Anthony Rapp has revealed that the Star Trek: Discovery cast were not told in advance that season four would be withheld from international audiences until at least next year.


The sci-fi drama is returning for a brand new run of episodes this week on US streamer Paramount+, with episodes initially expected to be available globally via Netflix the following day, as had been the case with the previous three seasons.

However, Deadline announced the surprise development that ViacomCBS has bought out of its distribution deal with Netflix, a move that saw Discovery pulled from its streaming library in all territories yesterday – including UK and Ireland.

This drastic action was taken in preparation for Paramount+ being rolled out in approximately 45 international markets over the next year, with Discovery being one of the platform's most valuable titles.

Star Trek fans are frustrated by the move as it means that many will now have to dodge spoilers for months as they wait for Discovery season four, while those living in regions with no Paramount+ launch date will have to sit tight for even longer.

Rapp, who plays Lieutenant Commander Paul Stamets, released a statement on his Twitter page in solidarity with international fans following the shock news.

"We cast members just found out about this as well and we share your disappointment and frustration," reads his tweet, which is the first in a five-part thread.

He continues: "I don’t pretend to understand how these sorts of deals for international rights are made (or unmade). I will say I wish we all had been told that this was coming, so we could have braced ourselves, and then we could have helped spread the word to all of you.

"Having just been to Germany for FedCon, having traveled twice to DST [Destination Star Trek] in Birmingham, and having interacted with countless international fans on social media over the past 4 years, I am keenly aware of how much love and support our show receives from many folks from all over the world."

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Rapp added: "We remain deeply grateful to you all. We hope that when the show makes its way to you, you will continue to support the hard work that we all have done to bring Discovery to life. We are all of us saddened that you will have to wait months longer to experience season four."

Given the backlash to this news, it's unclear if Paramount+ will attempt a similar buyout of its distribution deals for Star Trek: Picard and animated spin-off Lower Decks, both of which are currently housed at Amazon Prime Video in the UK.


Star Trek: Discovery season 4 premieres in the UK in 2022. Check out more of our Sci-Fi coverage or visit our TV Guide to see what's on tonight.