One of the most successful spin-offs in TV history could be getting a reboot /sequel with Patrick Stewart in negotiations to return as Captain Jean-Luc Picard from Star Trek: The Next Generation.
According to the Mirror, the 77-year old actor is close to securing a deal. This comes not long after the announcement that Star Trek: Discovery co-creator Alex Kurtzman reached a five-year deal with CBS to expand the current Trek universe.
Discovery has been a critical hit in its debut season for CBS All Access SVOD domestically and Netflix overseas. It was also at one point, the most pirated shows. One of the plans is continue the adventures of the Enterprise in the new series with Stewart returning to the captain’s chair.
The Mirror reports, “Patrick is looking pretty good to get back on board the Enterprise. There are some aspects of the deal to be finalized, but there is a verbal commitment from all parties. There are animated series also in the works, and Patrick could easily lend his voice to them. An announcement will be made in the next few weeks and the show should be out next year.”
Stewart expressed interest in reprising his role when Quentin Tarantino was in talks to write a Trek film. Ironically, Stewart initially expected what would be his most iconic role to be a flop over 30 years ago when he agreed to star in TNG.
From The Original Series to Enterprise, the shows’ main focus was the Starfleet captain. Discovery shifted perspectives to a disgraced former first officer Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green). Presumably the new show with Stewart would mark the first time the franchise focused its timeline back to the present since Voyager.
Enterprise and Discovery predate The Original Series. J. J. Abrams briefly used the present timeline in the 2009 film,Star Trek as a plot device to explain how Spock (Leonard Nimoy) from the prime universe ended up in his rebooted Kelvin universe.
The last time we saw The Next Generation crew was 2002’s Star Trek: Nemesis. Its poor performance at the box office shelved the TNG crew from films.
Who else from the TNG crew might be joining Stewart remains to be seen. Picard’s first officer, William Riker (Jonathan Frakes) decided to take his own command on a different Starfleet ship with the events of Nemesis. Who knows if this adventure will take place 16 years into the future.
While there are so many options on TV, one has to wonder if there can be fresh new stories to tell. Star Trek doesn’t have as big a cultural impact as it did when the original series debut in 1966. The franchise showed its age and diminished value when Enterprise was cancelled short of the typical 7 year run its three predecessors enjoyed.
Who knows what other projects could be in mind? Would you want a full reboot with the original cast given their current ages or could there be a transitioning from a few of the cast to usher in a younger crew to eventually take over?