Watch: New Video Shows How The Props of ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Were Designed And Built

This morning CBS released another behind the scenes video for Star Trek: Discovery, this time focusing on the making of props for the show. Prop Master Mario Moreira takes us through designing a prop, to the finished product. 


A Closer Look

Moreira in front of wall of production design art


Med kit

Medical scanner in action

Phaser 1 lifts out from pistol grip

Note the nice array of engineering “spanners” on the table.

Tricorder’s scanner pops out

Holding the new version of the communicator

Assorted deadly Klingon blades

Klingon disruptor rifle

Detailing on the ancient Bat’leth

A view from the set of the bridge of T’Kuvma’s ship

Sonequa Martin-Green in EV suit on large green screen stage


Star Trek: Discovery premieres on September 24th on CBS with all subsequent episodes on CBS All Access in the US.  In Canada Star Trek: Discovery will premiere  on Bell Media’s CTV and the Space Channel on the same night. Netflix will launch Star Trek: Discovery on Monday, September 25 to countries outside of the U.S. and Canada.

Keep up with all the Star Trek: Discovery news at TrekMovie.

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Geo-restrictions suck!! I mean, come on, CBS. We pay for your channels in Canada why can’t you just show it? Stupid rules/laws/restrictions.

THANK YOU BOB!!!! I REALLY hate this stupid geo-restrictions and regionlocked crap as well,but like I keep saying,there are ALWAYS ways to watch it,lol! Thanks again bob!

Thank you!

In the UK we have a TV licence with the BBC. You cannot watch anything on a TV without it!

Not entirely true,but close. lol!

These props look terrific!

I am so excited! It all just looks so beautiful. I hope the story is extraordinary and the acting is top notch, which will only add another layer to the amazing prop work.

Just don’t understand… I LOVE these props, but why skirt the edge with retro-inspired props and not continue along that vein with the costumes and sets? I know that recreating EXACTLY what we saw in TOS would be too kitchy, but there’s a happy medium that could’ve been struck. OH, well… just another Trekkie pissing and moaning about what he’s being given.

They did that with the JJ films and still got ripped to shreds over it. Likewise, I think part of it is to make sure it’s not too visually similar to the JJ films. I suspect they want fans to watch Discovery, and when they see in image know right away its from their show. No confusion with the films (which at the time of production were still going).

There is no reason why tech cannot be very varied and different on different ships and planets… it is a big galaxy…

To be fair, in the JJ films, the Enterprise looked good on the outside but was way too big and looked awful on the inside. The unis were fine though.

It was said Discovery had originally made Cage style unis. So maybe we’ll see them eventually.

These unis fit a sort of evolution from Enterprise to Kelvin though.

Replicating the look of TOS would not be too kitchy at all. There’s at least 3 amateur series that get a lot of attention and viewers using the TOS because fans are dying for it. They can always update it in the sense of making it less cheaply while maintaining the same fundamental look. I don’t think anyone would complain if the screens over the crew members heads – like Spock and Uhura – were actual screens with images, perhaps moving images, on them rather than warping plastic with static pictures on them. They took this approach in Rogue One and no one complained. In fact the movie was lauded for its fidelity to the look of the original film. You can run that movie and then watch A New Hope right afterwards like one long movie and it all fits visually seemlessly, and yet at the same time Rogue One is clearly high budget with cutting edge effects, sets, everything. I would love to see those bright bridge colors and hear those classic bridge sounds, the uniforms, the mini skirts, the whole shebang. And for those who say the miniskirts are scandalous I’d point out that the black shorts they wore under them show a lot less than the gowns at your average awards show. And it’s one thing the JJ movies held onto for Uhura and it looked great, not kitchy.

Love the props. First time I have seen the clip of Michael B. using EV suit in a fight. Cool.

This is very cool. So naturally, there will soon be a flood of comments from non-fans who only come here to complain about the latest Star Trek instead of {{{gasp}}} waiting for it to actually air first.

I think calling them “non-fans” is a bit harsh. They’re fans with a very… restrictive view of what Star Trek should be.

…I’d hate to disappoint! The props federation props look good, aside from the utilization of the WOK communicator antenna grid. That WOK communicator was an abomination, really hate to see see part of in incorporated here. Cant imagine why they would. A little more metallic looking, rather than, plastics, would’ve lifted the visuals a bit. The Klingon stuff is way too ornate. They’re not museum pieces, casual watchers aren’t going to notice all the intricate detail. And the series lead character, Bernham, continues to impersonate driftwood as she operates her tricorder. Too bad.

I can’t be the only person that doesn’t see the irony of CBS having anything at all to do with “Star Trek”, since 50+ years ago, not going with the original show(which the studio found “too cerebral”) and instead going with a little show called “Lost in Space” ?

Tony Shillings,

Re: …see the irony…

You aren’t. Although I wonder if I’m the only one that sees the irony of NETFLIX’s reboot of LOST IN SPACE. The last I checked they had a 10 episodes order.

Looking forward to seeing that they do with Lost In Space, actually.


Me too. Can they stick to the serious approach it initially had in the first season where it beat STAR TREK to the punch on matter transfer, The Prime Directive, Carey Wilbur, etc.? Should be interesting to see what balance they new crew achieve.

If only Irwin Allen’s education in history and science matched his enthusiasm and sense for adventure.


Happy to report that both ‘Lost in Space’ & ‘Altered Carbon’, the two big science fiction shows from Netflix, wrapped up production in June.


To quote the famous sportsman Yogi Berra, “It’s Deja Vu all over again!”

Thanks Ahmed.

LiS premiered a year earlier than Trek. Roddenberry pitched Trek to CBS, explaining things like M-Class planets amd humanoid aliens. Stories imply the CBS suits swiped the ideas, though it’s hard to find them demonstrated by LiS and its silly Mardi Gras masks.

The art direction on this show is nothing less than stupendous. And imagine the cosplay we could have with these gorgeous props!


In general I love the props and the costumes, but have to ask — why do they have the chevron branding on everything. This isn’t a company that needs to get its brand out there, it’s Star Fleet. It’s like the US military making sure the Stars and Stripes appeared on everything — weapons, boots, helmets. For me it cheapens the design.

Guess it’s the society we live in today. It’s all about the branding, branding, and branding.

“Why do they have the chevron branding on everything”
I concur. This actually takes me back to my childhood when TOS first aired. I *hated* many of the toys on offer back then. “Mr. Spock’s phaser doesn’t say ‘Star Trek’ on it!”

That’s why I rejected all store bought halloween costumes for Batman when I was a kid or Robin. When I was 6 I asked my mother to sew me a Robin costume to avoid that, not liking Robin particularly. But I was only 6 so I knew I wasn’t old enough to be Batman.

Especially since at this time (prior to the conclusion of Kirk’s 5 year mission) it was only used for USS Enterprise crew. It’s use at all for crew members of another ship makes no sense and won’t occur for 15 years.

Not true, and proven over and over again. Several other ships crews are seen wearing the Delta in TOS episodes, and the memo by Justman in 1967 shows that the creation of alternative insignia for other “starship class” ships was a production mistake that wasn’t corrected.

Stuff looks great but the acting… it feels… so… amateur.

So did season 1 of TNG.

This is 2017, not 1987.

There are a lot of shows I watch that have HUGE followings and some of the acting isn’t what I thought it would be or the delivery is different. Then again, I’ve felt that about a lot of Trek shows. Kate in Voyager delivered her lines very much like she was still on a soap. There were looks, raised eyebrows, laughs from the cast that felt overtly dramatic and not “natural.” This show like any other will find its stride I think.

Most top rated shows on TV have atrocious acting. That doesn’t justify it though.

Oh I agree. And I’ll say there are a lot of first seasons of shows where the acting is more stiff than a latter season. Besides, we’ve only seen clips from what is a 13+ episode season. We’ll see how it pans out.

indeed. The first season is always stiff the actors have a new roll they have to start playing it right then then they get more comfortable and understand the character and are able to play it much more loosely.

watch the Corbomite Manuever. First original episode filmed. They got on like they had known each other for years. You come on board every new project without knowing who you will be playing again, but if you’re a good actor, it doesn’t matter. You do your job. I’m afraid some of these actors just don’t have the chops to pull it off.

Stellar work.

This gets me hyped on a whole different level! Can’t wait!

Beginning of the timeline? Did he forget about Enterprise?

I never thought I could love any phaser more than the TOS phaser II. This phaser just stole my heart!

The closeup of the Batleth made me think of DS9’s docking arm if it were alienified.

I think I have a theory what they may be going for with this oddly thin bat’leth… Wasn’t there a legend about how Kahless created the first bat’leth out of one of his own hair? Perhaps the Discovery prop designers thought that this would more sense if the bat’leths actually looked like stylized hair strains?? (On the other hand, it’s specifically the lack of any hair that is the most controversial design choice of the Discovery Klingons…)

the federation props are OUTSTANDING! =D
everything else: not so much
LOTS of poor decisions =(