Producer (and former franchise director) J.J. Abrams has been teasing it during the Star Trek Beyond press tour and now it’s official: The new Star Trek series (now often referred to as the “Kelvin Timeline” movies) will get a fourth installment. And much like the fourth installment of the original Trek franchise, this one will involve time travel. Via a press release:

In the next installment of the epic space adventure, Chris Pine’s Captain Kirk will cross paths with a man he never had a chance to meet, but whose legacy has haunted him since the day he was born: his father. Chris Hemsworth, who appeared in 2009’s “STAR TREK,” will return to the space saga as George Kirk to star alongside Pine. The remaining cast is expected to return. 

Hemsworth, seen above, appeared in the opening of Abrams’ first Star Trek, where he played George Kirk, the captain of the U.S.S. Kelvin (hence the sort of official name for this film series), who is killed in an attack by a time traveling group of Romulans. This act is what sparks the big break in the Trek continuity that creates the films starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, and the rest of the new Trek crew. (Here’s part of the scene in question, with a fairly hefty SPOILER warning if you never saw this movie:)

The first Star Trek IV took the Enterprise crew back to modern times (i.e. 1986) where they had to find and steal some humpback whales to bring back to the future, where they’ve gone extinct. It looks like a similar threat will bring the younger Enterprise back to the past, to before George Kirk’s death, for a team-up of Kirks (and Chrises).

There’s been some speculation that with a new Star Trek series coming to TV next year, this could be the end of the Kelvin Timeline movies. Apparently, that is not the case. Time travel is funny like that. Star Trek Beyond opens in theaters this Friday.

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