Sunday, January 4, 2015

Why Justin Lin is perfect for Star Trek 3

Next year Star Trek 3 will be released, in conjunction with the fiftieth anniversary of the franchise.  Previously under the helm of screenwriter and would-be first time director Roberto Orci, it was recently announced that Justin Lin has taken over.

This is a very good thing.  Let me explain why.

Lin is best known for his work in the Fast and the Furious franchise.  He began, curiously enough, with the third installment, 2006's Tokyo Drift, and continued on with 2009's Fast & Furious, 2011's Fast Five, and 2013's Fast & Furious 6, famously integrating cast members introduced in the 2001 original, The Fast and the Furious, 2003's 2 Fast 2 Furious, and his own Tokyo Drift in a series that has become increasingly popular.

The nature of that popularity might seem odd to outsiders, who might assume it's all just a bunch of dumb characters driving fast cars, and thus thoroughly inapplicable to Star Trek.  From the first film, though, this was always a series about family, and that theme has grown with each new film, particularly under Lin's care.  Intricate continuity also plays a vital role in the series, which was something Lin reinforced with Tokyo Drift, which was set years ahead of later entries, until the present caught up with it at the end of Fast & Furious 6.

Don't those sound like attributes you'd love for a director of Star Trek to value, particularly one following in the footsteps of J.J. Abrams, who had similar ambitions in his two films?  With rumors circulating that William Shatner will somehow be involved, Lin seems perfect for the job on all scores.

Beyond these elements, there's also the fact that Star Trek has always been one of the most ethnically-integrated pop culture vehicles.  The closest anyone has come, and arguably even improved on, is the Fast and the Furious franchise.

Sounding better, right?  Besides, as strong as it may seem for a bunch of car thieves, Lin has a great deal of experience with characters who possess a strong moral compass thanks to these movies.  And hey, as a special bonus for those particular Star Trek fans, the bad guy in Fast & Furious was named Braga...

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