Final Season of ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ to Debut April 4

The fifth and final season of the sci-fi series “Star Trek: Discovery” will premiere on the Paramount+ streaming service April 4.

The first two episodes of the season’s 10 episodes will be available at launch in the United States, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, South Korea, Latin America, Germany, France, Italy, Australia and Austria, and on P+ in Canada. Subsequent episodes will be available on Thursdays.

The season will find Capt. Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) and the crew of the Discovery uncovering a mystery that will send them on an epic adventure across the galaxy to find an ancient power whose very existence has been deliberately hidden for centuries. But there are others on the hunt as well … dangerous foes who are desperate to claim the prize for themselves and will stop at nothing to get it.

The cast also includes Doug Jones, Anthony Rapp, Mary Wiseman, Wilson Cruz, David Ajala, Blu del Barrio and Callum Keith Rennie. Guest stars include Elias Toufexis and Eve Harlow.

The series is produced by CBS Studios in association with Secret Hideout and Roddenberry Entertainment. Alex Kurtzman, Michelle Paradise, Heather Kadin, Aaron Baiers, Olatunde Osunsanmi, Sonequa Martin-Green, Frank Siracusa, John Weber, Rod Roddenberry and Trevor Roth serve as executive producers. Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise serve as co-showrunners.

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Paramount+ Series ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ to End With Fifth Season

The Paramount+ streaming service March 2 announced that its original series “Star Trek: Discovery” will conclude with its upcoming fifth season in early 2024.

“Discovery” premiered on CBS in 2017, the first “Star Trek” series in 12 years since the end of “Star Trek: Enterprise” in 2005. Subsequent episodes debuted on the CBS All Access streaming service, where it become one of flagship shows of the service before it was relaunched as Paramount+ in 2021.

“’Star Trek: Discovery’ is a perennial favorite on the service, near and dear to the hearts of legions of ‘Star Trek’ fans as well as all of us here at Paramount+,” Tanya Giles, chief programming officer at Paramount Streaming, said in a statement. “The series and its incredible cast and creatives ushered in a new era for ‘Star Trek’ when it debuted over six years ago, embracing the future of streaming with serialized storytelling, bringing to life deep and complex characters that honor Gene Roddenberry’s legacy of representing diversity and inclusion, and pushing the envelope with award-winning world-building. This final season will see our beloved crew take on a new adventure and we can’t wait to celebrate the series’ impact on the franchise leading up to its final season early next year.”

The series, set in the 2250s, a decade prior to the adventures of Capt. Kirk in the original 1960s “Star Trek” series, focused on the adventures of the U.S.S. Discovery, a prototype starship with an experimental engine that allowed it to jump anywhere in the galaxy. Using a serialized format to tell one main story a season, “Discovery” focused on Starfleet officer Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green), the first “Star Trek” series not to feature the commanding officer as the main character.

Though the series was billed as a prequel to the original “Star Trek,” it drew criticism from some fans for the portrayal of future technology compared to other shows, and perceived contradictions in the established “Star Trek” timeline, such as making Burnham an adopted sister of the iconic character of Mr. Spock. The second season introduced additional elements from the original series, such as the U.S.S. Enterprise and Capt. Pike (Anson Mount), a character from Gene Roddenberry’s original “Star Trek” pilot “The Cage” that was rejected by NBC in the 1960s.

Following the second season, the Discovery and her crew were sent to the 32nd century, where they became instrumental in rebuilding the Federation, and Burnham finally became captain.

The adventures of Pike’s Enterprise went on to headline the spinoff series “Star Trek: Strange New Worlds,” which debuted in 2022 using more of more of the episodic formula of traditional “Star Trek,” and was generally better received by fans.

The fifth and final season of “Star Trek: Discovery” will find Capt. Burnham and the crew of the Discovery uncovering a mystery that will send them on an epic adventure across the galaxy to find an ancient power whose very existence has been deliberately hidden for centuries. But there are others on the hunt as well … dangerous foes who are desperate to claim the prize for themselves and will stop at nothing to get it.

“I can hardly believe that this mind-blowing journey with ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ is ending,” Martin-Green said in a statement. “I’m astoundingly blessed by God to have played Capt. Michael Burnham and to have taken part in a legacy alongside an extraordinary cast, phenomenal crew and remarkable writing team. To our most supportive partners at CBS Studios and Paramount+, who insisted on making television history, I’m deeply grateful. I’m also deeply grateful for the creative collaboration with our showrunners Michelle Paradise and Alex Kurtzman, as well as Olatunde Osunsanmi and the incomparable team of executive producers. I will never forget how it felt to stand together as a show family, cradling the heirloom of ‘Trek’ with all those from the franchise at large and with the fans. The fans welcomed us into their hearts as we launched a new iteration of ‘Trek’ and an entire entertainment platform, and we’ll never forget it. 65 episodes later, here’s to the entire company of ‘Star Trek: Discovery,’ to the show and its fifth and final season, to its beloved fans and to all those who envision a better future. Let’s fly …”

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Produced by CBS Studios in association with Secret Hideout and Roddenberry Entertainment, the show’s cast includes Doug Jones as Saru, Anthony Rapp as Paul Stamets, Mary Wiseman as Sylvia Tilly, Wilson Cruz as Dr. Hugh Culber, David Ajala as Cleveland “Book” Booker, Blu del Barrio as Adira, and Callum Keith Rennie as Rayner.

“When we first started talking about the return of ‘Star Trek’ eight years ago, we never could have imagined the indelible impact ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ would have,” David Stapf, president of CBS Studios, said in a statement. “The series brought back a beloved global franchise, and just like its predecessors, ‘Discovery’ honored ‘Star Trek’s’ legacy of ‘infinite diversity in infinite combinations,’ representing the best of what we could be as humans when we celebrate our differences. I’d like to thank Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise, who have led this show with heart, passion, and as fans themselves with vivid storytelling — always ready to push boundaries like those before them. And finally, I’d like to thank this talented cast, led by the brilliant Sonequa Martin-Green, whose leadership both onscreen and off has helped guide the way from day one.”

Leading up to the final season, Paramount+ will honor “Star Trek: Discovery” with year-long celebrations and appearances at key events in markets around the world. The first four seasons of “Star Trek: Discovery” are now streaming on Paramount+ and are available on Blu-ray Disc and DVD.

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“As lifelong fans of ‘Star Trek,’ it has been an immense honor and privilege to help bring “Star Trek: Discovery” to the world. The ‘Trek’ universe means so much to so many — including us — and we couldn’t be prouder of everything “Discovery” has contributed to its legacy, particularly with representation,” executive producers and co-showrunners Alex Kurtzman and Michelle Paradise said in a statement. “If just one person sees themselves, or the possibilities for their future, in a new way because of “Discovery,” then we think we’d have made Gene Roddenberry very proud.

“Of course, there would be no ‘Discovery’ without Sonequa Martin-Green and the extraordinary team of artists, both in front of and behind the camera, who have brought this show to life. Their passion and determination to make every episode special has been deeply inspiring; so too has their love and support for one another and their genuine love for ‘Star Trek.’ ‘Discovery’ has truly become a family over the years — and we couldn’t be more grateful to be part of it.

“To the fans around the world, thank you for joining us on this incredible journey. Your love for these characters and your excitement for every episode, every season, has meant the world to us. We can’t wait for you to see what we’ve been working on for this final season; we appreciate your patience in the meantime and trust us when we say it’ll be worth the wait. We love you all! [Live long and prosper!]”

The conclusion of “Star Trek: Picard” this year and “Star Trek: Discovery” next year means Paramount+ is losing two of its five “Star Trek” series, leaving just “Strange New Worlds” and the animated “Star Trek: Lower Decks and “Star Trek: Prodigy.” Another “Discovery” spinoff focusing on the franchise’s covert Section 31 intelligence agency and starring Michelle Yeoh in a reprise of her “Discovery” role has been in development for several years, but is not yet in production.

 

Paramount Re-releasing First Three Seasons of ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ as Boxed Set Nov. 2

CBS and Paramount Home Entertainment Nov. 2 will release Star Trek: Discovery — Seasons 1-3 on Blu-ray Disc and DVD. The collection includes all 42 episodes from the Paramount+ original series and more than eight hours of special features, including cast and crew interviews, behind-the-scenes featurettes, deleted and extended scenes, audio commentaries and gag reels, among other content.

The seasons were previously released as individual Blu-ray and DVD sets. A fourth season is expected to debut at the end of the year.

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Originally launched to support the CBS All Access (now Paramount+) subscription streaming platform, Star Trek: Discovery — Season One follows the missions of the U.S.S. Discovery during a war with the Klingons before the events of the original 1960s “Star Trek” series.

Season two finds the crew of the U.S.S. Discovery joining forces with Captain Christopher Pike (Anson Mount) on a new mission to investigate seven mysterious red signals and the appearance of an unknown being called the Red Angel. While the crew must work together to unravel their meaning and origin, First Officer Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) is forced to face her past with the return of her estranged brother, Spock (Ethan Peck).

Season three finds the crew of the U.S.S. Discovery landing in an unknown future far from the home they once knew. Now living in a time filled with uncertainty, the U.S.S. Discovery crew, along with the help of some new friends, must work together to restore hope to the Federation.

‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Third Season on Disc July 20

CBS and Paramount Home Entertainment will release Star Trek Discovery: Season Three on Blu-ray Disc and DVD July 20. A limited-edition Blu-ray in Steelbook packaging also will be available.

The four-disc set includes all 13 episodes of the latest season of the Paramount+ series, in which the crew of the U.S.S. Discovery travels 900 years into the future and learns that by the 32nd century the Federation has been shattered by a mysterious cataclysm that disrupted warp travel in the galaxy.

The cast includes Sonequa Martin-Green, Doug Jones, Anthony Rapp, Mary Wiseman, Wilson Cruz, David Ajala, Blu del Barrio, Ian Alexander and Michelle Yeoh.

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The Blu-ray and DVD editions include the featurettes “Star Trek: Discovery — The Voyage of Season 3,” featuring interviews with the cast and creative team; “Stunted,” a look at the stunts on the show; “Kenneth Mitchell: To Boldly Go,” a profile of the actor who plays Aurellio, his life with ALS, and incorporating his wheelchair into the show; and “Bridge Building,” a look at some of the supporting cast.

Exclusive home video extras include deleted scenes, a gag reel, a “Being Michael Burnham” featurette focused on Sonequa Martin-Green, and a “Writer’s Log: Michelle Paradise” featurette in which the showrunner discusses shooting the beginning of the season in Iceland.

‘SpongeBob,’ ‘Star Trek’ Top First Week of Paramount+

The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run and “Star Trek: Discovery” topped subscriber choices in the first week (March 4-10) ViacomCBS launched streaming service Paramount+, according to new data from JustWatch. The platform is an international streaming guide with more than 20 million users across 46 countries.

Paramount+, which is the new brand name for CBS All Access, is available monthly with advertising for $5.99, and $9.99 without ads. The AVOD option drops to $4.99 in June with access still largely limited to catalog content.

All Access and Showtime OTT ended the most-recent fiscal period with more than 19 million combined subscribers.

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CBS All Access Orders ‘Star Trek’ Spinoff Focused on Capt. Pike’s Enterprise

The CBS All Access streaming service May 15 announced it has ordered “Star Trek: Strange New Worlds,” a new series focused on Capt. Pike’s tenure as commander of the starship Enterprise 10 years before Capt. Kirk.

The series will star Anson Mount as Pike, Rebecca Romijn as first officer Number One, and Ethan Peck as science officer Lt. Spock. The trio first played the characters in the second season of CBS All Access’ “Star Trek: Discovery” and reprised the roles in a number of “Short Treks” episodes.

Though fan reaction to “Discovery” has been mixed, the performances of Mount, Romijn and Peck as the legacy characters has been widely praised, leading to calls for them to receive their own show.

“When we said we heard the fans’ outpouring of love for Pike, Number One and Spock when they boarded ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ last season, we meant it,” executive producer Alex Kurtzman said in a statement. “These iconic characters have a deep history in Star Trek canon, yet so much of their stories have yet to be told.”

The characters themselves date back to the original “Star Trek” pilot episode, “The Cage,” that was produced in 1964. Series creator Gene Roddenberry’s first attempt to sell the science-fiction series was famously rejected by NBC executives, though they were impressed enough by the concept to ask for a second pilot, which revamped the formula by replacing almost the entire cast, keeping only the alien Spock character, played by Leonard Nimoy, and introducing Capt. Kirk as played by William Shatner. Footage from the original pilot was eventually recycled for a two-part episode of the original “Star Trek” series that introduced Pike as Spock’s former captain.

“Strange New Worlds” could thus be seen in some regards as the “Star Trek” series that Roddenberry had originally envisioned in the mid-1960s. The title comes from the famous mission creed of the U.S.S. Enterprise to “explore strange new worlds” and “seek out new life and new civilizations,” with the show’s creators promising a series that returns “Star Trek” to its roots of a starship exploring a vast unknown galaxy.

“Fans fell in love with Anson Mount, Rebecca Romijn and Ethan Peck’s portrayals of these iconic characters when they were first introduced on ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ last season,” Julie McNamara, EVP and head of programming at CBS All Access, said in a statement. “This new series will be a perfect complement to the franchise, bringing a whole new perspective and series of adventures to ‘Star Trek.’”

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The series premiere was written by Akiva Goldsman with a story by Goldsman, Kurtzman, and Jenny Lumet. Goldsman, Kurtzman, and Lumet will serve as executive producers in addition to Henry Alonso Myers, Heather Kadin, Rod Roddenberry and Trevor Roth.

“With Akiva and Henry at the helm, the Enterprise, its crew, and its fans are in for an extraordinary journey to new frontiers in the Star Trek universe,” Kurtzman said.

Pike was previously played by Jeffrey Hunter in “The Cage,” with actor Sean Kenney in heavy makeup doubling for Hunter in new sequences shot for the pilot footage’s use in the original series. Bruce Greenwood played Pike in J.J. Abrams’ 2009 reboot movie and its 2013 sequel (both co-written by Kurtzman). Number One was previously played by “Trek” mainstay (and later Gene Roddenberry’s wife) Majel Barrett in “The Cage.”

In addition to “Star Trek: Discovery,” which is expected to premiere its third season later this year, CBS All Access is also home to “Star Trek: Picard,” a “Star Trek: The Next Generation” sequel that presented its first season earlier this year, and “Short Treks,” a series of 15- to 20-minute short films based on elements from the franchise. CBS All Access will also present the animated series “Star Trek: Lower Decks.”

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“Strange New Worlds” will be the eighth live-action “Star Trek” series in the history of the franchise. The series will be produced by CBS Television Studios, Secret Hideout and Roddenberry Entertainment. Aaron Baiers, Akela Cooper, and Davy Perez will serve as co-executive producers. Goldsman will remain an executive producer and a member of the creative team on “Star Trek: Picard” as well.

A premiere date for “Strange New Worlds” was not announced.

‘Star Trek: Short Treks’ Collection on Blu-ray June 2

CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount Home Entertainment will release Star Trek: Short Treks on Blu-ray Disc and DVD June 2.

Created for and originally presented on the CBS All Access streaming service, “Short Treks” are a spinoff of “Star Trek: Discovery” that present 10- to 15-minute stories set in the “Star Trek” universe.

The Blu-ray and DVD collection gathers nine “Short Treks.” The first season, produced between “Discovery” season one and season two, includes “Runaway,” in which Tilly bonds with a stowaway on Discovery; “Calypso,” set in the far future when a drifter encounters an abandoned Discovery; “The Brightest Star,” which delves into the backstory of Saru; and “The Escape Artist,” a standalone adventure featuring con-artist Harry Mudd.

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The second batch of shorts includes three tales about Capt. Pike and the U.S.S. Enterprise — “Q&A,” “The Trouble With Edward” and “Ask Not” — and two animated shorts, “Ephraim & Dot” and “The Girl Who Made the Stars.”

The cast includes Anson Mount as Pike, Ethan Peck as Spock, Rebecca Romijn as Number One, Rainn Wilson as Mudd, Mary Wiseman as Tilly, Doug Jones as Saru, and Aldis Hodge as Craft.

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The set includes more than 50 minutes of bonus material, including a featurette about the making of “Short Treks”; audio commentaries for “Runaway” and “Ask Not”; “Coming of Age,” a behind-the-scenes look at “Runaway”; “Shall We Dance,” a look at “Calypso”; “First Contact: Kaminar,” a look at “The Brightest Star”; “Covered in Mudd,” about “The Escape Artist”; “Engisn Spock’s First Day,” a look at “Q&A”; “Here Comes Tribble,” a deep dive “The Trouble With Edward”; “Score!,” a behind-the-curtain discussion with composer Michael Giacchino about “Ephraim and Dot”; and “Bedtime Stories,” about the animated “The Girl Who Made the Stars.”

 

CBS All Access Gets Grammy, ‘Star Trek’ Boost

CBS All Access, the standalone subscription streaming service from ViacomCBS, reportedly saw record subscriber growth in January, thanks to high-profile showcases, including the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards and the premiere of “Star Trek: Picard.”

The Jan. 26 Grammys telecast included a promotion that offered a free month of service to new subscribers.

“The new [sub] records we’ve experienced due to ‘Star Trek: Picard,’ the Grammys and a fantastic season of football are a phenomenal way to kick off what will be a fantastic year for CBS All Access,” Marc DeBevoise, chief digital officer, ViacomCBS, and president and CEO, CBS Interactive, said in a statement.

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CBS did not disclose actual subscriber numbers. Indeed, CBS revealed that 18.7 million viewers watched the telecast, which was down 6% from 19.9 million last year.

All Access, similar to Amazon Prime Video, is not afraid to stream live sports, including NFL broadcasts and playoff games. In the most-recent fiscal call, acting CEO Joe Ianniello said All Access and Showtime OTT had a combined 10 million subscribers.

CBS said The Grammys increased All Access sign-ups 80% from the same time last year, while dedicated viewership increased 30%.

The media company said the new original “Star Trek” series starring Patrick Stewart bumped up overall streaming (which includes Amazon Prime Channels) 115%, in addition to 180% spike on All Access — the highest streaming increases since the last original Star Trek series, ” Star Trek: Discovery.”

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“All Access continues to build upon its great mix of programming — from original series, to sports and special events — and we’ve strategically programmed 2020 to bring subscribers an ‘always on’ calendar of must-watch series and events,” DeBevoise said.

Merchandising: The ‘Discovery’ of Exclusives

A couple of retailers had exclusive editions for the Nov. 12 new releases.

Best Buy had a version of Paramount’s Blu-ray release of Star Trek: Discovery — Season Two in Steelbook packaging for $39.99.

Target’s ‘The Big Bang Theory: Season 12’ Blu-ray box art

Target offered the Blu-ray of The Big Bang Theory: The Complete Twelfth and Final Season with exclusive box art for $32.99. The store didn’t offer the regular edition on its shelves, so buyers who wanted to standard box art were out of luck.

Target’s ‘The Angry Birds Movie 2’ Blu-ray with sticker book

Sony Pictures’ The Angry Birds Movie 2 at Target was offered in a Blu-ray combo pack with a 24-page activity book with stickers for $22.99.

DC Universe Tops Digital Originals Chart with ‘Titans,’ ‘Young Justice’

Two DC Universal series captured the No. 1 and No. 2 spots on the digital originals chart the week ended Jan. 19, according to Parrot Analytics.

“Titans” topped the chart despite a minor decline in demand, while “Young Justice” rose to No. 2 from No. 4 with a 6% gain in Demand Expressions, a proprietary metric used by Parrot Analytics to measure global demand for TV content. The metric draws from a wide variety of data sources, including video streaming, social media activity, photo sharing, blogging, commenting on fan and critic rating platforms, and downloading and streaming via peer-to-peer protocols and file sharing sites.

Netflix’s “Stranger Things,” the prior week’s top digital original, slipped to No. 3 after an 18.6% drop in demand.

Fueled by an 18% increase in demand, Netflix’s modern thriller “You” rose to No. 4 from No. 8 the prior week. The show was singled out as a success by Netflix in its latest quarterly earnings report, triggering numerous media reports – including a story in the Washington Post with the headline, “’You’ was ignored on Lifetime. Then it blew up on Netflix.”

“You” launched last September on the linear Lifetime network. In December it was announced that “You” would move to Netflix as a “Netflix Original,” ahead of the premiere Season 2.

Rounding out the top five on the digital originals chart was CBS All Access‘s “Star Trek: Discovery,” which during the week that ended Jan. 19 attracted a daily average of 24.8 million Demand Expressions, 26.2% more than in the prior week.

The biggest gainer on a percentage basis was “Marvel’s The Punisher,” which returned to the top 10, at No. 8 (from No. 15 the previous week) with a 29.2% spike in demand.

Media Play News has teamed with Parrot Analytics to provide readers with a weekly top 10 of the most popular digital original TV series in the United States, based on the firm’s  proprietary metric called Demand Expressions, which measures global demand for TV content through a wide variety of data sources, including video streaming, social media activity, photo sharing, blogging, commenting on fan and critic rating platforms, and downloading and streaming via peer-to-peer protocols and file sharing sites.