Les Moonves, head of CBS, was reviewing some paperwork in his office when the phone rang. "Yes Jane", he said to his secretary on the other line. She formally responded, "There is a Bryan Fuller here to see you, sir."
"Jane, what have I told you about calling me sir," Moonves said playfully, "call me Daddy.", Jane stiffly said, "I'll send Mr. Fuller up, sir." and hung up. A few minutes later there was a knock at the door. "Come in" Moonves called, half focused on his paperwork, and Bryan Fuller walked into his office. After exchanging pleasantries, Fuller got to the point of why he came.
"Sir, I've been running the numbers from the Abrams Star Trek movies, and I think now would be a great opportunity to capitalize on creating a brand new Star Trek series." Moonves seemed unphased, "Bryan, I think we're already putting a lot of money into the Abrams movie, we don't want to count our chickens before they hatch."
Fuller was a little confused by this. While Star Trek Beyond was in production, CBS had no involvement with the movie other than the licensing agreement with Paramount. Fuller asked for clarification, "Uh sir, we're not paying for Star Trek Beyond."
"Beyond?" inquired Moonves now equally perplexed, "I thought we were calling the Trek film The Force something?" Fuller now understood the source of the confusion: Moonves didn't know the difference between Star Trek and Star Wars.
"No sir, that's Disney's franchise. You guys own the other one with Spock and teleporters, not the one with Luke and lightsabers. I used to work on the other shows before the split and I think we're in the right moment for a revival." Moonves wasn't very interested in science fiction television, so decided to let Fuller down gently, "Ok Bryan, let me run some numbers and I'll see what we can do, but we're not in much need of new content, all of our timeslots are full."
Fuller expected this type of response and decided to throw a second pitch at Moonves, "What about your streaming service?", Moonves looked dismissive "All Access? That's for old shows, it's not even making us a lot of money", "But what if you did what Netflix does and put some of your new content exclusively on All Access?", Fuller countered. "Let's put this in perspective. Star Trek is about to celebrate it's 50th anniversary and it's made you billions already. New content would only bring in more profit."
Moonves sat still for a moment contemplating. To Fuller it was obvious that he was swaying him, but to what point? Finally, Moonves stood up and extended his hand. "I was mistaken Bryan, now I realize that I'm gonna need a lot of new content soon." They shook hands, but in reality Fuller's whole body was shaking. He just convinced the head of CBS to allow him to create a new Star Trek series after being off the air for ten years.
The next day, Fuller's phone rang and he saw that Moonves was calling, "This is Fuller" he answered cautiously, "Bryan, it's Les. I spoke to legal about your space series and according to our contract, we are under a no compete clause with Paramount."
Fuller's stomach dropped. Looks like it may have been too good to be true, Fuller thought. He was about to thank Moonves for his time when he continued, "Good news is I found a way around it!"
"You did?" Fuller asked with hope.
"Yes, Bad Robot is going to send one of their representatives to help co-produce the show. Goes by the name of Kurtzman and his production company is called Secret Hideout". Fuller was once again relieved. It's normal to have multiple producers on a show. "Ok, so we're still a go then", "Still a go" Moonves confirmed. "Thanks for letting me know, sir.", Fuller said.
"Before you go," Moonves added, "I also wanted to let you know that there will be a press release tomorrow", "Ok, sir. Thank you." Fuller said before hanging up.
As Fuller sipped his coffee, he thought to himself, Wow. I get to make Star Trek for a new generation.