Watch: J.J. Abrams Counters Alice Eve Underwear Moment In 'Star Trek 2' With Deleted Benedict Cumberbatch Shower Scene

News
by Drew Taylor
May 23, 2013 5:44 PM
11 Comments
  • |

Following the release of "Star Trek Into Darkness," its male creators came under fire for a sequence where Alice Eve, playing a brilliant scientist who in the original continuity is responsible for a godlike device that can create life on barren planets, strips down to her underwear for no discernible reason. Kirk (and by extension, the camera) chooses to leer. It's a pretty unnecessary sequence and no matter how adorable Eve is (and, truly, her physique could be described as godlike), it had no real business being in the movie. While co-writer/producer Damon Lindelof has issued a public apology, director J.J. Abrams has taken a different approach. One that involves footage of Benedict Cumberbatch in the shower. That'll certainly even the scales…

Over the weekend Lindelof began an email conversation with MTV News' Josh Horowitz. When the conversation turned to the question of why Eve was in her underwear, the notoriously self-deprecating Lindelof shot back: "Why is Alice Eve in her underwear, gratuitously and unnecessarily, without any real effort made as to why in God's name she would undress in that circumstance? Well there's a very good answer for that. But I'm not telling you what it is. Because... uh... MYSTERY?" In other words: he agrees that it was in kind of bad taste and doesn't have much of an explanation. And now he's being called out on it.

On Twitter, Lindelof elaborated: "I copped to the fact that we should have done a better job of not being gratuitous in our representation of a barely clothed actress." And, later: "What I'm saying is I hear you, I take responsibility and will be more mindful in the future." Which, really, is all you can ask for: he 'fessed up, he took responsibility, and he'll try better next time.

Abrams, on the other hand, took a different approach. After admitting to Conan O'Brien that he probably should have edited that scene differently, he defiantly showed a still from a scene where Kirk is in his underwear (with two alien girls) and then wanted to counteract the charges of sexism by showing that there was once a scene of Benedict Cumberbatch's villain…in the shower. Because, you know, evil needs to lather up too. While the footage is brief (but does actually look like it came from the movie), we're not sure how exactly this is supposed to negate the charges of sexism leveled against the production. It's not exactly a case of tit for tat, or, um, yeah… It would have been one thing if the underwear shot was lost amidst some amazing, deeply etched characterization, but Eve's character, who was so strong in the original movies, basically screams, gets her leg broken, and has to watch her father get brutally killed. It's not exactly the kind of rich character where seeing her in her underwear would have just been one facet; it's kind of the only thing anyone will remember about her.

If you haven't seen the movie yet, or want to weigh in on Pantygate '13, "Star Trek Into Darkness" is in theaters now.

You might also like:
Free Indie Movies and Documentaries    

11 Comments

  • April | May 25, 2013 11:04 AMReply

    Boo on Lindelof, not because of the scene but because he apparently didn't know how to defend it. The scene WAS needed. In alternate timelines Marcus and Kirk had a sexual relationship, as evidenced by their son. Somewhere in the new timeline, there had to be a show of sexual chemistry between them. It was an important development between the two characters. Stop picking on Abrams, at least he knew what he was doing.

  • Rob | May 24, 2013 8:48 AMReply

    It was a little cheeky and short on taste... but I remember that more than most of the movie and I have that "God-like body" as you say to thank for that.

  • Linda | May 23, 2013 11:29 PMReply

    Yes, it's gratuitous, but unlike the author of the article, the scene I for which I remember her most strongly is where she refuses to abandon Scotty and saves the day at the last moment.

  • nightgoat72 | May 23, 2013 10:25 PMReply

    God, as if the last Abrams movie hadn't already done enough to make Gene Roddenberry roll over in his grave...

  • tristan eldritch | May 23, 2013 8:25 PMReply

    I take this seriously if the Star Trek franchise was something I could take seriously. But these movies are only designed to produce an entertaining spectacle, and a beautiful body (male or female) is an entertaining spectacle, as you seem to acknowledge in your article and by the fact of reproducing said deplorable imagery under the headline. Might have been better if they'd evened it out with a beefcake shot of Kirk or whatever, but it's not something I'd get a complex about. Nobody really asks (too strenuously) why Kubrick put that shot of Nicole Kidman's ass at the beginning of Eyes Wide Shut, or why Sofia Coppola put that shot of Scarlett's ass at the beginning of Lost in Translation - those shots, however you want to justify them, are completely extraneous to the movies themselves. Art movies are allowed to enjoy the spectacle of aesthetically appealing bodies, but we're supposed to get a complex about it in popular films, which most of the time are there to sell the sizzle away. Check out the trailer for the Wolverine film - how often is Jackman shirtless or just wearing a vest?

  • NIPS | May 24, 2013 12:07 PM

    There's more to it than the fact that she's half-naked.
    There's the fact that she, a subordinate officer to Kirk, blatantly asks him to turn his back and allow her privacy, and he, her superior, blatantly ignores that request and peeks anyway. And so we all learn violations of privacy (in professional settings or otherwise) are OK, because hey, Kirk did it, and Kirk's cool and also funny.

  • Ron | May 23, 2013 9:03 PM

    You must not have watched the video, because there is a "beef cake" shot of Kirk in the film...

  • Wash | May 23, 2013 7:58 PMReply

    Mean time, Alice Eve is braless for the entire Sex and the City movie and even the characters in the film call out how gratuitous it is... yet where was the furor over the "sexism" in that film?

  • tom | May 24, 2013 5:50 AM

    so what? we are talking about *this* movie now. we don't have to talk about sexism in every other movie to point it out in this one.

  • Washington | May 24, 2013 5:46 AM

    Oh no it must just be the evil feminists out to get your Star Trek

  • K | May 23, 2013 6:12 PMReply

    The main problem is not this really useless and dumb scene : it's the way the female characters are written. They're shallow, needy, none of them is heroic or funny or oustanding. The script is quite bad but Saldana and Eve are even worse than that...

Email Updates