'Star Trek Beyond' Star Almost Didn't Return for Third Movie

It’s been a rough summer for movies. The vast majority of the would-be blockbusters this season have been either bad, box-office flops, or both. That’s why Star Trek Beyond was such a breath of fresh air when it came to theaters in July. Among the many reasons it was so enjoyable was its ensemble. But! Get this: One of the cast’s most popular members almost didn’t return.

That’s right, Karl Urban almost didn’t come back as McCoy, a.k.a. Bones. In an interview with StarTrek.com, Urban said, “I certainly was hesitant about reprising the role of McCoy. I felt that I was in agreement with a vast number of fans and audience members and critics who, after watching Into Darkness, felt that the character had become marginalized. And I was not keen to repeat that experience.”

Urban, who was not required to return for a third movie, said he was actually close to working on another movie that would’ve conflicted with Beyond’s shooting schedule. It was a conversation with director Justin Lin that got him back into the fold.

“I was immediately intrigued and also somewhat reassured that he was a long-term fan of Star Trek, that he understood the weight and value of the character and how the character interacts with Spock and Kirk.”

Ultimately, it all worked out. Urban was pleased, saying, “I feel that the version of McCoy in Star Trek Beyond is the most well-defined version of the character that I’ve had the benefit to play. So it’s all turned out for the best.”

A fourth installment of the rebooted franchise is in the works, and aside from the late Anton Yelchin, the entire cast, including Karl Urban, is expected to return. If you like Urban as Bones, then I guess you’ve got Justin Lin to thank for that.

Karl Urban thinks he’d be friends with Bones from Star Trek:

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