Ahlan! Gets The Lowdown Ahead of Star Trek Filming
As the spaceship lands in Dubai, we got to hear what the cast and crew of the new film Star Trek Beyond ahead of filming, during their recent press conference.
Simon Pegg, in terms of your approach, you’re no stranger to these parts having worked out here on several occasions in years gone by but equally there’s an aspect of tradition. Is that something you’re looking to marry in to the film?
When we were taking on the story, we knew it was the 50th anniversary and we felt like we had to embrace a lot of what Star Trek is about but we’re almost making a new Star Trek where the films are forever-changing. There was a challenge for us to marry the two – the traditional Star Trek everyone grew up watching and our Star Trek which is more new.
Chris Pine, are you excited about the challenges that lie ahead out here on location?
I always love discovering new places. This is such a stunning city. I woke up this morning and opened up the blinds and looked out, it looks like the future. It’s incredible and I’m happy to be here with friends.
Zachary Quinto, do experiences like this, where you spend time with each other on set, does that bond you and create a special relationship?
I feel like we’re so lucky to travel the world the way we do and also do what we love and on top of that do it with people that we enjoy spending time with. We just came from Vancouver and it felt like a summer camp experience, being away from home and finding time to connect with each other. There’s something about discovering new places together so we’re looking forward to that here.
Karl Urban, a man being part of the franchise since the reboot, do you feel like you have a responsibility to Trekkies the world over?
I personally feel that what I concentrate on is that I’m doing the best thing I can do and as being a long term fan of Star Trek, I try not to think too much about what the fans are going to think about it because I don’t want to put more pressure on the situation on myself and the group. I am absolutely thrilled to be here. I have a few days off and I brought my family so I’m looking forward to exploring and hearing about culture, religion and politics.
Anton Yelchin, in terms of the hard work that lies ahead, is it all hard work and no play or do you have downtime?
I’m fortunate because I do have downtime. I’m so fascinated by the city and, this is going to sound so pretentious but as a student of architecture, I’m fascinated by this town and it’s magical. I’m so fortunate to be here with friends and I’m grateful for the city.
Idris Elba, you’re the new boy to a certain degree. You’ve been here a couple of times but are you looking forward to the challenges that lie ahead?
I’ve been with these guys for the past three or four months and I couldn’t have asked for a better group to work with so the challenges have been out of the way. Here in Dubai, we have a very exciting time in front of me. I am super excited to be here and I’ve been all over the world, I love to see how different countries approach film making. I’ve been from Jamaica to South Africa to England and America so I’m excited to see how we face the challenges here.
From a cultural point of view, do you think cinema bridges cultures?
Simon: I think Star Trek is the ultimate expression of that. Imagine a universe where there is no conflict, of course we’re fighting aliens but it is very much about cultural bridging. I think that’s why Star Trek is so beloved because it gives is this utopian ideal world where we can live together. It’s a wonderful thing.
Zachary Quinto, playing Spock for the first time after Leonard’s passing, is there any difference to the role or if you managed to have any last contact with him?
We were incredibly close, he was like a father to me as our relationship evolved over the last eight years. I’ve been in touch with him and his family towards the end of his life. There was another interesting that happened in the wake of that, coming back to the role for the first time without him, I felt the significance of the responsibility. He had such a profound and positive impact on the world because of his portrayal of this role and what he created with his character has so much depth and people can connect to him. I’ve always wanted to do good work and we give everything we have.
Idris Elba, how do you think your role will playout in the movie and what do you hope for fans of Star Trek to see you in the movie?
I am a fan of the films prior to this one and I think they’re amazing. Coming in to the project, I want to break new ground and play an interesting and dynamic character. I hope the fans accept my portrayal of my character. I’m having an incredible time doing it. I’ve never done a press conference during the filming so this is weird for me.
Simon Pegg, when you were given the opportunity to write this one, was it the best moment of your life or was it a moment of dread that you were suddenly in the position to write about something that’s a part of history?
Well, it is now! It was something that happened quickly and it was a good creative moment to work in. The conditions for writing a movie was partly favourable, the other part we had to do was very quick. Working with Justin has been great and it’s been a good experience.
Idris Elba, you’re playing a villain but there’s speculation you’re playing the world’s greatest hero? Which do you prefer; villain or hero?
I prefer the villain but at this point I can’t confirm if I’m playing a villain! I can tell you that most actors will tell you that writers will tend to flesh out villains more because they just want to get stuff off their chest. Leading characters tend to take a safer line and I’ve played both. I’ve enjoyed the expressions that you take on when you’re playing a villainous role.