Star Trek is getting ready to begin another new voyage. The Section 31-focused Star Trek: Discovery spinoff is set to film its pilot episode once production on Discovery’s third season is complete. While CBS All Access hasn’t ordered the show to series yet, CBS All Access’ executive vice president of original content Julie McNamara tells Vanity Fair that Star Trek franchise head Alex Kurtzman has already assembled a writers’ room. “We are very excited about the Section 31 show and Michelle Yeoh is excited to do it,” she says. “She is in the current season of Discovery so she’s working on that right now but we have scripts getting written, and Alex has a writer’s room. We love what we’ve heard so far. It’s yet another tonality of Trek. As Alex has mapped it all out, each show has its own unique sort of voice and vision.”
Kurtzman offered some new hints about what the show will be like, comparing it to a popular Clint Eastwood Western. “What we don’t want is for you to watch one show and be like, well I don’t really need to watch that other Star Trek show cause I’ve already watched Discovery or whatever,” Kurtzman says. “So to me Section 31 is sort of like the black ops CIA division of Star Trek and it was established in Deep Space Nine. Full credit goes to Michelle Yeoh for coming to me and saying in season one, before we even launched, ‘I want to do a spin off of my character!’ With Michelle Yeoh, it’s very hard to say no.
“This was like a year before Crazy Rich Asians came out and we had not launched Discovery yet. No one had seen it. So I was like, let’s have one show that hopefully people like and we can talk about it. Once Discovery happened, I brought it to Julie and she immediately said, great, let’s develop it. Erica [Lippoldt] and Bo Yeon [Kim], two writers on our Discovery staff, started writing a pilot and it’s really different. It occupies an area of the Trek universe that’s never really been explored geographically. It has a new mythology to it, which is very interesting. And it puts Michelle’s character to the test in a lot of ways that Discovery can’t. In some ways it will be her Unforgiven, I would say.”
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