As part of Star Trek’s self-celebrating First Contact Day event, Paramount has announced that virtually all of the main cast from The Next Generation will be returning for the third and final season of Star Trek: Picard.
“LeVar Burton, Michael Dorn, Jonathan Frakes, Gates McFadden, Marina Sirtis and Brent Spiner will star alongside Patrick Stewart in the third and final season,” the studio said in a press release issued this morning (April 5).
Related: ‘Star Trek: Picard’ Season 2 Episode 5 teases a great duel
It’s not mentioned exactly when in the season they will appear or if they will return as the same characters they played in Star Trek: The Next Generation. Lest we forget, Brent Spiner is currently appearing in Picard Season 2 as Dr. Adam Soong, an ancestor of the legendary father of eugenics and, further up the family tree, the creator of Data.
“I remember watching the premiere of ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’ with my father almost 34 years ago like it was yesterday,” the executive producer said in a statement.
“It is therefore very fitting that the story of Jean-Luc Picard ends with his dearest and most loyal friends from the USS Enterprise in honor of the beginning. To say that it’s an honor to give these characters a fitting send-off would be an understatement. The entire ‘Star Trek: Picard’ team and I can’t wait for fans to enjoy this final, high-stakes, starship-themed adventure in Season 1 3 experience,” said Matalas.
April 5th is a date known to all Star Trek fans as the day humans and Vulcans first met in the film Star Trek: First Contact.
If you recall, “Star Trek: First Contact” sends the USS Enterprise-E and her crew through a temporal vortex to prevent the Borg from preventing humanity’s first warp flight, which subsequently leads to first contact with an alien Race (the Vulcans) on April 5, 2063.
It is one of the defining moments in (fictional) human history and changes everything. After the invention of warp drive, fleets of starships are built and mankind begins to explore the galaxy. It unites our species in ways no one ever thought possible as humans realize they are not alone in the universe; Poverty, disease and war will disappear in the next 50 years.
Unless, of course, you live in the mirror universe, where warp drive inventor Zefram Cochrane (James Cromwell) gives both kegs to visiting Vulcans before everyone loots the alien survey ship.
A few other treats for Trekkies have also been released or announced to coincide with the First Contact event, including a brand new trailer and artwork for the upcoming spin-off show Star Trek: Strange New Worlds and a new coffee table book celebrating the actual movie “Star Trek: First Contact”.
Does this cast announcement mean that the third and final season of Picard is going to be one smashing feast of nostalgia? Well who knows. Season 3 just wrapped up shooting in March, so it’s sort of in the can.