I think an Abramsverse show could easily work around the events of the movies by featuring a crew that was way off in deep space while those events happened. What's really important is maintaining visual continuity, because I doubt Paramount/CBS want to muddy the Trek waters anymore than they are already by going with a Mobile Suit Gundam like "we're gonna pump out different AUs and looks for most new productions" deal. The Abrams look/universe is Trek from here on out, but it's a big enough playpen that you could do any number of stories without actually involving the rebooted TOS crew.
The only time continuity would really be an issue is if the Abramsprise and crew were the focus of the new show. Then you have to accommodate the movies and possibly the game(s).
Bingo. The average viewer is unlikely to be aware that there are multiple realities in play, or care very much. As long as the series looks like the movies, the audience will not be confused. Fans will squawk, but they like doing that.
The movie characters can't be the focus of a new series because some have movie careers that rule out TV. I'd thought maybe Quinto, Urban or Cho could headline a spinoff series, but now Urban has the lead in a different JJ Abrams series (not picked up yet, but it seems like a strong contender). Anyway, it would only be one or two at the most, might as well just have a whole new crew.
PS, the one thing the article left out is that Star Trek
must answer CBS's key question: why should we spend $$$ on this instead of another cop show we could be doing instead? And the answer to that is complex since it involves predicting where the TV business is going rather than looking at where it is now - broadcast starting its death spiral (with CBS being the most stable for now), cable still smug about the dangers of cord-cutting (which hasn't really taken off - yet), and streaming services being the hot new thing (but will it continue).
's biggest negative is the lack of anything you could point to as a close model for success. The closest examples are maybe Game of Thrones
and The Walking Dead
- still sf/f genre, very successful for cable, but could you replicate that success in a space opera format, and why even try when you could do something more closely aligned with high fantasy or sci fi horror?
In all this industry turmoil, CBS could be looking for interesting new ideas that they could use to point out the future for them. Their experiment this summer with a CBS-Amazon co-production of a sci fi series (Under the Dome
) is that kind of experiment. Since they're airing it in the summer, CBS isn't devoting a precious prime timeslot to a show that probably wouldn't get CBS-level survival ratings on its own (which is why they need the Amazon revenue stream as well). That might be a model Star Trek