With talk of a sequel to Star Trek going around, director J.J. Abrams has been discussing the possibility of bringing back some old favorites.
“The fun of this (new alternate Trek reality) is that the destiny of these characters is in their hands — it’s not constrained by the pre-existing films or TV series,” stated Abrams. “Believe me, whether it’s William Shatner or Khan … it would be ridiculous to not be open to those ideas.”
Of course, the circumstances behind either’s appearance may be very different from what we’ve seen before, but Abrams doesn’t think that will hinder their characterizations or how they interact with one another. Khan might still hate Kirk, for example.
“(Khan and Kirk) exist — and while their history may not be exactly as people are familiar with, I would argue that a person’s character is what it is,” said Abrams, explaining that new-Khan could be as bad as old-Khan despite disimilar backstories. “Certain people are destined to cross paths and come together, and Khan is out there … even if he doesn’t have the same issues.”
It’s a theme that Abrams already touched upon in the first film, with the Enterprise’s legendary crew assembling thanks to seemingly random occurrences, e.g. Sulu replacing a sick crew member and Kirk being stranded on Delta Vega only to find and bring back Scotty.