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Star Trek: Discovery loses showrunners again; Alex Kurtzman to take over

It would be safe to say that Star Trek: Discovery suffered from some growing pains. In addition to the numerous delays, the Star Trek series lost showrunner Bryan Fuller a year into development due to disagreements with CBS. Fuller was replaced by Gretchen J. Berg and Aaron Harberts, who shepherded Discovery through its first season, but now THR is reporting that Berg and Harberts are out as well and that co-creator and executive producer Alex Kurtzman will be replacing them.

"We’ve made some producer changes at Star Trek: Discovery. The series continues under the creative vision and leadership of executive producer and co-creator Alex Kurtzman. Discovery remains on course for season two in 2019 with new and continuing stories that build on its successful premiere season," said CBS Television Studios in a statement. THR goes into further details which hint that the reasons why Gretchen J. Berg and Aaron Harberts were shown the door were not creative, but instead for "leadership and operational issues." Production on the first five episodes of the second season are nearly complete, but THR's sources tell them that the budget for the premiere quickly ballooned, which led to concerns as those overages will have to come out of subsequent episodes. Most seriously, sources also say that Berg and Harberts were growing quite abusive towards their writing staff.

Insiders also stress that Berg and Harberts became increasingly abusive to the Discovery writing staff, with Harberts said to have leaned across the writers room table while shouting an expletive at a member of the show's staff. Multiple writers are said to have been uncomfortable working on the series and had threatened to file a complaint with human resources or quit the series altogether before informing Kurtzman of the issues surrounding Berg and Harberts. After hearing rumors of HR complaints, Harberts is said to have made imposing remarks to the staff to keep concerns with the production an internal matter.  

A production hiatus was already planned to follow the fifth episode, which will give Alex Kurtzman the time he needs to get the show back on the road. Akiva Goldsman, who served as Kurtzman's right-hand man during the first season, also won't be returning for the second season as it's said that he "had a management style and personality that clashed with the writing staff." Production on Star Trek: Discovery's second season isn't expected to run into any delays because of these changes, and CBS is reportedly pleased with the cuts and scripts they've seen so far.

Star Trek: Discovery's second season will return in 2019.

Source: THR

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