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Get ready for the return of Chris Pine's Captain Kirk.
At Tuesday's ViacomCBS Investors Event, where the company announced that they rebranded themselves as Paramount, Paramount Pictures President/CEO Brian Robbins and producer J.J. Abrams revealed that a new Star Trek movie with Chris Pine and the rest of the Kelvin crew is going forward.
Robbins also announced that a major expansion of their Nickelodeon Studios IP is in the works as well, including new SpongeBob spin-offs, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and an animated Transformers series.
On the Star Trek front, no story details were given about the long-gestating sequel to 2016's Star Trek Beyond, but we did get a release date: December 22, 2023.
In addition to Pine being in talks to reprise his role as Captain Kirk, the rest of the core crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise — Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, John Cho, and Karl Urban — are also set to return to their iconic roles of Spock, Uhura, Sulu, and McCoy, respectively. Executive producer J.J. Abrams, in an investors-only exclusive, revealed that they intend to get Pine and the full cast back and be in production by the end of 2022.
In 2021, Paramount announced that Matt Shankman (WandaVision) would direct.
For live-action Transformers fans, Transformers: Rise of the Beasts starring Anthony Ramos (In the Heights), is slated for 2023, and will be the first of a new live-action Transformers trilogy.
On the animated Transformers front, Robbins announced that Nickelodeon and Hasbro are co-producing a brand-new animated series, Transformers: EarthSpark. The 26-episode series will launch this fall and feature a new generation of Transformers robots: "The first Transformers robots to be born on Earth."
The animated series will be set in present day on Earth, and also include Optimus Prime and Bumblebee. Theatrically, there is also an untitled Paramount Animation and eOne (Hasbro’s entertainment studio co-production) animated Transformers movie directed by Josh Cooley set to debut in theaters on July 19, 2024.
Down in Bikini Bottom, Nickelodeon has set three brand-new movies based on SpongeBob SquarePants original characters for a Paramount+ release, with the first dropping in 2023. There is also a fourth theatrical SpongeBob movie in development that will go to theaters first.
To top it all off, Point Grey Pictures’ Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg are producing a new animated theatrical Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie directed by Jeff Rowe, set for release in 2023. And on the heels of that release, Nickelodeon Animation will release a 2023 Paramount+ series featuring villain-centric original films covering the "never-before-told tales" of the baddies that are set within the new theatrical film's canon.