CBS All Access has set phasers to funny with the announcement today that they’ve given a two-season commitment to Star Trek: Lower Decks, an animated comedy from Emmy Award-winner Mike McMahan. The show, which will be produced by CBS Eye Animation Productions, Secret Hideout and Roddenberry Entertainment, will follow the support crew serving on one of Starfleet’s least-important ships. CBS Eye Animation Productions is CBS Television Studios’ new animation arm.
Alex Kurtzman and Heather Kadin of Secret Hideout and Rod Roddenberry, Trevor Roth and Katie Krentz of Roddenberry Entertainment will serve as executive producers alongside McMahan, who is best known for Rick and Morty and has written the upcoming Harry Mudd-centric installment of Star Trek: Short Treks. Aaron Baiers, who brought McMahan to the project, will serve as a co-executive producer.
"Mike won our hearts with his first sentence: ‘I want to do a show about the people who put the yellow cartridge in the food replicator so a banana can come out the other end,” executive producer Alex Kurtzman said. “His cat’s name is Riker. His son’s name is Sagan. The man is committed. He’s brilliantly funny and knows every inch of every Trek episode, and that’s his secret sauce: he writes with the pure, joyful heart of a true fan. As we broaden the world of Trek to fans of all ages, we’re so excited to include Mike’s extraordinary voice.”
“As a life-long Trekkie, it’s a surreal and wonderful dream come true to be a part of this new era of Star Trek,” executive producer Mike McMahan said. “While Star Trek: Lower Decks is a half-hour, animated show at its core, it’s undeniably Trek – and I promise not to add an episode at the very end that reveals the whole thing took place in a training program.”
Trek fans will recall that in 2011 McMahan launched a Twitter account where he posted episode plots to a fake season of Star Trek: The Next Generation. Simon & Schuster subsequently hired him to write a readers’ guide to a fictitious eighth season of TNG titled Star Trek: The Next Generation: Warped: An Engaging Guide to the Never-Aired 8th Season. Beyond his Trek credentials, McMahan recently served as head writer and executive producer on Adult Swim’s hit animated series, Rick and Morty, and co-created Hulu’s animated alien family show, Solar Opposites.
Star Trek: Lower Decks, in addition to being CBS All Access’ first animated series, represents the latest expansion of the Star Trek franchise on CBS All Access, also currently home in the U.S. to the Star Trek: Discovery, returning with season two on Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019, and Star Trek: Short Treks, a series of four short stories tied to Discovery and the overall Star Trek universe. CBS All Access also recently announced plans for a new, as-yet-untitled Star Trek series featuring Sir Patrick Stewart reprising his iconic role as Jean-Luc Picard.