Trek Casting Hots Up

The stars are definitely aligning on the final frontier. Word has just broken that Eric Bana has signed to be the villain in J J Abrams' Star Trek. Bana - no stranger to the fantasy genre after his turn as Bruce Banner in Ang Lee's arthouse Hulk - will play a character named Nero, rumoured to be a Romulan (which makes sense given that Trek's depiction of Romulan culture always riffed on Ancient Rome). Bana is currently wrapping an adaptation of The Time Traveler's Wife, but will be free by next month, when the Trek shoot kicks off.

Meanwhile, there's a new frontrunner for the coveted role of Kirk. Last week everyone was tipping Poseidon's Mike Vogel for the Captain's chair, but now The Hollywood Reporter is claiming that Chris Pine is the man to save the universe while spooning with a green-skinned belly-dancer or two. The 27 year old's stock is high at the moment after impressing with a scene-stealing turn as a neo-Nazi assassin in Smokin' Aces. No ink has touched paper, though - apparently he's torn between Trek and an offer to star in a new George Clooney movie. Here at SFX we're still grappling with the boggling philosophical concept of someone being able to turn down the chance to play James T Kirk...