One of the pleasures of J.J. Abram's hit Star Trek movie is seeing "Spock Prime"—original series star Leonard Nimoy—given his due in a respectful and valedictory way, something the stewards of the previous Trek incarnations failed to do.
As Nimoy himself has noted in various interviews (including one with SCI FI Wire), he and Spock himself were callously cast aside and allowed to fade away when the film series transitioned to the Next Generation cast.
But what about the future? When we last see Spock Prime, he's headed off to help the Vulcans preserve whatever culture they can in a new colony after their home planet is destroyed by Nero.
Nimoy spoke with Star Trek Communicator and Official Fan Club founder Dan Madsen about the expected sequel to Abrams' Trek in a wide-ranging interview and was blunt about his prospects:
"I have no illusions on whether or not they need me. They decided that they wanted to make this film using Spock as kind of an anchor for the story, which I think worked very, very well. They don't have to do that again. If they decide they have a role for me to play, I would be very interested in talking to them about it. But I have every reason to believe that they have established a whole new set of characters, and they can sail very well without me, and that's fine. Either way is good with me. I am very gratified that this has happened."
Elsewhere, Nimoy said it's hard to say how Spock Prime might figure into the story anyway:
"It certainly is the beginning of a new era for Spock! It is impossible to predict about me and Spock. I have no idea where they want to go next, and I feel very comfortable either way. I feel very gratified that I have been able to have some kind of closure. If this is the closure, then I am very comfortable with it. I was not happy at all with the closure that was imposed on the Spock character some years ago when Spock was just simply abandoned and Kirk was killed all in one fell swoop! I felt both were great losses to Star Trek. There was no reason to kill Kirk, and there was a neglect of the Spock character. It seemed intentional. It seemed as if someone was saying, 'Well, we have to put a stop to that and start with a whole new era here.' Having had this movie and this experience as Spock and seeing Zachary Quinto in the role now, I feel the character has a potentially wonderful, new life and certainly the success of the movie is just so terrific! It is so wonderful to see this happen and to see Star Trek have a chance of a reinvention and a revival. It was certainly in need of a revival. ... "
What do you believe is Spock Prime's future after this film?
"My sense is that he has some work to do. He talked about establishing a new Vulcan colony, and I think he will be very involved in that. If we never see him again that is what I would imagine he is doing. He is busy rebuilding the Vulcan story."
(Thanks to our friends at TrekMovie.com for the heads-up.)