The last few years have seen arguably the two biggest sci-fi universes ever created, Star Wars and Star Trek, return to the fore in Hollywood. Seven years after the release of Star Trek Nemesis, J.J. Abrams came in and shook up the franchise with a movie simply titled Star Trek, featuring new iterations of characters from Star Trek: The Original Series. Seven years later, the rebooted Star Trek movie universe is now a trilogy of movies - with the arrival of this summer's Star Trek Beyond - and there's also a brand new TV series on the way: Star Trek Discovery.
Set to begin filming this fall and premiere on CBS in January 2017, with Bryan Fuller (Hannibal) and Alex Kurtzman (Star Trek Into Darkness) taking the helm as showrunners and Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry's son, Rod Roddenberry, attached as executive producer.
Roddenberry was present at last month's Comic-Con premiere of Star Trek Beyond, seeing the movie for the first time. Screen Rant spoke to actors Simon Pegg and Zoe Saldana, as well as co-writer Doug Jung, and we also got a chance to chat to Roddenberry before he took his seat. At the time, Star Trek Discovery's official title and teaser had not yet been revealed, so Roddenberry was naturally being cagey about the details. He did, however, praise the showrunners and give us an idea of his involvement in the series:
"What I can say is that the gentlemen in charge, Alex Kurtzman and Bryan Fuller, are the creators of the show, and I'm there to participate in any way that I can and ensure whatever they're willing to have me there for. I've had some great conversations with them. Too many times I've had conversations with them and I feel like, well they've got it. They're doing a great job, so I don't think people will be disappointed."
Roddenberry is the CEO of production company Roddenberry Entertainment, and one of the founders of the Roddenberry Foundation, which provides funding for programs that represent the "Pillars" of Gene Roddenberry's vision: science, the environment, education and humanitarianism. He previously served as a consulting producer on the fan series Star Trek: New Voyages, and a few years ago made a documentary called Trek Nation, exploring the history and impact of Star Trek. Reflecting on the 50th anniversary of the franchise, Roddenberry said:
"The fact that it's gone on for half a century is mind-numbingly cool. And that's an understatement. For me it's always been more about the message and the philosophy of Star Trek than the sci-fi and the action. I haven't actually seen this movie yet, but I have some close friends who have, and they say that it does an incredible job of representing Star Trek."
Hopefully Roddenberry's faith in Star Trek: Discovery's creative team will prove to be well-placed, and we won't have to wait too much longer to find out more details about the series.
Star Trek Beyond is in theaters now. The new Star Trek series will debut on CBS All Access and Netflix in January 2017.