Star Trek's Kelvin Universe's future is looking grim as it loses another director this time in Matt Shakman, who had to drop out due to a scheduling conflict. He's in talks to join Marvel Studios for its latest reboot of The Fantastic Four to succeed the departing Jon Watts. Watts was responsible for the MCU Spider-Man trilogy for Sony, most notably in 2021's No Way Home. Fantastic Four will be the franchise's second live-action reboot following the 2005 and 2015 incarnations.
"Matt Shakman is an incredibly talented filmmaker, and we regret the timing didn't align for him to direct our upcoming Star Trek film," Paramount Pictures said in a statement. "We are grateful for his many contributions, are excited about the creative vision of this next chapter and look forward to bringing it to audiences all around world." The director's stock has been on the rise since breaking out on the FX comedy It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and later working on the HBO high fantasy series Game of Thrones. Marvel recruited him to be the showrunner for their first MCU TV series on Disney+ WandaVision, which garnered critical acclaim including three Emmys.
Shakman was brought to revitalize the theatrical end of the Star Trek franchise that starred Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, John Cho, and the late Anton Yelchin. The last film was 2016's Star Trek Beyond directed by Justin Lin. The most recent version of the script came from Josh Friedman and Cameron Squires, working off a draft from Lindsey Beer and Geneva Robertson-Dworet. Paramount talked to directors Quentin Tarantino and Noah Hawley for the untitled fourth Kelvin Universe film before deciding on Shakman. Paramount's announcement of Star Trek 4 also came as a surprise to its own cast members back in February. A new search is underway to find Shakman's replacement. | The Hollywood Reporter