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East Bay Talking Points

A new gallery debuts; Michael Chabon takes charge of the latest Star Trek series; celebrities behind bars in Dublin.


Michael Chabon shows off his Star Trek spirit at Comic Con.

Photo by Lisette M Azar/CBS Interactive

Beam Him Up

Award-winning author (and East Bay resident) Michael Chabon takes command of the latest Star Trek series.


This month, Star Trek: Picard joins the fleet at the streaming service CBS All Access, with Berkeley-based novelist and die-hard Star Trek fan Michael Chabon in the captain’s chair.

Though he initially joined the Star Trek: Picard team as a writer, Chabon—the author of Telegraph Avenue, Wonder Boys, and the Pulitzer Prize–winning The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay—was named showrunner in June. The series stars Patrick Stewart in the eponymous role nearly two decades after the character’s last onscreen appearance.


Patrick Stewart in a scene from Star Trek: Picard. Photo by Trae Patton/2019 CBS Interactive.

Star Trek has been an important part of my way of thinking about the world, the future, human nature, storytelling, and myself since I was 10 years old,” Chabon said last year. “I come to work every day in a state of joy and awe at having been entrusted with the character and the world of Jean-Luc Picard, with this vibrant strand of the rich, intricate and complex tapestry that is Trek.”

Star Trek: Picard premieres on CBS All Access on January 23. —Emilie White




Mysteries of the East

The Blackhawk Museum’s latest gallery, Into China, debuts this month.


Terra-cotta warriors greet visitors at the Into China gallery. Photo by Andrew Warren.

Looking for a fun and unique way to celebrate Chinese New Year? Journey to ancient Asia with Into China, a new permanent gallery opening at the Blackhawk Museum in Danville on January 25—the first day of the Year of the Rat.

The gallery, which director of operations Jon Snyder calls “an artistic journey through China’s cultural history,” houses a variety of handcrafted showpieces. Highlights include The Great Dragon (Shen Long), a sculpture representing the power and wealth associated with dragons, and Dreamland, a model of a fantasy land focused on joy and peace, as described in a Chinese fable.

Local politicians and leaders from the East Bay’s Chinese community are expected to attend Into China’s opening ceremony. The festivities will also feature authentic cultural entertainment.

Says Snyder: “From replicas of antique treasures, created using the processes of the past, to classic philosophy’s and ancient history’s influence on the artwork, this exhibition allows the visitor to experience 2,500 years of Chinese antiquity and the forces that shaped it.” blackhawk​museum.org. —E.W.



Celebrity Cellblock


(L to R) Felicity Huffman: Photo by Shutterstock; Heidi Fleiss: Barry King/Getty Images; Patty Hearst: PD-US-no notice.

Forbes has called the Federal Correctional Institution Dublin one of the nation’s “10 cushiest prisons,” where inmates are permitted to sunbathe outside, watch TV late at night, and sleep until almost 10 a.m. on weekends. Last October, actress Felicity Huffman joined a who’s who of the East Bay facility’s notable residents.

Felicity Huffman: Served 11 days for her role in the college-admissions scandal.

Heidi Fleiss: The “Hollywood Madam” did 20 months in Dublin for tax evasion in the late 1990s.

Patty Hearst: The heiress served 22 months for bank robbery in the ’70s.—Virginia Shannon


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