Sir Patrick Stewart gave his final performance as Professor Charles Xavier in Logan earlier this year — for which he's receiving Best Supporting Actor Oscar buzz — but he could soon return to his other best-known role.
Stewart had previously ruled out ever playing Star Trek: The Next Generation Captain Jean-Luc Picard again, feeling that 2002's film Star Trek: Nemesis was an appropriate sendoff to the U.S.S. Enterprise-D (and -E) crew. He'd given Trek a decade and a half of his life, and understandably wanted to focus on other projects.
So, what's changed his mind? Quentin Tarantino, who reportedly met with J.J. Abrams earlier this week about directing an R-rated Star Trek movie. While Tarantino's story may focus on Kirk and Spock — Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto are contracted for another movie — Stewart wants in, telling the Hollywood Reporter:
People are always saying to me, 'Will you be Jean-Luc Picard again?' And I cannot think that would be possible, but there are ways in which something like that might come about. But one of my dreams is to work with Tarantino. I admire his work so much, and to be in a Tarantino film would give me so much satisfaction. So, if he is going to direct something to do with Star Trek and there was the possibility of dear old Jean-Luc showing up again and doing that for Mr Tarantino, I would embrace it. The one thing that characterizes all of his movies is that frame by frame, it always challenges, always demands your attention, always demands a very kind of open and generous response to what he does. I also love his sense of humor as a filmmaker. So yes, he would be my first choice.
In the past, Tarantino has expressed a preference for the William Shatner-era Original Series over The Next Generation (with the exception of TNG episode "Yesterday's Enterprise") so the director might reject Stewart's offer. Still, Trek fans everywhere would love to see it happen — because otherwise, we'll probably just have to settle for a quick Stewart cameo on The Orville.