J.J. Abrams says that he ''can't wait'' for fans to see the new Star Trek movie and has been singing the praises of new cast members including Benedict Cumberbatch.

The 46-year-old director of Star Trek into Darkness told Collider: ''I just can't wait for people to see the movie. Benedict is unbelievable. It's a tall order, coming into that movie, because the crew of the 'Enterprise' - that cast - is so damn good and they're wonderful to work with and they're all good hearts."

Sherlock star Cumberbatch plays a mysterious villain called John Harrison in the new movie.

"To come into that group, as he did, as Alice Eve did and as Peter Weller did, and be one of the family was something that I was doubtful could happen. And he completely did it. I not only love him in the movie, but I love him, as a human being. He's an amazing guy. I can't wait for people to see the movie and experience what he's done.''

The preview of the film has already been shown in selected US theatres but Abrams admits it was hard to gauge people's reactions to it: ''I got some anecdotal response about it. It wasn't like there was a target that I was aiming at and I wanted to hit a certain mark.

"I don't know how I could quantify what the reaction was. It's hard. There's no focus group or ratings or box office for what the response was to either the trailer or the preview. I can only hope that people enjoyed what they saw.''