CBS Orders New 'Star Trek' Series for Its All Access Streaming Service

More Than a Year Before First Episode Runs, but Pressure Is on Media Companies Now

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Leonard Nimoy as Spock in the original 'Star Trek.'
Leonard Nimoy as Spock in the original 'Star Trek.' Credit: 1967 CBS Broadcasting Inc.

CBS Corp. will introduce a new "Star Trek" series in January 2017, but not on flagship broadcast TV network, the company said today. After a "special preview" on CBS, the new "Star Trek" will be available in the U.S. only on CBS All Access, the streaming video platform introduced last year for $5.99 per month.

That makes the new "Star Trek" the first original series created specifically for CBS All Access, which so far has offered viewers only live and on-demand programming that has already run on the CBS TV network.

The news comes more than a year before the first episode is expected, but at a propitious time nonetheless. CBS plans to release its latest quarterly earnings on Tuesday, becoming one of many media companies that will go under the microscope to see whether they are adequately preparing for a digital future. Media stocks were punished earlier this year as fears grew that consumers would abandon the traditional cable-and-satellite, ad-supported TV model in favor of streaming services such as Netflix.

The original episode of "Star Trek" premiered on NBC in September 1966.

"This new series will premiere to the national CBS audience, then boldly go where no first-run 'Star Trek' series has gone before -- directly to its millions of fans through CBS All Access," said Marc DeBevoise, Executive VP-general manager, CBS Digital Media. "We've experienced terrific growth for CBS All Access, expanding the service across affiliates and devices in a very short time. We now have an incredible opportunity to accelerate this growth with the iconic 'Star Trek,' and its devoted and passionate fan base, as our first original series."

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