing characters alive on the screen can sometimes be daunting. “It can be overwhelming so I like to start with a blank canvas and approach it from the angle that this is brand new and no one has ever done it before. Then I put my trust in the writers and the people behind the scenes and get my inspiration from them.” Saldana’s inspiration came from a little closer to home. “I got a feeling of how it should be through talking to my mum about her memories of the show” she explained, whilst Pine’s was actually pretty basic, “I just like the fact that Kirk is a fighter, and gives it all he’s got.”

Bringing their individual characters to life on the screen was not without its challenges however. “My character, Harrison, could have appeared stereotype. But I believe you can both abhor him and feel for him. You can sympathise with his cause” explained Cumbberbatch. “I also had to work out a lot to get in shape which was fun, and eat a lot of chicken.” Fitness also featured in Eve’s regime. “Keeping up with Abrams was an experience. I don’t look the best running on screen, so that was something I had to work on.” Where Pegg was concerned though it was the authenticity of his character’s Scottish accent which was questioned. “Half my family, including my wife, are Scottish, so I worked really hard this time round on improving my accent. Scottish people on the whole have been very positive about how I sound. Any criticism tends to come from the English.

In closing there was only one question which remained to be asked, though some of the cast may have been slightly reticent at admitting the truth. Did they get to keep any mementoes from the film? “During the making of the first film all Spock’s ears were cut up after filming,” said Quinto. “This time round I made sure I got to keep a couple of pairs.” As for Pegg, always the joker of the pack, he made a sheepish admission, apologizing to Abrams. “You had to hand everything back at the end of each day on the first movie. This time I kept my Star Fleet badge – it’s beautiful, but I would have kept anything I could.”

Cleaver Patterson

The Good folks at Film Beat have sent us over the video premiere report from UK premier of Star Trek Into Darkness

Full Coverage of Star Trek Into Darkness can be found here.

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