Call them ”Star Trek: The Previous Generation.” In the wake of the paltry $43 million gross for last year’s ”Star Trek: Nemesis,” Capt. Jean-Luc Picard and crew have beamed themselves up to movie limbo, according to the captain himself, Patrick Stewart. ”I’ve probably said goodbye to Picard forever,” Stewart (who’s maintained his geek cred as ”X-Men”’s Professor X) said during an ”X2” junket on Wednesday. ”I think ‘Next Generation’ is over.”
The widely panned ”Nemesis” was the lowest-grossing ”Star Trek” movie ever. ”It was a very big disappointment to us and remains a mystery,” Paramount chair Sherry Lansing told EW earlier this year. ”We can only assume that the fan base has in some way shrunk.” On TV, the franchise continued with the now-defunct ”Star Trek: Deep Space Nine,” and ‘Star Trek: Voyager,” as well the still-going, back-to-basics show ”Star Trek: Enterprise.” But in light of Lansing’s comments, it’s far from clear if any of those casts will appear in a future ”Trek” movie (a Paramount spokesperson didn’t immediately return a call for comment).
Although ”Nemesis” was released with the tagline, ”A Generation’s Final Journey Begins,” cast and crew had been coy about whether it truly represented the end of the Stewart-era cast, which took over the movie franchise with 1994’s ”Star Trek: Generations.” ”If the movie’s bad, then it’s the final journey,” Brent Spiner, (a.k.a. Data) told EW before its release. ”If it’s good, it’s just beginning.” So it seems you can forget about ”Star Trek XI: The Search for Data.”