Star Trek: Lower Decks Casts Paul Scheer as Chief Engineer
Star Trek: Lower Decks, the next of the many Star Trek projects in development to debut, has revealed the chief engineer of the USS Cerritos. Guest star Paul Scheer will voice Lt. Cmdr. Andy Billups in the show's first season. Billups is the senior officer that Ensign Rutherford, played by Eugene Cordero, report to aboard the ship. Scheer is a recurring guest start. The number of episodes Billups appears in is unknown. Scheer is a comedian, writer, producer, and director best known for his role on The League. He created and starred in the Adult Swim series NTSF:SD:SUV:: and appeared in Veep. He's also written for Marvel Comics and co-hosts of the film and comedy podcast How Did This Get Made? He currently stars in the Showtime series Black Monday.
Emmy Award-winner Mike McMahan (Rick and Morty, Solar Opposites) developed Star Trek: Lower Decks. The series follows the support crew serving aboard one of Starfleet’s least significant ships, the USS Cerritos, in the year 2380. Ensigns Mariner, Boimler, Rutherford, and Tendi have to keep up with their duties and social lives, often at the same time as sci-fi shenanigans rock the ship.
The Starfleet crew residing in the “lower decks” of the USS Cerritos includes “Ensign Beckett Mariner,” voiced by Tawny Newsome, “Ensign Brad Boimler,” voiced by Jack Quaid, “Ensign Tendi,” voiced by Noël Wells and “Ensign Rutherford,” voiced by Eugene Cordero. The Starfleet characters that comprise the ship’s bridge crew include “Captain Carol Freeman,” voiced by Dawnn Lewis, “Commander Jack Ransom,” voiced by Jerry O’Connell, “Lieutenant Shaxs,” voiced by Fred Tatasciore and “Doctor T’Ana,” voiced by Gillian Vigman.
"A big thing that was important to me was figuring out how do we comedically access these characters," McMahan said of the series in a past interview. "How can these characters be funny and not break Star Trek? You can't have a Morty in Star Trek. You can't just have a stupid person in Starfleet, otherwise, it breaks the aspirational paradigm of what humanity is like in Starfleet. So our leads are foils for each other, but they're very much ingrained in Star Trek."
CBS’s Eye Animation Productions, CBS Television Studios’ new animation arm, produces Star Trek: Lower Decks, along with Secret Hideout and Roddenberry Entertainment. Secret Hideout’s Alex Kurtzman and Heather Kadin and Roddenberry Entertainment’s Rod Roddenberry and Trevor Roth, and Katie Krentz (219 Productions) are executive producers alongside creator and showrunner Mike McMahan. Aaron Baiers (Secret Hideout) serves as a co-executive producer. Titmouse, the Emmy Award-winning independent animation production company behind Big Mouth, serves as the animation studio for the series.
Star Trek: Lower Decks is the first animated series to join the expanding Star Trek franchise on CBS All Access, which also includes the original series Star Trek: Picard; Star Trek: Discovery, returning for its season three later this year; the recently announced USS Enterprise set series Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, featuring Anson Mount, Rebecca Romijn, and Ethan Peck; and the development of a Section 31-based series with Michelle Yeoh. A CG-animated Star Trek series for younger audiences is also in the works for Nickelodeon.
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