Ever since Abrams pumped new life into Star Trek with his alternate-timeline films, talk of some kind of return of the franchise to it's television roots has persisted. Star Trek: The Next Generation star Michael Dorn once floated the idea of a Captain Worf series, Hannibal creator Bryan Fuller wanted to bring Trek back as a series, and most recently Into Darkness co-writer Roberto Orci was reportedly meeting with Paramount for a Trek show, but nothing conclusive came from it. The difficulty in making this happen - which is something that many, many longtime Star Trek fans would love to see - may have contributed to Abrams jumping to a the other landmark sci-fi universe with Star Wars.
Is there ever going to be a return of Star Trek to television? Abrams gives a tersely diplomatic reply:
I have been hearing for as long as I can remember that CBS, who has the rights to the series, has just been saying they’re not interested. That’s the word I’ve been told.
Given the noted lack of hard science fiction on that network's various procedurals, sitcoms, and dramas - none of which venture into the out-there realms of, say, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on ABC, NBC's Dracula reboot, the CW's Arrow or FOX's Sleepy Hollow - CBS may feel that the built-in fan-base of a Star Trek show is not enough to possibly displace their established audience.
For the record, CBS apparently responded to Abrams' comment: "We love the Star Trek franchise, its fan base and the many possibilities for its future when the time is right."
As for Abrams, he's one of those A-listers who can theoretically have his pick of projects. When asked what the future may hold for him - and if there are any other existing franchises he'd like to explore - Abrams hinted that he'd like to get back to telling original stories:
There are a few stories I can’t wait to tell. And there are new things we’re developing in-house that are not existing properties. I feel I have inadvertently worked on a number of shows and movies that existed long before my involvement. I couldn’t feel luckier to have gotten a chance to do that. I would say I look forward most to the stories that are to come, that are not based on pre-existing [properties].
So far, Almost Human has been a rare example of the actual product meeting - and then exceeding - expectations. There is no way to tell just yet how much or how little Abrams' influence will be felt on the show as his other duties inevitably vie for his attention. Abrams has a lot on his plate, along with that little movie set in a galaxy far, far away on the horizon, so our culture won't be starved for his voice anytime soon. Still, an episodic approach to Star Trek would be most welcome, even if it sounds as if Abrams won't be involved.
Almost Human airs Mondays @8pm on Fox.
Source: Entertainment Weekly