Quentin Tarantino Turned Down Directing Star Trek For a Very Somber Reason

Quentin Tarantino Turned Down Directing Star Trek For a Very Somber Reason
Image credit: Paramount Pictures, Legion-Media

The director had to ask himself some tough questions as he considered making the movie.


  • Quentin Tarantino almost made a Star Trek movie.
  • The director took his vow to make only ten films very seriously.
  • Tarantino's version of Star Trek would have had the director's famous dark flair.

It's been over seven years since the release of the last Star Trek movie. And it would seem that audiences have forgotten all about the franchise, but recently news of Quentin Tarantino's possible involvement in the film has resurfaced, rekindling fans' interest.

Apparently, the acclaimed director and actor, known for such gory and violent films as Pulp Fiction, The Hateful Eight, and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, was offered the chance to create an installment of the fan-favorite cosmic odyssey franchise. But he didn't, and it turns out there's a thought-provoking reason behind Tarantino's decision.

A Perfect Swan Song

Quentin Tarantino, one of Hollywood's most prolific directors, is known for his unusual approach to filmmaking. He's also known for his extensive knowledge of film history, strong opinions, and a very peculiar retirement plan.

'I like that I will leave a 10-film filmography,' he told Deadline in a 2014 interview,'and so I've got two more to go after [The Hateful Eight]. It's not etched in stone, but that is the plan. If I get to the tenth, do a good job and don't screw it up, well, that sounds like a good way to end the old career.'

Since then, he has repeated the same statement many times, so it looks like Quentin is true to his word, but that commitment came with a price. Considering that the latest Star Trek installment would have been his tenth film, it's no wonder that Tarantino thought so much about whether he should direct it at all.

And according to screenwriter Mark L. Smith, who was supposed to co-write the movie with him, that was the reason why the beloved director ultimately turned down the project.

'Quentin and I went back and forth, he was gonna do some stuff on it, and then he started worrying about the number, his kind of unofficial number of films. I remember we were talking, and he goes, 'If I can just wrap my head around the idea that Star Trek could be my last movie, the last thing I ever do. Is this how I want to end it?' And I think that was the bump he could never get across, so the script is still sitting there on his desk,' Smith said in a recent interview.

A Lost Masterpiece

Although the movie never came to be, the screenwriter is adamant that it would have been 'the greatest Star Trek film' thanks to Quentin Tarantino's involvement. Furthermore, it would've been a very different Star Trek movie.

'I think his vision was just to go hard. It was a hard R. It was going to be some Pulp Fiction violence. Not a lot of the language, we saved a couple things for just special characters to kind of drop that into the Star Trek world, but it was just really the edginess and the kind of that Tarantino flair, man, that he was bringing to it. It would have been cool,' Mark L. Smith added.

Source: Deadline, Collider.

Would you like to see a Quentin Tarantino Star Trek movie?