Variety has revealed that massive superstar Idris Elba has begun early talks to play the lead villain in Justin Lin’s Star Trek 3. Lin (Fast Five) takes over as director after previous director JJ Abrams left the project to do Star Wars: The Force Awakens but stayed on as producer.
Elba has been eyeing a villain a role as he was previously in the mix to play the titular villain in X-Men Apocalypse, losing-out to Oscar Isaac. He’s also no stranger to science fiction playing Captain Janek in Prometheus.
Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban and the rest of the crew of the USS Enterprise are all on board to return for the third installment with cast member Simon Pegg and Doug Jung overhauling the script with major rewrites.
Word on what the villain for the new film is being kept under wraps by the fan-favorite theory is having the Klingons be the main antagonists for the film but that hasn’t been confirmed. The Variety report does briefly mention them but can’t confirm they’re indeed the baddies.
A war between the Federation and Klingons has been pretty much brewing since the first installment. After the events of Star Trek Into Darkness they’ll figure-out that human weapons were involved with the attack on Kronos. Those events could impact the Enterprise’s five-year mission to explore new worlds. It’s been alluded to that war was on the way no matter the outcome of the second film.
Bryan Cranston was previously linked for a villain role by Film Divider, nothing is saying he’s out of the running or isn’t still playing a villain in the film. This report by Variety fails to mention Bryan or attempt to debunk their casting rumor.
Badass Digest had suggested that the role Cranston could be looked at was Captain Kor, who was the main Klingon antagonist from the original series. Adding that a Cold War setting between the two factions last seen in Undiscovered Country could influence the film.
I’ll even go further and mention equally viable options such as Commander Kurge played by Christopher Lloyd in The Search For Spock or even Christopher Plummer’s General Chang in The Undiscovered Country, who have also tangled with Kirk. Considering they went and used Khan for Into Darkness cherry-picking characters from other films might be an option.
My impression is that Cranston and Elba could play co-villains, if they both end-up landing roles.
Star Trek 3 is official set to hit on July 8th 2016