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Confirming an earlier rumor, Deadline reports Star Trek 3 co-writer Roberto Orci is the frontrunner to direct the film, stepping in for J.J. Abrams, who left the Paramount Pictures franchise to helm Star Wars: Episode VII.
It would mark the directorial debut of Orci, who co-wrote the first two Star Trek films, and is collaborating with Patrick McKay and John D. Payne on the third. Orci’s interest in the sequel became public last month in a story about he and longtime writing and producing partner Alex Kurtzman deciding to pursue separate film interests.
According to Deadline, Skydance Productions has been backing Orci’s pursuit of the Star Trek 3 director’s chair, but Paramount has required some convincing.