VARIETY – The “Star Trek” universe is expanding.
During the Comic-Con panel for “Star Trek: Discovery,” show co-creator and executive producer Alex Kurtzman announced the upcoming launch of a four-part miniseries titled “Star Trek: Short Treks” this fall.
Rolling out on CBS All Access on a monthly basis, each of the four “Short Treks” episodes will be approximately 10-15 minutes long, and dig deeper into specific characters and themes explored on “Discovery.”
Rainn Wilson will return to play Harry Mudd in a short he will also direct, while Aldis Hodge will star in another as Craft, a man who finds himself as the only human on board a deserted ship. Additional episodes include a deep dive into Saru’s (Doug Jones) backstory as the first Kelpien to join Starfleet, and Tilly’s (Mary Wiseman) journey aboard the U.S.S. Discovery and her friendship with an unlikely partner.
In addition to the announcement, “Discovery” fans were treated to the first trailer for the upcoming second season, which came days after images from Season 2 were released, depicting Michael Burnham aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise and Linus, a Saurian officer.
The trailer links “Discovery,” which is set roughly a decade before James Kirk takes the bridge of the U.S.S. Enterprise, with former Enterprise Captain Christopher Pike taking command of the U.S.S. Discovery, due to a Federation regulation that takes effect in times of imminent danger. Red flares are popping up throughout space and the Federation can’t determine whether they’re friendly greetings or malevolent declarations. To top it off? Vulcan icon Spock may be involved.
The trailer also offers a first look at the show’s spiffy throwback uniforms, with Pike’s duds giving fans a flashback to the gold shirts of the original series.
Sorry I got so behind on updating these events! I’ll do better next time!
The actor and Chicago-based artist will have a series of paintings — collectively titled “Through the Looking Glass” — on display from Jan. 10 to 14.
THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER – When Aldis Hodge DM’d artist Harmonia Rosales on Instagram to compliment her paintings, he never expected to kick off a collaboration. But the Hidden Figures actor, 31 — who next stars opposite Kevin Bacon in Showtime police pilot City on a Hill — showed Rosales some of his paintings, and she told him they held a beautiful sadness. “I was surprised someone responded to my work in that way who was not named ‘Mom,'” he says. Now the duo are bowing two new works via the Simard Bilodeau gallery at the L.A. Art Show, Jan.?10 to 14 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
Chicago-based Rosales, 33, had a viral moment in May after, at Hodge’s urging, she Instagrammed her painting The Creation of God — a take on Michelangelo’s The Creation of Adam with black women as both figures. There was a backlash, including racist attacks directed at her. “There’s a lot of hypocrisy in religion, but when you’re talking about God as a representation of love and as a representation of all of us, we should all be able to see God as ourselves,” says Hodge. “So there’s nothing wrong with the image at all.” The incident made fans of stars like Willow Smith and drew the attention of Eve-Marie Bilodeau, who with husband Guy Simard runs Simard Bilodeau. Samuel L. Jackson purchased “Black Imaginary to Counter Hegemony (B.I.T.C.H.),” a piece by Rosales, from the gallery’s September show of paintings.
“I’m so glad we have this collaboration, because I don’t like talking about my work,” says Rosales of working with Hodge. “I just like painting, I just like color, but [talking] is his strong suit, so it’s great.” In their series, “Through the Looking Glass,” Rosales paints figures — like a woman named Adeelah, in hijab and carrying a baby swaddled in an American flag. “I want them to be familiar, regardless of who you are,” she says of her subjects. Hodge paints the backdrop with words like “equal” and “survivor,” then distresses them, sometimes with a technique using fire. “It’s a subtle reminder that no matter what her culture is, what her religion is, she can still be American,” says Hodge of Adeelah. “She’s American-American just like I’m American-American. I know my culture, and my culture’s equally American as anything else.”
Sorry for the delay on these events!
FORBES – John Legend is publicly renewing his efforts to save Underground, the ground-breaking, recently-cancelled series that humanizes and tells the stories behind the Underground Railroad. A popular social media and ratings darling, Underground aired on WGN America until Sinclair Broadcast Group made a bid for Tribune Media three months ago. Meanwhile, as the potential merger of the two companies was reviewed by the FCC, the two-year-old drama was deep sized. The series told the not-told-enough stories of the people who tried mightily to help the enslaved escape to freedom in the north United States and in Canada. Legend is an executive producer.
Since the cancellation, fans have tried to persuade OWN, Netflix and other networks (or streaming services) to host the series, which clocks in at around $4.5-million an episode and was selected as an inaugural public program at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. No network has bitten yet (that we know of) and Legend took to Twitter to distribute an open letter discussing his thoughts on the matter. He castigates Sinclair Media’s choices in programming, saying the “far right” network turned away from high quality scripted shows to “cheaper unscripted entertainment.”
I hope Aldis has had a wonderful birthday!