After much speculation and rumors regarding new Star Trek shows after Alex Kurtzman’s recent deal with CBS Television, fans attending the 2018 Official Star Trek Convention in Las Vegas received news that one of the rumored shows is happening, as Sir Patrick Stewart made a surprise appearance to announce that he will be reprising his Star Trek: The Next Generation role as Captain Jean-Luc Picard, in a new series for the CBS All Access streaming service. Marking the third Trek series for CBS All Access. In addition to Star Trek: Discovery, it was announced that Short Treks, four fifteen minute mini-episodes featuring characters from Discovery will make it’s debut in the fall, airing monthly leading up to season two’s premiere in January.
Alex Kurtzman was quoted as saying, “With overwhelming joy, it’s a privilege to welcome Sir Patrick Stewart back to the Star Trek fold. For over 20 years, fans have hoped for the return of Captain Jean-Luc Picard and that day is finally here. We can’t wait to forge new ground, surprise people, and honor generations both new and old.” The creative team for the new series, in addition to Kurtzman, will be James Duff, Akiva Goldsman, Michael Chabon, and Kirsten Beyer. Sir Patrick will also serve as an executive producer to the, as yet, unnamed series.
Star Trek: The Next Generation made it’s debut in 1987, and ran for seven seasons, with 170 episodes. During it’s run, it has garnered it’s fair share of awards, including 19 Emmy Awards and a Peabody Award. It also spun off four feature films, Star Trek: Generations, Star Trek: First Contact, Star Trek: Insurrection, and Star Trek: Nemesis.
Since Nemesis, Sir Patrick continued acting in several roles, both on stage and screen, including as Professor Charles Xavier in the X-Men films. He has also lent his voice to video games and animation, including a role as Avery Bullock in American Dad series from Seth MacFarlane.
On his Facebook page, Sir Patrick posted, I will always be very proud to have been a part of Star Trek The Next Generation, but when we wrapped that final movie in the spring of 2002, I truly felt my time with Star Trek had run its natural course. It is, therefore, an unexpected but delightful surprise to find myself excited and invigorated to be returning to Jean-Luc Picard and to explore new dimensions within him. Seeking out new life for him, when I thought that life was over.
During these past years, it has been humbling to hear stories about how The Next Generation brought people comfort, saw them through difficult periods in their lives or how the example of Jean-Luc inspired so many to follow in his footsteps, pursuing science, exploration and leadership. I feel I’m ready to return to him for the same reason – to research and experience what comforting and reforming light he might shine on these often very dark times. I look forward to working with our brilliant creative team as we endeavor to bring a fresh, unexpected and pertinent story to life once more.
Although details of the new series are not known, we do know that this is not a reboot, but a sequel of sorts to the Next Generation series. This is also one of the most exciting Star Trek news that we’ve heard in quite awhile.
As further details regarding the new show become available, SCIFI.radio will bring you the news. In the meantime, tell us your thoughts on the return of Jean-Luc Picard.
Gary DaBaum, SCIFI.radio DJ, writer, and all around nice guy, can be heard on SCIFI.radio. He’s also on Twitter: @GaryDaBaum.