Paramount has released a new still photo from J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek Into Darkness that shows the character played by Benedict Cumberbatch in what appears to be the Enterprise’s brig where he seems to be involved in some sort of a stare down with Chris Pine’s Captain Kirk, while Spock (Zachary Quinto) looks on from the left.
According to the caption provided by Paramount, the character played by Cumberbatch is named "John Harrison." While there apparently was an Enterprise crew member with the last name of Harrison in some 14 episodes of the original series, the name could be a smokescreen to cover the real identity of the character played by Cumberbatch, which could be some sort of permutation of Gary Mitchell, who was played by Gary Lockwood in the classic "Where No Man Has Gone Before" episode of the original series, with the threat posed by the megalomaniacal Mitchell character expanded in Star Trek Into Darkness into the epic scale required by summer movie blockbusters. Karl Urban, who plays Bones in Star Trek Into Darkness, may have inadvertently let the cat out of the bag when he raved about Cumberbatch’s "Gary Mitchell" in an interview this summer (see "Bones Reveals 'Star Trek's'Sequel's Villain?"). Certainly the newly released image is consistent with some form of the Gary Mitchell saga.
Whatever it turns out to be, Cumberbatch’s role in Abrams’.Star Trek sequel may well be revealed at least in part during a 9-minute Star Trek Into Darkness trailer that will run with IMAX 3-Dscreenings of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Otherwise we may have to wait until the film opens on May 17th, 2013.