Strange New Worlds, Star Trek 4 and much more: New reveals for all things Trek

Star Trek 4 with Chris Pine is still a go. The Section 31 movie with Michelle Yeoh has wrapped. Starfleet Academy is about to start production. The final frontier is hopping:
L-R David Ajala as Book, Mary Wiseman as Tilly, Doug Jones as Saru, Sonequa Martin-Green as Burnham, Wilson Cruz as Culber, Blu Del Barrio as Adira and Callum Keith Rennie as Raynor in season 5 of the Paramount+ original series STAR TREK: DISCOVERY. Photo Credit: James Dimmock/Paramount+
L-R David Ajala as Book, Mary Wiseman as Tilly, Doug Jones as Saru, Sonequa Martin-Green as Burnham, Wilson Cruz as Culber, Blu Del Barrio as Adira and Callum Keith Rennie as Raynor in season 5 of the Paramount+ original series STAR TREK: DISCOVERY. Photo Credit: James Dimmock/Paramount+ /

Variety just published a huge article detailing what's happening in the wide world of Star Trek, which has more shows on the air right now than at any point in the franchise's 57-year history. From Discovery to Strange New Worlds to Lower Decks to Prodigy to the recently completed Picard, Paramount is going hard on this universe, pleasing older fans and hoping to make new ones.

What does the franchise have coming up next? Let's run through the highlights:

  • The upcoming third season of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, which might be the most universally praised Trek series on the air right now, is expected in 2025. They're going all out on the sets; a new science lab set has "a transparent floor atop a four-foot pool of water that swirls underneath the central workbench, and the surrounding walls sport a half dozen viewscreens with live schematics custom designed by a six-person team." Jonathan Frakes, who played Riker in Star Trek: The Next Generation and who has remained involved with the franchise ever since, is directing an episode framed as a Hollywood murder mystery. He calls it “the best episode of television I’ve ever done.”
  • Paramount is also at work on a show called Starfleet Academy, set at a school for officers. This show is set in the 32nd century, far in the future of Star Trek, which is generally set somewhere around the 23rd. Variety saw plans for the largest set in the franchise's history, a "central academic atrium, a sprawling, two-story structure that will include a mess hall, amphitheater, trees, catwalks, multiple classrooms and a striking view of the Golden Gate Bridge in a single, contiguous space." Starfleet Academy starts production this summer.
  • Michelle Yeoh will once agan play Philippa Georgiou, the semi-reformed tyrant she played on Star Trek: Discovery, in a TV movie about Section 31, a black ops organization within the Star Trek universe. This was originally going to be a TV series, but with Yeoh winning an Oscar for Everything Everywhere All at Once, the actor's schedule filled up. Still, she still has a lot of fondness for Georgiou. “We’d never let go of her,” she said. “I was just blown away by all the different things I could do with her. Honestly, it was like, ‘Let’s just get it done, because I believe in this.’” Yeoh just wrapped on the movie, which will include an appearance from a young Rachel Garrett (Kacey Rohl), a character first introduced in Star Trek: The Next Generation. If the Section 31 film is successful, Yeoh is down for a sequel.
  • On the big screen, a Star Trek movie written by Seth Grahame-Smith and directed by Andor director Toby Haynes is on track to start preproduction by the end of the year. The movie will be "an origin story for the main timeline of the franchise."
  • There are also plans to make Star Trek 4, a follow up to the 2016 movie Star Trek Beyond starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto and Zoe Saldaña. That movie will be the "final chapter" in that series. Steve Yockey (The Flight Attendant) has been hired to write a new draft of the script.
  • Star Trek overboss Alex Kurtzman is thinking about a possible follow-up to Star Trek: Picard, although it doesn't sound like there's anything set in stone yet.

And let's not forget that the fifth and final season of Star Trek: Discovery, the show that kicked off this new jam-packed Trek era, is coming back in just a week!

Star Trek: Discovery Season 5
L-R David Ajala as Book, Sonequa Martin-Green as Burnham and Wilson Cruz as Culber in Star Trek: Discovery, season 5, streaming on Paramount+, 2023. Photo Credit: Marni Grossman /Paramount+ /

Descriptions for all 10 episodes of Star Trek: Discovery season 5

Speaking to SFX Magazine, Star Trek: Discovery showrunner Michelle Paradise shared non-spoilery descriptions of all 10 upcoming episodes of season 5, which were helpfully compiled by

  • Episode 1: “Red Directive”: “Launching the mission. The mission is a red directive. An exciting mission that launches us onto our season, and it’s super-secret.”
  • Episode 2: “Under the Twin Moons”: “A lovely Burnham and Saru episode.”
  • Episode 3: “Jinaal”: “Culber like you’ve never seen him before.”
  • Episode 4: “Face the Strange”: “Mind bending and exciting, and a heck of a lot of fun.”
  • Episode 5: “Mirrors”: “[Long pause] I’m trying to think of something that won’t be spoilery! Surprising encounters and surprising new information about our heroes.”
  • Episode 6: “Whistlespeak”: “Oh, classic TOS-style adventure!”
  • Episode 7: “Erigah”: “Tense and unexpected.”
  • Episode 8: “Labyrinths”: “Oh, just an incredible gorgeous location, incredible scope and a singular journey for Burnham.”
  • Episode 9: “Lagrange Point”: “Discovery in a location where you’ve never seen her before.”
  • Episode 10: “Life, Itself”: “Part of me wants to say the end of an era. But that just sounds so sad. I don’t wanna say that! Hopefully it’s all the things that Discovery has always been. Action, adventure, heart, family, love, sci-fi wonderfulness, beautifully acted, beautifully directed, production values, gorgeous VFX. It’s everything we have always had in Discovery in one episode.”

The first two episodes on Star Trek: Discovery season 5 drop on April 4. All of this is happening on Paramount+.

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