When it was announced that Bryan Fuller (Hannibal, Pushing Daisies) would be acting as showrunner for Star Trek Discovery, fans were excited at what he would bring to their beloved franchise. Since they got their first look at the show at SDCC and learned how the show would “explore stories from a different point of view,” fans have been eagerly awaiting the pilot, which will air on CBS, with subsequent episodes airing on the CBS All Access streaming platform. However, significant delays have forced CBS to pull Fuller from his duties as showrunner. More on the story below.
Variety says that even though Fuller will no longer be seeing the day-to-day operations, he will still be on as executive producer and will retain much of what he has contributed. Basically, the bones are still there. Now executive producers Gretchen Berg and Aaron Harberts will be acting as Discovery‘s showrunners.
One of the reasons why Fuller may be out is because of the production delays the show has been experiencing. Even though production is set to begin in Toronto next month, Discovery‘s premiere had been pushed back, most recently from January 2017 to May 2017. There was also a chance that the premiere could have been delayed once again, and that wasn’t a risk that CBS was willing to take.
Other contributing factors include Fuller’s commitment to other shows like Starz’s American Gods and the fact that he is developing American Stories over at NBC. With so many shows over at different networks, CBS believed that he may have been stretched too thin. It is being reported that Discovery‘s budget is approximately $6-7 million per episode. This may be the reason why CBS has brought in writer-director Akiva Goldsman to help Berg and Harberts.
Obviously, this is very disappointing news to Star Trek fans who were looking forward to continue the franchise with a show that was headed by Fuller. He intended to bring back the spirit of what made the original Star Trek great in Discovery by having a female captain, a diverse crew, and introducing an LGBTQ crew member. These additions that are a clear reflection of the diversity of the original Star Trek and its crew. However, the report also states that the network has had its issues finding the right actress to fill the lead role.
And even though Fuller will no longer be showrunner, he is still a part of the creative team. Sources also say that the network is happy with what Fuller has been able to give them so far.
“We are extremely happy with the creative direction of ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ and the strong foundation that Bryan Fuller has helped us create for the series,” said CBS Television Studios in a statement. “Due to Bryan’s other projects, he is no longer able to oversee the day-to-day of ‘Star Trek,’ but he remains an executive producer, and will continue to map out the story arc for the entire season…Bryan is a brilliant creative talent and passionate ‘Star Trek’ fan, who has helped us chart an exciting course for the series. We are all committed to seeing this vision through and look forward to premiering ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ this coming May 2017.”