Simon Pegg is opening up about Star Trek Beyond’s lackluster box office performance, and has some specific ideas regarding why the movie failed to connect with audiences as well as its predecessors had.
Speaking with Geek Exchange recently, the actor — who played Montgomery “Scotty” Scott in the rebooted series and co-wrote the third film — said he felt the film was “poorly marketed,” which resulted in it under-performing financially.
“If you look at a film like Suicide Squad, that was around for such a long time before it finally came out and people were so aware of it. Whereas with Star Trek Beyond, it was left too late before they started their marketing push,” Pegg shared. “It still did great business, but it was disappointing compared to [Star Trek Into Darkness].”
Beyond, which hit theaters in July 2016, had a budget of $ 185 million, but only managed to make back $ 158.8 million domestically and $ 343.6 million worldwide.
By comparison, Into Darkness earned a worldwide box office gross of $ 467.3 million off a $ 190 million budget.
Some fans of the franchise have said the film’s first trailer — which was set the Beastie Boy’s “Sabotage” and focused primarily on the movie’s action sequences instead of its characters or levity — turned them off to the idea of watching it.
According to Pegg, the trailer actually spoiled the movie’s major climactic scene.
“I was really angry about that,” he said. “[The trailer] used ‘Sabotage,’ which was our surprise moment in the end. It was supposed to be a very fun and heightened twist, and something that was a big surprise and they blew it in the first trailer, which really annoyed me.”
Pegg also lamented the fact that the promos “made the film look like a boneheaded action film.”
While Pegg was disappointed about the film’s advertising campaign, the 48-year-old actor — who is currently appearing in Steven Speilberg’s new sci-fi epic Ready Player One — he appreciated the love the film ended up getting from many fans.
“From a professional standpoint for me, it was such a great experience in the end, because the critical response that we did get was exactly what [co-writer] Doug Jung and I and [director] Justin Lin had hoped for.”
As for the upcoming fourth film in the franchise, Pegg explained that there is “a script that’s been written.” However, things are somewhat up in the air amid the news that Quentin Tarantino could be involved with the creation of the next installment in the franchise.
“There’s also the story of Quentin Tarantino coming and chatting with J.J. [Abrams] about an idea that he’s had for a long time. That idea is going into the writer’s room to be looked at,” Pegg said. “I think it might take something like him to restart it.”
The actor admitted that Tarantino penning a Star Trek script could actually be “an interesting proposition.”
“I don’t know if that means everybody will be blowing each other’s heads off with phasers and calling Klingons mother f*****s, but, who knows?” Pegg said. “That could be fun.”
However, before any iteration of a new Star Trek hits the big screen, Pegg will also be starring alongside Tom Cruise in the upcoming Mission: Impossible – Fallout.
ET’s Cameron Mathison caught up with Pegg at the Hollywood premiere of Ready Player One on Monday, and he opened up about working alongside Cruise for the third time in the series, and the wild stunts the movie promises — including one that led to Cruise getting seriously hurt.
“It was almost a year [of shooting]. We took some time out [of production] because Tom broke his foot, but he recovered in a bizarrely quick way as only he probably would,” Pegg joked. “[But] it’s crazy what we do in this one. I mean, it’s falling off things again, but higher and more dangerous.”
According to Pegg, the take showing Cruise’s injury is actually in the film. “Your foot shouldn’t touch your knee, not on the same leg. But it did and it’s gross,” he joked.
While he said he’s impressed by Cruise’s dedication, he’s concerned about the star’s determination to one-up himself in each Mission: Impossible film.
“I worry because every time we do one he has to kind of raise the bar and at some point that’s going to mean death,” Pegg said.
Ready Player One comes out March 29. Mission: Impossible – Fallout explodes into theaters July 27.