Star Trek has come a long way since the original series was canceled back in 1969. Today there is no question as to fan loyalty and desire for more space exploration. Not since the golden age of the Next Generation era have there been so many shows and films in production. With Discovery still going strong, Picard launching to rave reviews, and Lower Decks set to inject a more lighthearted tone to the franchise, fans have plenty to talk about. In this article, we'll explore Star Trek rumors for 2020 and provide the latest news on the fourth film in the relaunched franchise.
The 4 Top Star Trek Rumors for 2020
Speculating about upcoming Star Trek rumors is almost as fun as watching the shows and films. More than any other franchise, Trek treats its fans like family, and you can be sure show producers, writers, and directors peruse social media sites to get the fans' take on the direction they're heading. The more you comment, like, share and discuss, the more you contribute to the continued health of the Federation.
It's exciting to be at the beginning of a second golden age of Star Trek. Discovery is set to hit its third season, which has historically been a landmark season for a Trek franchise. Any series takes a while to find its footing and develop the proper interplay with the characters, and by season three, the episodes make a subtle transformation from merely entertaining to thoroughly engaging. History provides backstory, and it will be exciting to see how that plays out in 2020. Here are some of the most compelling Star Trek Rumors floating around out there.
1. Is a Captain Pike Spinoff in the Works?
Season two of Discovery got a massive boost when the producers decided to explore some of the early adventures of the Enterprise. The impact of a younger, more impulsive Mr. Spock could be expected to please fans, but the compelling performance of Anson Mount has set the wheels spinning on a likely Captain Pike centered spinoff. Pike made his first appearance in the original Star Trek pilot played by Jeffrey Hunter, and Mount has managed to both encapsulate the promise of that performance and build it into something special.
A Captain Pike show has been steadily gaining momentum. Julie McNamara, head of CBS Access's head of original content, said that they have heard the demands of fans loud and clear, and that the chemistry of the Enterprise crew, as seen on Discovery, was very evident and compelling. The Pike series will follow his adventures leading up to his final fate revealed in the Original Series episode, 'The Menagerie.' Akiva Goldsman is rumored to be the showrunner, and Ethan Peck is also likely to return as Spock.
2. Commander Ransom Will Steal the Show on Lower Decks
Star Trek: Lower Decks is the animated series launching in 2020 that is designed to show the lighter side of the franchise. Some fans have expressed mixed feelings about the concept, but they have been largely placated by the fact that program creator Mike McMahan is a self-professed Star Trek fanatic. The hope is that the humor will embrace the Star Trek concept in a way that makes light of itself but doesn't fall into mockery. However, because there is a fine line between funny and offensive, it remains to be seen how fans will handle the offering.
One concept of Lower Decks that is already drawing a buzz is that of actor Jerry O'Connell as Commander Ransom. Ransom is a bearded officer who has been described as 'Riker on speed.' Of all canonical Star Trek characters, Riker is one of the easiest targets for a parody treatment, and even though Ransom is envisioned as a supportive character, we're betting he will become a greater focus as the show progresses.
3. Star Trek 4 Canceled Again?
The last we heard Star Trek 4 was full steam ahead, but recent developments suggest that the next film in the relaunched franchise might again be looking at delays. The problems started with the unfortunate passing of Anton Yelchin, and there's some suggestion that the remaining cast feels some reluctance to continue. Simon Pegg also went on record to note that although the Chris Pine led films have been successful; they aren't as bankable as films like the Marvel superhero movies.
Star Trek: Beyond fit into that unfortunate category between a megahit and a mild disappointment, which makes follow-up films less of a slam dunk. The names of many prominent writers and directors have been passed around, including that of Quentin Tarantino. The good news is that even though there's nothing concrete with Tarantino, he's not distancing himself from the project either. Tarantino represents a real wild card who could sweep in and inject some needed life into the franchise if all the more conservative writer/director choices fail to materialize.
Although there's more uncertainty now about Star Trek 4 than there was a few months ago, it still is being kicked around, and big names are still involved, so there's reason to be hopeful that we'll get some good news about the movie side of Trek soon
4. The Death of Jean-Luc Picard?
There have been some rumors that despite the overall fan satisfaction with Discovery and Picard, the CBS streaming service is not pulling in enough revenue to justify continuing paying the expenses of Trek franchises. One problem is that Patrick Stewart is a bonafide screen legend, and his paycheck alone makes the accountants over at CBS break out in an anxious sweat. One macabre solution to the Patrick Stewart acting fee scenario is to kill off Jean-Luc Picard and then continue the series with a ship that is christened to honor the former Starfleet Admiral.
Killing off a star early in a franchise is not an unprecedented action. Prolific actor Sean Bean was the most bankable actor during the first season of Game of Thrones, but that didn't save him from having his head separated from his shoulders in the penultimate episode. Game of Thrones went on to find an almost unprecedented level of success, but it's possible that eliminating a character of the stature of Jean-Luc Picard would prove fatal to the fledgling series.
As StarFleet rumors go, this one is a concern. Some viewers have pointed out that Star Trek franchises like Discovery, Voyager, and Enterprise were all named for the ships that provide the focal point for the action. Could it be that naming the series Picard was always meant to be taken as foreshadowing for an inevitable demise of the beloved character?
We know that Star Trek: Picard has already been greenlighted for season 2, yet on the show's season finale, Picard DOES die—but thankfully, his consciousness has been downloaded and put into a duplicate body. With no augmentations or powers, you might wonder why they didn't choose to put his consciousness in a younger body. But thankfully, we will see Patrick Stewart back for season 2. What will the future hold for Jean-Luc Picard now that he has a new lease on life?
Trek Will Endure
It can be an emotional whirlwind to follow rumors that range from unprecedented popularity, growth, and success, to the specter of imminent cancellation. However, it's important to maintain the perspective that this alternation between exhilarating highs and paralyzing lows is common in the film and television industry. Fortunes change quickly, and all you can do is cross your fingers, keep watching, and hope that film and network executives come to their senses.
Don't lose sight of the fact that there are currently (at least) three Trek televisions shows in production, and that the relaunch film franchise has always made money. Unforeseeable world and economic events like the repercussions from Coronavirus can also have a huge impact on the type of Star Trek rumors that come down the pipe. Just keep watching and discussing Trek on your social media profiles, and good things will happen. For more discussion on breaking Star Trek rumors, check out Mahannah's Sci-Fi Universe today!
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