While Star Trek: Discovery has had its share of problems and has been hit or miss with Trek fans, it was the main driving force in subscriber growth to CBS’s streaming service, CBS All Access. Current showrunner, Alex Kurtzman, who is also the producer of CBS’ Hawaii Five-0 and Instinct, as well as one of the screenwriters to JJ Abrams Star Trek reboot, had recently renewed his contract with CBS Television for an additional five years. Reportedly the deal is worth $25 million. This five year deal (oh, it’s so hard not to make a “Five Year Mission” comment) will see him continue as the executive producer of Star Trek: Discovery, as well as placing him in charge of future Trek television shows.
Kurtzman is taking sole control of Star Trek: Discovery after the departure of its previous two showrunners Gretchen J. Berg and Aaron Harberts, who lost their respective gigs due to a combination of cost overruns during production of the show’s first season, and reports of difficult, sometimes abusive working relationships with the writers and other production staff. The problems were so severe that they are now planning a hiatus after episode 5 of the second season to give Kurtzman a chance to regroup and get Star Trek’s house back in order after the departure of the two problematic producers.
Under this new deal, Alex Kurtzman and his production company, Secret Hideout, will continue to develop new shows for CBS Studios for broadcast, cable and streaming. Kurtzman is also developing a remake of The Man Who Fell To Earth with Jenny Lumut for Hulu.
As for Star Trek, although nothing has been finalized as of yet, there are some projects that are in the works, however, we should stress that these may not even make it to the pilot stage, but it does show that CBS Television is interested in continuing the franchise. Among the potential shows includes a series that takes place at Star Fleet Academy, created by Stephanie Savage and Josh Schwartz (who created Marvel’s Runaways), a limited series based on The Wrath Of Khan, also an unnamed animated series and an additional limited series are in development. Details on any potential Trek series is being kept under wraps.
Picard The Series? Can We “Make it so”?
Adding to the rumors of shows in the works, a possibility of Sir Patrick Stewart returning as Jean-Luc Picard in a series reportedly being developed by Kurtzman and Akiva Goldsman. Again, we should stress that nothing has been finalized as of yet, and it is just a rumor. However, Patrick Stewart recently said that he had good cause to catch up on Discovery.
As for Star Trek: Discovery, in addition to the love/hate relationship with Trek fans, it has had it’s fair share of drama behind the scenes. After original showrunner, Brian Fuller, had stepped down after delays in production and to focus on multiple projects, his replacements, Aaron Harberts and Gretchen J. Birg, were recently fired midway through the production of season two due to budget disputes and several writers of the show complaining of abuse, making way for Kurtzman to take over. Hopefully, with this new deal, Star Trek: Discovery and future Trek television will live long and prosper.
And while we’re not sure if and when these potential Trek shows will be given the green light, season two of Star Trek: Discovery will make its debut in 2019, and will feature Anson Mount guest starring as Captain Christopher Pike.
Gary DaBaum, SCIFI.radio DJ, writer, and all around nice guy, can be heard on SCIFI.radio. He’s also on Twitter: @GaryDaBaum.