Orville Update: Jonathan Frakes Shooting Current Episode; ’24’ And ‘Gossip Girl’ Actors Guest Star

We have to wait until December 30th for the premiere of season two, but production continues on the show so it is time once again for quick pre-Comic-Con round of The Orville news. We’ll have more news this weekend from Comic-Con.

Frakes on set this week

As we expected, Star Trek: The Next Generation’s Jonathan Frakes is back to direct an episode of The Orville for season two. Show creator and executive producer Seth MacFarlane confirmed the news in a tweet a few days ago and executive producer (and former Star Trek: Enterprise writer/producer David Goodman) shared an image of Frakes on set yesterday.

And according to this post from a food truck, Frake’s episode of The Orville was doing location shooting today at Disney Concert Hall in downtown LA.

More praise from today’s shoot:

More guest stars revealed

Jon Cassar, producer and director on The Orville, also directed a number of episodes of the hit Fox show 24. It looks like 24 alumnus Carlos Bernard will guest star during season 2 based on Cassar’s Instagram post from earlier this month.


Just yesterday Entertainment Weekly confirmed that Leighton Meester will guest star in an episode, this will reunite her with Gossip Girl cast member Jessica Szohr (who is playing Talla Keyali in season 2). According to EW:

Meester will share scenes with Szohr, who plays a new crew member aboard the U.S.S. Orville. Details about Meester’s role weren’t made available at this time.

Leighton Meester will guest star in season 2

The Orville at Comic-Con

Similar to what CBS is doing with Discovery, TVInsider reports that Fox has customized Orville pedicabs running around the Gaslamp district. Riders will get sneak peeks at exclusive content on the attached screen and a special U.S.S. Orville crew pin too.

A pedicab decked out in Orville gear.

There will also be a mini-poster available at the Fox booth (#4229) on the convention floor. Cast members will be signing the posters on Saturday from 5:15PM-6:15PM.

Mini-poster available on convention floor.

And of course, The Orville has a Comic-Con panel scheduled for Saturday afternoon (July 21 at 4:00PM), TrekMovie will be there to cover it. So check back Saturday evening for a full report!

What’s it like to edit The Orville?

Last month Mashable posted an interview video with editor Tom Costantino.

Saturn makes the rounds

As we reported a couple of weeks ago, on the same night that Star Trek: Discovery won the Saturn Award for Best Streaming/New Media Series, The Orville won the Saturn Award for Best Sci-Fi Series (NOTE: Saturn rules have streaming services shows in a separate category). Following the win, the actual award did a tour around the set, visiting with cast and crew.

Shuttle pics of the week

Those USS Orville shuttles show up everywhere! Folks who work in or near the Fox lot routinely see them. Apparently this shuttle sat a little too long and people couldn’t resist writing on the windshield. Assistant editor on The Orville Hillary Wills noticed that a catchphrase from the Mel Brooks space comedy Spaceballs was written on the shuttle. Yogurt would be pleased.

Here is a background actor taking a shuttle selfie:

Editor Tom Costantino gives us a nice shot of the shuttles against the “city streets” section of the Fox backlot:

More behind-the-scenes bits

Seth’s stunt shoutout:

Peter Macon channels Alf:

It’s 6 am… do you know where your cat is?…you don’t cause I ate it

A post shared by peemay (@peterjerrodmacon) on

A young director in training:


The Orville will return in late 2018 for season two.

Keep up with all our coverage of The Orville at TrekMovie.

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The Saturn award is a great achievement. Congratulations to the Orville crew, very well deserved. Interesting that a show spoofing Star Trek won, and Star Trek did not. Says a lot and I do agree…

Discovery also won for best series. Maybe you should check your facts or read the article.

You both need to check your facts or read the article. The article clearly states that BOTH shows won Saturns. The Orville won best SF show, while DSC won best streaming/new media show. Two different categories. Two shows. Two wins.

But i still can’t wrap my head around the fact that The Orville won against The Expanse! The writing on The Expanse is on a whole other Level and the show gets bet by dick jokes?! OMG

If the expanse doesn’t win now, they never will, because the book series upon which their story is based gets worse and worse. Book five was almost unreadable.

That’s disappointing to hear about the books. I’ve struggled to get into the first book, which I’ve heard rave reviews about, so it worries me if the other books are worse. (I’m not saying book one is bad, just that it hasn’t grabbed me.)

Frickin love The Orville. I hope Seth is allowed to give us many, many more seasons – I’ll be buying the boxsets on bluray. It’s fun, thought-provoking and imaginative escapism. Not something I feel about Discovery sadly. Discovery is the first Star Trek series I’m not going to invest in, not buying for my collection. The Orville will have pride of place on my shelf.

But Wilson Cruz will be playing a Disco ghost resurrected by mushrooms. Just wait.

I’m glad some people enjoy the Orville. I find it unbearable, but everyone has their own tastes. I remember some friends not watching DS9 and instead getting sucked in to B5. I don’t at all rank Orville anywhere near B5 or DS9 but you get the comparison. It’s nice to have options at the end of the day.

That’s assuming there is a blu-ray release.

Agreed, Martin. May they (and we) enjoy many more seasons. Looking very forward to season 2.

I just wish it would rise above “mini-series” status and have a full 20 plus episode season.

Looking forward to more Orville, wish we didn’t have to wait so long for season two.

Both series were, in my view, literally cosmic letdowns.

Does this site receive paid consideration for coverage of the Orville? Curious.

Don’t think they’d admit it if they did….


Why? EW, TVLine, DenofGeek, Cinemablend and others have also covered this latest news about ‘The Orville’

That comparison is sort of missing the mark though. This site isn’t a general sci-fi or entertainment site. I think that’s the point JAM was making.


While the site is called Trekmovie they did cover other TV shows in the past.

I’ve been coming to the site since the days it was called ‘The Trek XI Report’ & I remember AP covering shows like Terra Nova & Fringe. There was also a weekly ‘Sci-Fi TV Thursday’ that was covering all news regarding SF shows.

That has to be the case! I mean, who in their right mind would cover that show for free?

The Orville may not be Trek in name but it’s definitely got some Trek spirit.

More than Discovery, that’s for sure.

1. I think it is a good idea to separate streaming series from regular over the air fare. Circumstances surrounding both types of productions are so very different.

2. Can’t wait for the inevitable Orville vs Discovery comments. Get me the popcorn!

Well, okay, but considering the predominance of streaming these days, you’d think the Saturns would add the category. Criminy.

Carlos Bernard is good at talking quietly. Jon Cassar was a longtime producer & director on 24. Today’s trivia challenge is: what Star Trek writer, other than Brannon Braga and Manny Coto, wrote for 24? Wrong. The correct answer is Maurice Hurley.

I remember when publications would try to paint 24 as anti-Muslim, right wing propaganda. Of course, there was the season when the terrorist villain was the POTUS himself. And one Braga season gave us a noble family of Derkastan. I don’t think the show actually had any politics beyond the likes of Octopussy.

I just loved the fact that for 7 pr 8 years (depending on how you count seasons) America’s premiere tough-guy TV hero was named for… a yogurt drink.

Well, I still think Kiefer Sutherland might make an interesting Captain or admiral in Trek. His last show was cancelled, I wonder if they might consider him for one the upcoming in development shows.

Thanks for the disclaimer that streaming shows are excluded from the Saturn Awards, because every time I see The Orville as best SF show I’m like, WHUT

I mean, I love it, but it’s no DISCO or EXPANSE or ….

It’s not that they are excluded from Saturns. It’s that they are in their own category.

Disco is no Expanse.

@Denny C,


Neither show is The Expanse. Not even close.

Agreed. The Expanse is the best sf show right no by a long shot.

Yeah, comparing Disco to The Expanse is like comparing big mac to a juicy steak. There is a place for both, but I’d prefer the juicy steak.

Continuing with that analogy, then The Orville is a SPAM sandwich.

Wow, Frakes is looking good! “Speak for yourself sir, I plan to live forever!”

I just came here to say thing, Frakes looks amazing!
Actually, most of the TNG cast have really kept themselves well over the years. They would still look great playing their TNG characters.

Well hey, if those movie rumors pan out, you might just get to see them in action one last time!

Nice to see Frakes back. He’s looking fit!

Thanks for the update, it’s going to be a long wait till December 30th.

Edit: For people needlessly and constantly complaining about The Orville coverage on Trekmovie, here are some of the times when Trekmovie covered other TV shows/movies in the past.

Fringe Update: Episode Review of “Arrival” [UPDATE: Gets Full Season Order] [October 1, 2008]

EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Fringe’s Lance Reddick Is Trekkie & Wants Sequel Role + Anna Torv Talks Nimoy’s Last Day [June 29, 2010]

Brannon Braga: Terra Nova Has Star Trek Feel & New Kind of Time Travel + Wondercon Video [April 5, 2011]

Terra Nova Cancelled – What Does This Say For Future Of Sci-Fi & Star Trek TV? [March 6, 2012]

10 Things Mission: Impossible: III Can Teach Us About JJ Abrams Star Trek [June 9, 2008]

Sci-Fi TV Thursday: Terra Nova, Fringe, Chuck, The Hulk + more [September 29, 2011]

So you had to go back 7 to 10 years into the site archive to find some examples to prove this out?

I think you just unintentionally proved the opposite of what you intended. This seems to illustrate that for many years now the practice has largely been that this site has not covered such shows.

This is liking claiming iPods are still extremely popular, and then trying to prove that by citing examples of iPod sales figures from 10 years ago. LOL


Trekmovie had covered and continue to cover other genre shows.

End of the story.#basta

Thank you, Disinvited! That is more complelling. I was taking his post at face value – why woul he use nearly decade old examples to make that point? And since I started here last winter, all I see is The Orville.

Wouks you say that Trekmovie’s covering of other series’ was more limited from 2012 until The Orville versus that period of 2008 to 2011 where Ahmed provides many examples?

Disinvited, i’m waiting for you to answer the question I had for you? Thanks


Certainly couldn’t say restricted in regards to their coverage of the TWILIGHT ZONE as both original and newer versions have been covered since the site went up. However their lack of coverage of the following:


would seem to tilt in your favor but then what are we to make of their lack of coverage of Paramount’s current intellectual property, a topic they’ve more than demonstrated a definite appetite for, woes?:


Well a cursory glance at some articles from 2012 to 2016 that I just took shows a radically smaller amount of articles on other sf series then the 7-10 year old period that Ahmed used to illustrate his point. I can why he had to go back so far it time to back up his point.

Thanks for this Ahmed. You may have to post this every time someone whines why is a non-Trek show being discussed. Clearly they been doing this from the beginning.

Certainly weird though how Ahmed provides those examples from nearly a decade ago when it seems this site regularly covered numerous sf series. If they were still doing that today in the major and regular they obviously covered multiple series way back when, then why are there no articles on The Expanse, and Westworld?

Obviously they are doing this less often these days, which is why Ahmed had to take “a journey back in time” to find enough examples to prove his point…they simply aren’t covering as many other series’ these days as they did a decade ago…FACT!


Will do.

So, could you describe Peter Macon’s expression there as “saturnine”?

The shuttle was on the Warner Bros. Backlot Thursday when MacFarlane tweeted it was so hot (it was only 87!). I think they filled the pond — not sure if it was in the water or not. But man, watching the Teamsters unload that thing from semi was something. Now those guys had something to complain about!

comment image

Thanks for keeping us non-streamers/Free TVers informed about Orville. I love and appreciate it.

Brannon Braga, Andre Bormanis, Joe Menosky, Jonathan Frakes, James Conway, Robert Duncan McNeill, David Goodman, Penny Johnson Jerald, Robert Picardo, John Debney, Marvin Rush.

The Orville is VERY Trek-adjacent, and that’s why we cover it. It should be obvious.

Some people in here seem to think that Orville is somehow a threat to Discovery. It’s nothing of the sort. The shows are very different animals and have very different goals. I’m not sure why it has to be an either/or thing.

I’m not sure why some people feel the need to fuss over coverage which doesn’t interest them rather than just skipping over it in any case. Why must every-damn-thing be so divisive?

The internet has created a very binary environment that has destroyed discourse of every kind. We’re more tribal than ever.

I don’t know that we’re necessarily more tribal than ever, but I definitely agree that the intertubes have coarsened public dialogue. Remember when your granny told you that some thoughts were best left unspoken? Ah, those were the days. :(

Scott Gammans

I don’t know that we’re necessarily more tribal than ever…

Yes we are. And I suggest that you agree.

Perhaps telling people who don’t like The Orville to just skip articles about The Orville is like telling people who don’t like Discovery to just skip articles about Discovery. It’s not going to happen. Some people will rather just regurgitate the same complaints over and over again instead of moving on to something that actually does interest them.

That is essentially what I have said. I just can’t write as succinctly as you do, I guess. :)

I think if such coverage bothers someone so very much then just skip the coverage. Why feel compelled to read every story that appears? I personally have no interest in the comic adaptations nor the gaming world. I just skip those articles as I have no interest. I don’t post in the threads blasting the site for writing about games when they should be sticking to TV. That’s just silly.

I think they may see it as a threat to Discovery because subconsciously they actually know that it has got more Trek related stuff (messages, ideas, science fiction elements, crew members etc.) than Discovery actually has and this might it make it a little frustrating for them. I personally think there is nothing wrong with covering other shows here too.

@Brian Drew,

Like the others said, if someone doesn’t like the coverage of a particular topic (The Orville, the comics, the games ..etc) they should skip them, rather than complaining in every thread.

At this point it’s just trolling, so you guys should simply close those comments.

For my part, I thought it was just odd that you had to go back a decade to find examples of this site regularly covering other shows. I mean who goes 10 years back to prove a point about today’s coverage? That kind of shows there’s not that many near terms examples obviously. This is not me trolling; this is me just looking at your post and analyzing your provided examples. Please stop taking it so personally and trying to shot me down. We disagree – big deal!

And I also take exception to all this false sense of hysteria here now from several of you like, “Oh my God, how dare people discuss the coverage of non-Star Trek shows on the site.” Why is it such a big deal some of us have this opinion? Maybe take your own advice and ignore these posts and move on, but there is no need to label that group as trolls just because you find their comments can be inconvenient to digest?

And there is another person here – not you – who postted one of the most hypocritical post I have seen in ages today on this thread. That person constantly posts negative pot shots on nearly every DSC article on this site — That person is actually suggesting that people skip posts on things that they don’t like and don’t go negative, yet he is the lead voice of posting neagativity on this site. Wow!

I think the advice to all of us here or should be to just not take everything so personally and get so sensitive about it when we don’t like something that we read. And if we challenge something, so what, it’s discourse. Post your response that you disagree with it and chill out. No need for the fake hysteria that the sky is falling and that we’re all going tribal because we’re having a bit of an argument. This is a fan web site where people disagree a lot on certain topics – so what?

Let’s just all stop being so sensitive to people who don’t like some of the group-think opinions on both sides of any disagreement .

@Brian Drew — It’s not necessarily that DISC fans think that ORVILLE is a threat, it’s that some ORVILLE fans are making it a competition, with t r o l l-like comments such as: ORVILLE is the true successor to TNG, and ORVILLE is “real” Trek, DISC is not. Regardless of whether someone skips articles about ORVILLE or DISC, is moot, if someone is coming to a Trek site and posting comments like that.

So it should be obvious why you’d make that observation: Those Trek fans who appreciate DISC are defending a legitimate Trek production. So those ORVILLE fans in turn feel compelled to step up the rhetoric to bash DISC and it becomes a vicious cycle. There are t r o l l s on both sides, but from my perspective those ORVILLE fans are the initiators, since this is first and foremost a Trek site. If they were making comments about who is and is not a “real” Trek fan, they would be banned, and indeed have been, since we’re all Trek fans regardless of our views about Trek or we wouldn’t be here. It’s funny that attacking the show in this way then is considered acceptable.

Either way, Trek has passionate fans, and some ORVILLE fans are using it as means to attack DISC. Opinions are fine, but more and more, these comments seem designed to inflame and bully rather than constructively criticize.

” Those Trek fans who appreciate DISC are defending a legitimate Trek production.”

It’s not an absolute. SOME are. Most are not. Most Trek fans who enjoy Orville do not see either in competition with each other and are fully capable of seeing them for what each of them are.

My opinion probably doesn’t mean anything to most people but, so what. Personally I am a fan of both shows. I think they are exceptional in what they do and should each be around for another ten years. I would like to see more episodes of each but, you take what you can get.

@Cadet. Agreed! And there is another person here – not you – who posted one of the most hypocritical post I have seen in ages today on this thread. That person constantly posts negative pot shots on nearly every DSC article on this site — That person is actually suggesting that people skip posts on things that they don’t like and don’t go negative, yet he is the lead voice of posting negativity on this site. Wow!

That is one ugly shuttle.

That shuttle uses Galifrey technology. Watch the series. It is bigger inside than it is outside.

Don’t care what technology it uses. Ugly is ugly.