Sir Patrick Stewart to return as Jean-Luc Picard in new ‘Star Trek’ series

It had been rumored, but today the good news was confirmed by the actor himself: Sir Patrick Stewart is returning to one of his most iconic roles, Captain Jean-Luc Picard, for a new Star Trek series to air on CBS’s All Access streaming service.

The new series is not a reboot, and will feature tales from Picard’s life after the end of Star Trek: The Next Generation. It will share a number of producers with its streaming-platform sibling Star Trek: Discovery (including former executive producer Akiva Goldsman), but a few big and interesting names have also attached themselves to the project: The Closer creator James Duff, and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Michael Chabon, which should cause any nerd in the know to shit their pants with excitement.

Stewart’s statement on his return follows (via Deadline):

“I will always be very proud to have been a part of Star Trek: The Next Generation, but when we wrapped that final movie in the spring of 2002, I truly felt my time with Star Trek had run its natural course. It is, therefore, an unexpected but delightful surprise to find myself excited and invigorated to be returning to Jean-Luc Picard and to explore new dimensions within him. Seeking out new life for him, when I thought that life was over.”

“During these past years, it has been humbling to hear stories about how The Next Generation brought people comfort, saw them through difficult periods in their lives or how the example of Jean-Luc inspired so many to follow in his footsteps, pursuing science, exploration and leadership. I feel I’m ready to return to him for the same reason — to research and experience what comforting and reforming light he might shine on these often very dark times. I look forward to working with our brilliant creative team as we endeavor to bring a fresh, unexpected and pertinent story to life once more.”

Here’s the moment at the Las Vegas Star Trek Convention when he and Alex Kurtzman announced the good news:

No word on when the show will hit the air or even start shooting, but stay tuned for more as this project develops.

Featured image by Shervin Lainez via CBS All Access.