Star Trek movie casting rumors
According to industry speculation found on IESB, J.J. Abrams is set to cast 28-year-old Pennsylvania native Mike Vogel (who has appeared in such movies as Poseidon and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake) as Captain James T. Kirk in the upcoming Star Trek movie, a role made famous by William Shatner on the TV series from 1966 to 1969. Vogel also appears in J.J. Abrams upcoming untitled Cloverleaf project.
If Vogel joins the cast, he would be alongside Zachary "Sylar" Quinto as young Mr. Spock, Leonard Nimoy reprising the role that he made famous as the older Mr. Spock, Zoe Saldana as Uhura originally played by Nichelle Nichols and Anton Yelchin as Pavel Chekov originally played by Walter Koenig.
I'm not surprised that Abrams is going for someone who is fundamentally an unknown. Obviously the director has worked with the actor before and is comfortable with him. This is the sort of role that doesn't require a big-name actor in it. The franchise itself is known well-enough to draw people in.
Of course, the real question would be not if Mike Vogel could act, but could he act like Shatner?