Roberto Orci Meeting With CBS For New ‘Star Trek’ TV Show [Updated]

Published 2 years ago by , Updated October 12th, 2013 at 5:23 am,

Star Trek The Next Generation Enterprise D Roberto Orci Meeting With CBS For New Star Trek TV Show [Updated]

With this summer’s Star Trek Into Darkness now available on home video, and director J.J. Abrams hopping the asteroid fields to take on Star Wars: Episode VII, there remains a bit of uncertainty for the future viewing pleasure of Trekkies. The 50th anniversary of the iconic Star Trek franchise approaches in 2016 and what better way to celebrate boldly going where no one has gone before than a three-quel to the film trilogy about young Captain Kirk (Chris Pine) and crew beginning their adventures on the U.S.S. Enterprise?

A new television series, of course! And that’s exactly what could happen.

In a potentially wondrously joyous tweet for Star Trek fans, Sky News reporter Joe Michalczuk shared word that Bob Orci told him he’s met with CBS to talk about bringing Star Trek back to the small screen.

With Orci taking meetings – or as we’re told, inquiring about the rights - that would suggest that a new Star Trek TV series – if greenlit – would be in the same timeline as the film franchise, when the Enterprise begins its 5-year mission. A series in the quasi-rebooted Trek universe (thank you, time travel paradox) would allow CBS to pull a Disney and have a television show based in the same cinematic universe as the films, a la Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD on ABC.

Then again, Orci is loyal to his brands, evidenced by his work on the Transformers Prime animated series which is not in the same universe as Michael Bay’s movies – which he and writing partner Alex Kurtzman left after two installments. Orci and Kurtzman are busy producers/writers, with Sleepy Hollow starting strong on Fox, Ender’s Game preparing for its theatrical release, and development beginning on a new Van Helsing and a Mummy reboot, not to mention work on the Amazing Spider-Man sequels.

Talk of a Star Trek TV series hasn’t settled since Enterprise concluded its final season in 2005, marking the first time in two decades where there wasn’t a Trek series on the air. The movies thankfully reinvigorated the brand in 2009, making it “cool” again, but talk of a TV show hasn’t far gone beyond The Next Generation/Deep Space 9 star Michael Dorn expressing desire to making a series centered around his character of Worf, a show that would take place in the “old” universe.

star trek into darkness jj abrams official 570x378 Roberto Orci Meeting With CBS For New Star Trek TV Show [Updated]

There were also attempts to create a new Star Trek show by Bryan Singer (X-Men) and Bryan Fuller (Hannibal) but as of late, word on the street is that any such project would need to get the J.J. Abrams go-ahead. Then came a report that claimed rights issues between Paramount (on the film side) and CBS (on the TV side) prevented such a show from developing and in turn, helped in Abrams’ decision to take on the Star Wars franchise, effectively ending his directorial responsibilities in the Trek series.

Update: To be clear, Star Trek is not currently in development for TV and this is a case where the potential is there and inquiries are being made about the rights.

Would the series follow the traditional formula of following a crew of new characters? Would it need to tie-in with the film franchise? Is the timing right for Star Trek on TV?

Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes.

Enterprise-D art by The Light Works.

Follow Rob Keyes on Twitter @rob_keyes
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  1. I would love to see a new Star Trek series. But the director, writing and budget are always a problem. I want writing and direction to go where no man has gone before. Let the episodes target the intellectual crowd of all ages with breathtaking special effects.

    • Breathtaking special effects cost lots of of money and take lots of tome to create. I doubt CBS could afford to spend $10 million or more per episode.

      One way to do this might be to get the fans involved. Let them help by being part of a massive distributed rendering farm. Millions of people could donate time on their computers to do the rendering required to create these breathtaking special effects.

      They could also ask for help with 3D modeling and other related tasks. Have a contest for the best results.

      • It’s not really the render time that is expensive, it’s all the work that needs to be done by many people until rendering can start. Also, there are many problems with distributed rendering. First, an appropriate renderer that can be distributed freely and offers all the features the movie makers need must be developed, which is very expensive in itself. Then, there is the problem of copyright since everyone who is rendering is actually receiving raw content (3D models, animations) which can not be efficiently protected and which also means plot details will leak ahead of time. Finally, the data that needs to be sent before and after rendering can be huge, which often really doesn’t make it even worth spending the time to transfer considering the render time that could be achieved with an average user computer.

        • Effects aren’t the problem. It’s the horrible writing. Braga and Berman lost the plot of their shows and J.J. Abrams and his plot hole happy henchmen are just plain awful whatever they do.

          Nobody watches the Original Series today for its breathtaking effects, yet, people still watch it with pleasure.

  2. While I would LOVE to see Star Trek return to television, I’m not sure a show centered in J.J.’s alternate timeline would satisfy most Trekkies. I for one don’t mind the alternate timeline, but I know a lot of Trekkies absolutely despise it. Well, I don’t know if they despise the timeline itself, or the lack of more cerebral stories, but I have always maintained that NONE of the previous Trek movies have been that cerebral. If you want cerebral, political and philosophical, you need to watch the shows, plain and simple. Perhaps a new series centered in the alternate timeline could help some of the naysayers grow to like it, but I doubt it. I say bring on a Captain Worf show, or U.S.S. Titan. Those guys do some pretty great amateur work. Check them out on Facebook. Their test videos are first rate, and with a budget, they could do wonders.

  3. I’ve been a fan of the series since I was 7 and missed an unreal amount of school between kindergarten and first grade. I watched TOS every day I could (Trek is 48, I am 43). Quite honestly I don’t know of a time when it didn’t exist for me. My collection of Trek books, manuals, wall hangings and figures/toys has amassed over the years and I affectionately call it my Shrine.

    However, I will say this: If this new series comes to pass and it is set in this new alternate timeline, I will not support it with my time or my money. Just go ahead and stick me in a red shirt and set the phaser on heavy stun now. Quite frankly, I don’t think I’m the lone Trekkie here, and those who don’t want to see the franchise destroyed need to kick up a fuss now before this gets the green-light for development.

    Bring on a Michael Dorn or George Takei series. Make it before Enterprise’s era or after DS9/Voyager–I don’t care. Timing would be right for anything–except the movie timeline. I’ll put in a dvd of a TOS episode before I would watch an alternate timeline series. =/\=

    • They should set a Prime Universe series during the Romulan War(s).

      • Yes this would be perfect, and will be appreciated by all Star Trek fans…

    • While I don’t entirely mind the new timeline, I just don’t want a series set in it because of J.J.’s ENORMOUS ego. He actually said that he wants HIS Star Trek to be remembered as THE Star Trek. Much as I enjoyed the 2009 movie, it ain’t gonna happen, Skippy! (talking to J.J., not you…lol)

      • I feel that J.J. has done more to revive the series than anyone since The Undiscovered Country. This is a new generation, and my kids loved the these two movies. I feel that the new timeline is perfect for a new generation of fans. Free to go where they want with the story without constantly constraining thier imagination with retro compatibility. That’s how Microsoft bounced back, and it is the only way Star Trek will. If we continue to worry about the old Trekkies (Myself included) openion, then the series is done.

  4. If they do a New Universe series, they should a Prime Universe series, that way both can exist and/or live again.

  5. A series set in the past (pre TNG/DS9/VOY) will be a failure, just look at what happened with Enterprise. They need to look to the future, have it a decade or so after Voyager. Themes which started in DS9 and the TNG movies can be expanded upon. The series should flow more like LOST with a large cast, continuing multi-episode storylines, and more of a drama than sci-fi.

  6. An all-new ship with an all-new crew.
    Stra Trek: The Third Generation, set a few decades after Picard/DS9/Voyager.

  7. Being a fan of Star Trek since TNG, I feel any new series will work well as long as they put together a tight group of people. On thing that made TNG/DS9/Voyage turn out so well, was a great cast, and wonderful story’s. I might be the odd one, but I would like to see a TV series set about 10/15 years after the last TNG movie. They could bring back some of the crew from TNG/DS9/Voy for guest appear, and build a whole new crew running a new Enterprise. I am not sure going back in time is really the best idea, as Star Trek has always been about the future.

  8. quality first!!even if it means just making 10 episodes per year

  9. I like the movies but I never understood why they needed to move away from the rich history that had already been laid down before. I really do hope that they bring a new series out sooner rather than later.

    I am also hoping it will be a new crew, again I love Kirk and the gang and the movies do a good job, but I just think they new to explore a new crew and ship.

  10. Well since the Enterprise went off the air, I have to say I was left wondering why some interesting topics were not developed further such as Romulan Wars or the creation of the Federation. Thats one great and exciting option for me. Even more exciting option is the continuation of the original timeline and perhaps setting the show after “Nemesis”. There are so many topics lef unanswered such as Romulan-Reman story, 8472 – would the agreement with Voyager be accepted or not, would the Borg really be defeated, I always wondered what happens after TNG “Conspiracy” with the misterious message, would the Klingons actually stop after the war with the Dominion (and what about them), I was always very sad that topic from Voyager “Distant origin” was not developed further, what happens with Cardasians, and so sooo many different topics that would be interesting if they would deside to continue this timeline with the show set after “Nemesis”. Titan-Riker or Worf-captain would be, for me at least, ideal continuation of this story bringing us the mix of familiar faces and topics with some new ones. I am not a fan of the new timeline or reboot of the other shows. OK the movies were great spectacles but, lets leave already finished shows in our memories as they were, with all their flaws and good sides.

    • I am sure that so many of us agree! there are so many interesting open ends to explore!

  11. W h at about a captain Wesley Crusher? He comes back from being with the traveler and re enlists to protect the federation from a new and terrible foe. He is no longer a sweet innocent kid but has become a dynamic figure, with a scar on his face from his battle with an alien race that lives in subspace.

  12. I would like to see a series based on the series of books by Peter David-STAR TREK THE NEW FRONTIER. The main character captain Captain Calhoun is a intriging and exciting characer. and his crew has some intresting back stories. I suggest you fans read these series of books and decide if it should be the next Star Trek TV series.

  13. It is a no brainer! Get a different producer. JJ has obviously failed. Not to say that I don’t like the idea of the new/old movies, but the timeline change is rough. However, it can be melded with the all of the series. Time has a way to make fate come thru. The producer(s) we need will focus more on exploration than war, Melding all the series together. There is so much to play off of, Voyager left so much of the Delta quadrant unexplored and added fluidic space. Somewhere between voyager and enterprize we went wrong. In my opinion, the prequal trend is crap. A good episode or two of historical past is great, but why try to remake the a great thing?? The great mr Roddenberry is gone but not forgotten in so many minds, we need to keep his ideas alive.

  14. > “JJ has obviously failed”

    Star Trek is a business, first and foremost. If Star Trek doesn’t make money, no more Star Trek, period.

    ST Into Darkness cost $190 million to make, but made $467 million in box office.
    Before that, ST 2009 cost $150 million to produce, and made $385 million in box office.

    By most standards these movies were very successful and clearly were enjoyed by many, many people. I don’t think JJ “obviously failed”.

  15. personally id love to see star trek on tv ok enterprise didnt do well i think cuz we went back to the past instead of to the future like tng/ds9/voyager all did very well, for a really good show it should be in the future like tng/ds9 and voyager, it should come after voyager to continue the legacy.

  16. Jump up a couple centuries to the 26th century like the Enterprise J (where it was shown in Enterprise). They have transwarp, most of the Galaxy has been explored and they are starting to explore out of the galaxy. They meet enemies and friends so powerful they make the Borg look like kindergarteners.

  17. Space opera must meet TV again – there was just a too big vacuum for too long now in this area. I’d love to see a new Star Trek series, but please make it less shiny and polished than the old series. make it gritty. Make it more like Firefly, BSG reboot and Stargate Universe. Let the protagonists have serious character flaws and have some of them die an unheroic, meaningless death from time to time. Give us huge space battles but make them unpredictable. JJ’s Star Trek is cool, but still too shiny and way too many lens flares.

    • You just argues to copy three of my all-time most hated shows. They were poorly-made flops and the reason there are no space-operas on TV today is because of those shows failing to bring in viewers!

  18. I personally would like to see a series set in the mirror universe after the bearded Spock took over. This would be a darker Star Treck.

  19. Have been a trekkie since the early 70′s. Have every episode in my personal collection and am well pleased with the Abrams re0boot. We knew what we were getting when he signed on and he delivered. More people are excited about it and the bigger the fan base the more movies we can have and possibly even more tv…which is where we can have all the ‘brainy-philosophical’ aspects of the vision of roddenberry.

    • We did get what we expected: Yet another J.J. Abrams crap-fest full of bad writing, bad acting and incompetent directing…

      The man is single-handedly responsible for SF having a bad reputation these days.

      • Sorry, I just gotta weigh in here…say what you will about writing and directing (I myself was DISGUSTED with “Into Darkness”), but bad acting? I think not. Zachary Quinto is good as Spock, Karl Urban is FANTASTIC as Bones…I think everybody else does a competent job as far as acting goes.

  20. Is the time right for another Star Trek series? Hell, the time is always right for a new Trek series.

    • Really? Was the time “right” for the dreadful Enterprise? Or for the last three years (and first year) of Voyager?

      The problem is finding a creative voice that can make it interesting and since Hollywood thinks J.J. Abrams is talented, that means you won’t get it.

    • What are you talking about?!

      The only place TV is “hot” is on the press. There has never been a dearth of hit shows like in the last five years.

      Walking Dead is the only hit TV has produced in that time and The Mentalist was the last hit produced by the major networks.

      Don’t confuse hype with reality.

  21. There were plans for an online animated series a few years ago that sounded really interesting…perhaps they could make it live action for television. The setting was the 26th century, and the Federation is split into various factions…not buy diplomatic upheaval or civil unrest, but because space has become so damaged by warp (remember that Next Generation episode?), that there are VAST areas of space where warp simply no longer works. They didn’t get much further in plans than the setting, but I thought it sounded like there were definite possibilities.

  22. There has been a good rumor that there has been two new star trek tv series coming one will be a NCIS in space and the other will be like a ER in space

  23. CBS developing new CSI and EMS related Star Trek television shows

  24. A CBS insider leaked to us an announcement about shows in development for the fall 2014 season line up. Due to increased demand for Start Trek to be back on TV after the new JJ Abrams movies, CBS is once again boldly going where no one has gone before. According to our source not one but two Star Trek related shows are in development.

  25. The first of the shows is a Police Procedural based in the Star Trek universe. The working title is Star Fleet Investigative Section, or SFIS, which promises to be a sci-fi version of CSI or NCIS.

  26. The plot outline we were given is that the show will follow the exploits of the star ship Edmund Locard. For those not familiar with forensic science Edmund Locard was a French Scientist who is responsible with the development of the first modern Crime Lab. The outline said the USS Locard would likely be a “Defiant class” type smaller starship.