Tuesday, February 9, 2016

CBS' New STAR TREK Series Beams Up Bryan Fuller as Showrunner

Well, this is just...fascinating.

Entertainment Weekly has word that the upcoming CBS' upcoming Star Trek series for the digital subscription service CBS All Access is bringing aboard none other than Bryan Fuller as showrunner.

Fuller, 46, is the acclaimed writer and producer of HBO's upcoming adaptation of Neil Gaiman's American Gods, along with his previous series Hannibal, Pushing Daisies, Heroes, Wonderfalls, and Dead Like Me.  This will be his return to the Star Trek universe, after writing two episodes of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine in 1997, and serving as writer, story editor and producer of Star Trek: Voyager from 1997-2001.

"My very first experience of Star Trek is my oldest brother turning off all the lights in the house and flying his model of a D7 Class Klingon Battle Cruiser through the darkened halls," said Fuller, who will be co-creator and executive producer on the untitled project. "Before seeing a frame of the television series, the Star Trek universe lit my imagination on fire.  It is without exaggeration a dream come true to be crafting a brand-new iteration of Star Trek with fellow franchise alum Alex Kurtzman and boldly going where no Star Trek series has gone before."

Kurtzman co-wrote and produced the blockbuster films Star Trek (2009) with Roberto Orci, and Star Trek Into Darkness (2013) with Orci and Damon Lindelof.  "Bringing Star Trek back to television means returning it to its roots," added Kurtzman, "and for years those roots flourished under Bryan’s devoted care.  His encyclopedic knowledge of Trek canon is surpassed only by his love for Gene Roddenberry’s optimistic future, a vision that continues to guide us as we explore strange new worlds."

David Stapf, president of CBS Television Studios remarked, "For the past 50 years, Star Trek has been a groundbreaking franchise that not only changed the landscape of television, but made a significant impact on pop culture.  When we began discussions about the series returning to television, we immediately knew that Bryan Fuller would be the ideal person to work alongside Alex Kurtzman to create a fresh and authentic take on this classic and timeless series.  Bryan is not only an extremely gifted writer, but a genuine fan of Star Trek.  Having someone at the helm with his gravitas who also understands and appreciates the significance of the franchise and the worldwide fan base was essential to us."

The new series will debut with a special preview broadcast on the CBS Television Network. The premiere episode and all subsequent first-run episodes will then be available exclusively in the United States on CBS All Access, the Network’s digital subscription video on demand and live streaming service, previously announced as $5.99 per month.

In 2013, Fuller was quoted as having a "very specific idea" for a relaunch.  "Having spent four years on staff and another year of freelancing before that on Star Trek, it’s a very near and dear property to my heart, and also a philosophy. I would love to create a Star Trek show, so that’s on my dream docket.  I think there’s something very exciting about the new J.J. Abrams-verse, and there’s also kind of an interesting reinvention.  How would The Next Generation evolve from that?  Where would that be?  Where would that go?  But there’s also…Star Trek is such a big universe, and there are so many places to go with it.  I have a very specific idea that I would love to do.  We’ll see if I ever get the opportunity."

Later that same year, Fuller mentioned another idea would be to not have the show set on the Enterprise, but the U.S.S. Reliant, best known for being commandeered by Khan Noonien Singh in the franchise’s second feature film Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan.  "I think let that be the movies and let that be their story.  I would love to do something on the Reliant…I want Angela Bassett to be the captain, that’s who I would love to have, you know Captain Angela Bassett and First Officer Rosario Dawson.  I would love to do that version of the show and but that’s in the future to be told."

The new Star Trek series is expected to debut on CBS sometime in January 2017.

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