It's safe to say that no one saw the surprise announcement that Sir Patrick Stewart was returning to the role of Star Trek: The Next Generation's Captain Picard in his own solo series coming. This is the type of news that Star Trek fans would have never expected to see the light of day and yet, here it is, ready to take the world by storm. This was all made possible thanks to the massive success of the CBS All Access series Star Trek: Discovery.
Discovery showed that there was still great interest in the Trek franchise, and that fans were willing to dive into a new series that honored the legacy of what came before. With the Picard-fronted series, CBS All Access now has two Star Trek series -- and the streaming service isn't planning on stopping there.
In an interview with Deadline following CBS All Access' Television Critics Association executive session, CBS Studios TV president David Stapf revealed that he hopes to have as much Star Trek material as possible. "My goal is that there should be a Star Trek something on all the time on All Access," he said. "We know it draws an audience, and Discovery has done quite well."
What could these potential other series be? Well, there's a lot of possibilities. The platform's EVP of Original Content, Julie McNamara was also a part of the interview, and she spoke of what exactly they are looking at for their upcoming Star Trek projects. "We’re looking at limited series for some Trek shows and we are looking at ongoing series for some other Trek shows," the EVP said. "We’ve obviously announced the one that’s coming next with Sir Patrick Stewart but we have more in development there."
"We’ve really talked about virtually all of the characters who popped in Discovery as potential spin-off shows," McNamara continued. "It’s obviously very much driven by our conversations with Alex Kurtzman’s Secret Hideout and the other creators involved." For example, the EVP said that discussions did take place to examine the potential of Michelle Yeoh's Emperor Georgiou and Rainn Wilson's Harry Mudd, but that they are not currently actively following up on these specific characters.
"I think what you are asking is are we incubating things potentially, and the answer is Yes and No," Stapf added. "There’s not a grand design of “lets plant a Rainn idea and see how that does.” It’s more Secret Hideout and the rest of the Trek brain trust coming to us and saying, “we think this would be really cool, storywise, characterwise."
Is it too soon to ask for a return of William Shatner's Captain Kirk? "I would say, never say never," Stapf said with a laugh.
Star Trek: Discovery is only returning in 2019, but fans won't have to wait that long to see new material. CBS All Access will soon feature Star Trek: Short Treks, a four-part monthly series of 10-15 mini episodes showcasing different characters.