Nemesis’ Failure Killed TNG’s Fifth & Final Movie Plan
The failure of Star Trek: Nemesis abruptly ended the Star Trek: The Next Generation movie franchise, but there were plans for a fifth and final film featuring Picard’s Enterprise before Nemesis flopped. The overall Star Trek franchise was not in good shape at the turn of the century. Star Trek Voyager limped to the finish line of a seven season run in 2001, a show that was out of gas creatively and endured middling ratings in its final years. Star Trek: Enterprise would debut later that year, a prequel series that never found its footing or its audience and was unceremoniously canceled after its fourth season.
Star Trek: The Next Generation had been the most popular iteration of the franchise ever on television, but even the TNG crew were beginning to wear out their welcome. Star Trek: Insurrection hit movie screens in 1998, coming up short of the box office and critical success of the previous TNG film, Star Trek: First Contact. Paramount realized the film franchise was on a bad trajectory and decided to bring in new creative blood to develop the next movie. Director Stuart Baird and screenwriter John Logan were brought in to make 2002’s Star Trek: Nemesis, which was an even bigger failure than Insurrection, putting the Star Trek movie franchise into hibernation until 2009’s J.J. Abrams-directed reboot. However, had Nemesis fared better, plans were underway for a proper TNG movie finale.