Prepare to boldly go to San Diego Comic Con 2023. The various arms of the Star Trek franchise have announced plans for activations, panels and booths from across the upcoming pop culture event. Announcements include the return of the franchise to Hall H with a panel focussing on the futures of Discovery, Strange New Worlds and Lower Decks.
The annual gathering of nerd culture will also feature plenty of Trek panels and events focussing on the history of the decades-old franchise so today we’re giving you our guide to a Trek fan’s perfect SDCC 2023.
It all kicks off with IDW Publishing on Thursday with the Star Trek: More Bold Than Ever Before panel which will focus on the publishers plans for continuing to grow their ever-expanding line of Star Trek comics. The panel is happening Thursday July 20, 2023 12:00pm – 1:00pm PDT in room 28DE. Here’s the full description:
Never before has Star Trek been bigger (or bloodier)! IDW Group Editor Heather Antos and writers Chris Cantwell, Collin Kelly, and Jackson Lanzinggive an inside look into Star Trek: Day of Blood, the first ever Star Trek comics crossover event. Plus: Marc Guggenheim, Sam Maggs, Malachi Ward, Chirs Sequiera, and Liana Kangas share all the exciting things happening across IDW’s line of Star Trek comics.
For those looking for their fix of Star Trek TV then you’ll want to be in Hall H on Saturday from 1:30pm – 3:00pm PDT for the Star Trek Universe panel which will feature creatives from across the franchise. With the writers strike still underway and the actors strike threat still looming, no names have been confirmed as yet but the con has released a short brief for the panel:
The fan-favorite Star Trek universe panel returns to Comic-Con, featuring exclusive content from Star Trek: Discovery, Star Trek: Lower Decks, and Star Trek: Strange New Worlds.
Fans of the classic Star Trek: The Animated Series won’t want to miss a very special celebration as the show embarks on its 50th birthday celebrations. Official 50th Star Trek Animated Celebration kicks off Friday July 21, 2023 10:00am – 11:00am PDT in Room 25ABC.
The Star Trek brand team first look at Star Trek: The Animated Celebration, a campaign celebrating 50 years of Star Trek: The Animated Series. Explore the latest in publishing, gaming, and beyond with one-of-a-kind giveaways, exclusive sneak peeks, and special panelists
Saturday night will bring Star Trek: Picard show runner Terry Matalas and series’ star Todd Stashwick to the con for a special in-depth conversation on the psychology of the final season. Boldly Go: The Psychology of Star Trek: Picard is taking place Saturday July 22, 2023 7:00pm – 8:00pm PDT in Grand 12 & 13, Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina.
Dr. Drea Letamendi (psychologist at UCLA, host of The Arkham Sessions Podcast) and Brian Ward (host of The Arkham Sessions Podcast) take a deep dive into the psychology of Star Trek: Picard’s final season with showrunner Terry Matalas and actor Todd Stashwick. This lively conversation will celebrate what makes Trek both illuminating and entertaining and will cover powerfully emotive themes such as resilient leadership, family conflict, and finding purpose in the face of failures, risks, and dangers only imagined in the final frontier.
Finally, Saturday night will also see the legend that is William Shatner appearing for his annual William Shatner: You Can Call Me Bill panel. Saturday July 22, 2023 4:30pm – 6:00pm PDT in Hall H.
The icon himself, William Shatner, hosts an entertaining discussion about his illustrious career, spotlighted by his two most recent adventures: Legion M’s new documentary, You Can Call Me Bill, and the famed sci-fi captain’s real-life journey into space! Beam into Hall H for a lively chat between Shatner, doc director Alexandre O. Philippe (The People vs. George Lucas, Lynch/Oz), Legion M executives Jeff Annison and David Baxter, and some very special surprise guests. Publicist Gary Miereanu moderates the festivities.
On the show floor you can find the Paramount+ team manning a dedicated Strange New Worlds booth (#3529). Little more is known about the booth at this point but we can expect some kind of interactive event. Perhaps similar to the booth seen recently in London at MCM Comic Con?
The team from Hero Within, legendary for their Trek merchandise will also be on the show floor. You can find them at booth #1943 where they’ll have plenty of Trek hoodies and jackets on sale to complete your Starfleet look. But that’s not all!
They will also be hosting a special activation outside the convention centre. The “intimate Star Trek-themed experience” will give fans a “chance to relax, recharge and connect with fellow Trekkies” with Trek-themed coffee drinks. The lounge will feature a display of the Trek merchandise along with additional Star Trek promos from IDW Publishing, RockLove Jewelry, and the Star Trek Cruise. The Energize Lounge will be located at 332 J Street in the Gaslamp just one block from the Convention Center, open Thursday through Sunday 8 AM to 10 PM PT.
There are also plenty more panels which will take a closer look at the franchise across the weekend. Here’s a look at the highlights:
THURSDAY, JULY 20
How to Boldly Go in to Star Trek
Grand Rooms 12 & 13 at the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina on Thursday July 20, 2023 1:00pm – 2:00pm PDT.
With Discovery, Lower Decks, Strange New Worlds, and Picard, Star Trek is going strong after 57 years. However, with so much Trek and such little time, it’s overwhelming to know what is essential viewing. With over a dozen movies, several series, and now all the streaming content, where does someone new to Star Trek start? Moderator Tony B Kim (Hero Within, Crazy 4 Comic Con) leads this fun and helpful discussion with Star Trek pros Giraffe (Strange New Podcast), Myrriah Gossett (Star Trek Discovery Podcast), and Clyde Haynes (Star Trek Discovery Podcast).
Thursday July 20, 2023 1:30pm – 2:30pm PDT in room 24ABC.
Roddenberry Entertainment is warping back into Comic-Con, and resistance is futile. Prepare to be assimilated into the Roddenberry collective as this panel transmits updates on all things Star Trek. Executive producers Rod Roddenberry (Star Trek: Discovery, Star Trek: Prodigy) and Trevor Roth (Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, Star Trek: Lower Decks) engage in a Q&A session moderated by Scott Mantz (Variety, Enterprise Incidents with Scott and Steve). Get ready to hear about the newest developments in the world of Star Trek (the Prime Universe, of course) as well as Rod and Trevor’s hopes for the future of the franchise.
Women of Conept Art for Film and TV
Thursday July 20, 2023 1:45pm – 2:45pm PDT in room 6A.
Concept artists Gina DeDomenico (The Boys, Star Trek: Picard), Barbra Araujo (Haunted Mansion, The Acolyte), Maybelle Pineda (Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, Black Adam), Robin Richesson (Mars Attacks!, The Spiderwick Chronicles), and Jen Hancock (Haunted Mansion, Violent Night) join for a candid discussion moderated by costume designer Mairi Chisholm (Sleepy Hollow, The Orville) highlighting their professional journeys into Hollywood, the unique challenges they are facing as female concept artists, and how their careers continue to grow and change alongside an ever-evolving industry. One lucky attendee will have a chance to win a pen tablet, courtesy of Xencelabs!
Inglorious Treksperts Live: Free Enterprise at 25
Thursday July 20, 2023 4:00pm – 5:00pm PDT in Room 5AB
The hosts of the Star Trek podcast TrekMovie present a 25th anniversary tribute to the ultimate love letter to Star Trek, the beloved cult classic Free Enterprise, released in theaters in 1999 and starring William Shatner and Eric McCormack. Panelists will be sharing never-before-seen clips and footage from the film that proved Captain Kirk was cooler than Han Solo. Featuring Inglorious Treksperts hosts Mark A. Altman (author, Star Trek: The Fifty-Year Mission; writer/producer, Free Enterprise), Daren Dochterman (associate producer, Star Trek: The Motion Picture—Director’s Edition), Ashley E. Miller(writer, Thor, X-Men: First Class), and Robert Meyer Burnett (director/writer, Free Enterprise, The Burnettwork), along with a special panelist or two.
Star Trek Adventures by Modiphius
Thursday July 20, 2023 4:30pm – 7:30pm PDT in Omni Hotel, Omni Grand Ballroom ABC, 4th Floor
Star Trek Adventures is a Tabletop RPG where new discoveries await explorers of Starfleet. It’s a 2D20 game of action, adventure, hope, and shenanigans. The company GM and players boldly go where no con-goer ever went before. The Shackleton Expanse will never be the same!
It’s Alive, Jim! Evolutionary Biology in Star Trek
Thursday July 20, 2023 8:00pm – 9:00pm PDT in Room 28DE
Did you ever wonder if giant space jellyfish could ever realistically be a thing? Could our parasites evolve to take over Starfleet Command? Or computers be reprogrammed by sentient yeast? Would aliens really just look like us with pointy ears or ridge noses? Since the beginning of Star Trek, exploring strange new worlds has been synonymous with meeting fascinating new species—friendly or less friendly . . . Star Trek shows us life as we know it and as we’ve never seen it before, and examining the science behind both can teach us a lot about where we come from, where we’re going, and what we might meet—out there. Dr. Ashley Poust (paleontologist at the San Diego Natural History Museum), Dr. Danielle de Carle (researcher and lecturer at the University of Toronto), and Dr. Amanda Jack (biochemist and biophysicist at SyntheX) take a deep dive into the reality, the fiction, and the possibilities of this Trek-tastic biology these last 56 years. Moderated by Giraffe of the Star Trek podcast Strange New Pod.
FRIDAY, JULY 21
TV Academy: Bringing TV to Life
Friday July 21, 2023 10:00am – 11:00am PDT in Omni Hotel, Omni Grand Ballroom DE, 4th Floor
The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences is the honorary organization behind the iconic Emmy Awards. Moderated by Ryan Arey (ScreenCrush), this panel features six TV Academy/Producers Peer Group filmmakers of your favorite TV shows as they discuss the creative challenges of bringing their projects to the screen. Featuring Doug Aarniokoski (Star Trek: Picard, Sleepy Hollow), Juan Alfonso (Emergence, El Diez), Seth Edelstein (For All Mankind, Better Call Saul), Erik Holmberg (Fargo, Lucifer), Scott Trimble (Snowfall, Star Wars: The Book of Boba Fett), and Sabrina Wind (Muppets Now, Desperate Housewives).
Women of the Hollywood Art Department
Friday July 21, 2023 11:00am – 12:00pm PDT in Room 9
Explore the works and minds of several of the talented women and members of the Art Directors Guild who are responsible for dreaming, designing, and drawing some of the most memorable and immersive environments for film and TV. Panelists include Amelia Brooke (Everything Everywhere All a.t Once, Westworld), Danelle Davenport (Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, The Little Mermaid), Kelly Rae Hemenway (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, Bullet Train), Rupali Ingle (Star Trek: Picard, Abbott Elementary), and Daniela Medeiros (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, Thor: Ragnarok). Moderated by Kate Weddle (Yellowstone, WandaVision).
Den of Geek and Roddenberry Entertainment Present: Does It Fly?
Friday July 21, 2023 11:30am – 12:30pm PDT in Room 29CD
What would it take to make Spider-Man’s web-shooters a reality? Is there a real-world “invisibility cloak” from the world of Harry Potter? Is Star Trek’s replicator truly feasible? Roddenberry Entertainment, originators of modern-day fandom, is joining forces with Den of Geek to put your favorite sci-fi and fantasy concepts on trial! Come join these two entertainment juggernauts for a live episode of Does It Fly?—a new weekly podcast hosted by Hakeem Oluseyi (Nova, Outrageous Acts of Science) and Tamara Krinsky (Tomorrow’s World Today, Marvel LIVE! Red Carpet broadcasts) to see whether movie magic flies or crashes and burns. Get your burning questions ready, prepare to argue over your favorite properties, and maybe even win fun giveaways. Hosted by Scott Mantz (Variety, Enterprise Incidents with Scott and Steve).
Production Design for Indie Filmmakers and Content Creators
Friday July 21, 2023 1:00pm – 2:00pm PDT in Grand 6, Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina
Learn how to use production design, set decoration, prop design, and location scouting to enhance the world building of your web series, indie film, cosplay videos and photos, TTRPG live-play sets, and more. Set decorator Rae Deslich (Drunk History, Promising Young Woman) leads the production design team Cindy Chao and Michele Yu (Waffles + Mochi, American Born Chinese), prop master Josh Bramer (Euphoria, Everything Everywhere All at Once), graphic designer Sarah M. Gonzalez (Kindred, Dave, Double Dare 2019), art director Liz Kloczkowski (Star Trek: Picard, Quantum Leap), prop master Kevin Hummel (Lyle Lyle Crocodile, Dark Knight Rises), and producer and assistant director Johnny Recher (Rebel Moon, Our Flag Means Death) in an introductory presentation of Hollywood cinema techniques that you can use immediately in your own projects.
IDW Publishing: 2023 and Beyond
Friday July 21, 2023 1:30pm – 2:30pm PDT in Room 10
IDW Publishing’s co-publishers Mark Doyle and Tara McCrillis, along with EIC Jamie S. Rich and Top Shelf’s Chris Staros, discuss the exciting new direction of IDW’s future. From fan-favorite titles like TMNT, Star Trek, Sonic the Hedgehog, Godzilla, My Little Pony, and Cosmoknights, plus IDW Originals like Scott Snyder’s Dark Spaces, IDW has something for everyone. Here’s your chance to hear about the work being done by talents like Snyder, Hannah Templer, Jeremy Lambert, Sam Maggs, Frank Tieri, Scott Bryan Wilson, and Che Grayson.
Saturday, July 22
Inside the Writers’ Room: Building a Better Future for Writers
Saturday July 22, 2023 10:00am – 11:30am PDT in Room 24ABC
Showrunner Mark A. Altman (Pandora, The Librarians, Castle) moderates this annual panel, reuniting some of the biggest showrunners and writers in the business to share their insights into the state of television today and what’s at stake as writers fight for their futures. You’ll hear from Terry Matalas (Star Trek: Picard Season 3, 12 Monkeys), Gabrielle Stanton (The Summer I Turned Pretty, Haven), Ashley E. Miller (DOTA: Dragon’s Blood, Fringe, Black Sails), Kay Reindl (Shining Vale, Swamp Thing), Deric A. Hughes (Quantum Leap, Legacies), Christopher Cantwell (Halt & Catch Fire, Paper Girls), Anslem Richardson (The Boys, Timeless), VJ Boyd (Justified, SWAT), Marc Bernardin (Carnival Row, Masters of the Universe: Revelations), Amy Berg (Warrior Nun, Counterpart), and Steven Melching (Star Wars Rebels, The Clone Wars, DOTA: Dragon’s Blood).
Space Command: Epic Adventures
Saturday July 22, 2023 11:00am – 12:00pm PDT in the Neil Morgan Auditorium, San Diego Central Library
Thousands of fans funded the pilot of Space Command, seen by fans around the world. The cast is a Who’s Who of TV and film genre stars, including Doug Jones (Star Trek Discovery, The Shape of Water), Ethan McDowell (Walking Dead, Doom Patrol), Bryan McClure (Doom Patrol, Mindhunter), Mike Harney (Orange Is the New Black, Project Blue Book), Bruce Boxleitner (Babylon 5, Tron), Bill Mumy (Lost in Space, Babylon 5), James Hong (Everything Everywhere, Blade Runner), Mira Furlan (Lost, Babylon 5), Aaron Gaffey (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.), Katharine McEwan (Solitary) and John Hennigan (Glow, WWE). The series was created by Star Trek writer Marc Scott Zicree (TNG, New Twilight Zone), with post sound by David Bartlett (Speed), designs by Iain McCaig (Star Wars, Avengers), editing by Dave Edison (Remember the Sultana), and music by David Raiklen (Star Trek New Voyages, Max Steel). Also appearing: Joe Ochman (Star Wars Visions) and Ellen Dubin (Dune, M3GAN).
Comics and Other Geek items for the Vision Impaired
Saturday July 22, 2023 3:00pm – 4:00pm PDT in Room 3
Blind and visually impaired people love comics, gaming, TV, movies, and all sorts of science fiction/fantasy/horror artforms just as much as their sighted counterparts. How do they enjoy such things with little or no eyesight? Blind adventurer and unashamed geek Joshua Loya (52 Masters, Miracle in Malibu) and actor/writer Scott Brick (audiobook narration, Dune, Shannara series) are joined by actor and audio description advocate Roy Samuelson(Star Trek Discovery, Westworld) to share what options exist for nonvisual entertainment.
Writing across Film/TV, Games, and Comics
Saturday July 22, 2023 3:00pm – 4:00pm PDT in Room 25ABC
Film writer/director Duncan Jones (Moon, Rogue Trooper), games designer Cliff Bleszinski (Gears of War, Fortnite), and TV writer Marc Bernardin (Star Trek: Picard, Critical Role) discuss the differences (and similarities) between writing for the screen/the Steam and writing comic books. Moderated by comics and animation writer Alex de Campi (Blade Runner: Black Lotus; Dracula, Motherf**ker!).
Star Trek: The Art of Neville Page
Saturday July 22, 2023 5:30pm – 6:30pm PDT in Room 10
Concept artist Neville Page discusses his incredible career with Forbidden Planet TV‘s Andrew Sumner. As a visionary creature designer, Neville has applied his considerable expertise to the creation and development of the aliens of the Star Trek universe. From the movies Star Trek (2009) through to Star Trek Beyond (2016), as well as the shows Star Trek: Discovery and Star Trek: Picard, Page’s incredibly detailed and intricate work has yielded some of the franchise’s most memorable characters! Star Trek: The Art of Neville Page from Titan Books is a stunning retrospective celebrating all of Neville’s fantastic Star Trek creations – and debut copies will be available at the show!
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