Star Trek: Discovery's third season will explore a new frontier in the Star Trek universe. Discovery's second season concluded with Discovery and its crew traveling forward through time and into the 32nd century. Since then, teasers for the new season have revealed that the Federation isn't what it used to be. While its exact status remains a mystery, the Federation has diminished from what it was in the 24th century. Producer Akiva Goldsman worked on Discovery's first two seasons. He's since moved on to work on Star Trek: Picard and the Discovery spinoff series Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. Though he's no longer working on Discovery, he has picked up some exciting ideas about what the show's "post-Federation" future may entail.
"I'm not on Discovery now. I just know things," Goldman prefaces in discussion with Collider about the end of Discovery's second season. "We all helped build that idea, all the way back to Season One. Aaron Harberts and Gretchen Berg, the original showrunners from season one, that idea dates all the way back to that. I think it's a spectacular idea, which is to go post the timeline we know. I think Alex Kurtzman has really been deeply involved in the building out of what Season Three looks like and what that post-Federation future is. I've seen some of it because we all work together in the same, or we did, place with lots of Star Trek pictures on the wall and editing bays and things. It seems awesome to me. It's not a final frontier, but it's a new one."
"Discovery has primarily to do with Sonequa's character, as you'll see. At the end of Season Two, we flash-forwarded, I think 930 years. Michael Burnham has found a new core, not to mention a new partner in crime. So again, there's a big tonal shift on that show, less driven by the pain and guilt of her past and more about the magical reunification of the Discovery crew and wherever she went off to," Frakes said. "God knows where she went as the Red Angel. Those two things coming back together are very much the theme, and how grateful everyone is and what's next. It's got a lot of action-adventure and not so much pain."
Work has slowed on Star Trek: Discovery due to the coronavirus pandemic, but CBS All Access still plans for the third season to debut in 2020.