Star Trek writer/director Nicholas Meyer has been involved with the franchise for over thirty-five years, dating back to his first role helming Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan — and in he was involved in the early days of Star Trek: Discovery during Bryan Fuller’s tenure as showrunner on the series.
While he’s remained credited in the series in a ‘consulting producer’ role through the first season of Discovery, we really haven’t heard from Meyer in the months since Fuller’s departure from the project, as his role with the show seems to have diminished (or ended) since that time.
Almost a year ago, Meyer hinted towards another Trek project he was supposedly working on — a non-Discovery project — to TrekMovie.com in an interview from last June, which sparked much interested in the fan community:
Meyer: One thing that has nothing to do with Discovery is that I am working on another Star Trek project, but I can’t discuss that either.
TrekMovie: Are we talking more feature film because as far as I know, there is only one television project, I assume.
Meyer: You can assume.
Since that tantalizing statement, fans have wondered what exactly Meyer meant — perhaps a second television series, or a film, or even something on the literary side of the franchise? — but it’s been radio silence from Meyer regarding the situation ever since that interview was published… until now.
Last night, speaking to an audience at the University of California, Irvine, at a public “Shakespeare and Star Trek” discussion, Meyer shared details about his Trek project for the first time — and thanks to exclusive coverage from this event, we can share his comments with you.
AUDIENCE QUESTION: A while back there were reports that you might be working on a ‘Star Trek’ miniseries, is there any truth to that, if you’re allowed to say anything about that?
MEYER: No, I can say something. I was hired to write a stand-alone ‘Star Trek’-related trilogy, [details of which] I can’t discuss or I’d have to kill you. [Laughs] I was writing it for CBS [All] Access… but at the moment CBS is at a war with Paramount/Viacom [about merging].
They’re in a power struggle which turned really nasty this past week when CBS decided to sue Viacom. So I don’t think my project is going anywhere in a hurry, because everything is on hold while they sort out this merger business. That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.
The “re-merger” of CBS and Viacom/Paramount under one roof would bring all of Star Trek‘s ownership back together again — as CBS manages the franchise’s television rights and the Viacom/Paramount theatrical film side of things.
Meyer’s comments regarding the situation are of course referring to this week’s escalating legal battle between the two companies, which began Monday when CBS filed suit against parent company National Amusements to try and shake themselves free of managerial control, followed by National Amusements’ “outraged” reaction to this legal action and the two companies heading to court today amidst the annual CBS upfront presentation to television advertisers occurring this afternoon in New York City.
The project, as Meyer mentions, is likely ‘on hold’ not due to the question of the Star Trek franchise’s status, but the overall corporate situation which doesn’t seem like it’ll be resolved anytime soon — and with the financial commitment that something like a new Trek production would surely require, it isn’t a surprise that things would be placed on pause until this kind of high-level structural situation gets resolved.
For obvious reasons, CBS isn’t commenting on the ongoing merger situation — they would not address questions on the topic in their early-May corporate quarterly earnings call, and president Les Moonves is even skipping today’s annual press event breakfast at the Upfronts for the first time as “the number of questions he could not answer outweighed the number he could,” said CBS Entertainment head Kelly Kahl to the assembled press — so we’ll have to wait and see how things shake out between the two corporations.
As for the Trek side of things, well, Meyer clearly is sticking to secrecy about his project, but these new comments are sure to stoke speculation about what he might be working on. A “standalone trilogy” could cover any variety of storylines, including the rumored (but not confirmed) Khan tale, but the writer remains tight-lipped about the details — but if and when more specifics become available, we’ll certainly bring you them here.
Keep checking back to TrekCore for all the latest in Star Trek news!
Special thanks to Alvaro Zinos-Amaro, author of the Hugo-nominated book TRAVELER OF WORLDS: CONVERSATIONS WITH ROBERT SILVERBERG, for his contributions to this report.