In a new behind-the-scenes featurette, “Star Trek Into Darkness” director J.J. Abrams and star Chris Pine give insight into Captain James Tiberius Kirk. “Kirk is a man of passion and emotion, and follows his gut,” Pine says. The character is in direct opposition to his sidekick and friend Spock (Zachary Quinto), who bases every move on pure logic.

Abrams believes the level of brashness in the character comes from how he views himself, explaining, “Kirk sort of feels like he’s above the rules in some way,” while Pine thinks the U.S.S. Enterprise captain has a self-serving quality. “He wants to prove that he’s the best and prove that he can get away with all of it.”

Still early in his Federation career, Abrams says the second “Star Trek” movie finds Kirk being tested to earn what he thinks is his. “The question for Kirk,” he says, “is ‘what does it mean to be captain and how is he ever going to be the kind of captain he’d need to be?'”

“Star Trek Into Darkness” also stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Zoe Saldana, Simon Pegg, Alice Eve, Karl Urban and John Cho. It arrives in IMAX theaters on May 15, before opening nationwide on May 17.

Posted by:Chris E. Hayner

Chris E. Hayner is equal parts nerd, crazy person and coffee. He watches too much TV, knows more about pro wrestling than you do and remembers every single show from the TGIF lineup. You may have seen him as a pro-shark protester in "Sharknado 3." His eventual memoir will be called "You're Wrong, Here's Why..." TV words to live by: "I'm a firm believer that sometimes it's right to do the wrong thing."