The upcoming “Star Trek: Picard” series sees Patrick Stewart revisiting his most iconic character, that of U.S.S. Enterprise Captain Jean-Luc Picard which he played for fifteen years across film and television, and which he is now returning to almost twenty years later.
Stewart understandably had reservations about picking up the role again, but as part of a new interview with Vulture he says one of the key things that made him want to come back to the franchise was for the series to be to his previous Trek work the way “Logan” was to “X-Men”. Namely it had to be quite different and more grounded:
Stewart says “To be honest, I didn’t want to [come back]. I had determined long ago that my time with Jean-Luc and Star Trek was over.” The show’s producers Alex Kurtzman and Akiva Goldsman approached him and talked it out with Stewart who left the meeting intrigued:
“In less than two days, I had over 30 pages of copy, which I studied very carefully. One of the points I had made in the meeting was that the only possible way I could consider returning to that life would be if, for example – and this was only an example – we did something like Logan, the final X-Men movie I made with Hugh Jackman; then you would have my attention.
[The producers] were very enthusiastic about creating a world that was very different from the one that we got used to. I met with them again and we talked and talked and I told them about my uncertainties and doubts and little by little I found that they were all being addressed and being addressed in such an interesting way that I was intrigued. This was not going to be Star Trek: The Next Generation, Part Two. That’s why I said yes.”
The series will premiere on CBS All Access in the United States in weekly installments starting January 23rd, followed by an Amazon Prime Video debut in the rest of the world on January 24th. Santiago Cabrera, Michelle Hurd, Alison Pill, Harry Treadaway, Evan Evagora, Jonathan Frakes, Brent Spiner and Jeri Ryan co-star.