At a press day for the release of Star Trek and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen on DVD and Blu-ray, screenwriters Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman discussed the futures of those respective franchises, and offered a few highlights from their upcoming slate of screenplays and producing projects. When asked about their process for developing sequels, Kurtzman said, "Every franchise has a different need, so you have to look at them differently, based on whatever the mandate is. You need to be able to not have seen the first movie to appreciate the second one. But, for us, it's always about going back to the sequels that we loved as kids and asking ourselves why we loved them."
Offering a list of their favorite follow-ups, Kurtzman continued, "there's Empire Strikes Back, Superman II, Aliens, Terminator 2, Star Trek 2. What do all those movies have in common? Well, they're amazing stories all on their own. You didn't have to see the first movie. And, there was some incredible, emotional test of character, in all of those movies. Superman has to give up his powers for love. The Spock and Kirk relationship is tested by Khan. Ripley finds a daughter. All of those things are such big ideas, in and of themselves, and you really can't tell those stories in movie number one because movie number one is very much about establishing a world."
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen debuts on DVD and Blu-ray October 20, 2009, and Star Trek follows on November 17. The following is an edited version of a news conference featuring Orci and Kurtzman.
In terms of Star Trek's expanded universe, are there any elements from the later series that you might want to throw into the next film?
Roberto Orci: I think we'd think about it, just because we do love The Next Generation, but I think our instinct would be to first look at the original series before we considered that. But, all that is on the table for us.
Is there a possibility of doing a Star Trek 2 and 3 back to back?
Alex Kurtzman: It's very, very important to us to make sure that each movie is good, not "Hey, let's do as many as possible." We feel like we've inherited this incredible honor and this mantle of Star Trek, and the most important thing is to make sure that we're protecting that first. So, if the studio wants more than one, great. But, our thinking is going to be very much about the story and whether the story prescribes that there will be more than one. Part of what is great about Star Trek is that it's a continuing adventure, so you naturally think that there will be many, hopefully, but we only focus on what comes next, and then build off of that. Right now, we're not thinking specifically about making 2 and 3. It may come up, but it's not where our heads are at right now.
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