It's not altogether clear when the U.S.S. Enterprise and its crew will be making their way back to the big screen, following the release of 2016's Star Trek Beyond: a film that was critically well-received, but under-performed at the box office. Nevertheless, it does appear that progress is being made now on Star Trek 4 (official title TBD), even as CBS moves forward with a Star Trek project of its own; namely, Star Trek: Discovery, the first Star Trek TV show to be produced since the J.J. Abrams-helmed Star Trek movie reboot hit theaters in 2009.
Discovery has gone through some rough patches in recent months, largely due to co-creator Bryan Fuller stepping down as showrunner on the TV series in order to focus on completing his other upcoming TV show; Starz' American Gods TV adaptation. That hasn't necessarily impeded progress on the Discovery TV series on the whole though, as evidenced by the fact that the TV show is now officially in production mode.
CBS debuted the above video, as a mean of confirming that Discovery has started filming - confirming recent reports that cameras would start rolling on the Star Trek TV show by the end of January. The video quickly recaps the history of the Star Trek franchise (starting with its early life as the brainchild of Gene Roddenberry), then shifts in a montage of behind the scenes footage that offers a sneak peek at the Discovery sets being constructed, costume fittings for the various cast members, CGI spaceship effects being rendered - and more!
While this Discovery video emphasizes a shot of the spaceship U.S.S. Discovery's (empty) captain's chair, the actual protagonist of the TV show is the Discovery's lieutenant commander; played by The Walking Dead's Sonequa Martin-Green. That's not the only change in typical Star Trek protocol that Discovery includes, what with Anthony Rapp (Rent) playing Lt. Stamets: the first openly gay main character on a Star Trek TV show. Discovery is pushing the boundaries of representation for the Star Trek property in terms of race and sexuality, but it will include some old-school hallmarks of the franchise too - such as, featuring (at least three) Klingons as antagonists of sorts.
Discovery itself, as indicated before, has generated excitement among Trekkies thanks to its open embracement of Roddenberry's progressive values and vision for the beloved science-fiction property. That being said, this TV series has also prompted some concerns among fans, between its unexpected changes in behind the scenes personnel and rumors that it may be delayed (again) from its current May premiere date target. As such, there's fair reason for those who love all things Star Trek to be cautious, yet optimistic about how the franchise's return to its small screen roots will pan out.
Of course, there's still a good deal about Discovery that has yet to be revealed; including, most of the direct connections between Discovery's plot/characters and those of the original Star Trek TV show, which takes place ten years after the events of Discovery. Now that production is officially underway though, it shouldn't be too long before CBS shines a bit more light on these things - hopefully, improving the general outlook towards the TV series, in the process of doing so.
Star Trek: Discovery is currently slated to premiere on CBS All Access this May.