Star Trek: Prodigy may not be on Paramount+ anymore, but the first season is available digitally and on physical media (with the second half arriving on DVD/Blu-ray soon). At the recent #SaveStarTrekProdigy aerial banner event in Hollywood, TrekMovie had a chance to talk to writer and co-executive producer Aaron Waltke about the status of season 2, what’s new in season 2, and the chances for a third season.
So are you surprised by this effort [getting an aerial banner] by the fans?
Honestly, no, because I think Star Trek fans more than anyone don’t like it when you mess with their shows. I think they’re some of the most passionate people out there. There’s a great legacy in Star Trek of efforts to sustain the movement dating all the way to Bjo and John Trimble. So the fact that that kind of legacy has been resuscitated for our show is a deep honor.
When you were on stage in Vegas, the Hagemans talked about a possible third season. When the removal from Paramount+ was first announced, Prodigy was reported to be cancelled, but technically that isn’t right is it?
Yeah, as far as I know. There was a lot of confusion because it was kind of announced alongside a number of shows that were I believe, officially cancelled. But at the bottom of some of those articles, you saw the caveat of like, “Oh, we’re actually still producing our show and we’re shopping it around for the potential for more episodes and licensing.”
So Paramount isn’t shopping it around saying “you can buy seasons 1 and 2 and that’s it.” It’s open-ended, like they can buy the first two seasons and more if they want?
Exactly. I think there’s nothing preventing them from paying for more episodes. I think the question now is just who’s paying for it? But from what I understand the talks are active. There is some positive trending, but deals like this take a very long time, as you can imagine. All I can do is just like keep up the movement, keep the faith, and eventually I think we can expect some very good news.
With regards to the second season, I know you guys have been optimistic the show will find a new home, but even the absolute worst-case scenario would be that it gets released to buy on digital and physical media, right?
You know, that’s above my pay grade. But what I can say is that the sales for the DVD and Blu-ray and digital have been unprecedented. Specifically, I was told the season 1 volume 2 Blu-ray [pre-orders] has outperformed many of their other shows, like way beyond what they would have expected. So I think that that’s a very positive trend, and partially why CBS Studios recognizes that this show can and will continue.
Regarding making the second season, when do you think you’ll actually be done?
So right now, I believe we’re still continuing on track to produce all 20 episodes by the end of the year. There might be some mixing this spills over into January, but we never stopped making the show, fully anticipating for it to be ready to air by December. And that’s where we are now.
So, all 20 episodes of season 2 would be ready by December?
Yeah, but like I said, the last few episodes might need a little bit of mixing or whatnot. But definitely, the first 10 and the majority of the rest of the episodes will be completely done by the end of the year.
Speaking of season 2, can you tease anything? Can you give us a little taste?
One little taste. Well as you know, the Voyager-A has arrived and, as I’ve hinted elsewhere, it is fully equipped with all sorts of technology that Voyager brought back from its travels in the Delta Quadrant and beyond. We’ve already seen a little taste of a limited sort of tandem quantum slipstream. I think there are other elements that you’ve seen shall we say on the Enterprise-D, or heard about it, and on the Cerritos, that will also be on the show.
So, the season 2 clip shown at STLV had Bob Picardo back as The Doctor. Is the implication that Admiral Janeway will be busy with admiral stuff and so The Doctor will be overseeing the kids as a recurring character?
Yes, as I’ve said elsewhere, when we bring a legacy character onto Star Trek, it’s not just for pure nostalgia or a fun “Hey, look at that guy.” Because of both financially and because of how our story unfolds, we want their relationship to be an integral part of both our young cadets’ journey and hopefully have an influence on those characters’ story as we get this sort of coda to what happened after Voyager returned to Earth. So Picardo as The Doctor is in it for the long haul. And he certainly has his fair share of teaching young people about how the warp core of the cell works. I think he fancies himself as something of a mentor to them, even if they still don’t quite know what to make of him.
Warp core of the cell, that’s deep…
Yes, that’s a deep cut to the Voyager episode where he taught young Naomi Wildman about how cells work.
Anything else you want to say before we wrap up?
I just want to say thank you to everybody. I know it can seem like firing missiles into a void but you are being heard. Your efforts have not gone unnoticed. We deeply appreciate them. And the #SaveStarTrekProdigy movement is something that I think will resonate for a very long time.
Reminder: Season 1, Vol. 2 DVD & Blu-ray arrives in September
The second half of season 2 of Prodigy with episodes 11-20 arrives on Blu-ray and DVD on September 26, 2023. The set includes over 45 minutes of brand-new bonus content featuring exclusive interviews and collectible character cards. You can pre-order on Amazon: $14.99 on DVD and $22.99 on Blu-ray. The first volume with episodes 1-10 is also back in stock at Amazon: $13.99 on DVD and $17.78 on Blu-ray. You can also buy all of season 1 (episodes 1-20) digitally for $9.99.
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