Are The Original 'Star Trek' Cast In 'Star Trek Beyond'? The New Film Pays Tribute To The Past

The release date of Star Trek Beyond is kind of a big deal. Not just because it heralds another installment of the beloved franchise, but because 2016 marks the 50th anniversary of Star Trek: The Original Series. With that being the case, a lot of hope surrounds the new film, which fans are expecting to blaze a new trail forward into the final frontier while also calling back to the series' proud past. One way to accomplish the latter would be to include some cameos from the original series' cast. So, are any of the original series' stars in Star Trek Beyond ?

If you recall, the 2009 reboot film, Star Trek, established that this movie universe takes place in an alternate universe than the original series. The one element that linked the two was Leonard Nimoy's Spock, who existed in the new movie universe as a man out of time and out of his reality. He reprised that role in the sequel, Star Trek: Into Darkness, but sadly passed away in February of 2015 — four months before filming began for Beyond. So since Nimoy, the only original cast member to show up in the first two films of the new universe, was unable to appear in the new film, does that mean that no one else does?

The answer is... yes and no. In the new film, it's announced that (spoiler alert!) Nimoy's Spock has passed away. His death occurs off screen, of course, but the loss is clearly felt. In a poignant scene, the new timeline's Spock (Zachary Quinto) goes through the old Spock's belongings, and he comes across a photograph of the original series' cast (Nimoy, William Shatner, etc.), which the camera lingers on for a moment. It's both a touching tribute to Nimoy, and to the original series itself as a whole. Without that first iteration of Star Trek, there would be no Star Trek Beyond, and no 50 years of pop culture touchstones for legions of fans.

So yes, the original cast does appear in Star Trek Beyond, at least in photographic form, and it's a great way to pay tribute to the crew that started it all.

Images: Paramount Pictures