A couple weeks ago, we got the joyous news that Roberto Orci would not be directing Star Trek 3. Although Edgar Wright‘s name was floated as a possible replacement, five other choices have emerged with Rise of the Planet of the Apes director Rupert Wyatt as the frontrunner. Paramount is apparently high on Wyatt for the gig, and he’s met with the studio. But Deadline reports there are four other directors who might be steering the Starship Enterprise to its new destination.
Hit the jump for more on Paramount’s candidates for their Star Trek 3 director. Paramount is aiming to release the film in 2016, which would mark the series 50th anniversary. [Update: One of the directors has taken himself out of the running. More after the jump.]
According to Deadline, Paramount is also considering Morten Tyldum (The Imitation Game), Daniel Espinosa (Safe House), Justin Lin (Fast & Furious 3 – 6), and Duncan Jones (Source Code).
Breaking down the choices, Tyldum could become a very hot director depending on how far The Imitation Game goes in the awards race and how well it does with audiences. Right now, the movie is only in 25 theaters, but will be expanding throughout the holiday season, and I could easily see it being this year’s The King’s Speech.
Espinosa recently wrapped Child 44 starring Tom Hardy, but he’s expected to follow it up with the Boston Marathon bombing story Boston Strong, which is about the hunt for the terrorist. Additionally, the movie is trying to film in time to get footage from the upcoming Boston Marathon, which is on April 20th.
Lin’s schedule recently opened up with the Bourne Legacy sequel getting delayed to make room for a new Bourne film starring Matt Damon and directed by Paul Greengrass. However, there’s the possibility that Lin might return to the Fast & Furious franchise to direct back-to-back sequels.
Jones is currently working on Warcraft, which is set for release on March 11, 2016. It would be remarkable if he was able to crank out two major movies for one year, but it’s been done before by other directors.
I don’t know what Wyatt’s take is on the material, but looking at the other four choices, I can see why he’s the frontrunner. He’s got blockbuster experience under his belt; his latest film, The Gambler, is finished any ready to be released in theaters; he’s not attached to any other big name projects; and he was circling Star Trek 3 over a year ago, and received an unofficial endorsement from J.J. Abrams. That could be more than enough to put him in the captain’s chair.
Update: Jones has tweeted that he won’t be directing Star Trek 3 because he’d prefer to do an original project as his follow-up to Warcraft:
Very flattering being on short list for Star Trek, but won't be doing it. Absolutely MUST make my own thing next, or I'll die of old age!
— Duncan Jones (@ManMadeMoon) December 15, 2014