As reported by ScreenRant, the creative minds behind the 2009 ‘Star Trek’ reboot revealed their source of inspiration for Captain James T. Kirk and Mr. Spock: The Beatles’ John Lennon and Paul McCartney.
In the book ‘The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years,‘ co-writer Roberto Orci is revealed to be influenced by the dynamic between the two music icons to shape the relationship between the movie’s central characters. As per ScreenRant, he said:
“We looked at John Lennon and Paul McCartney’s friendship as part of our model for Kirk and Spock when we were writing. They were opposites and they bonded very young because they both lost their mothers when they were teens.
They might not have actually gotten along at the time had it not been for that kind of bond. They were the only ones who understood each other’s pain, so they were definitely an influence on our view of Kirk and Spock.”
He then explained who was who:
“You know, Star Trek and the Beatles were products of the sixties, so sometimes you have to tie it all together. By the way, Spock is Lennon, because Paul is the optimist who can see through the pain and still keep his chin up. That’s Kirk. Spock is a little more fatalistic with his logic, as John Lennon was.”
Roberto Orci Believed Kirk and Spock Were Shakespearean Characters
Directed by J.J. Abrams and written by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, ‘Star Trek‘ (2009) presents an alternate reality that allows for new explorations of the characters first brought to life in the 1960s television series. This alternate reality reimagines the backstory of Kirk and Spock, who were portrayed by Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto.
The foundation of Kirk and Spock’s relationship in the film is deeply influenced by the personal and musical connection between Lennon and McCartney. Orci, in previous discussions and interviews, again emphasized how the two Starfleet officers’ friendship mirrors the Beatles’ members’ synergy. Resembling the two as Shakespearian characters, he told TrekMovie.com the following in 2007:
“Spock and Kirk and Bones are Shakespearian in that they are so archetypal in their relationships. One of the things we have approached Kirk and Spock with is like Lennon and McCartney whose background is also very archetypal. They have managed to become characters who are more than the sum of the actors, more than the sum of the writing, they are pop culture icons.”
Upon its release, ‘Star Trek’ (2009) received widespread acclaim, grossing over $385.7 million worldwide and securing an Academy Award for Best Makeup — the first in the franchise’s history. Its success also led to two sequels, ‘Star Trek Into Darkness‘ (2013) and ‘Star Trek Beyond‘ (2016). There will also be a prequel, announced for development in 2024.