William Shatner has never seen a single episode of 'Star Trek', here's why
Canadian actor William Shatner played Captain James T Kirk for years in the 'Star Trek' TV show, and across seven films, but believe it or not, he's never seen a single episode. Recently being crowned the oldest man to go to space, Shatner first opened up about his lack of interest in his own work in March. Since then, Trekkies have been left devastated that their beloved Captain Kirk appears to hate his role.
On October 13, Shatner joined a small group of people who made the historic trip to space aboard Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin rocket. At 90, Shatner beat the record set by Wally Funk, who was 82 when he made a trip to space in July, along with Bezos. Despite knowing the moment was supposed to be historic, Bezos cut in to pop some champagne while Shatner was speaking after landing.
Bezos' rude interruption aside (which quickly went viral on social media), Shatner has made history as the oldest man to blast out of our atmosphere. It comes decades after he became famous for his space adventures as Captain Kirk, a role which proved to be both a blessing and a curse. So why then hasn't Shatner seen the show? The answer might surprise you.
Why Shatner hasn't seen 'Star Trek'
Shatner first appeared as the popular character in the show's third episode 'Where No Man Has Gone Before', which aired on September 22, 1966. He then went on to play the role for the remainder of the show's original run until 1969. A decade later, he returned to the role for 'Star Trek: The Motion Picture', and went on to play Kirk in all the movies until the character's death in 1994's ' Star Trek Generations'.
But despite that long association with the franchise, Shatner was never one to see himself perform. "I have never watched Star Trek. There are many episodes I don't know, there are some movies I don't know," he admitted in an appearance on 'People (The TV Show)!'. The only time he did watch an entry in the franchise was 1989's 'Star Trek V: The Final Frontier', which he directed. "I had to watch that one," he admitted.
Wondering why Shatner hasn't seen the show? He says it is because "it's all painful because I don't like the way I look and what I do." He never detailed why exactly he finds the franchise "painful", so there's no concrete answer to that question. But it might have something to do with his struggle to find work in the 1970s. After the show was canceled, Shatner was left broke, and also had to contend with the divorce from Gloria Rand.
The divorce and the lack of prospects forced Shatner to live out of a truck in the San Fernando Valley. He took a few small gigs to make a meager living in the first half of the decade before things turned around for him in the latter half. It's unclear why the actor who portrayed Captain Kirk failed to find many roles at that time. He's never really opened up about it, so again we can only guess that casting directors of the time could not see him play anything other than "Captain James T Kirk".