In interviews with Variety and The Hollywood Reporter, Alex Kurtzman and Paramount+ Programming Chief Julie McNamara spoke about adding new shows to the Star Trek Universe.
It has already been announced that Star Trek: Prodigy will be making its debut this year. Also coming will be new seasons of Star Trek: Discovery and Star Trek: Lower Decks. Production has begun on the second season of Star Trek: Picard, and the first season of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds.
Expect these shows to be very different from one another. “We’re aiming to have our shows feel unique and different from each other,” said Kurtzman. “We want to give everybody a reason to watch each show…our goal is not to make it so insular that if you haven’t seen the show you’re lost when you watch another show.”
Some fans have wondered about the Section 31 series which would feature Michelle Yeoh‘s as Georgiou. There are still “conversations,” according to Kurtzman and McNamara, but don’t expect to see the Section 31 series until one of the other Trek series ends.
“We’re very careful about curating the pacing — the number of shows at any given time — and what those shows are, so that we make sure that it’s always exciting when there’s a new track show coming out,” said McNamara. They would like to debut “a new Trek a quarter” on Paramount+.
“Whether there’s a show that comes up that feels additive and we should add that into the mix, or waiting for attrition of another Trek show, we feel good about where we are,” she said. McNamara explained that “attrition,” could mean a show “aging out” or “perhaps an older lead is only committed to a certain number of seasons and therefore we move on from that.”
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Kurtzman said that “there are other Trek stories to tell in the kids’ space. Hopefully, in success, this is going to be the first of many in that space. In our live-action world, one thing we hear a lot from fans is how much they’ve liked that we freed ourselves from canon in Discovery and jumped forward into a new timeline with a whole bunch of new worlds and new characters. What that speaks to more than anything is the spirit of exploration that is at the heart of Star Trek. Whatever we do next is probably going to be in different timelines and different areas of the universe that haven’t been explored before; a show that hasn’t been dedicated to them yet.
“As an audience member, I know I like to watch shows that take me into new spaces that are different and tell stories in a way that don’t feel like a formula you’ve seen before.”
Some fans may be worried that too much is in the pipeline, and that the quality of what is produced may begin to suffer. Kurtzman reassured fans that this would not happen.
“Despite all appearances, we’re not interested in being in the quantity business,” he said. “I don’t think that serves the Star Trek universe. We are interested in being in the quality business.
“It takes upwards of two years from inception to post-production. Yes, we’ve thought beyond the five [shows]. Yes, we’re having conversations about what happens beyond the five. But we have to make sure we’re staying true to the way we’ve built the first five.
“Each show is incredibly different, offers a specific thing, they’re not all targeted at the same audiences — but interestingly enough, they tend to bring in the same audience. It’s difficult to make something for everyone. You end up making something for no one when you take that approach. Do I see something on BET? Yes, because there may be a niche Star Trek show that’s perfect for that.
“I want to make sure as we build this out that we’re being thoughtful about creating a really interesting rainbow of colors, that each show feels different and you don’t think, ‘I can watch Picard and not watch the others.’ Because they’re all very different. That to us is more important — staying true to that approach.
Looks like we’ll have some form of Star Trek for some time to come!