By James Hibberd
December 10, 2018 at 03:04 PM EST
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The mysterious upcoming Star Trek series bringing back fan favorite Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) is going to be very different in tone from previous shows in the franchise, and below, executive producer Alex Kurtzman explains exactly how.

The writer-producer has worked on J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek films and is the current showrunner of CBS All Access’ Star Trek: Discovery, as well as an executive producer on the Picard series. We asked Kurtzman how the spin-off will compare to Discovery and Stewart’s previous Star Trek series, The Next Generation.

“It’s an extremely different rhythm than Discovery,” Kurtzman told EW exclusively. “Discovery is a bullet. Picard is a very contemplative show. It will find a balance between the speed of Discovery and the nature of what Next Gen was, but I believe it will have its own rhythm.”

CBS via Getty Images

Continued Kurtzman: “Without revealing too much about it, people have so many questions about Picard and what happened to him, and the idea we get to take time to answer those questions in the wake of the many, many things he’s had to deal with in Next Gen is really exciting. ‘More grounded’ is not the right way to put it, because season 2 of Discovery is also grounded. It will feel more… real-world? If that’s the right way to put it.”

So there you have it, the words that come to mind when asked to describe the Picard show are things like “real-world, contemplative, grounded.” (And, yes Kurtzman used “Picard” as if that’s the show’s title, but there is no official title yet, and it’s pretty hard to imagine the actual title won’t have “Star Trek” in it.)

Only Stewart has been cast in the spin-off so far, Kurtzman added. “The writers’ room has broken about eight episodes and we’re moving quickly, and I couldn’t be more excited about it,” he noted. There’s no premiere date announced as of yet.

In the meantime, we have season 2 of Star Trek: Discovery coming Jan. 17. Kurtzman took over the captain’s chair on the series last June. Now that the Discovery story has moved beyond the Klingon war, the show is taking on a bit of a lighter tone, and has added Anson Mount (as Captain Pike) and Ethan Peck (as Mr. Spock) to the cast, which is led by Sonequa Martin-Green (Michael Burnham).

Here’s the most recent trailer:

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