Star Trek Cast And Crew Share Production Updates On ‘Strange New Worlds,’ ‘Picard,’ And ‘Discovery’

Earlier this week, we shared the news that voice recording had already started on the third season of the animated series Star Trek: Lower Decks. Today we share some tidbits from the three live-action Star Trek shows currently in production.

Strange New Worlds shooting eighth episode

Production continues apace for Strange New Worlds. On Thursday, director Amanda Row revealed she was helming an episode. The news came via her Twitter, with a photo of the clapboard with Thursday’s date, showing she is directing the eighth episode (108) of the ten-episode series. This is Row’s first time directing for Star Trek, and she showed her excitement with the message “THIS IS NOT A DRILL!!!!!!!! 🤯🤯🤯🤯🤯 I AM CURRENTLY DIRECTING #STARTREK” She has previously directed a number of other series including Cloak & Dagger, Doom Patrol, and The 100.

Amanda Row follows Sydney Freeland, who directed episode seven of the new series, who also shared a clapboard picture (from the beginning of the month) this week. Freeland is another Trek first-timer, with previous experience directing for Gray’s Anatomy, Fear the Walking Dead, and Nancy Drew. She shared her excitement on Instagram with the message “So so much I want to say about this. But until the time comes 🖖🏽.”


Episode one of the series is directed by co-showrunner Akiva Goldsman, but the rest of the first season (from what we know so far) appears to be directed by women. In addition to Row and Freeland, other episodes have been helmed by Maja Vrvilo (who has directed episodes of Discovery and Picard), Leslie Hope, and Andi Armaganian.

And in the last couple of days, two of new writers (Bill Wolkoff and Onitra Johnson) shared their excitement visiting the set and being part of the show.

Production of the show set on Captain Pike’s USS Enterprise began in February. Recently, stars Anson Mount and Rebecca Romijn have offered updates that the Toronto-based production has been going smoothly, despite COVID protocols. Strange New Worlds is expected to debut on Paramount+ in 2022.

John de Lancie still at work on Picard

We also have a brief update from the production of Star Trek: Picard, thanks to a post today from executive producer and co-showrunner Terry Matalas. He posted an image of actor John de Lancie sitting in a captain’s chair in Matalas’ office.

As revealed in the teaser for season two, de Lancie is returning to Star Trek to reprise his role as the godlike Q, and he has been offering updates on Cameo over the last couple of months, revealing he is going to appear in six episodes total, spanning seasons two and three of the series. De Lancie’s most recent revelation may have even spoiled a surprising character return.

Production on the ten-episode second season of Picard also began in February in Los Angeles. It is expected to arrive on Paramount+ in 2022.

Discovery has “locked” some season 4 episodes as production continues

The next live-action Trek set to arrive on Paramount+ is the fourth season of Discovery. During a Gold Derby Emmy panel this week co-showrunner Michelle Paradise gave an update on progress:

In terms of an airdate, I don’t know. The teaser trailer said “2021” so we’ll go with that. I don’t want to give away how far along we were in shooting. Our finale is written. We are in the midst of shooting things. We’re in the midst of editing things. We have some cuts that are picture locked. We’re doing VFX. A lot of things are coming together and we’re pretty excited about how it’s all shaping up.

And during the Outfest panel last weekend, she offered this:

Our trailer has been released and our heroes are going to have some challenges this coming season and some things they need to deal with. I think it will be an interesting season for all of them in terms of challenging as individuals and challenging their relationships with each other and how those relationships can grow. I have to say, it’s really fun watching these folks bring these stories to life. I am eyeball-deep in editing right now and it is an absolute treat.

So it appears that they are deep into editing the fourth season, including “picture locking” some episodes, which means finishing the episode cut, but awaiting visual effects, music, and other post-production elements. Speaking of editing, earlier this week editor Scott Gamzon shared his excitement on Twitter for being back at work on Discovery for season four.

Even though COVID protocols have added some complications, during the Gold Derby panel actor Anthony Rapp (Paul Stamets) also pointed to how the cast has benefited from the pandemic production delay:

In season four we’ve been given the scripts sometimes weeks before we do the episode, which is bananas. In the first season there were a couple times where we got them at the last minute, but that was before Michelle [Paradise] came on board. She’s running a super-tight ship that way, and we’re really grateful. Seriously. It’s really great to have that run-up, especially when we have a lot of super high-tech dialog. Yesterday was sort of typical for me. It was a little bit of a later call. I had to be there at 8am, but I didn’t wrap until 10pm. And the whole day I was talking about science-y things. My brain at the end of the night was kind of leaking out my ears, but it was very satisfying.

Another actor to weigh in on those late nights on the set is Emily Coutts (Keyla Detmer), who earlier this week shared a photo of herself with co-star Oyin Oladejo (Joann Owosekun). Coutts said on Instagram: “filmed all night and watched the sunrise with my partner in crime 🌴 #startrekdiscovery.”

 

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A post shared by Emily Coutts (@couttsemily)

Paramount+ has announced season four of Discovery will arrive later in 2021.


Find more news and analysis for the Star Trek Universe at TrekMovie.com.

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Really technical film production question…

The clapboard image for SNW Ep 108 directed by Amanda Row indicates it was shot on 32mm.

The clapboard image for SNW Ep 107 directed by Sydney Freeland indicates it was shot on 50mm.

Is that a film indicator? Or a lens indicator?

If it is film, why the difference from one episode to the next?

Thanks!

It may have to do with the 50mm being used for a VFX shot, which it says on the clapper board. And you can see the blue screen.

50mm is the focal length of the lens used. They are putting that on slates now for visual effects heavy productions.

It’s weird they even bother IDing the lens that way given so much info including that is built into the metadata, but I guess it is something of a tradition at this point.

Even if it’s in the metadata, sometimes looking at the metadata is a chore, you have to go into a menu or whatever. When you shoot, the slate is in the picture when you press the record button, so the 1st frame of pic is the slate. This means that in the editing bin when you look at it, the thumbnail states clearly all the info up top, or if the shot gets lost and ends up in the wrong drive or something it’s super easy to find just by looking at the first frame, you don’t have to scroll through and wonder what it is.

Also entering in metadata is a whole thing and sometimes people do it wrong. And even if metadata entry is absolutely perfect, it’s important to have a backup. 20 years from now who knows what metadata formats will be compatible with the ones from today? They may have a whole other system and our current system might be archaic. Or maybe there’s a thing where the metadata gets stripped from the file. By putting the most important info on the slate, you are literally “baking” the information you need into the shot itself, thus you guarantee that the necessary info will be preserved for posterity regardless of whether the metadata continues on.

So it’s more than just tradition.

Those are very good observations, and borne out by so many other systems (in the biz and out – was traumatized to find out that 95% of all data gathered by NASA in its first thirty years was irretrievable by the early 90s) where obsolescence has lead to data loss. I stand corrected.

Thanks all!!

Really appreciate the feedback. I feel like you just gave me a film school primer on the use, history and importance of the slate / clapboard.

Good stuff!

I don’t know how the metadata is stored but I would imagine that if changes in formats should make the metadata inaccessible in the future the same would probably also be true for the footage itself. There’s no analog film stock anymore, it’s all just a bunch of files in different formats now.

No major news but it’s still cool to see Trek in so many level of productions these days. And what’s cool about these three shows is they all represent different centuries: 23rd, 25th and 32nd and all being done at the same time. This still blows my mind. I always rolled my eyes when people said you can’t do Star Trek pass Voyager, lol. Well that idea is now completely dead in the water thankfully and Trek is expanding in kinds of ways I been dreaming of for decades.

Anyway, looking forward to it all! I’m looking forward to Discovery the least at the moment but that will probably change when we get more info on season 4. But PIC and SNW I’m SUPER excited for! Maybe Q will transport Picard onto Pike’s bridge and watch the internet melt down lol. But when you really think about it, there is nothing out there that said they never met. ;)

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

This is also a reminder that when people say new Trek is risking being “spread too thin” remember that even with 3 shows filming, it’s still likely to be less than 30 total episodes produced per calendar year, far fewer than the 50 or so that were regularly being produced between 1993-1998.

I’m amazed that TOS made 29 episodes during its first season; that would be THREE seasons in the modern era! No wonder Bob Justman needed a rest cure; it’s a wonder the entire team didn’t. :-)

VFX were far less a part of the shows back in TOS era.
Over time television seasons have got shorter for shows demanding a lot of VFX and many shows demand VFX don’t they?

Another factor is television has changed and the choice for consumers is now overwhelming and binge watching is now a thing, and so people won’t want to sit a watch 20-30 episodes. People want to watch 10-15 episodes over a couple of days and then move on, that’s what I am thinking anyway.

“People want to watch 10-15 episodes over a couple of days and then move on…”. Speak for yourself. And, of course, even *if* one wanted to binge like that, you would have to wait until the end of each season to do so (most folks on this site aren’t that patient).

I don’t necessarily buy that. The main thing is if the seasons are so time intensive then why take so very long between seasons? If they only make 10 episodes then take no more than a month or two off and start right up on the next season. Don’t sit around for 6 months waiting to decide what to do. There are short season shows that have had breaks of two years! I also don’t think binging has anything to do with it. BTW… An issue I have had with the short seasons and the lengthy time between seasons is by the time the show returns there are cases where the show was gone for so very long that I literally forgot what the hell happened the previous season! Out of sight, out of mind and all that. And that is not just be because I’m old. I experienced that more than 15 years ago when this phenomena was just starting. I recall seasons of Hell on Wheels and The Americans being so far apart I had to go dig up episode synopsis’ on the internet to refamiliarize myself with what was going on! That’s asking too much of an audience.

In fact the same thing is happening with The Orville right now, I can’t even remember when it aired its last episodes, it has been so long. So I agree with you in this regard. The main reason I can think of for doing shorter is to benefit the actors rather than the audience. So actors can work in more than one show and not get stuck doing the same thing all over again.

Fine but honestly, this isn’t for their benefit. It’s for the AUDIENCES! It’s like a hardware store saying, “we are closed 4 days a week because it enables our staff to do other things with their time.” They aren’t there to give their staff personal time. They are there to sell hardware! If an actor doesn’t want to commit to a show for as long as it is required then don’t take the gig!

Yeah there is a HUGE gap with shorter seasons now that I had trouble remembering what happened in previous seasons with shows like West World, Better Call Saul and Stranger Things. Most of these were nearly 2 years apart between seasons. What’s crazy is Stranger Things only have 8 episodes a season and it’s already been over 2 years since season 3 but I guess you can partly blame that on the pandemic as well.

But this is just becoming the new normal. It’s probably also why there will be five Star Trek shows on because clearly P+ can’t wait around for a year or more for just one of the shows to return. Again, part of it is due to the pandemic but Picard will have been off the air for two years before we get season 2. Oddly enough Lower Decks seems to be the first show to have its second season at least premiere within the same year time frame and that’s still pretty long compared to the old days.

Even doing the TNG era, they were still making 26 episodes a year which still went beyond the standard 22 episodes most shows ran then. If TNG landed on a traditional network it would’ve only gotten around 22 episodes max but it was a different standard in syndication.

Now we’re lucky if we get a Star Trek show that gets more than 10 episodes these days. But of course all of this is due to the fact syndication is basically dead now so there isn’t that drive to make 100+ episodes like the old days.

That is also the irony about TOS, they were making that many episodes to get into syndication. If the show was cancelled in second season instead of third I don’t think anyone would be talking about it today, at least not in the present tense. Crazy how things worked out.

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

The syndication of TOS and it’s success was a phenomenon, not a forethought. But you’re correct that a 2 season TOS would have doomed the chances of TOS to be syndicated at all.

“If TNG landed on a traditional network it would’ve only gotten around 22 episodes max but it was a different standard in syndication.”

VOY was on UPN and they continued making 26 episodes as of Season 3. They later sold VOY into syndication but it was network-based. We just got lucky they continued that tradition although it may have given us some bottled episodes. ENT’s first two season also had 26 episodes on UPN…

If TNG landed on a traditional network it would’ve only gotten around 22 episodes max but it was a different standard in syndication.

The A-Team had 23 and 25 episode seasons.
Knight Rider had 24 in Season 2.
Miami Vice had 24 in Season 3.
Airwolf got 24 episodes in Season 4 on USA.
Dallas was ridiculous. It had 25 or more episodes per season from 1981 to 1990, peaking at 31 in 1985-86.

OK, I see I have to be more specific. I was talking about TNG directly. When the show was being shopped around the networks, NONE of them wanted to do 26 episodes a year because at the time the show was considered either too costly, risky or both. They went to every major network and either they shot it down completely or only offered them between 13-22 episodes a season. I think FOX offered only 13 episodes and CBS ironically was offering around 20 episodes, but no one wanted to do a full 26 episodes.

That’s literally why the show ended up in syndication because that was the only way they could get a guarantee of 26 episodes because at the time they thought the show would only make it to 5 years and wanted at least 100 episodes to sell in, ironically, syndication later.

Of course when TNG became a big hit, it was all moot and yes later shows like VOY and Enterprise got the same episode count automatically when they went to UPN.

So yes some shows had more than 22 episodes but not ALL shows. It obviously just depended on how big they were. That said TNG probably could’ve gotten more episodes in later seasons if did land at FOX or ABC and proven a big hit like it was in syndication.

That’s not the story I heard. I had heard that GR intentionally went to syndication from the beginning because he would have more control over his show. Also, FOX didn’t start until 1989 and TNG first aired in 1987.

A lot of this was expressed on the documentary Chaos on the Bridge by one of the Paramount Presidents at the time, so it definitely happened. I don’t remember ALL the specifics and I read a lot of it in a news article back in the early 90s but they went to ALL the networks at the time. Maybe that’s what Roddenberry wanted but the show was shopped around to all four networks before it landed in syndication first.

And they DEFINITELY went to FOX. IIRC, they went to them first actually because FOX was just starting and the guy who ran it liked the idea of a known franchise for his start up network and thought the Star Trek name could bring more attention to it (sound familiar ;)). That happened 100% and you know me long enough when I say something I say it with some sources to back it up (but I could get the story mixed up being so long ago but not with that Fox part. That definitely happened.).

And FOX started back in 1986, not 1989. Their first big show, Married with Children came out in 1987, a few months before TNG did in fact.

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

My bad. Fox did indeed start in ’86. For some idiot reason I was thinking the network started with The Simpsons. But that show was spun off from Tracy Ulman.

No worries!

It is a very convoluted history, going back to Star Trek: Phase II. When Paramount belatedly got serious about Phase II in 1976-77, all three major networks (ABC, CBS, and NBC) were extremely interested in it. There would likely have been a bidding war, the reruns of TOS at the time were that lucrative. This is one (perhaps the main) reason Paramount decided it would launch its own network.

Then Star Wars happened. Paramount decided it needed a Trek movie, and Phase II faded into Trek history.

Flash-forward to 1986. Three movies had all been very successful (even if Paramount would forever plead they lost their shirts on TMP.) and a fourth was imminent and the studio was very happy with it. And a new TV series was once again being seriously considered by Paramount. The networks (now including the new Fox) were all again very interested. But to do it right, the new show would be very expensive, and Paramount wanted 24-ish episodes per season to spread the cost over more episodes to sell to the networks. The networks would probably have gone along with some arm-twisting (standard practice was to start with just 10 or 12 episodes and up the season order later.) Eventually, Paramount (probably with Roddenberry’s complete agreement) decided syndication was the way to go, pocketing more of the money itself instead of sharing it with ABC, CBS, FOX, or NBC middle-men. And the rest is history.

Last edited 1 month ago by Thorny

STAR WARS may have primed the pump, but Paramount just regarded it as a one off fluke. It was CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND that actually tipped the scales and got their Trek movie salivary juices flowing.

In the 80’s and 90’s 24-26 episodes were still the norm. This lasted even into the 00’s. Although 18 episode seasons were becoming more common by the mid 00’s.

Stargate always used to do 20 episode season until and including Stargate Universe in 2011.

Don’t know if Stargate did this but BSG would often split their longer season into two parts. Sometimes with a break so long they may as well have called it the next season.

SG1 was 22 episodes until season 8 with 20. This is because SGA aired so they were doing 40 episodes a year.

Note: The first few years of SG-1 were on Showtime, a pay network.

There are some things that have shrunk over time. And it isn’t always for the better. TV seasons are shorter. Some are as few as 8 episodes! That’s just nuts. There was a time when 8 episodes qualified for a “mini-series”. Which is what I consider every show under 15 episodes to be. Honestly I still think it’s laziness to make so very few episodes in a season. They only do 10 or 12 episodes and then take a 12 or as many as 16 months between seasons! There just is no excuse for that.

I equate this to baseball. 40 years ago there were 4 man pitching rotations and starters were expected to go 7+ innings at least. Now days there are 5 man rotations and starters are only expected to go 5+ innings. What happened? This is not an improvement.

Well we’re really talking about streaming shows. Network shows don’t have seasons that small. Most of those are still around at least 12-13 episodes today. Even most cable shows have that many although around 10-13 seems to be the norm.

Streaming shows are just a really different animal for a lot of reasons. The Disney+ shows, both Marvel and SW, seems to only be 6-8 episodes tops. But then you also have to remember these episodes are basically costing the price of mini films. The Mandalorian cost around $100 million a season or $12-15 million an episode. You could’ve made about 50 TNG episodes for that price back in the 90s. Two seasons worth of shows.

The MCU shows cost even more than that because you have to factor in how much they are paying the stars of the shows since they all started in the movies, so they are getting HUGE salaries basically what they are getting in the movies while still keeping to movie like productions. These aren’t ‘TV shows’ like the old days.

And because they are spending so much, they treat them more like films than TV shows and spend a lot of time editing them and adding effects. I think Alex Kurtzman said it takes 9-10 months to render the FX on Discovery. That’s basically the same time it takes to do effects for average films today. Back when TNG/DS9/VOY was around it only took about 4-5 months for an episode IIRC. Still a lot of time but nearly half of what it does today. Which is of course funny because everyone said when CGI came around and became a staple in Hollywood, the belief back then was stuff would be cheaper and faster to do in time and that’s been proven wrong on both accounts. Movies cost more than ever because the FX budgets have gone insane.

So that’s another reason, even if they shot seasons in a faster time, most would still probably take about a year to premiere anyway because you can’t rush post-production that much. And if you made MORE episodes, it would take even longer to premiere them.

But it’s not ‘laziness’, in fact its the opposite of that. They try and craft each episode like an event and that takes waaaaay more time and money to do versus churning out 20 episodes of NCIS and everything is shot in 8 days. These shows are treated at a much bigger level.

So yeah seasons are becoming smaller but that’s also because they are just spending a TON more on these shows then in the past. You probably have to blame it on GOT since they were the first to spend so much on a show before but that trend is now continuing, especially with sci fi and fantasy shows.

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

Over the air network shows still have a number of shows with 20 episodes or so. But the short seasons have even been encroaching there, too. FOX has done it quite often. And frankly those 10 episode shows on the air don’t look any better technically than the 20 episode shows. So I stand by my comment on laziness.

And let’s face it, there really isn’t any great reason to be so meticulous when doing FX and other post work. They can still do a pretty good job and crank those suckers out faster. Now if they want to do a feature quality mini-series then do a one off. Like the old mini-series’ of the past were. Things like Roots and Shogun ran for two hours each episode over 5 or 6 nights! That’s a 10 or 12 episode show in today’s world. And many of them were quite good. Lonesome Dove was 4 two hour parts. That’s an 8 episode miniseries today. And it was still one of the best things I’ve ever seen on TV in my life. One offs like that it is understandable that a larger effort can go into the production. But for a regular TV show, there really isn’t a need for it especially if that is just going to cause a slower turnaround to not only getting the show out but in getting the next season out. The Mandalorian was good but honestly, I’d sacrifice some of the look and effects work for more episodes in their season. In a heartbeat. It would still be good.

The problem as I see it is too much effort is made towards the flashy shiny things that in the end aren’t as important to story telling as quality writing and plotting is. This is also true of feature films. A great special effect in a badly written movie with bland characters doesn’t make the film any better. But a great story well performed with just decent special effects actually is a better end product. So again, I stand by my “lazy” comment when it comes to the short seasons. I have yet to hear a reasonable case made to support 8 or 10 episodes a year. Just as I have yet to hear any logical case be made to support starting pitchers going 5 innings is a “good” outing. It isn’t.

“Over the air network shows still have a number of shows with 20 episodes or so. But the short seasons have even been encroaching there, too. FOX has done it quite often. And frankly those 10 episode shows on the air don’t look any better technically than the 20 episode shows. So I stand by my comment on laziness.”

Again I’m talking about the streaming shows, which Star Trek is now. Those are a very different animal from the network shows, which I agree is mostly just experimenting with lower episodes. but streaming shows it is mostly out of need because of the cost, the fact they don’t rely on audience numbers wise in the same way and take longer to film and produce.

Back in the TOS and TNG days, it would take 6-8 days to film an episode. For Discovery, takes 15 days now, basically twice as long. Its one of the things Anson Mount complained about when he was shooting that show and why I wasn’t sure he was up for a full series. But it’s also WHY ten episodes is more fitting when it takes the same amount of time to shoot 10 episodes it use to take 20.

And we can sit on our sofa and just shrug off the millions of dollars and months of labor it takes to make these shows but this is just the reality today, especially with FX. TV has been transforming more into event series for the last decade, thanks mostly to GOT (and which btw the producers the originally referenced as the kind of show they wanted Discovery to be in terms of production….and why it got delayed for so long).

Discovery cost $8 million an episode, that’s not The Mandalorian but that is still above what a typical network show would cost and probably why it wouldn’t last very long on one. And yes the turnaround would have to be faster but streaming and cable don’t have the same time schedule like a FOX or ABC show has. With streaming its just different dynamics.

I agree it doesn’t mean because it cost more and has better effects it will be a better story behind it. Look how much Hollywood spends on movies themselves and takes years to get them made just to deliver a so-so product a lot of the times. BUT it manage to get more people to view it then who don’t if they DIDN’T take the time and money to make it into a spectacle. The Kelvin movies are literally the perfect example and why it take 3-4 years just to get one made when TOS and TNG films could be made in 2-3 years. A lot of the streaming shows are going through the same process, but they clearly think its worth it because those shows are only getting more expensive as well.

And these shows are sold to a worldwide audience now. Gone are the days America ran a show first and 9 months later Australia or maybe Germany would get it. They are now more global than ever thanks to streaming and another reason they are putting in the money and time to make them bigger because they are showing them in 200 countries all within 24 hours most of the time.

It’s just a different world now so different expectations and dynamics. I know as we get older change is harder, but it is change nonetheless and I don’t see it going back to the old way because with streaming it never conformed to the old way in the first place.

But you’re getting 5 Star Trek shows out of it, so glass half full! ;)

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

I understand that is the way things are going. And have been for some time. Streaming does not have the same delivery dates and other such restrictions TV had in the past. All of that is known and understood. I just don’t see it as a legitimate excuse to take so very very long to produce 8 hours of television. Ultimately I think those drop dead dates and other restrictions were a good thing. It kept the producers on their toes. It forced the artists to be more creative. And in the end it was better for the audiences.

Dude I just explained why lol. BECAUSE they are filmed more cinematically today than the more standard (but efficient) way TV shows mostly did in the past. I mean that is the excuse, they are taken longer because how the shows are made today literally takes longer to make…and more expensive to boot. They are spending $100 million a season on a dozen episodes in a lot of these shows. They want to take their time.

I guess it’s just funny to me. In the Berman days people criticized Trek back then because Trek was turning into a meat grinder factory producing so many episodes for 15+ years. Now they are taking more time between seasons to try and do it a different way. I understand many still don’t feel they are getting a great show, but if people are criticizing the shows NOW, I can only imagine how badly they would with rushed episodes at a fraction of the price.

And I disagree totally about having set dates. I mean that is the other crazy thing, most franchise films seem to be getting all these set dates (even if they are years away) and I don’t think it makes the films better. Yes we ALL want more Star Trek and the sooner the better, but I still prefer for them to take their time if they think it will be a better experience. At the end of the day that’s what we’re talking about. And in terms of the production values, that can’t be argued. Discovery literally does look and feel like a movie at times. Just too bad they don’t spend more time on the scripts themselves but that’s not exactly an exclusive issue in Hollywood in any form. ;)

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

You did indeed give me a reason. I just felt that reason was not sufficient to support amazingly short seasons that have such a long turnaround time to the next season. It should be amazingly obvious by now that in a lot of cases more time does not = better product. If it did, or even if it did more often than not, I might reluctantly be OK with the situation. But the fact is, it doesn’t. It’s not even a factor. Since, it’s not, better to make them produce more episodes and start the next season sooner. That’s all.

Which is of course funny because everyone said when CGI came around and became a staple in Hollywood, the belief back then was stuff would be cheaper and faster to do in time and that’s been proven wrong on both accounts.

VFX have become faster and cheaper to do on a per-shot basis. The reason movies still take so long and VFX budgets have gone up is that the number of VFX shots in movies has exploded. Jurassic Park had about 50 VFX shots in 1993. Compare that to modern-day blockbusters which often have between 2000 and 3000 VFX shots.
There’s an article by FXGuide called “Star Trek Discovery In COVID” from November 2020 that states that each episode has anywhere between 100 and more than 700 VFX shots. So for the full season, that’s indeed more than a modern-day blockbuster.

Those are all great points. Yeah, I agree, because they have more toys at their disposal today, they can do more. Of course that’s the OTHER argument against movies and shows today, there is too much of a reliance of FX and CGI, but it gets people to show up when they see how cool it looks in the trailers. ;)

True but when you add the animated shows it will basically be 50 episodes a year which is insane! Yes certainly less than classic Trek but since none of these shows will air at the same time the way TNG/DS9/VOY did then that means we are basically getting a new Star Trek episode every week for the entire year.

And it looks like that will start in 2022 since we know PIC and SNW will both premiere next year and both PRO and LDS have been renewed for another season (and already being worked on). That only leaves DIS if there will be a season 5 or not but more than likely it will happen. So yeah, possibly five shows next year, but four minimum!!! And I can’t wait!

From the 23rd to the 32nd century and everything in between for a full year! And this may not happen but from August 12th (when season 2 of LDS start) and on we may even have constant Star Trek beginning August through the end of 2022!! With LDS, PRO and DIS all coming this year we could be getting constant Star Trek for 16 straight months!! It’ll probably will come down to Discovery and if they start season 5 early enough to premiered in 2022.

I know, I’m setting myself up for disappointment but that would be freakin amazing!!!!!!

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

A new Trek per week is the only thing that will keep me and a lot of other Trekkies hooked to Paramount+ as a service. It makes a lot of sense that that would be their goal. Right now, I just cancel the service in the “off-season.”

Last edited 1 month ago by Locutus

Fully agree of course. Even though I am one of the people who has never cancelled it in four years (I don’t know why either ;)). But yeah this is definitely a smart strategic move because they know most of Trek fans are only signing up to the service to watch Star Trek. Plenty of Star Wars fans are doing the same at Disney+ but that service has a large amount of franchises to get a wide range of fans watching all year long. Not really so with P+. At least not yet.

And it’s really smart they now have shows to bring in various types of Trek fans, like TOS fans will be pulled in by SNW, TNG fans by PiC and LDS, VOY fans with PRO and DIS for fans who want to see something completely new. And now we have shows for both kids and adults a like. I really like this strategy, Trek is not just doing one thing and something for people who who want to stay in certain eras or go forward again. Best of all worlds. ;)

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

What about ‘Why Women Kill’ and classic ‘Five-0’ (12 seasons of it)?

Here too. I pay for the Trek and even delay the start of my subscription for a week or two if it means I avoid that extra monthly fee. (They don’t pro-rate the fess, sadly and there is literally nothing on P+ that will get me to keep their service besides Trek. I still haven’t seen the last half of The Stand. It wasn’t good enough to keep me subscribed.) When Trek returns I catch the end. But if they had another Trek show beginning no more than two weeks after another ends I would be far less likely to can the service. Not sure how many others are in that boat with me, however.

Last edited 1 month ago by ML31

“True but when you add the animated shows it will basically be 50 episodes a year which is insane! Yes certainly less than classic Trek…”

Nah, it’s not even close to being insane in 2021… It’s a moderate number of eps compared to what other franchises are churning out these days… Look at The Walking Dead or even worse, the Arrowverse (!?!)… I know, it may result in constantly plummeting audience numbers but at least we get all these episodes before it fades away in some years…

TWD only has about 40 episodes a year between 3 shows (Two are around 15-16 episodes and one is only 10 episodes), so it’s not that crazy at all. Arrowverse I’ll give you that. ;)

But yes compared to what Disney is doing with Marvel and SW yes it’s getting crazier and crazier. MCU is going to have SIX shows on this year alone and the third on now, Loki. However they are all under 10 episodes a show .

P+ has to REALLY compete and since Star Trek is their ONLY big TV franchise then yeah. I won’t predict how long it will go but I think it can go a decade at least before they will have to slow it down. I don’t know if they can go 18 years like the Berman era but there will probably be three times as many shows by the time it does need a rest. We already have more Trek shows in just the last four years than we saw in 18 years by the time Enterprise ended. ;)

In another 5 years we’ll probably have a new show set in the 41st century that’s about forming a new Federation in the Andromeda galaxy lol.

Paramount+ has set 10 episodes per season as its standard for streaming series.

That’s about what all streaming services have done. It’s been that way for some time now.

I’m starting to wonder if Discovery itself will fall to 10 episodes next season to stay in line with the others? When it was the ONLY Star Trek show on, it seem natural to do at least 13 episodes but now with so many around and trying to fit them all in a year (or relatively that) I am starting to wonder if DIS will just be given about the same amount of episodes to keep them all consistent?

Kind of odd no one has said yet how many episodes are in season 4. The first three seasons they told us up front. This one though, its been silence on it. I’m not saying for any big reason but I wouldn’t be shocked we learn it will be fewer episodes.

The stories they have done thus far on Star Trek Discovery have felt padded out just to get them up to 13 episodes. Each season could have gotten the job done in 8 or 10 episodes each time. I’m not endorsing they shorten it. I actually think they should be 18+ episodes. My point is that the people running the show do a pretty bad job mapping their stories out. It’s almost like they are given too MUCH time to tell their tale!

The small irony is that they did run out of episodes in season 2 and had to expand it another episode (although 2 or 3 before that one could’ve been erased ;)). But yeah I have a feeling they will shorten the season. Maybe wrong on that but we’ll see. Or maybe there is a deal in place they have to produce a minimum amount of episodes with Netflix or something so maybe we will still get 13 episodes at least.

Most Netflix Originals seem to have less than 13 episodes per season these days, often less than 10. So I can’t imagine Netflix would demand a longer season for Discovery unless they pay a fixed fee per season, not per episode.

Could definitely be true. But I know with the Marvel shows they were all contracted to be 13 episode seasons from the jump with the exception of the cross over show Defenders which (ironically) had fewer episodes even though all the characters were together in that one.

But yeah I don’t know lol, it’s just me spit balling, especially since we have no clue what the count will be yet. For the record I HOPE it’s at least 13 episodes like last season, just won’t be shocked if it’s less.

Interesting, I thought I remember reading somewhere that Jonathan Frakes was going to direct for Strange New Worlds. So this is not happening for the first season then?

I think Frakes has said that he hopes to direct an episode but I don’t think there’s been any official confirmation. That being said it’s possible that they’re having a different director for each instalment of SNW given the episodic nature of the show and the article only confirms 6 of the directors for a season that’s been confirmed for 10 episodes so there’s no reason at this stage to rule him out.

Or I may just be mixing up my shows and he is directing for Picard and for some reason I remembered that as SNW.

Two words for Picard: Robin Lefler.

No. Ro Laren.

No. Shinzon’s clone Blinzon.

lol

No. Beverly Crusher.

Four words for the next top-secret movie: Star Trek and Robin…

After Star Trek Beyond, I so much want Star Trek Forever and Star Trek and Robin… They could also do the Batman-wise unrealized Star Trek Triumphant…

Robin Lefler commanding the USS Gotham… I love the sound of that…

I see what you did there….smells like an Oscar winner (or two) too me!!

Of all the post-apocalyptic kids cartoons on streaming, Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts (created by Rad Sechrist and developed by Bill Wolkoff) might be the best of the bunch.

“Our heroes are going to have some challenges this coming season and some things they need to deal with. I think it will be an interesting season for all of them in terms of challenging as individuals and challenging their relationships with each other and how those relationships can grow.” Well, color me intrigued!

I’m glad your excited! I am too!! Personally though, I hate these generic responses. “Some challenges”? “Some things”? They can provide a little more detail than that without spoiling everything.

I read that as sarcasm.

Looks like I’ll be trying out Paramount + in 2022. I hope PIC S2 and SNW are worth it and really make Trek shine again, but DSC is dead to me. I will check out LD at some point, but I figure no hurry. Good luck to all, of course.

Dude, do not sleep on Lower Decks. I went into it prepared to dislike it and WOW, the character arcs and growths, good solid episodic stories, low key grounded plots, not everything is a universe ending threat and organic, humorous call backs to prior franchise entries. Hell its my favorite of the current star trek shows. This and SNW are the only ones I’m excited to see, I mean, I’ll watch them all but…

“organic, humorous call backs to prior franchise entries”

No, just no. There is nothing organic about LDS’ call backs. Its metalevel is beyond absurd!

A main character quoting TWOK lines for no reason in her sleep, someone referring to TOS as “Those Old Scientists”, a golden statue for Miles O’Brien out of thin air, Riker quoting the ENT theme song, numerous far too detailed references no one aboard that little ship would know about… If there is a definition for forced and force-fed inside jokes it’s LDS’ humor…Picard-style facepalm inducing madness…

Last edited 1 month ago by Garth Lorca

All of those things are also funny, which is what matters with this show.

They aren’t funny, they don’t make any sense at all and they feel forced, which is the complete opposite of “organic”… Those “jokes” felt like juvenile fan fiction…especially when they arrive without any in-world explanation. Humming the TNG theme on the turbo lift… so that WOULD make sense if that tune turned out to be the Federation Anthem.

Rebels did a great job on explaining the Imperial March as an in-world propaganda tune that made a lot of sense.

I always had my issues with the TOS theme performed in We’ll Always Have Paris on some folk instruments. I think: if you do that, you need to explain what it is… Is It the Starfleet March? The UFP Anthem?

DS9’s theme could be the Bajoran Anthem, if they ever use it in-world… It’s okay, but I need proper explanation for such meta stuff…

Some alien parasite enabling Mariner to break the fourth wall in her sleep… Riker quoting one of Archer’s speeches in which he himself quotes Rod Stewart’s original Faith of the Heart, which would also explain why it had to be a cover song to become the ENT theme…

I know, I’m complicated… Sorry :-)

Is It the Starfleet March? The UFP Anthem?

We heard a little of the UFP Anthem in DS9’s Take Me Out To The Holosuite, so no. And didn’t TOS use a variation of its main theme as bar music in Court Martial, too?”

In the first episode of the new BSG they played that Stu Phillips theme and said it was Caprica’s national anthem. Or the anthem of the colonies or something…

None of those things were funny. Which is what matters with that show. And why it was such a tremendous disappointment.

There are a couple of early episodes of Lower Decks that I thought were terrible. But for the most part, I like the show and I thought it ended the first season very strong.

We all have our tastes. I went into LDX prepared to like it and was thoroughly disappointed on every single level. You of course will make your own determination but do not get the impression the show works for a larger portion of the viewers than it does. Your attitude of “I’ll watch it eventually” seems to be a proper one.

Is this the first time we’ve seen the SNW logo?

It could be a working logo, but we’ve seen it in a few social media posts previously.

I wonder if the artwork on the slate reflects that they reverted the nacelle pylons to not be swept back for the series.