Tag: star trek
Star Trek: Discovery, which premiered last night on the CBS broadcast network (slightly delayed due to football) before it goes exclusively to the CBS All Access streaming service, pulled in 9.6 million viewers and a 1.9 rating in the 18-49 demo.
It is expected for those numbers to increase in the Live+7 as people watch it on a delay.
Our impression of the show from a single viewing is that it does seem like an acceptable member of the franchise so far, although there are some issues. Most notably for us there were three things: First, although it supposedly takes place in the original series timeline (not the “Kelvin” timeline of the movies), it takes liberties with the established canon, like Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) being an apparent ward or adopted daughter of Sarek and raised as if Vulcan, yet a seemingly important familial relationship has never been mentioned and stretches the canon thin. The Klingons are yet again changed, and the fact that the U.S.S. Shenzhou is apparently a more advanced starship than the original Enterprise of our childhoods.
And we never even get to see the title ship in the premiere!
I’d like to see more, but I’m firmly in the camp of not paying for yet another streaming service – even for Star Trek.
[Edit: A previous version of this article accidentally transposed the number of viewers]
At last, we have a trailer…
CBS has set the premiere of Star Trek: Discovery for September 24th, 2017 – about 9 months after originally intended. And according to showrunners Aaron Harberts and Gretchen J. Berg, the primary reason for the delays was building the world in which they explore.
In an interview with EW “There’s is so much artistry and custom craftsmanship that go into every prop, every costume, every set,” Harberts explained. “These things have to be designed and manufactured. We flew a costume designer to Switzerland to pick up the fabric for the Starfleet uniforms. Several items on our uniforms are 3D printed. Some of our sets can take over six weeks to make. CBS has given us the time and the money to make something the fans will find worthwhile.”
Added Berg: “You can’t cut corners or have 95 percent of what’s on screen be completely original and inspired and then have five percent something you bought at a store. It has to be cohesive — and it is. I’m so proud of what’s on screen, it’s so beautiful and it’s taking world-building to a whole new level.”
But this is not something unique to this show. Other shows have to build sets, make props, etc. and that should have been figured in to the production cycle from the start.
The show will premiere on CBS at 8:30pm-9:30pm ET/PT (a strange slot, but it follows a football doubleheader), followed by the first two episodes being available on the pay-streaming CBS All Access. 6 more episodes will premiere on succeeding Sundays through November 5th, after which it will have a short break and pick up again in January for 7 more episodes. The break will allow more post-production time on the later episodes.
CBS dropped some info on the upcoming CBS All Access series Star Trek: Discovery – not a lot, mind you, but some – and more importantly, the trailer for the show.
Today at the network’s upfront presentations, they announced that they ordered an additional two episodes, bringing up the first season to 15 episodes. In addition, there will be a companion “Talk” series called Talking Trek – a strategy that is becoming increasingly popular with off-broadcast genre shows.
And then there is this…
I still have fears that limiting this series to the CBS All Access pay-streaming service will limit the audience too much to support such an expensive show, but I’m not sure what the All Access subscriber numbers look like currently.
Harcourt Fenton “Harry” Mudd will finally return to Star Trek…one of the franchises most memorable guest characters will appear in the upcoming Star Trek: Discovery for CBS All Access, played by Emmy-nominated Rainn Wilson, who starred in The Office for nine years.
The bombastic criminal/”entrepreneur” Harry Mudd was originally played by the late Roger C. Carmel in the original series episodes “Mudd’s Women” and “I, Mudd”, and he reprised the role in the animated series episode “Mudd’s Passion”.
The Starship Discovery has found its captain…Jason Isaacs, who recently appeared in the Netflix thriller series The OA and played Lucius Malfoy in the Harry Potter films, will play Captain Lorca in the upcoming CBS All Access series, which began production a month ago. Although he is the captain, the series will focus on his “Number One” played by Sonequa Martin-Green.
CBS President Les Moonves is hopeful that the series will debut on the broadcast network this Fall, with it continuing on the streaming network afterwards.
Syfy has canceled the Matt Damon/Ben Affleck produced Incorporated after just a single season. The hyped-up show failed to get hyped up ratings, averaging well below Syfy’s other flagship shows. Syfy is lining up pilots with four given green lights so far along with Superstition, which was given a straight-to-series order.
On the opposite side, CBS’ Les Moonves is very confident that the twice delayed Star Trek: Discovery will be ready to debut in early Fall and perhaps late Summer – and he understands the importance of the show to the network.Star Trek is the family jewels,” Moonves says. “We’re not going to rush it in. There’s a lot of post production. But I’m very confident based on what I’ve seen so far.”
Star Trek: Discovery was most recently delayed from a May release last month, given they hadn’t actually started filming yet. Filming started shortly after that announcement, so a Fall debut seems more realistic.
A couple of catch-up tidbits tonight…
Star Trek: Discovery, finally in production, added three cast members this week. Terry Serpico (Army Wives, The Purge: Election Year) will play Admiral Anderson, a high-ranking official of Starfleet; Maulik Pancholy (30 Rock, Weeds) will be Dr. Nambue, the Chief Medical Officer of the U.S.S. Shenzhou (another ship to be featured in the show); and Sam Vartholomeos as Ensign Connor, a junior officer from Starfleet Academy on board the U.S.S. Shenzhou.
Amazon has reportedly picked up anthology series Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams, which has also tweaked it’s title. The show was first announced last May is executive produced by Ronald D. Moore (Battlestar Galactica), Michael Dinner (Justified, The Wonder Years), and Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad). The former two are also writing, while the latter will appear in an episode. Based on the many short stories by science fiction author Dick, it joins another Dick adaptation at Amazon, The Man In The High Castle.
We can now say that the Battle of Axanar is over…Paramount/CBS and Axanar productions have reached a settlement in the suit against the fan-produced Axanar film. With things looking bleak earlier this month when Axanar was denied fair use status, so there wasn’t much surprise that a settlement was reached. It wasn’t much in the film’s favor, but it will see the light of day in a shortened form with major modifications, restricted to two 15-minute episodes released on YouTube sans ads (they will not be allowed to monetize the film), along with Prelude to Axanar with the same restrictions. Producer Alec Peters also admitted that the production “crossed the line” and was not approved by Paramount/CBS.
Axanar wasn’t the only loser here though, as Paramount/CBS lost a lot of the fan love they had by bringing on this suit.
The full text of the announcement is here:
Paramount Pictures Corporation, CBS Studios Inc., Axanar Productions, Inc. and Alec Peters are pleased to announce that the litigation regarding Axanar’s film Prelude to Axanar and its proposed film Axanar has been resolved. Axanar and Mr. Peters acknowledge that both films were not approved by Paramount or CBS, and that both works crossed boundaries acceptable to CBS and Paramount relating to copyright law.
Axanar and Mr. Peters have agreed to make substantial changes to Axanar to resolve this litigation, and have also assured the copyright holders that any future Star Trek fan films produced by Axanar or Mr. Peters will be in accordance with the “Guidelines for Fan Films” distributed by CBS and Paramount in June 2016.
Paramount and CBS continue to be big believers in fan fiction and fan creativity. They encourage amateur filmmakers to showcase their passion for Star Trek. Paramount and CBS will not object to, or take legal action against, Star Trek fan productions that are non-professional, amateur, and otherwise meet the Guidelines, which can be found at http://www.startrek.com/fan-films. Paramount and CBS would like Star Trek fans, with their boundless creativity and passion, to “Live Long and Prosper.”
Well, we thought a May air date seemed very ambitious for a show that hadn’t begun production, and it turns out to be true – we hear from several sources now that Star Trek: Discovery will not make the planned May debut date, which had already been pushed back from the original plan of this month. Production does start next week in Toronto at least.
While CBS has been tight-lipped as to specific reasons, Entertainment Weekly gives two reasons – one, star Sonequa Martin-Green would be appearing on her current hit show, The Walking Dead (at least if they don’t kill her off earlier) and there could be “marketplace confusion”, and also that they are still working on various decisions to be made on directors, visual effects, etc.
No new target date has been set. CBS Television Studios did respond to EW’s inquiry, stating “This is an ambitious project; we will be flexible on a launch date if it’s best for the show.” So they are still behind the show, and determined to do it right and not rushed.
In the meantime a little good news: they signed another actor in a key role – James Frain, who currently appears in Fox’s Gotham. Frain will play Sarek – yes, the Sarek that is Spock’s father. The character was also the Vulcan ambassador to the United Federation of Planets (in the time of the original series) and an astrophysicist. He was played by the late Mark Lenard, who appeared in several of the series and movies (and even once as the Romulan Commander in “Balance of Terror”, which introduced the Romulans to the universe.) How the character fits in to the show has not been released.