Despite the behind-the-scenes issues Star Trek: Discovery has recently had to deal with, the upcoming CBS All Access series has made great strides with casting over the last month. When Discovery starts streaming next year, it will have a refreshing lineup of diverse characters, from humans to Klingons. Now the series has found its main star in The Walking Dead actress Sonequa Martin-Green.
EW broke the news that Sonequa Martin-Green will play the lead in Star Trek: Discovery, making this the second Star Trek series to have a female lead (the first being Star Trek Voyager) and the first to have an African-American actress leading the charge. However, rather than be the captain of a starship/space station as has been the case with previous Star Trek main characters, Martin-Green will play the Discovery's lieutenant commander, making her the "Number One" character that's been referenced numerous times. Her character's real name wasn't mentioned, nor were any details about this individual revealed other than reiterating previous showrunner Bryan Fuller's comments about how this lieutenant commander has "caveats."
Sonequa Martin-Green is best known for playing Sasha Williams on The Walking Dead since 2012. The casting report mentioned that Martin-Green "will continue to serve as a series regular" on the AMC series, but if her time is being taken up flying around on the Starship Discovery, then surely the will make it more difficult to keep making regular appearances in undead country, right? Walking Dead fans, I hate to say it, but don't be surprised if something bad happens to Sasha in Season 7's second half. Martin-Green's other notable credits include recurring stints in Once Upon a Time and The Good Wife, as well as appearing in an episode of New Girl earlier this year.
Finding the actress to play Number One is the latest update concerning who will make up Star Trek: Discovery's cast. Three weeks ago, it was revealed that Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon actress Michelle Yeoh will appear as Captain Georgiou of the USS Shenzhou. As for Sonequa Martin-Green's cast-mates about the "actual" Discovery ship, Hellboy's Doug Jones will play Saru, a science officer who is a member of a new alien species, while Broadway actor Anthony Rapp will play Stamets, another science officer and openly gay, a first for a Star Trek TV series (Hikaru Sulu's sexuality wasn't officially revealed until this year's Star Trek Beyond). Then on Monday, it was announced that Chris Obi, Shazad Latif and Mary Chieffo will recur as Klingon officers, and given the time period Star Trek: Discovery is set in, it's likelier than not they won't be friendly. More casting announcements are on the way, but right now, the lineup looks impressive.
Star Trek: Discovery is expected to premiere on CBS All Access in May 2017, though the pilot episode will also air on the main CBS network.