William Shatner criticises Star Trek reboots over "gratuitous" character appearance

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The original Star Trek captain, William Shatner aka Captain Kirk, recently spoke out about his disapproval of the Star Trek movie reboots. Speaking with the Express, the famous actor described how he disliked a specific element of the new films, the first of which released in 2009.

Directed by J.J. Abrams, the reboot featured the likes of Chris Pine as Kirk, Zachary Quinto as Spock, Zoey Saldana as Uhura, Simon Pegg as Scotty and numerous others reprising iconic characters from the first TV series. 

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The Star Trek reboots were set in an alternative timeline. The first of which followed the crew as they fought against a Romulan named Nero. Time travel was a key plot device, as the late Leonard Nemoy reprised his role as Spock from the future. 

Critics mostly review Abram's reboot trilogy positively. The first film in the trilogy broke the record for the most positive critic reviews. However, each subsequent sequel reviewed less positively, and a number of Star Trek fans were critical of the reboot trilogy. 

A “gratuitous” appearance

One of those critics is none other than Captain Kirk himself. William Shatner told the Express that he found Leonard Nemoy’s Spock reprisal “totally gratuitous”. Nemoy starred alongside Zackary Quinto as Spock Prime, travelling back from the original series' timeline to change the past. 

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Shatner went into more detail, stating: “Leonard Nimoy was in some of those films, but it was totally gratuitous. They just wanted to put Spock in there and I didn’t admire that.”

The interview took place during the promotion of Shatner's latest film, Senior Moment. Shatner also expressed interest in potentially returning to the series in the future.

On one condition

Shatner expresses his interest in returning to the series on one condition, any role he plays must be relevant to the plot: “If they could come up with a way of putting a character I played in a movie where it functioned as a point in the movie [and] made the movie move along, I’d be delighted.”

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Star Trek has gone through a cultural revival in recent years. There are numerous shows currently in production, including a second season of the Picard reboot. With so many projects in development, it's not unrealistic to imagine Kirk reprising his role as the original captain.  

“I spend the time speculating why Star Trek has been and is so popular. In fact, nobody really knows. So I would be delighted to be a part of Star Trek if it was something worthy.”

Captain Kirk canonically died in 1994’s Star Trek Generations after starring alongside Patrick Stewart who portrayed Captain Picard. In the movie, Captain Picard finds Kirk inside the Nexus, a place between space and time. Kirk is fatally injured after the pair teamed up to take down Soran.

Read More: The best Star Trek captains, according to us