London Comic Con Report & Photos: Walter Koenig On Shatner + Brent Spiner On Data’s Death | TrekMovie.com
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London Comic Con Report & Photos: Walter Koenig On Shatner + Brent Spiner On Data’s Death July 10, 2011

by Daniel Lewis , Filed under: Conventions/Events/Attractions,TNG,TOS , trackback

London Comic Con was held this weekend and on hand were Star Trek: The Next Generation’s Brent Spiner and Star Trek’s Walter Koenig. See below for photos from event along with a report of the star’s Q&A sessions including Koenig dishing on William Shatner and Spiner making it clear that Data is dead.

 

Star Trek: TNG Music Set Debuting At Comic Con

On Saturday London Comic Con was held at the aircraft hanger-like Earls Court Hall 2 in South West London. London Comic Con isn’t as big as some cons in the USA and doesn’t have studios promoting their upcoming tentpole films, but it does attract a good collection of film & TV stars to sign autographs, including Star Trek’s Walter Koenig and Star Trek: The Next Generation’s Brent Spiner.

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Earl’s Court – home of London Comic Con 2011

Walter Koenig: William Shatner is no Patrick Stewart

Walter came onto the stage to a packed out audience of several hundred applauding fans. The first question put to him was whether he felt that his appearance on William Shatner’s ‘Raw Nerve’ had gone some way to heal the wounds of the past. His reply was diplomatic, but to the point. Looking up for the appropriate words to use he said, “No, not really.” He continued by saying that Shatner had been “very generous, and in my old age I’d like to think it was genuine” having invited him on the show. Explaining the rift that himself, James Doohan and George Takei had had with Shatner he said , “Bill…just never got it.” He went on, “Bill wasn’t Patrick Stewart. We never had the respect for our Captain the way the TNG crew had with theirs.”

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Walter Koenig at London Comic Con 2011

Other questions dealt with his opinions of Anton Yelchin’s performance in the 2009 Star Trek, of which Koenig was gracious in his praise for the actor. In drawing comparisons with his own career he commented on how the new Star Trek cast seemed to be able to pursue avenues away from Star Trek and go on to other projects , to ultimately further their careers, which he inferred never really had the chance to do.

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Walter Koenig at London Comic Con 2011

Asked about the title of his favourite episode Koenig named “Spectre of the Gun” as the one in which he “Got the girl, got shot, what’s not to like", he added. He went on to describe how, during the making of the original Star Trek series, he had to pretend to be looking out at the viewing screen, though in fact he was “looking at the crew scratching themselves”. He continued by saying that his best acting turns generally came when a centerfold of Playboy was stuck on a board (just off camera) as a point of interest to hold the actors’ attention. In his best Russian accent, he declared, “Keptin, I don’t know what that is…”.

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Walter Koenig at London Comic Con 2011

The last question enquired whether Koenig had picked up any other Russian roles following the success of his Chekov character, to which he responded, ” Not one!!” responded to by rapturous laughter from the audience. He closed the 25 minute session by telling the gathered fans that he has completed work on his upcoming comic book entitled, “Things to Come.”

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Walter Koenig at London Comic Con 2011

Brent Spiner: Look at Me!? How Can I Play Data Now?!

Brent Spiner came onto the stage just minutes after Koenig had finished, bringing with him lots of energy. On seeing all the cameras that had positioned themselves in front of the stage he went into a dozen different comedy poses, which got a big laugh from the assembled crowd. Having met Brent once before, I knew what we were in for. In jest, he once asked my girlfriend at the time what she saw in me!

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Brent Spiner at London Comic Con 2011

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Brent Spiner at London Comic Con 2011

Spiner definitely likes to entertain the crowd , and entertain he did. Firstly getting into Jean -­Luc Picard mode, he proceeded to do an impersonation of Sir Patrick (in his best English accent ) in which he quoted the thespian from the initial first weeks on the set of TNG in the mid -­80’s, saying, “For Heavens sake, we are here to act!!” He told the tale of how Sir Patrick, having been a distinguished Shakespearean actor all his life up to that point, was becoming frustrated by the lack of seriousness on set and had lost his temper with the rest of the cast. Spiner went on to explain that Stewart, within months, became the worst behaved of all the cast on the TNG set, such was the influence of Spiner and the others. He also performed hilarious impressions of Michael Dorn.

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Brent Spiner at London Comic Con 2011

When asked about what he thought was the best part, or the peak, of his career, he replied; “Probably 1996-97…I had an amazing run there,” he said, referring to his appearance in Star Trek First Contact, Phenomenon, Independence Day as well as an extended stage role and other film roles.  When quizzed about playing the Data character again he self-­mockingly exclaimed “Look at me!!! I look more like Dr Soong these days!! How can I play Data now?!!”

Spiner went on to explain that Star Trek Nemesis was made with a lot of good intentions but when Stuart Baird came in he promised not to re­invent the wheel, and on the first day of filming, proceeded to reinvent the wheel. He also promoted his new show ‘Fresh Hell ’ as well as explaining his Twitter stories that have gone on for weeks, though he doubts that will happen again.

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Brent Spiner at London Comic Con 2011

Around London Comic Con

Following the Q&A sessions I bumped into John Carrigan, who plays the Klingon Kargh in the Star Trek: New Voyages/ Phase II series and we had a chat – a really nice guy.

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John Carrigan (from New Voyages) at London Comic Con 2011

I also spoke to Giles Aston, the Patrick Stewart look-­a-­like, who was actually dressed as Charles Xavier. He mentioned to me that he had appeared in the Star Trek TNG spoof porn film, much to my amusement.

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Giles Aston (from New Voyages) at London Comic Con 2011

There are, as usual at these types of events, thousands of people who dress up as anything from Stormtroopers to Voldermort to Professor Xavier. And there were a few showing their love for Star Trek as well, here are some of the costumed Trekkies from London Comic Con…

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Trek fan Sarah Beasley at London Comic Con 2011

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Trek fan  Sam Darragh at London Comic Con 2011

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Trek fans (L-R) Ruth Bloxam, Jack Sweeney & Lota Bantic at London Comic Con 2011

All in all London Comic Con 2011 was a good day out.

All photos by Daniel Lewis

Daniel Lewis is a commercial and editorial photographer based in London with work published in magazines and newspapers in the UK. Daniel is currently working on an ongoing personal photographic project about UK science fiction fans. You can visit Daniel’s website at www.daniel-lewis.biz.

Comments

1. chain of command - July 10, 2011

Walter Koenig. Good man. I always thought he was one of the most down to Earth of the cast (Along with De Kelley and James Doohan).

2. Kelly - July 10, 2011

Love these shots, especially of Spiner on stage. Out of curiosity, what kind of camera set up were you using for those?

3. Davidj - July 10, 2011

2, agreed. Whoever shot these should be the regular photographer for this site. Wow.

4. MJ - July 10, 2011

““Bill…just never got it.” He went on, “Bill wasn’t Patrick Stewart. We never had the respect for our Captain the way the TNG crew had with theirs.”

Harry Ballz, you and I can just sit back and relax on this one….Koenig did all the work for us this time around!

Buzz, care to offer your “spin” on this one? :-)

5. Red Dead Ryan - July 10, 2011

I find it sad that Walter Koenig is still holding a grudge against William Shatner. I find it interesting how him and George Takei like to criticise him when he’s NOT around to defend himself, and if he didn’t like Shatner why did he go on his show in the first place?

6. MJ - July 10, 2011

@5. Well that was there “treating them like pions for several decades” thing, but other than minor issue, Shat has been a true gentleman. :-)

7. trekker 5 - July 10, 2011

#5,I was going to say something,but you said it all for me!! I agree with you 100%!!

8. Anthony Pascale - July 10, 2011

I only wish Daniel could be our regular photographer, but he is based in London. Dont exactly have the budget to fly him around the world.

Unless i could start charging for TrekMovie.com Platinum….how does $99.99/month sound? ;)

9. Red Dead Ryan - July 10, 2011

#4.

Actors like Walter Koenig and George Takei rode the coattails of William Shatner (as well as Leonard Nimoy). So I’d have to think they’d be grateful to Shatner for creating a character that saved and drove the show and got people tuning in to watch and care about not just Kirk and Spock, but Chekov and Sulu, who were always secondary characters at best.

I realize that maybe Shatner has had conflicts with people in the past, and that perhaps he does have a big ego, but he did help rescue “The Original Series” after Jefferey Hunter left, and the lack of enthusiam about the character of Chris Pike.

It’s very rare to hear the surviving TOS actors, save for Nimoy, to say anything positive about Shatner. Heck, Patrick Stewart, who only worked with Bill once (“Generations”) has nothing but positive things to say about the man.

People have good and not-so-good qualities. William Shatner is no different. But I think overall he seems to be a good guy who has done a lot more good than bad.

10. Browncoat1984 - July 10, 2011

RE: Koenig on the new Trek crew and their careers – I think that the big difference is the new Star Trek series was started as a movie series, rather than TOS which was a TV series, so you have a lot more freedom when you do one, two, or even three because you can always go on to different projects. Also typcasting is not a big of a problem these days in hollywood but back then especially with TV it was a big problem. I was watching a biography program on Adam West the other day talking about the problems he had getting roles outside of his work as Batman, so its not a phenomenon limited to Star Trek.

RE: Spineron not playing data anymore – seirously, WHY DO FANS KEEP BEATING THIS DEAD HORSE? This is about the dozenth time I’ve seen him make that comment in recent months. If you want to know if Spiner is going to play Data again, you just have to google it! Even if Spiner WANTED to play Data again, most fans should be smart enough to know ITS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. They’re not going to ask him to be in the next movie anymore than they are any other Star Trek actors, and there will never be another TNG film.

And contrary to what Spiner said, Data is very much alive he just isn’t playing him right now. I would be interested to hear Spiner’s opinions on Data’s status as Captain of the Enterprise-E in the comic series.

Also, there sure are a lot of cute Trekkie chicks who attend these things…why can’t I find me a cute Trekkie chick to share my love of Star Trek/sci-fi?

11. MJ - July 10, 2011

@9. “It’s very rare to hear the surviving TOS actors, save for Nimoy, to say anything positive about Shatner.”

And what would be the most logical and likely conclusion from this?

12. Vultan - July 10, 2011

I don’t think De Kelley ever said a negative word (in public) about… anybody. Man, I miss that guy. A real gentleman.

13. Vultan - July 10, 2011

Funny to hear about Patrick Stewart going from deeply serious to class clown in a few months. You could see the change in his performance over the course of season one as well.

14. MJ - July 10, 2011

@12. De Kelley was the best Trek actor, in an out of the part, of all time, bar none.

15. the Dogfaced Boy - July 10, 2011

Yeah, there was a popularity contest during the original series. There doesn’t seem to be as much animosity between people when they’re trying to see who can bore an audience the most. Though I do think Picard did win.

(Can I get away with saying, “Just kidding”?)

16. VOODOO - July 10, 2011

Wasn’t it established in the comic prequel to ST 09 (that I believe was written by the guys who wrote the film) that Data was alive?

17. Andy Patterson - July 10, 2011

I like the choice of conventioneer/crew woman shots.

18. the Dogfaced Boy - July 10, 2011

I already feel bad about my comment above. I should have just said, TNG could have used a talent like William Shatner, even if it took screen time from Data, Worf …etc and caused a resentment later on.

19. John Gill - July 10, 2011

The quality of those photos is FANTASTIC!!!

20. MJ - July 10, 2011

@18. No problem. We’ll chalk it up to mental stress from all your years being exploited at carnivals.

21. Red Dead Ryan - July 10, 2011

#18.

You’re barking up the wrong tree, Dogfaced Boy!

22. andrew - July 10, 2011

First of all, a little nitpick, but it’s “Spectre” of the Gun, not Spector. That would be a music producer who shoots people.

And this is obviously just my opinion, but I think the reason that Walter Koenig didn’t get “the chance” to do things away from Star Trek like Yelchin, etc is that he is just not a very good actor. I find that idea a bit more plausible than the system, or William Shatner, or whoever, keeping him down.

23. MJ - July 10, 2011

@21. And let’s not confuse him with “the bonar-faced boy” in post #17 above. :-))

24. Red Dead Ryan - July 10, 2011

#22.

Walter Koenig did star on “Babylon 5″ during the ’90′s, so I don’t know what he’s complaining about.

#23.

I think you meant “boner-faced boy”. I’ve never heard of the word “bonar”, though it could be like using a boner to pinpoint hot chicks just like sonar and radar are used. :-)

25. Red Dead Ryan - July 10, 2011

oops, I meant “…just like sonar and radar are used to detect various objects underwater, or in the skies.”

26. MJ - July 10, 2011

@22 “First of all, a little nitpick, but it’s “Spectre” of the Gun, not Spector. That would be a music producer who shoots people.”

Hilarious!!!

27. Daoud - July 10, 2011

Koenig had a sweet part on B5 as Bester. Can’t he count that for something? He wrote a TAS episode. And he’s been a convention regular (and usually most cons pay for TOS actors to appear all these years.)

28. Jon Spencer - July 10, 2011

@ Dogfaced boy. If you don’t like it, don’t watch it. Just dont knock it to those of us who love it.

29. Harry Ballz - July 10, 2011

4.

MJ, a day off? Thanks! :>)

30. Jonboc - July 10, 2011

Sad to say, Walter is the one who just doesn’t “get it”. He was little more than an extra…his name, along with George’s came at the END of the episode, not the beginning…IF they were lucky enough to have it there at all. Shatner spent the lions share of his time being with his co-stars, Nimoy and Kelly, both whom had great things to say about the man.

Fandom put George, Nichelle and Walter on such a pedestal for so long, I think over time they actually believed they belonged there. How dare the star of the show get all the lines while the guy who was hired to sit there and push buttons has to, well, sit there and push buttons. The nerve.

31. Anthony Thompson - July 10, 2011

Daniel, I hoped you hooked-up with Sarah afterwards! WOW!!!

And, yes, just more testimony from yet another cast member that Shatner was a jerk. But his usual defenders come out of the woodwork to deny the obvious. Will the Takei-haters now morph into Koenig haters? : D

32. Browncoat1984 - July 10, 2011

#27 What he was asked was if he had any RUSSIAN roles since TOS and his reply was no, which is correct. They didn’t ask if he had any roles at all. Though I will say that his role on B5 seems to be under-played by Trekmovie sadly :(.

33. MJ - July 10, 2011

@31 “And, yes, just more testimony from yet another cast member that Shatner was a jerk. But his usual defenders come out of the woodwork to deny the obvious.”

Agreed!

34. Buzz Cagney - July 10, 2011

#4 lol i’m flattered to be singled out as Bill’s Standard Bearer, MJ! Truly, I am! All I would say is what I always said- Walt and Tacky and Jimmy were bit part players. No more, no less. TOS was about its Big 3. The bit parters were lucky to have Bill leading the charge and shouldering the burden of the show. They could rock up, sit in the back ground, say their three lines and go home!

TNG was more of a collaborative show. They all got their moments in pretty much every show. Its tHE shows big weakness imo. Bland characters (Stewart aside) who clearly recognised they weren’t in Patrick’s League- hence their respect for him.
Sadly the TOS support acts all thought they were the star of the show!
There you go. All quite simple if you’d have given it just a little though, MJ.

35. Buzz Cagney - July 10, 2011

Oh darn it, all I had to say was read #9! RDR said it better and sooner! lol

36. Buzz Cagney - July 10, 2011

#20 I did laugh at that post though, MJ. When you concentrate on something other than your Bill resentment you can actually be quite funny! You should try it more often.

37. Buzz Cagney - July 10, 2011

#33 ok, so how about we call a truce? I’m keen to leave the whole Bill issue alone. Unless I’m called on it by name, as I was @ #4. In which case I will fire up!
Lets face it. nobody is having their minds changed on Bill. I think he’s bloddy brilliant. MJ and Harry merely think he’s bloody marvellous. Funny how that gap in thinking can appear to large, isn’t it! ;-P

38. Vultan - July 10, 2011

Well, I think Shatner was probably a bonafide jerk to some people in his youth, but the fact he now TRIES to make amends to those he insulted in the past is a positive sign that there is indeed a good guy in there… somewhere. I mean—could be worse. He could’ve pulled a Garbo and shut himself off from the fan community and Hollywood a looong time ago and retire to his horse ranch. And what fun would that have been for us?

39. Vultan - July 10, 2011

Good idea, Buzz. You guys meet at Camp Khitomer already and get those peace accords moving!

40. Buzz Cagney - July 10, 2011

Who hasn’t been an ass at some point in their life, Vults?
But the bottom line isn’t about that- its about the Trek supporting actors just not getting their place in the great scheme of things.
To be still carrying these grudges around after all these years displays a huge lack of insight on their parts.

41. somethoughts - July 11, 2011

With time travel, alternate realities, no trek character is ever dead

42. Buzz Cagney - July 11, 2011

#8 I wouldn’t pay that, Anthony, but I would miss it! :-P

43. Vultan - July 11, 2011

#40

Good points, Buzz. I think the remaining TOS cast should just get together and have a big group hug… and maybe a little group therapy. Anyway, enough with their silly bickering. I mean, you’d think they were Trekmovie readers! ;)

44. Harry Ballz - July 11, 2011

Can’t we all just get along??

45. Buzz Cagney - July 11, 2011

We do, Harry. This is all just for fun.
We are all part of the Trek family after all mister. ;)

46. chrisfawkes.com - July 11, 2011

Koenig, Takei and others were effectively extras who never got over the fact that they were not the major stars. Time for them to stop acting like bitches. You guys got a lot longer run than any other background actors in any other show, be grateful.

I find his comment “William Shatner is no Patrick Stewart” to be vulgar and distasteful. In what world is a statement like that seen as diplomatic?

47. Harry Ballz - July 11, 2011

46.

Maybe they consider it diplomatic compared to what he COULD have said.

48. Jeffrey S. Nelson - July 11, 2011

I really thought Koenig had come to terms with Shatner on Raw Nerve…disappointing to hear otherwise.
Koenig looks really youthful in these photos.
Brent Spiner could still play Data. Obviously Data has an aging program as part of his matrix!

49. chrisfawkes.com - July 11, 2011

@48 “Brent Spiner could still play Data. Obviously Data has an aging program as part of his matrix!”

Using an advanced technology called “rust”.

50. chrisfawkes.com - July 11, 2011

Perhaps so Harry.

How do people live holding on to stuff like that though.

51. Keachick (rose pinenut) - July 11, 2011

When was the last time Walter Koenig had to work with William Shatner? Answer – when he appeared at the beginning of the Star Trek: Generations movie which came out in 1994 – 17 years ago. I have heard and seen next to nothing of George Takei or Walter Koenig since the last Star Trek movie, except for George Takei in Heroes, where he spoke Japanese and looked and sounded grumpy and wooden. Walter Koenig appeared as Bester in Babylon 5 in the 1990s. He was good in that series. Other than those series respectively – nothing.

Now Walter Koenig is bitching about what William Shatner “didn’t get” nearly 20/30/40 years ago? He is just doing a George Takei – very tacky!

It is not William Shatner’s fault that these two guys have not had the same sort of careers as Shatner. They have had more than enough time to prove themselves away from the Shatner spotlight and they have, for all intents and purposes, failed in being as successful as Shatner. I am sick of the obvious envy and jealousy here.

Shatner does not criticise publicly (not that I know of), not in the manner that these other TOS actors have continually done. He just gets on with whatever – appearing in daft priceline commercials and game shows, becoming a crazy old lawyer who is convinced he has mad cow disease, keeps a blow up doll in the likeness of his former love in his work closet and shoots off a rifle in a law office because he is exercising his right to bear arms…yep, the one and only Denny Crane played by the one and only William Shatner. Then he appears in a movie where he is teaching Eddie Murphy how to hood jump LOL and so it goes on… And of course, there are his horses and charity work.

Walter Koenig, George Takei – Get over it and get a life!

52. MJ - July 11, 2011

@47 “Maybe they consider it diplomatic compared to what he COULD have said.”

Exactly. It is not like he went “crazy Takei” on Shat. Given the treatment he and others received from Shat, I found his criticisms of Shat refreshingly measured. You get the sense that he didn’t really believe that Shat reaching out to him was genuine, and I agree with his appraisal of that based on my viewing of that Raw Nerve episode — Shat is just producing another TV show and he kind of played along with “being nice” to Koenig to fit his TV show, as well as to possibly make a point to Takei, who he has deliberately not invited to be on Raw Nerve (remember his asinine comments that Takei was not famous enough to be on Raw Nerve…and then he goes and invites the less famous Koenig???)

53. Christopher Roberts - July 11, 2011

22. Spector of the Gun. LOL! I think that’ll be the title of his bio-pic someday.

The Rise and Fall of the Record Producer who wore a ten gallon wig.

54. Aussie Ian - July 11, 2011

It’s interesting to read the posts in this thread. It seems that the ego’s of William Shatner, Walter Koenig and George Takei are the focal point.

I would actually say that it’s a matter of timing your peak, so to speak:

George Takei has been famous for 45 years but only peaked enough in the last decade enough to state that he was gay! Had he come out when he was still a young TV actor and paved a new road for gay actors in the 70′s and 80′s he would have been an admirable role model and someone to listen to now as he would have shown his conviction of his moral ground ………….. but he didn’t do that did he? Now, he just comes along as someone who tries to make himself look big by saying hurtful things to make others appear small! …….. very sad, when you consider who he COULD have been!

Walter Koenig, is a very smart and articulate man with many diverse interests, writing, comic books, acting etc. I thought that the episodes of Babylon 5 where he played Bester were the ONLY ones worth watching. While he is nowhere near as ascerbic as Takei on the subject of William Shatner, I find it interesting that when he appeared on “Raw Nerve”, he was amicable to apologies for past discretions, but that was before he had his own Hollywood Star wasn’t it? Has the granting of this recognition now elevated his self-worth to the point where he can resume a grudge that truly should have died in 1969 with news of the show’s cancellation.

Why doesn’t William Shatner slag off these 2 actors publically? Because the Heavyweight Champion of the World has his belt and doesn’t need to give rematches with those not worthy of a title shot, that’s why?

IMO

55. Aussie Ian - July 11, 2011

PS Brent Spiner is an absolute hoot at conventions – I love the guy more as a stand up comic than I did as Data!

In “The Outrageous Okana” he should have been teaching Joe Piscipo how to be funny, not vice versa!!

56. MJ - July 11, 2011

@51. You can’t put Koenig is the same bucket at George Takei. Koenig is a great guy and Takei is a jerk-clown, similar to Shatner, but will much less talent.

Koenig, Nichols and Doohan — I believe those three had good reasons to “not get over it” regarding Shat, the least of which would be that his condescending behavior toward them continued through the movies and at conventions over the years.

57. Cygnus-X1 - July 11, 2011

Great article.

As for Nemesis, if Stuart Baird re-invented the wheel on that film, he re-invented it in the shape of a square.

Or a triangle.

Cuz it didn’t work!!!

58. Christopher Roberts - July 11, 2011

I’d have absolutely no problem with Brent playing Data/B-4 again. I see the same guy who had a white streak in hair, and held a chair at Oxford.

Data’s story should basically have ended like Bicentennial Man. Him dying a century after TNG, having got his wish to almost indistinquishable from a human being.

59. Christopher Roberts - July 11, 2011

*correction to 58.* Cambridge NOT Oxford!

60. Robert H. - July 11, 2011

It makes more sense now why Shatner was nominated for the razzie award for worst supporting actor on Generations. How Kirk was comforting Chekov as to how he was “never that young,” why it didn’t feel genuine.

61. Robert H. - July 11, 2011

And in a continuation from #60, why Chekov didn’t seem to buy what Kirk said, and why it felt like he didn’t feel like Kirk’s words were genuine.

62. Christopher Roberts - July 11, 2011

60. Was he? The “No, you we’re younger” response from Kirk rang completely true for me. The delight was Chekov and Scotty ribbing him later on (Wery good, Sir. Brought a tear my eye.)

Too be honest, I’ve never paid too much attention to all the tales about the cast no getting along. The reason why some are so interested in this gossip, is because onscreen at least, they did seem like a family. Ironic really, this being the focus of attention for us Brits – since our tabloid press exist to fill this need.

63. Buzz Cagney - July 11, 2011

#46 once again I have to ask the question (not that i’m expecting an answer) why should Bill be the same as Patrick? I’m just not following that at all.

#60 it seemed genuine enough to me. Lets face it, the whole movie was a contrivance so pretty much every scene felt strange and strained. In fact it was so laboured my waters actually broke and I gave birth to quads watching Trek 7!

64. Christopher Roberts - July 11, 2011

were NOT we’re

65. SoonerDave - July 11, 2011

Never forget – if you want to find out what (apparently) most of the TOS cast thought of Shatner, just go watch “Galaxy Quest.”

Given age, though, you’d think at some point carrying the baggage would get a little tiresome.

66. James T. West - July 11, 2011

TOS was never meant to be an ensemble…TNG was.

67. Damian - July 11, 2011

It seems pretty clear that in his day, William Shatner was a jerk to his co-stars. You pretty much have most of the supporting cast saying the same things about him. Now Shatner was the star of the show (along with Nimoy and later Kelley) so he certainly had enough clout on the show to do as he pleases. But that does not make it right. That is the difference I think between him and the other captains of the other shows. I can’t say I’ve ever heard anything bad said about Stewart, Brooks, Mulgrew or Bakula by their co-stars. Especially in the cases of Stewart and Bakula, I’ve always heard that they were always very respectful of their co-stars, even trying to set a good example on set.

Takei, Koenig, Doohan, and Nichols were not stars of the show, no. But that does not mean Shatner should have treated them poorly. I’ll give Shatner the benefit of the doubt on his attempts make up for the past. He’s getting older and maybe thinks he needs to make amends. Whatever happened in the past does not change my opinion about the original series or Captain Kirk. I always liked what Doohan said, that he loved Captain Kirk, Shatner not so much. Whatever jerk Shatner may have been off set, it never came off on Kirk. If Shatner was not always the best leader, Captain Kirk always was.

68. Captain Hackett - July 11, 2011

Great work, Mr. Lewis! :)

69. Silvereyes - July 11, 2011

#8 Anthony

“Unless i could start charging for TrekMovie.com Platinum….how does $99.99/month sound? ;)”

Well worth it Anthony, for this quality site that just gets better with time. However, and I’ll say this before Harry Ballz does, we would need more nudity… :)

70. chrisfawkes.com - July 11, 2011

The only thing more distasteful than Takai and Koenig bitching on about Shatner is the trekkies who do not even know the guy bitching on him too.

@52 ” Given the treatment he and others received from Shat,” And what “treatment” is that exactly? What should Shatner have done for these guys that you think he failed to do?

The difference between tos and next gen is not the quality of the captains but the level of class of the supporting actors.

71. captain_neill - July 11, 2011

Was at the London Film and Comic Con on Sat, did not get to see Brent and Walter but have seen them on stage many a time at a Creation con.

When I go to the London Film and Comic Con next year will stay till Mon and do both days. It was all rush

I got to meet Christopher Lloyd which was awesome and Karen Gillan was gorgeous in person.

I would def be up for Brent returning, he is one of my favs

72. P Technobabble - July 11, 2011

I think the “feud” between the supporting players and Shatner has gotten very old — in fact, as old as they are. I would imagine that when one gets older, with “fewer days ahead than behind,” a lot of baggage would get dropped, and people would let go of their grudges. What can be done about it now anyway? I don’t think it would be very good for the supporting players to carry a grudge to their grave. In the grand scheme of things, is harping of Shatner an important part of their lives.
As some others have mentioned, Shatner was not responsible for their careers, or their not getting great big juicy opportunities. And TOS has been off the air for 43 years, for cryin out loud!
It’s all water under the bridge at this point. Shatner, for better or for worse, is still around and still going strong. I don’t think any part of his career was handed to him on a silver platter.

73. Buzz Cagney - July 11, 2011

#67 Shatner has stated he wasn’t even aware he was ‘treating them poorly’. He was working his guts off in more or less every scene trying to make a success of the show. He was the star. His name was at the top. That must be some responsibility to carry.
If he failed to say good morning once or twice or whatever then so what?
As I understand it the supporting cast quibbled about not having enough lines. Well, I never noticed any of them having the courage of Denise Crosby’s convictions and moving on.
They had a cushy number and they knew it. Thats why they stayed. Anything else they might say on the subject just looks like them trying to grab a bit of the limelight off Bill’s back.
I guess old habits die hard for them.

74. Katie G. - July 11, 2011

With respect to everyone’s opinions, WE WEREN’T THERE. Plus, we do not know the actors personally and, sorry, but they could be telling the truth as easily as lying/exaggerrating.

And before you say “but others who worked with them witnessed it”, again, we don’t know the whole story. If those who witnessed it had personal bias because of friendships, it could be different as well.

I know that Galaxy Quest is supposed to be a spoof of Star Trek: The Original Series and it shows things in a certain light, but, how many times do I have to say it? WE WEREN’T THERE.

However, I can admit that there are some hurts in my life that do just seem to reasserting their “pangs”. But yes, it would be nice if everyone would just get over it.

ktg

75. Buzz Cagney - July 11, 2011

#74 but if they ‘got over it’ they’d have little of any interest to talk about I fear.
Slagging Bill is proven Box Office. And that is the name of the game.

76. Jack - July 11, 2011

there’s something a bit icky about the talking about it (the discord) in front of crowds, for money.

77. Damian - July 11, 2011

72–I tend to agree that holding a grudge at this point in the game seems pointless. Star Trek has moved on about 6 times over now. I guess some of them feel that Shatner was responsible for them not getting more screen time. Certainly in the case of George Takei, he has alleged that Shatner did not want Sulu to become a Captain.

In all honesty, seeing Shatner’s interviews, I see someone who thinks a lot of himself. It was always my impression he feels (or felt at the time) that he was the sole reason Star Trek is so popular. At one point in his career he seemed almost dismissive of the fandom behind Star Trek.
How he feels today? Who knows. I’d like to think that he looks back with a little more objectivity.

But at the end of the day, it really does not matter a whole lot. Whether I think Shatner is a swell guy or not is irrelevant. I love Star Trek and I love the character of Captain Kirk. Whatever regard or disregard Shatner had for his co-stars did not come out of the character of Kirk. While I may not want William Shatner as my leader, I would take Captain Kirk anyday.

78. Silvereyes - July 11, 2011

It’s clear we don’t know any of these people, those against W. Shatner and the man himself, to be able to know which side of the story is closer to reality.

It could very well be that Mr. Shatner is exactly the way they and others say. He wouldn’t be the first and only one. However whining about it as they have been doing for 40 years is not the way to deal with it.

Just leave the man alone. He is who he is and it’s nobody’s place to judge him. His attitude in all this pettiness is certainly better than the poor-me whiners and this and Mr. Shatner’s success shows much more about the man he is than what the complainers say about him.

79. Harry Ballz - July 11, 2011

69. “we would need more nudity”

Silvereyes, I agree. One SHOULD always have some skin in the game!

80. P Technobabble - July 11, 2011

74. Katie

You are right, we weren’t there (unless some who were there are posting here under an assumed name!).
But we do know the animosity is real. In one of Shatner’s “Star Trek Memories” books, he tells of how he finished his interview with Nichelle Nichols, said “Thank you,” and thought that was the end of it. She responded with something like, “No, wait. Don’t you want to know how we all hated you?”
Now, what we really don’t know is whether or not Shatner actually did know, or had suspicions, that the others were angry with him, or he really was stunned because he had no idea.
In any case, I think if the supporting cast could just put things into perspective, they would appreciate everything that came with being associated with Star Trek, and let bygones be bygones for the rest…

81. John from Cincinnati - July 11, 2011

The TOS episode “That Which Survives” should be re-shot and re-edited with Casey Anthony playing Losira, the beautiful woman who kills people with her touch.

82. Geekette - July 11, 2011

@9. “It’s very rare to hear the surviving TOS actors, save for Nimoy, to say anything positive about Shatner.”

And what would be the most logical and likely conclusion from this?

Actually, I hear lots of people jerking off about Shatner’s so called bad treatment, of which I have never heard an actual example (except maybe telling Takei, he would be better off on the Enterprise in VI, and I have to say I think it was a good piece of advice).

Whereas Shatner only has good things to say about them. Who’s the jerk?

And they should stop pretending they don’t have egos. They’re actors! They wanted more lines for their egos! Just like Bill. They were jealous of Shatner. Still are.

83. Stephan Mittelstrass - July 11, 2011

Actually, Giles Aston, whom I met in his “other” role as Captain Jean-Luc Picard, in full “First Contact”-Uniform on Sunday, did not appear in any “New Voyages / Phase 2″ episodes, at least not to my knowledge.

He was very suprised that I know his familyname, since in the TNG XXX-”Parody” he is only credited as “Giles”.

I did not mention the parody at all, just told him that I remember his full name from old advertisements from the Scottish Fanshow “Star Trek: Intrepid”, by Nick Cook.

Giles will appear in the upcoming episode “The Stone Unturned”, in the role of …. Jean-Luc Picard, of course. :-)

It was a shame that I was there on Sunday only! Wish I had had a chance to meet John Carrigan. After all, I`m translating the Phase 2-episodes to German and so far I only have met James Cawley (Kirk) and Patrick Bell (Lt. Xon) of this cast!!

Maybe next year.

Brent was as hilarious as the first time I met him at German FEDCon in 2008 and he promised to be back in Germany next year.

I kinda felt sorry for Walter Koenig… whose panel I missed except for the last 10 minutes!!! FedCon is far better organised than Comic Con, but he resalers were quiet good. Whish I could have seen all of Walter`s and W. Morgen Shepperd`s panel.

Walter looked very exhausted and tired at the autograph-stand. He went trough a lot bad things last year and I`m sorry I didn`t see him at Saturday, when apperantly his mood was better than on Sunday.

84. captain_neill - July 11, 2011

Shame I did not stay an extra day, the ecent was so packed I almost got claustophopbic because of the crowds. The longest queue was waiting to lift more money out for autographs.

As I said because I met them before I focused on meeting actors I had not yet met. There were actors I wanted to meet but I had to budget myself, which was a shame.

85. Desstruxion - July 11, 2011

Shatner was the Captain. The show was about Kirk and his beloved ship. The rest were along for the ride.

86. 1984 - July 11, 2011

Walter did okay for a third string actor who lucked into a failing TV series about half way of it’s short 3 year run in an ill-conceived attempt to get more viewers via a new character on the show.

Wearing a bad toupee and spouting the worst Russian accent in the biz and seeing it turn into a decent gravy train had to be more than he could have ever dreamed of given his limited talent as an actor.

People forget George Tacky and Walter fought each other and the script writers for more exposure in the films. Walter got more exposure by managing to get injured in the scripts and Tacky finally got to be Captain Sulu after whining about it for years. Their extra seconds on screen were unremarkable at best.

These guys would have done far better to take the high road over the years, and be grateful for what they were given. But they learned squawking and moaning got more light to shine on them. So they still think short term and only about themselves and continue to bleat for attention. Very sad and pathetic of them.

87. VulcanFilmCritic - July 11, 2011

Why criticize Walter Koenig’s opinions regarding William Shatner? At least they are honest, and in line with what others have said about the man. Not only the actors but luminaries like Harlan Ellison have commented on his need to be the center of attention.

In his prolix introduction to the original “City on the Edge of Forever” teleplay, Ellison writes about Shatner’s absolute need to have more lines than everyone else. And Shatner would go over any script with a fine tooth comb to make sure that he got the most lines. If he didn’t have the most, he would lobby the writer for changes. He bullied directors into putting the camera on him even when the other actor was speaking.

Now, how many of you out there are actors or have any acting background? I’m not an actor, but I imagine that it must be infuriating to have someone stealing what little camera time you get and even stealing your lines.
At the end of “The Omega Glory” you can see and hear Shatner stepping on one of Nimoy’s lines. He starts to say something about the doctor, and Shatner suddenly jumps in. Nimoy almost rolls his eyes in frustration, but goes on with the scene anyway. And this occurs in an episode in which Shatner just goes on and on and on about “freedom” and the Constitution, seemingly forever. Doesn’t he have enough lines in “Omega Glory?” Apparently not.

That being said, actors are supposed to be notoriously competitive, so I guess scene stealing goes with the territory. It was up to Mr. Koenig to steal his scenes back from Mr. Shatner. Just look at what Bettie White did with a small part as the Happy Homemaker, Sue Anne Nevins, on the Mary Tyler Moore show! Now there’s a real trouper.

Mr. Koenig was handed a plum: the chance to be a teen idol, and he did nothing with the role. At the time, I thought he was being groomed to be the next Ilya Kuryakin from “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.”, not a Monkees clone. David McCallum was cast in a small role as the Russian sidekick to Robert Vaughn’s Napoleon Solo, and boy, did he ever run with it. The cool, enigmatic, unemotional Ilya provoked riots from teenage girls where ever he went, similar to the reaction to Mr. Nimoy (also assigned an initially small role.) It was up to Mr. Koenig to flesh out his role with charm, charisma and verve. Even a few lines can make a star, provided an actor has star quality. Mr. Koenig had several roles in which to do that, “The Deadly Years” for example. While he was a more than capable actor, he was just not a star.

P.S.- As for being typecast, it’s up to you as an actor (with the help of your agent) to make your own rain. Nimoy worked tirelessly DURING his stint on Star Trek to further his career and he was a real hustler in snagging work, “Mission Impossible” being an example. Also, George Takei was out making “The Green Berets” during “Star Trek.” But how much hustling did Mr. Koenig do when he was still on the show? Surely he had more downtime than the principles in which to nurture his career outside of Star Trek.

It’s very easy for actors to blame episodic television for causing them to be typecast, but more likely than not it is getting comfortable with a regular paycheck (not hustling) and the passage of time (aging) that leads to one’s name being deleted from the active lists of casting directors.

88. Shannon Nutt - July 11, 2011

“Bill…just never got it.”

Actually, Walter, you, Nichelle and Jimmy “never got it”. Bill was the STAR of STAR TREK, you were supporting cast. Get over it!

89. Starfleet's Finest - July 11, 2011

@ 45 “We are all part of the Trek family after all mister. ;)”
Thank you for pointing that out! Sometimes I think Trekkies would sooner nerve pinch someone to death than listen to another challenge their opinions… so it’s nice to hear someone else shares (and voice) those views!

When I was younger and found out the TOS cast really didn’t like each other, needless to say I was slightly devastated. But now that I’m older I have a slightly more objective view on things. First, Kirk is NOT my favorite captain but I have enough sense to acknowledge that, as he was the FIRST captain, Trek would not be what it is today without him, so respect must be paid.

Second, like what has been said above, Shatner is human and I’m sure that there was a time where he let his fame go to his head. Regardless of what character any of the actors played, they served a part of the original crew and without them the show would not have been what it was, so I’m sure they do feel like Shatner was an overall jerk to the ‘secondary’ character actors. That being said, it’s really too bad they are still holding a grudge after, what, 40 years later? It’s time to bury the hatchet in something other than each other’s backs. That goes out to actors and fellow Trekkies with love. :)

90. Greystoke - July 11, 2011

One thing occurs to me about the whole Shat and the other cast members: In David Gerrold’s book, “The Trouble with Tribbles,” about the his experience in writing and getting that episode produced he tells a small story about Shat that always stuck in my head. This is not a direct quote, it’s from dim memory, but one day in discussing the script, big Bill felt it necessary to remind young David the HE was the star of the show and that by necessity the story needs to reflect that.

Though he certainly wasn’t the only top-billed actor to act that way, and won’t be the last, seems to me that that behavior could be at the center of the others dislike.

91. wtriker1701 - July 11, 2011

Too bad, Koenig can’t let go of feeling, he was robbed of his stardom by William Shatner. Too bad, Takei even makes it his own playground to have a grudge against him. If he wants to have some PR of his sentiments… well he succeeds… kind of.. in a really, really bad way. Sorry for you, Guys!

Bill Shatner had and still has this appealing factor (well, he lost in for a while during the seventies, I think), that lifted that show. And his fellow real friends, Nimoy and Kelley acknowledged that fact.

Sometimes I think, what it would have been like, if Billy Blackburn would have had a greater role. He is this nice guy, who was in front of the center screen; he was this fellow, who really treasured Star Trek with his Super 8. The guy, who is always recognized as the one sitting on Chekov’s seat, when he’s not there. And he did a great job. AND he’s still having fond memories of the show, he did almost everything for – behind AND in front of the cameras.

And HE never complained!

Sorry, Mr. Koenig – you have a life outside of Star Trek. Enjoy it. enjoy your Star on Hollywood Boulevard – and don’t play that Grumpy Old Man. You’re for sure worth so much more! Get a life!

92. Geekette - July 11, 2011

“Now, how many of you out there are actors or have any acting background? ”

I do. Nimoy certainly does not roll his eyes, that would be very unprofessional.

93. ML31 - July 11, 2011

At least the animosity the cast felt towards Shatner never was seen on screen. Good that they were professional about it. Even if Takei and Koenig had a problem with Shatner, Chekov and Sulu obviously had tremendous respect for Kirk.

94. Trek Nerd Central - July 11, 2011

Goodness gracious, you mean actors don’t all love and support one another? I had no idea.

95. CmdrR - July 11, 2011

For the umptee-millionth time, it was a show about a captain, his Vulcan first officer, the chief medical officer, “and the rest.” Shatner got the gig because he stood out on TV (aka, he was a bit of a richard) not because he played well with the other kids. If Shat, or Nimoy had been less good at what they did, we would not be talking about this multi-billion dollar franchise 45 years later.

Also, red is such a nice color, ladies. Please do show it off at DragonCon in Atlanta.

96. MJ - July 11, 2011

@88 “Actually, Walter, you, Nichelle and Jimmy “never got it”. Bill was the STAR of STAR TREK, you were supporting cast. Get over it!”

Shannon, you are what we can an “enabler,” as in willing to turn the other check and not speak out when someone in a position of power treats poorly those in lower positions.

97. Mike Thompson UK - July 11, 2011

I’m now glad I couldn’t make it this year!

To hear Walter’s comments on Bill Shatner would have really hurt..

98. MJ - July 11, 2011

@97. Imagine an even worse scenario, where you get treated like a pion for three years in your work environment, followed by three more decades of the same crap. Now that would hurt!

99. Cygnus-X1 - July 11, 2011

Watched the Koenig Raw Nerve episode at Amazon for $2.

Koenig and Shatner disagreed as to whether Shatner “killed the shots” of the supporting actors, Koenig, Takei and Nichols, with Shatner saying that he never did and Koenig saying that he did “frequently.”

That seemed to be the biggest point of contention between Shatner and Koenig, and they totally skirted the disagreement, possibly edited it out, in the episode.

Anybody have any info supporting one position or the other?

100. Shannon Nutt - July 11, 2011

@96 – I’m just sick of Shatner getting a bad rap/bad rep from those three…who had about 20 years on the convention circuit to badmouth Bill without him (for the most part) even knowing about it. Those who have actually met (and I mean met as in had conversation with, not said hello or heard speak at a con – where he can be a bit of a ham) Bill know he’s not like that. Trust me, this man wouldn’t be best friends with Leonard Nimoy (the nicest actor you’d ever want to meet from ANY TV Show – let alone the Star Trek ones) if he was as nasty as Koenig and his co-stars have made him out to be.

101. Red Dead Ryan - July 11, 2011

#35.

Thanks Buzz!

102. VulcanFilmCritic - July 11, 2011

92. @ Geekette. Watch the ending of that episode very carefully. Nimoy certainly does roll his eyes upward at that point because I guess he thought the director was going to yell cut and end the scene right there. It’s a slight thing but it is definitely there.

103. Harry Ballz - July 11, 2011

To roll one’s eyes at that point (in reaction to Shatner’s antics) is simply logical!

104. Starbase Britain - July 11, 2011

love seeing people going to these things in TOS costumes. like the old days!!
classic Trek rocks.
Re: Keonig and shatner – well, some people like some people and some people dont. Its just the human condition. Thats it.

Greg
uk

105. Anthony Thompson - July 11, 2011

Something which rarely gets talked about is whether Nimoy truy likes Shatner. Fact is, they didn’t get along during the making of the show. So, is their “friendship” real? Or is Nimoy playing a part which will last until Shatner is lowered into his grave and then he’ll say what he really thinks (after a respectful amount of time has passed)? I still rememeber someone at a con telling everyone a story of a voiceover job shatner and Nimoy both had. Nimoy was in a hurry to finish and get out before Shatner arrived. But he didn’t make it in time. But then they both behaved like ‘old chums’ until the work was finished. What does that tell you?

Oh, and BTW, it matters little to me whether the other cast members were an ensemble or ‘bit players’. The character of a man is not shown by how he treats his superiors or even peers. Rather, it’s shown by how he treats those ‘below’ him. Would any of you Shatner defenders here like your boss to treat you disrespectfully? Be honest.

106. Jack - July 11, 2011

96. Is Shat a workplace bully now?

A movie/TV set isn’t like most other workplaces, the actors see each other for readings, rehearsals and the actual filming, but they’re not at cubicles next to each other 7 hours a day. Maybe he was a self-centred ass — a lot of the talent can be, I hear. But, are we now saying they were victimized by the guy?

107. Sebastian S. - July 11, 2011

How terrible that so soon after the ‘healing of the rift’ episode on “Raw Nerve,” Koenig apparently wastes no time in stabbing Shatner in the back once again. Shatner explained on Raw Nerve (and he was not making excuses) that at the time of TOS, he was going through a divorce, the show was faltering in the ratings, etc. and he had a lot of ‘leading man’ pressures. When Stewart came aboard, Star Trek was already a cult phenomenon with a pretty-much guaranteed audience (thanks largely to the efforts of Shatner and the TOS gang).
He had it just a bit easier, I think…

Every time I read interviews with him, Koenig comes off as a very myopic, bitter man. A shame that’s the image he chooses to project.

And I got to meet Brent Spiner last year at Comic Con; the man is hilarious. Here’s hoping he gets more comedy roles down the road.
Love his webseries, too…
;-)

108. Landru - July 11, 2011

Walter Koenig is a class act.

109. MJ - July 11, 2011

@106. Wow Jack, you are really stretching the Shat thing to give him a complete free pass it seems. I have been in work environments where the one or two leads were not great people, and it pretty much ruins the experience at time for everyone below their pay grade.

110. Jack - July 11, 2011

From his trek.com interview:

What would surprise us about your time on Star Trek? Something that’s maybe not commonly known?

Koenig: (after talking about his toupee and spray painting his bald spot)… Other than that, everybody knew that there were some contentious moments on the set, mostly having to do with Bill and Leonard and the front office. At that point, we were not feuding. The supporting cast did not hold a great deal of animosity for Bill. That subsequently became a factor, but not during the television series. I would say that what maybe people didn’t know, which was a positive thing, is that Bill was very funny. He kept the set light and there
were a lot of laughs. Despite what was happening behind *closed doors,* (astresks added) it seemed like a very congenial environment.”

So, all this “i want more lines” stuff was behind closed doors? He was actually great to everybody on set? And somebody, er, close to a producer heard about it and… 44 years later the other actors are using this to make money from convention appearances? “It was great on set, Shatner told lots of jokes” doesn’t really draw in the crowds…

How is this different than Takei and Koenig lobbying for more lines/screen
time (which they’ve both said they did, at least during the movies) and taking both from say, the Kyle guy or Eddie Pasky?

And what was the whole Takei/Excelsior thing, that Bill asked him why he
didn’t want to stay on the Enterprise where most of the story was taking place, rather than being off on another ship for a couple of scenes and Takei was insulted? I haven’t heard Takei’s version….

111. MJ - July 11, 2011

@107 “Shatner explained on Raw Nerve (and he was not making excuses) that at the time of TOS, he was going through a divorce, the show was faltering in the ratings, etc. and he had a lot of ‘leading man’ pressures.”

Excuse me why I play my mini-violin for Shat. Like this gives the guy a valid excuse (oh wait, you are saying these aren’t excuses…LOL) to treat the supporting staff like shit? What a loser, and what a sad and lame series of excuses (whoops, he’s not providing “excuses”). I’ve had tough times in my life, and tough times in my career, but I have never let if effect my professional conduct.

Shat, how about saying: “You know what, Walter. I was really a jerk back then, and I don’t have any excuses and I take full responsibility for my bad behavior. I’m truly sorry!”

112. MJ - July 11, 2011

FYI (this is from a former Trekmovie.com article)”

“The 2004 Planet XPo “Beam Me Up Scotty…One Last Time” tribute in Hollywood, CA, was the last convention appearance for the late James Doohan, Star Trek’s Scotty, who was suffering from Alzheimer’s and passed away in 2005. The con featured appearances from William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, Grace Lee Whitney, Majel Barrett Roddenberry, Walter Koenig, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols and other Trek and space celebrities. The event ended with most of the Star Trek stars joining a wheelchair-bound Doohan on stage for one final goodbye. Grace Lee Whitney, Majel Barrett Roddenberry, Walter Koenig, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols and Neil Armstrong join James Doohan on stage for finale of “Beam Me Up Scotty” Planet XPo tribute in 2004″

“Wednesday on the Howard Stern radio show, the Stern 100 News segment discussed a now-deleted 2004 blog entry from James Doohan’s son Chris Doohan, which stated that William Shatner refused to appear on stage with Doohan for “Beam Me Up” con finale. According to Doohan, Nimoy had to leave for another event. However, Doohan’s blog says William Shatner specifically refused to participate. According to the report, Shatner told the con organizer: ‘Shatner: I don’t want to do this and I really don’t want to deal with all this Alzheimer’s crap.’ ”

Enough Said! Yea, this is the kind of guy we are talking about here, folks.

113. Red Dead Ryan - July 11, 2011

#111.

“Shat, how about saying: “You know what, Walter. I was really a jerk back then, and I don’t have any excuses and I take full responsibility for my bad behavior. I’m truly sorry!””

Sure, but then you’d find some reason to question his sincerity anyway.

You’d say something like this “Oh, Fat Shat is only saying that so he can get himself into the sequel! He’s only apologizing to make himself look good!”

C’mon man, you just can’t stand William Shatner!

114. Jack - July 11, 2011

asterisks…

;).

No free pass, at least I don’t think that’s what I’m doing, I just have never heard of anything that was that horrible, like him openly being an asshole. And i get the workplace feuds, i’ve worked with people who lobbied to get another fired because she was “kind of snippy” with one of them once, after a dozen years of working together. Or a single incident being (he pronounced my name wrong that time) brought up over and over again, for years, when bitching with other employees over a beer.

Why address it publically when the guy’s not around to defend himself? I’ve never heard the guy (Shatner) at least before the last couple of years, say anything negative about the other cast members…

Fine, he was lobbying (behind the scenes?) for more lines — he’s said he was in survival mode on a struggling star-driven 1960s TV show. And they didn’t like it. fair enough. And they’re still pissed off about it, and making money off the stories.

115. JKP - July 11, 2011

Man I wish these second-string, lottery-ticket winning supporting actors would shut up.

I couldn’t care less about Chekov, Sulu and Uhura to be honest. Yes, it’s nice to see them, but they were totally interchangeable with all the other navigators, helmsmen and comms officers. They really need to realize this and shut up. It wasn’t an ensemble. Enjoy your fame and money and just zip it already.

Shat, Nimoy and De were the stars (that’s why their names were at the front instead of the end). Enough already.

116. Cygnus-X1 - July 11, 2011

115. – That’s funny.

117. Jack - July 11, 2011

112. Yep, if that’s true, it was definitely shitty. But being reported, especially on a blog, doesn’t automatically make it true (no offense to Chris Doohan). Maybe it was. Maybe he had some other reason not to be on stage with someone who had increasingly, and very publically, despised him (for hogging the spotlight), for one of that man’s final moments in the spotlight. I have no idea. But again, it’s all this ‘I heard that Shatner…” fourth-hand stuff that’s shaky.

It’s really damned weird that I’m, I’ll admit it, now a Shatner apologist, after having been really pissed off at him for his attitude/ego in the ’80s and early ’90s.

And, admittedly, Koenig was just answering a question. But i guess it bugs me that there’s so much glee when some of these folks repeatedly, publically talk about Shatner.

118. Damian - July 11, 2011

What cracks me up sometimes is fans that disagree with something someone says about something they liked, and now they were not good. Oh, Koenig and Takei don’t like Shatner, “Oh I never liked them anyway and Star Trek didn’t need them.” It’s the same thing when Harve Bennett was honest about how he felt about Star Trek (2009). All of a sudden, Star Trek II wasn’t that good or he had nothing to do with it.

My own personal feelings–I believe Shatner thought a lot of himself. He wanted Abrams and Orci to get him into the film, storyline be damned (who cares that it would take half the movie to explain his sudden resurrection). Never mind the fact his character died (something he agreed to). In the past, he has given the distinct impression he could be arrogant. You have multiple co-stars saying much the same thing. Doohan practically could not stand to be in the same room with him, reading his interviews. Shatner was the lead, no doubt. But he could have been a good leader. His attitude, though, judging from numerous interviews with numerous people over the years, has been he is the star and everyone is there to help him.

Should Koenig get over it and be the bigger man. Sure. They have all been out of Star Trek since at least 1994. It’s time to move on. I’d like to believe that Shatner is sincere in his attempts to mend bridges he may have burned in the past, and Koenig and Takei should take him at his word and move on. They can’t blame Shatner for everything bad that may have happened to them. They were supporting actors in a great show. They were not main characters, but I always felt they were important characters nonetheless. Be thankful for that, if nothing else. While Shatner may have hurt them in the past, they still got to play in a great show. Most people know who Chekov and Sulu are. That’s something to hang their hat on. Shatner could be the biggest prick on the face of the Earth, but I still love Captain Kirk. That will never change.

119. Jack - July 11, 2011

publicly.

120. Sebastian S. - July 11, 2011

111.

MJ.
Blaming all of Walter’s woes on the ‘big, bad Shatner’ takes away all responsibility from Walter for himself; bear in mind, Mr Koenig was an adult at the time of TOS, not a helpless child. If he was being truly slighted, he should’ve sought some advise or help from the other cast members; I don’t think line-counting or stealing limelight count as war crimes, either. Instead, he chose to be bitter and backstab Shatner in print later on, even after Shatner offered to bury the hatchet publicly.
Excuse ME, while I play a violin for Walter Koenig….

And it was Shatner (on Raw Nerve) who said he was not making excuses (not ME, jackass) that these things were going through his mind at the time of TOS and that, in hindsight, he might’ve been insensitive to Koenig and the rest of the cast. He offered to bury the hatchet and Koenig seemed to accept… only to turn around months later and say all this shit to a crowd later on. Class act, indeed.

As for your constant s**t-picking on every little thing I ever say on these threads? For my money YOU’RE a bully, just like you accuse Shatner of being. Everyone has a right to an opinion. So, just jump off of my back (and others) for a few seconds and let someone besides yourself express an opinion now and then, alright?

121. Jonboc - July 11, 2011

#110
“Koenig: (after talking about his toupee and spray painting his bald spot)… Other than that, everybody knew that there were some contentious moments on the set, mostly having to do with Bill and Leonard and the front office. At that point, we were not feuding. The supporting cast did not hold a great deal of animosity for Bill. That subsequently became a factor, but not during the television series.”

For once, a refreshing honest response from one of the supporting cast. Take note MJ and please limit your Shat-hate-ons for the movie years! :)

122. MJ - July 11, 2011

@120. WOW!!! If I am the bully, then how is it that you are the one “going personal” here?

Perhaps instead of reducing this to you attacking me for being a “jackass” bully like we are little kids on some playground, we just disagree on things?

Don’t be so fracking sensitive.

123. MJ - July 11, 2011

@118. Damian, good post — you are perhaps the only one here to find a viable middle ground on this position.

124. MJ - July 11, 2011

@121 “Shat-hate-ons”

LOL — got to give you kudos for this phrase, Jonboc — nearly choked on my soda here laughing so hard. :-)

125. Sebastian S. - July 11, 2011

122. MJ

Why don’t YOU stop ripping into everyone who doesn’t agree with you?
YOU’RE the one who rips apart almost every damn thing I post. Do yourself a favor; if you read one of my posts? No need to reply. You give me a wide berth and I’ll give you one.

You’re the one who makes it personal, MJ. I read some of your other posts; you bully and name call a lot of people here. And like a typical bully, you just can’t handle it when someone pushes back.

You stop nit-picking the hell out of posts, and I’ll stop answering yours.
Otherwise, you’ll confirm my already lowered opinion of you.

126. MJ - July 11, 2011

Dude, what’s with all the anger directed at my. I refuse to make this personal and accept your bait.

And I reserve the right to respond to anyone’s post on these boards. I don’t need to give anyone a wide berth. Keep getting personal if that is your style, but I will not be bullied into not discussing anything in your posts…period! Nice try!

127. Harry Ballz - July 11, 2011

Simply put, Shatner was an egotist during filming TOS. Every line counted and he wanted every one of them. He wanted the camera on him and no one else. The entire TV show revolved around him. The man was self-absorbed to the extreme. To say the man was selfish is an understatement.

Did I miss anything?

128. MJ - July 11, 2011

@127. Well said, Harry.

129. Vultan - July 12, 2011

I think it’s established Shatner has a BIG ego. It was fairly well known since the days of TOS, even more during the original Trek movies, and it’s been apart of his whole self-parody shtick for the past fifteen years or so—as if he was in on the joke all along!

But I was just wondering: what’s the reason you guys come here and so passionately vilify this man, a public figure who has done you no personal harm? I’m assuming you’re trying to persuade those who defend him to come to your side of the debate (and vice versa), as if doing so would be a great personal victory.

Could it be ego…?

130. Keachick (rose pinenut) - July 12, 2011

Honestly, what arrogant, ignorant twattishness. As one poster correctly said, WE WERE NOT THERE, NONE OF US. And no one is perfect – not Shatner, not Nimoy, not Takei, not Nichols, not Koenig…

This is as relevant now as it was 2000 years ago,

“…forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us…”

131. MJ - July 12, 2011

@129. Just sick of the facade and the phoniness, and truly surprised that others can’t see through it…actually astonished and quite amazon that other can’t see through it. It is so obvious to some of us.

That’s all.

132. MJ - July 12, 2011

@130 “ignorant twattishness”

Keachick, is that New Zealand speak for “trailer park trash hooker”? :-))

133. MJ - July 12, 2011

@131 “amazon” should have been “amazed” and “other” should have “others”

argh!!!

134. Vultan - July 12, 2011

Well, as long as it makes you happy, MJ. Everybody needs a hobby.
Now, I’m gonna watch another Foghorn Leghorn cartoon on youtube.

“That’s all Folks!”

135. chrisfawkes.com - July 12, 2011

@127, yes you missed something, actually been there so Shatners alleged bad behavior would be speculation.

Plus i judge Shatner to be a very cool guy and based on the time proven rule that it takes one to know one i consider my opinion authoritative on the subject.

136. Keachick (rose pinenut) - July 12, 2011

No, MJ. I just made it up to try to describe my impression of a lot of what has been written here. Anyway, what has a “trailer park trash hooker” got to do with this discussion?

All I am reading are the nasty words of people here and equally nasty words quoted by older people (George Takei and Walter Koenig) who should, surely, by now, know better. I do not understand why some appear so angry towards William Shatner when he has done nothing to any of you personally – thinking especially of MJ and Harry Ballz here.

I can understand how people who have grown up in a physically, emotionally, sexually abusive home may hold a lifelong grudge against the perpetrators of these crimes, but people like George Takei or Walter Koenig continuing to speak ill of someone after all this time just does not make a lot of sense. It is even worse when it comes from people who do not know Shatner at all vilifying him. Frankly, it is nuts and actually quite sick.

I quoted from the famous New Testament (Bible) prayer because it makes sense and it is not because it is supposed to come from some holy religious text. The words make good psychological sense and could be repeated as an affirmation. It is not about the perpetrator. It is about people making peace with themselves about what harm may have been done to them by others. It is about acknowledging that no one is perfect – everyone makes mistake, can say and do mindless, heartless mean things and that includes ourselves and if we seek understanding and forgiveness, then we should be prepared to give the same. It is also about not allowing the pain, the hurt, the anger of what another did to you consume you because proper healing and peace cannot happen. One is lost in an all-consuming painful captivity, which is ultimately becomes more of their own continuous making, long after the original assault has come and gone.

This is why it is good to be able to forgive those we perceive as our enemies. It is not about the enemy. They are who they are and it is not up to us to dictate who they should be. That is what “shaking the dust off the sandals” and walking away means. It is about who we are and who we want to be…

The choice is yours!

137. chrisfawkes.com - July 12, 2011

Well Keachick you have to understand that some people here have read this stuff in magazines so consider themselves experts on the subject. Kind of like those people who form their political opinions based on what they read in womans weekly.

The other thing to consider is that Shatner is the father of all trekkies wether they like it or not and some just have daddy issues.

Think about that kids, who’s your daddy?

138. VulcanFilmCritic - July 12, 2011

Beware the aggressive stage of grief.

Have all of you forgotten that Mr. Koenig lost his beloved son in 2010?
One of the side effects of grief, especially when a loved one is taken from you suddenly, is almost uncontrollable bursts of anger. I have been through such a trauma, and I remember getting angry over the most trivial things.
It is good to discharge such anger. Better to let it out over something that happened years ago, rather than to direct it at oneself.

I must say that Mr. Koenig has handled such tragedy with tremendous restraint and grace. My prayers still go out to him and his family. But do not be too harsh in judging a man until you have walked in his shoes.

139. captain_neill - July 12, 2011

10

Agreed, I have difficulty finding a hot chick to share my love of Trek with.

140. Damian - July 12, 2011

I think things are getting a little out of hand here. Koenig basically said he and some of the others did not like Shatner on a personal level. That happens. I respect him for his honesty. I give all of them credit, from Shatner on down, for never letting that show in their characters. They were good enough actors to put their personal feelings aside. It’s not like Koenig said he thought Shatner sucked and should have died of cancer or anything. He just is not likely to sit, have a beer and discuss the good ole days with Shatner. I don’t think anyone denies Shatner has an big ego. That may have served him well on a professional level, but ego can get in the way of personal relationships with people. That’s just a fact of life. There are going to be people that are put off by that. But again, I have never watched an episode of Star Trek and seen that come out of any of the characters. As a fan, that’s what counts the most. After all, it’s not likely I’m going to become friends with Shatner, Koenig, Takei or anyone else.

141. Sebastian S. - July 12, 2011

#136.

Well-said Keachick.

And MJ?
Thanks for the confirmation. I wasn’t baiting you; I was just asking you to lay off. You demonstrated that, in your myopic little world, heckling other posters was more important to you than trying to be a decent person. That speaks volumes to me. I was simply asking you to back off, but you refused. You are just as petty and small-minded as I suspected.

142. Damian - July 12, 2011

123–What can I say? I’m a middle of the road kind of guy:)

Really, though, I can understand both sides. People can deny it, but when you have multiple people saying much the same thing about Shatner back in the day, it’s hard to ignore. I think he’s mellowed in recent years. Oh, he still has an ego the size of the Sun, but I don’t think he’s as arrogant toward others as he used to be. And yes, for Koenig and Takei to still be angry about it after all these years is dangerously close to being petty. They don’t have to like him, just move on and focus more on the positive aspects of being a part of such a great and loved franchise (though again om fairness, Koenig was answering a question, this did not come out of the blue).

143. Jack - July 12, 2011

They have every right to dislike the guy. and, yes, the self-centeredness, ego and hamminess are no secrets (entire movies have been made on this) but we’ve also heard more nuanced takes on this in recent years (Meyer… ) and Shatner himself has talked about it (and, yeah, he rarely drops the facade, the lucrative self-mockery and dumb-joke-making). seriously, i despised tye guy for years. for some reason, after a bunch of articles on this site, that’s changed a little. Maybe it’s because he’s acknowledged some of it, i don’t know. Maybe I’m more irritated with Takei for milking it.

My only real point here was, yeah, they don’t love the guy and are pissed off by the crazed line-counting and, it seems, that he wasn’t their buddy. he was a selfish prick, fair enough. but it’s never sounded like he was actively out to get any of them — that he made their day-to-day working lives a living hell or was mean to them in person — and some of the comments here were putting him in the horrible bosses category.
territory.

144. Shannon Nutt - July 12, 2011

Funny we hear all these stories about Shatner being an egotist and camera hound from the Star Trek supporting cast, but we never hear it from the casts of TJ Hooker, Boston Legal, or the countless other shows Shatner has been a part of. Do you guys REALLY think he have gotten all those other TV and movie roles if he was considered difficult to work with? Need I remind you he’s been nominated for seven Emmys and won two of them – an award that is voted on by his acting peers!

Sometimes we’re all so wrapped up in our own work that we don’t see it through other people’s eyes…I think that’s exactly what was happening on TOS, if anything was truly happening at all. Shatner has never said or done anything publically that would make us doubt his claim that he had no idea his costars were angry at him on the set of TOS, yet everyone believes George, Walter, Nichelle and (believed) Jimmy. I have more respect for someone like Dee Kelley – who may have joked playfully about Bill, but never through him under the bus like these other co-stars.

145. Sebastian S. - July 12, 2011

143.

My sentiments exactly. De Kelley was a true southern gentleman; and he always seemed to rise above the fray.

He is so missed.

146. Katie G. - July 12, 2011

What would we pass the time with if it weren’t for “discussing” this stuff on a trek site? Why, we would have nothing to do. :-)

Re: #120. Sebastian S.

“111. MJ.

Blaming all of Walter’s woes on the ‘big, bad Shatner’ takes away all responsibility from Walter for himself; bear in mind, Mr Koenig was an adult at the time of TOS, not a helpless child.”

Exactly. He was 31, portraying a 22-year-old. (Boy was I surprised to learn that. He looked young for his age.)

And…

“…I don’t think line-counting or stealing limelight count as war crimes, either.”

Excellent point!!!!!! They REALLY need to put things in perspective. What an opportunity to be on TV! I mean, what a blast! And to also be in the movies! At the time I can understand being a little frustrated because everyone is fighting for their acting career but now… it would be nice to hear them say “at the time it was awful but we did okay so it’s time to let the animosity go”. When I think of the big deal I have made of some things in my life in the past I am SOOOO embarrassed. But maybe they think that’s what the fans want to hear. I don’t know…

Even if they had not lost any lines to Bill’s supposed ego, they need to realize that they would not have been promoted to Captain and been made the star of the show. Only characters that really stand out attract that kind of attention.

And as Damian said in post #118 “They can’t blame Shatner for everything bad that may have happened to them. They were supporting actors in a great show. They were not main characters, but I always felt they were important characters nonetheless. Be thankful for that, if nothing else.”

And I think someone else said that they were good at what they did but they weren’t outstanding superstars. Shatner had what they wanted. If they found someone better they would have replaced him in a nanosecond. Believe it. But to be fair I can understand the thinking at the time.

Either way I still watch Star Trek rabidly.

I have been terribly hurt by some people in my life, and it was a LOT worse than taking someone’s lines and hogging the limelight. Am still working on forgiveness because I don’t want to be tied to these people for the rest of my life. It’s been long enough. Hopefully these wounded ones can do the same before they leave this world and have some semblance of peace.

ktg

147. MJ - July 12, 2011

@142, “REALLY think he have gotten all those other TV and movie roles if he was considered difficult to work with?”

Two words: Val Kilmer

148. HubcapDave - July 12, 2011

Some thoughts on the comments here……

Harlan Ellison ragging on Shatner’s apparent prima donna behavior sorta seems like the pot calling the kettle black…….

Nichelle Nichols comment to Shatner in Star Trek Memories was, “I’m not finished yet. I have to tell you why I despise you.” She spoke only of her upset with his on-set behavior; she didn’t act as spokeperson for the collective discontent of Doohan, Koenig, Takei, and herself.

I echo the comments that some have made that none of us were ever there to see any of what went down between Shatner and the rest of the cast. It is foolish to believe that any of us have the whole truth of it enough to make bold and definitive proclamations as to the character of these actors’ personalities.

That having been said, my guess is that Shatner’s main failing (at least in those days) is an unawareness of other viewpoints than his own. Such a lack of empathy can certainly rub people the wrong way, and it sounds like it did for the part-time players.

149. MJ - July 12, 2011

@138 “I must say that Mr. Koenig has handled such tragedy with tremendous restraint and grace. My prayers still go out to him and his family. But do not be too harsh in judging a man until you have walked in his shoes.”

Amen!

150. Katie G. - July 12, 2011

Sorry forgot this…

I repeat something I said a few years ago when people were dissing Shatner for always talking about not being in J.J.’s Star Trek. When asked questions about the behind-the-scenes stuff that went on, all the Original Series actors had to do was say “it was tough but we got through it — next question” or something like that. They could have said (as Scotty would say) “this has been bandied-about enough — can we move on please?”.

Or…

This is (as I said earlier) a free country and no one, even reporters, can FORCE you to answer (stupid) questions. The actors don’t have to be rude. And it wouldn’t be rude to gently defer the question. They can very politely or even jokingly say “I’ve talked enough about this. Ask me something else” and go on to discuss other Star Trek topics.

I still think that way. Maybe the Convention Organizers want this. Maybe they think this draws more people in. I don’t know. Would greatly respect the stars for saying “let’s move on, people”. I really would. Is behind-the-scenes gossip the only thing that Trekkies want to hear? I don’t think so. I’d like to think we’re not that shallow.

ktg

151. P Technobabble - July 12, 2011

145. HubcapDave
I stand corrected. It’s been a while since I read the Memories books. Now I’ll have to dig them out and read them again.
They say the first thing to go is the memory…

152. Sebastian S. - July 12, 2011

#145.
Katie G

“What would we pass the time with if it weren’t for “discussing” this stuff on a trek site? Why, we would have nothing to do. :-) ”

;-D

That gave me a good chuckle! ;-)

153. Red Dead Ryan - July 12, 2011

I honestly can’t figure out how Harry Ballz and MJ can call themselves fans of “Star Trek” and the character of Captain Kirk, while ripping into William Shatner. Its quite a dichotomy.

Shatner created Kirk and is a big reason why Trek is what it is today. Do continually bash the man is to bite the hand that has fed us all.

And if I recall correctly, Harry Ballz posted once how he remembered meeting Shatner in a movie theatre and said how nice he was. So what changed?

154. Red Dead Ryan - July 12, 2011

Do=To

DAMN TYPOS!!!

155. Damian - July 12, 2011

142–Don’t forget, there was around a 20 year difference between Star Trek and some of his later shows. While I still think he has a big ego, I do think that he has mellowed. I don’t think he pushes his weight around as much these days as was alleged he did in the past.

Probably best case scenario would be for all involved to be the bigger person. For Shatner to simply say he’s sorry if was the source of hurt feelings. And for Koenig (and Takei) to accept that and move on with their lives. A lot of what happened is water under the bridge now. They all still do the convention circuit and people love to see them all. Hell, I’d be excited just to meet William Blackburn (Lt Hadley) who never had a single line in the show.

156. Starfleet's Finest - July 12, 2011

Wow…more evidence that Trekkies are family. You know, the “just-about-to-gouge-each-other’s-eyes-out-at-the-next-family-reunion” kind of family as evident by MJ and Sebastian up there…it’s kinda sweet when you think about it. Just don’t think that hard and it is.

I’m inclined to agree with Vultan (@129). I’m sure it’s clear to everybody reading the comments that no one is going to have an epiphany and suddenly switch sides on their Shatner love or hate. Ok, yes, the very essence of comments is to voice your own opinion, but good grief! I’m surprised none of you (more vocal writers) haven’t busted your computers trying to reach through your screen to strangle someone! I’m just making an observation but it’s too bad that fellow Trekkies have such distain for each other. Not to sound tacky, but can’t we all just get along??

Yeah, I didn’t think so… :P

Oh and @139, best comment. Not necessarily in content but in between such a heated debate, what great comedic timing!

157. rm10019 - July 12, 2011

I hope they tap the TNG cast to do an animated adventure or a PS3 game. That way Brent doesn’t have to worry about being too old, and the cast can have a reason to reunite and hopefully put the bad taste of Nemesis behind them/us.

158. Damian - July 12, 2011

With all this back and forth about Shatner, not much was said about Spiner’s comments. I have to agree that a Data return is highly unlikely due to his age. His age was even starting to show through in Nemesis, though I was able to look past that then. I’m curious to see if the novel writers follow up on what the Countdown comics portrayed (B-4 becoming Data at some point). At the end of the Typhon Pact story, Picard is considering other career paths, such as Ambassador (which Picard is in Countdown). In the future will one of the authors have Data resurrected. It will have to be soon because in the Countdown story, Data is Captain. He will need time to work up to that rank. So far, the last we heard of B-4 he was at the Daystrom Institute.

159. Harry Ballz - July 12, 2011

149.

Ryan, you are correct that when I met Shatner in 1974 and chatted with him for 10 minutes, he was cordial and friendly. I’m also clearly on record here for stating that I LOVED the character of Captain Kirk and how Shatner portrayed him in TOS. That doesn’t, however, negate what I think of the character of William Shatner.

These threads are not just for a LOVEFEST of all things Trek. There should be room for criticism as well. That’s what makes the world interesting, don’t you think?

160. Keachick (rose pinenut) - July 12, 2011

I think the problem with how Data looked was more to do with the awful makeup rather than Brent Spiner’s aging. Honestly, what was that about? Apart from the white hair, Brent Spiner still has a fairly youthful appearance, even now. So does Steve Martin, who I can’t remember ever seeing without white hair.

Re Shatner – While he was doing the TOS series, he had a wife and three little girls all under the age of 10. Sometimes he did not see them for days at a time. On breaks he was seen talking on a phone to his daughters, if and when, what with school, bedtimes etc. At other times he would be out pounding the pavements of the Paramount backlot, jogging to keep fit and not put on any of those inches that MJ despises so much. During the making of the episode “Devil in the Dark” he got a call from his mother in Montreal saying that his father had died suddenly of a heart attack. His father was not very old. So Shatner had to fly from LA to Montreal (not a short trip even by today’s standards) to be there for the funeral etc and get back to complete his part in the episode.

Curiously, the two people who continue to bitch and moan about Shatner the most were the only two who did not have families (along with mortgages etc…) at the time. They were footloose and fancy free, you could say. I really have to wonder who were the most self-absorbed and self-centered out of the cast.

So, we are supposed to give Walter Koenig a pass but not Shatner. Really? I agree that Walter Koenig is still no doubt very upset and grieving for his son, but what has the death of his son got to do with William Shatner? Why are these people continuing to use Shatner as their whipping boy? Frankly, this just shows a certain emotional immaturity and dare I say it, a lack of moral fibre.

161. MJ - July 12, 2011

Keachick and RDR,

I really admire both of you — seriously! You want to see the good in Shat and always defend him. You love the guy pretty much unconditionally, and even point out family pressures, and other excuses that explain away his bad behavior.

It is sad to me though that, in my opinion, this phony baloney does not deserve this reverence from great fans such as yourselves. Every time I look at him I think about his shenanigans with JJ about trying to force his way into the movie, his feud with Takei, his poor treatment of subordinates, and his horrible Alzheimer’s remark and the Doohan tribute con.

I wish I did not know and feel what I did about thy guy, and I wish that I was not wearing the “They Live” Sunglasses when I see him, because it would be so easy for me to drink the Shat Kool-Aid then versus having to deal with boards like these, where some (not you two) overly sensitive types go ape-shit on me and cuss at me, etc. etc.

Its a hard road for me to toll, but I’m not going to throw in the towel.

162. MJ - July 12, 2011

@159. “I’m also clearly on record here for stating that I LOVED the character of Captain Kirk and how Shatner portrayed him in TOS. That doesn’t, however, negate what I think of the character of William Shatner.”

I am also on similar record, in fact, I have mentioned previously that I really respect his work on TOS, and the movies up until Trek V.

It’s OK folks to love the character, love the performance and dislike the actor when his is away from the part. Mel Gibson, anyone?

163. Jack - July 12, 2011

Would these guys have griped if they’d been on TNG and actually worked with Patrick Stewart?

“Bill just never got it…”

Got what?

160. Well, someone did ask him a question. But, yeah. All the points – it was an ensemble show – have been made well here.

Maybe he’s just angry that Shatner had a much less obvious toupe/weave? Or that Shatner’s absurdly loaded now.

Shat’s apparently not the only one with an ego in the group (rhymes with toupe) And it’s hard to tell where concern for a character (12-line Sulu being promoted over the years) stops and self-interest begins. I think the guy really believed that there’d be a Sulu TV show.

164. Dep1701 - July 12, 2011

Why do the actors keep bringing this tired subject up? Because the fans keep asking them about it at convention after convention that’s why.

When asked these questions, they have one of two choices; they can answer the question honestly, which is what the fans there are obviously hoping for ( to hopefully hear some juicy dish that hasn’t been spilled before ), or to say ” I’ve been over all that before. I don’t want to talk about it anymore…let’s move on. Next question.”

Would that be preferable? Probably, but then the fans would probably slag them for avoiding the subject. The fans should stop asking about it ( so should interviewers for that matter ). It’s the same tabloid mentality that makes so called reality shows with people bickering ( which I detest and refuse to watch ) so damned popular.

As far as Shatner’s behavior towards the cast back then, they are entitled to whatever feelings they have. I’m not always the nicest person at work either ( I just had one person who works under me complain that her feelings were hurt because I didn’t say “Hello” before launching into what needed to be done that day. It genuinely took me by surprise that a “hi” from me was SO important to her, but there you go. It wouldn’t have bothered me at all. Different things bother different people ). I can believe that Bill has been a tool to people over the years, but so have I. Fortunately, no one has ever interviewed anyone about me in the media over the decades.

The upshot is, if people would stop asking about it, it might go away.

165. Brandon R - July 12, 2011

I really wish the actors, particularly George Takei, would just answer with “It’s in the past and we’ve moved on.” The fact that they keep answering the questions the way they do, regardless of the fact that they’re being asked, is just becoming petty.

166. dmduncan - July 12, 2011

The hurt is done and Walter and George are never gonna let go. No matter what anybody does to you you can’t ultimately blame them for your own negative attitude. And if anybody missed Diane Sawyer’s interview with Jaycee Dugard, then you simply are not going to comprehend what I’m talking about. The charitable thing to do would be to chalk it up to whatever was going on in the earlier days of the life of Shatner and let it slide, because no matter how bad it was, it was still pretty effing MINOR in the scheme of things, and holding on to it is a reflection of their own insecurity. They don’t have to LOVE Shatner, but if they are loving people like Nichelle Nichols is, it also wouldn’t be worth it to keep all that ancient history open like a fresh wound.

With George in particular it’s becoming The Wrath of Takei.

167. Mr. "There are always possibilities" - July 12, 2011

I know its not possible for all people to move on when they feel they have been wronged. However, when you are a celebrity I think that a modicum of professionalism shoud be employed.

Maybe it would be better if they decided to at least change how they addressed the issue How about when asked about Shatner, the reply is “That was along time ago, and we’ve all heard the stories. How about I tell you about this interesting time that I …” or “I am honored to be the invited speaker to talk about the greatness of Star Trek and my role in it. Instead of talking about any disagreements with my fellow castmembers, I just have to share with you the time I laughed so hard when…”.

168. Magic_Al - July 12, 2011

When I saw the trailer for Apollo 18 the first thing I thought of was Walter Koenig and Bruce Campbell already did that in Moontrap, which sadly is not on DVD.

169. Greg2600 - July 12, 2011

Did I miss anything?

Yes Harry you did, it was what they called a contract. Shatner, Nimoy and Kelley were the stars of the show, and back in the 1960′s, that meant you got most all the lines and scenes. Also meant you got paid for being there almost every day. Nowadays, TV shows have much larger ensembles, but that was not the case then. Nimoy was just as involved, probably moreso, in complaining to writers during the script process.

I’ve always thought that Doohan, Takei, Nichelle and Walter felt they should have had larger roles, and blamed Nimoy and Shatner for not having them. When in fact, the network/studio/producers had no interest in that. Now, it’s quite possible that had Phase II become a series, they would have. Nimoy didn’t sign on, and Shatner was only going to do a limited run. Phase II of course largely was used as basis for TNG, where the roles were far more even among the actors.

I’ve watched interviews like Mind Meld, it’s clear Nimoy AND Shatner both do not “get it” as Walter suggested. Their feeling was and still is, they were paid to be the stars, and that’s what they were. The other cast members were on set maybe once or twice a week, those three were there every day. I don’t know what they expected of Shatner or Nimoy? They showed up, did their jobs well, and didn’t treat the others as surfs or anything. It’s simply how things were back then.

170. Harry Ballz - July 13, 2011

Greg,

you’re preassuming that it went exactly that way. There are documented reports that Shatner looked at each script and LOBBIED for more lines, even if that meant taking some away from the supporting players. Apparently Shatner repeatedly argued, “I think the Captain should say that line!”

If you were Uhura, and you had 5 lines in next week’s episode, and then you saw Shatner go to the director and encourage him to give the line to the star (Shatner)…..don’t you think YOU’D be pissed?

The supporting players weren’t looking for BIGGER roles, they were simply trying to hold on to the meager part they had!

171. K-7 - July 13, 2011

– Note to Sebastian S

You call MJ a bully, but you essentially try to coerce him into not responding to your posts, and you use foul language and attack and berate him. Who is the real bully here?

Also, if he is a bully, then you are by contrast a petulant child who complains, cries and freaks out when challenged in an attempt to “get your way.”

Maybe you would be taken more seriously on these boards if, instead of freaking out and personally attacking people, you sucked it up and put together some better reasoning to counter people’s opinions that you disagree with? Just a thought.

172. Damian - July 13, 2011

169–The key difference is that I don’t recall the supporting cast complaining about Leonard Nimoy. From everything I’ve heard, Nimoy has been a class act.

162–Good point. There have been many movies and shows I watched in the past where I despised the actor but loved the character (Note–I’m not saying I despise Shatner necessarily). Shatner was a good enough actor back in the day that whatever failings he had did not reflect on to the character of Captain Kirk. In a way, Captain Kirk was what Shatner was not back then. I think that’s why James Doohan said he loved Captain Kirk, not William Shatner. The way the character was written, and yes acted and created by Shatner, made Kirk the type of character any one of us would want as our leader. Gibson was a good example. He does not have too many fans these days but I don’t see anyone having Mad Max or Lethal Weapon bonfires. You can be a creep but still be a good actor.

173. Do You Wanna Dance - July 13, 2011

Stop. Linking. To. Flickr.

Some people are Websensed and can’t see anything.

174. Jack - July 13, 2011

170. behind closed doors?

I guess I stress this because, when I’d first heard these stories, I always pictured Shatner doing this on set with everyone else around and basically being a total dick to everyone — stopping filming saying “why does Uhura need that line?” But doing that behind the scenes — while annoying to the others — is a little less dickish, and the kind of crap that happens often in television.

It was also interesting to read, somewhere, that he was stung by a critic, early in the series, who called Kirk wooden… Is that where the ham started?

I know it’s not exactly the same thing, but Stewart campaigned for more action
and more planetside visits for Picard, cutting a big swath of Frake’s grass.

175. Harry Ballz - July 13, 2011

Jack, with Shatner’s wry sense of humor, I guess you’re saying………..

“Gimmee the ham on wry and hold the wood”

(runs and hides)

176. Iowagirl - July 13, 2011

Well, Koenig was invited by Shatner into his show, Koenig appeared, they talked….and now Koenig’s telling people Shatner just didn’t get it. Well, that’s a really nice way to behave, isn’t it.

What was it again he didn’t get? That ST was made a worldwide cultural phenomenon by Kirk & Spock, not by Sulu & Chekov? That after centuries of fame based exclusively on ST, Koenig and Takei are still bitter about some things Shatner might have said or done about 100 years ago, or might not have said or done, or might or might not have said or done in the wrong way, or him being a jerk or not or maybe or whatever? That he invites Koenig into his show and tries to talk to him although he doesn’t get it?

I’m with Shatner – I just don’t get it… :))

177. Jack - July 13, 2011

175. Fantastic.

178. Jack - July 13, 2011

Ps. I’m not trying to let Shatner entirely off the hook.

Oh, and Frakes’ grass.

Anthony, invite all three of ‘em (Shat, Walter, George) here for a chat…

179. dmduncan - July 13, 2011

When you read about some of the things early Shatner did, it was funny. A little like something Michael Scott would do. Sure. Michael Scott is a jerk, but I love the guy! It’s a lousy thing to treat your second string actors like second string actors. No need for that. And the man has definitely come a long way since the days when his ego was so big he took himself too seriously.

But what it comes down to is that he bruised some egos in his travels in the entertainment business, and hey, that’s really not that serious a crime. I mean it’s not like he allowed loads of guns to be illegally sent to Mexico where they were used to commit crimes when it was his job to PREVENT that sort of thing.

180. Mike Thompson UK - July 13, 2011

I vaguely remember from Shatner’s DVD “Mind Meld”, Nimoy said that during one of the Films he Directed, at the end of one of the days, in the car park, he said good night to one of the actors but they just went off in a huff (or something like) because their piece was too short!
(should really watch it again).

Shatner, Nimoy were the Stars, they had big careers the others really just had well Star Trek…..

They even did not like it when Shatner didn’t turn up for things.

I personally think Shatner now is at his happiest, perhaps because he is now in a happy Marriage. Which obviously wasn’t always the case!

181. Greg2600 - July 13, 2011

Yes in Mind Meld and elsewhere Nimoy has talked about the animosity the other cast members later told him about, but that he never knew about during the 60′s. Again, if you listen to Leonard and Bill talk about those days, they have many stories about pestering Roddenberry and Gene Coon about scripts. Neither man did it to purposely screw the supporting cast, they simply wanted the best lines. Shatner is highly competitive and I think that fed his nature. Nimoy is highly concerned about his craft, and that fed his desire for control. If the writers had been inclined, they would have written scripts that centered on those other characters. They never did.

182. Phil - July 13, 2011

I have to give Koenig credit for at least being willing to be diplomatic about it. I suspect that the surviving supporting cast members have an understanding, at some level that they were playing in WS’s sandbox. It does say a lot about the chemestiry of TNG cast, that they seem to get along so well….

Brent, you need to read this site – all the suggestions on how to overcome Shatners current physical condition could just as easily applied to a Data comeback attempt!!

183. The Real McCoy - July 13, 2011

K7, #71 above

Agree with you completey on that Sebastian guys over-the-top freakout on MJ. MJ’s a bit of ass, but he didn’t deserve that. Looks like Sebastian is simply trying to browbeat folks here on Trekmovie.com so his views will go unchallenged. That is unethical and not cool.

184. Anthony Thompson - July 14, 2011

173. Do You Wanna Dance

What the heck is “websensed”??? : D

185. florian - July 14, 2011

i would love to see data given the chance to age and eventually die. like in this robin williams film “bicentennial man”. i think this even could work for b4 as a rubbish version of data or something like that. i would love too see this explained: an emotional b4 with data’s memories becoming data himself, aging and dying. i guess this would have made a great tng episode…

186. florian - July 14, 2011

as an addition: this would make data (almost) human. his whish would have been come true.

i would like to know what you guys think about this idea.

187. Damian - July 14, 2011

No doubt Shatner, Nimoy, and Kelley after a time were the stars. I think it’s mainly just that some people get upset when they see the leaders treat the second strings like second strings like 179 said. I think that was the difference with the later shows. The lead actors did treat the other actors with a certain amount of respect. There is also a difference between Shatner, Nimoy and Kelley in that I don’t hear the supporting cast complain about Nimoy or Kelley. To me that’s telling. I just think when you have a number of people saying much the same thing about Shatner, while at the same time not saying those things about the other stars, and in fact they usually have good things to say about Nimoy and Kelley, it does give some credence maybe to their allegations that Shatner treated them as second class citizens.

Now, as I said before, that was a long time ago at this point. It’s time to move on. Most Star Trek fans would love to get to meet George Takei or Walter Koenig on the street someday. Maybe they don’t have Shatner’s overall fame, but any Star Trek fan would love to shake hands with them and talk to them about Star Trek. I think that’s something to hang your hat on.

188. dmduncan - July 14, 2011

Here’s a YouTube including the ‘rants” of Bale, Shatner, and Baldwin. Shatner sounds reasonable but firm, whereas Bale and Baldwin both sound bonkers. So if that’s the Shatner these guys are all upset about…grow up. Life is full of friction, and when you make movies you are going to get some people on the production team who rub each other the wrong way. It’s the wonderful world of entertainment, which has more than its share of bloated and sensitive egos to wound.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eQX1Ol2D-H4&feature=related

189. MJ - July 14, 2011

@171/K-7: “Note to Sebastian S — You call MJ a bully, but you essentially try to coerce him into not responding to your posts, and you use foul language and attack and berate him. Who is the real bully here? Also, if he is a bully, then you are by contrast a petulant child who complains, cries and freaks out when challenged in an attempt to “get your way.” Maybe you would be taken more seriously on these boards if, instead of freaking out and personally attacking people, you sucked it up and put together some better reasoning to counter people’s opinions that you disagree with? Just a thought.”

Well said! “V’ger is a Child; I suggest we treat him as such” would seem to aptly apply to Sebastian here based on your comment, eh?. :-)

@183/The Real McCoy (in response to K-7′s post above): “Agree with you completely on that Sebastian guy’s over-the-top freakout on MJ. MJ’s a bit of ass, but he didn’t deserve that. Looks like Sebastian is simply trying to browbeat folks here on Trekmovie.com so his views will go unchallenged. That is unethical and not cool.”

Yes, I am a bit of an ass and also a legend in my own mind, but I am not a whiner who goes nuts on people to try to intimidate them into not responding to their comments so they get a “free wide,”…i.e. you won’t see me employ the “give me a wide berth” cop-out of being so freaking sensitive to criticism that I crack under the pressure and name-call and make it personal.

190. Harry Ballz - July 14, 2011

And me? I don’t give a rat’s ass what anybody thinks of my opinion. Never have.

191. Jack - July 15, 2011

189. And here we are feuding over whether they should be feuding. ;)

Dude, I kind of just ignored Sebastian S.’s post because I didn’t get where it was coming from… and then I forgot entirely about it. But, yeah, I don’t think you’re a bully. Sometimes it’s tough to let these things go.

192. Harry Ballz - July 15, 2011

…and on that note, all I can say is “bully for you!”

193. Jack - July 15, 2011

190, 192 ;)

wish I had your ballz, so to speak…

I’ve gotten a little pissy when i’ve gotten a ‘no, no, no — you’re wrong!’ on here, when it’s been an opinion and not a right/wrong fact. I wish i hadn’t (got annoyed). I may just need to get lei’d (Hawaii is supposed to be lovely). i have no idea where that joke came from.

194. Jack - July 15, 2011

Btw. I need to learn how to focus like the photog did in those last couple of pictures — with the background totally blurred like that. Awesome.

195. Harry Ballz - July 15, 2011

Attaboy, Jack! Good for you!

I’m curious, where do you call home?

196. MJ - July 15, 2011

@191/Jack: “Dude, I kind of just ignored Sebastian S.’s post because I didn’t get where it was coming from… and then I forgot entirely about it. But, yeah, I don’t think you’re a bully. Sometimes it’s tough to let these things go.”

Agreed — I am letting this go. Besides, once others starting countering him on his outrageous posts, he ran for the hills and stopped his abusive posts.

197. Gerry Alanguilan - July 18, 2011

Wasn’t John Carrigan “Patrick”, the guy who didn’t speak on Brittas Empire?

198. Jack - July 18, 2011

Hey, Harry. Toronto now. Sort of. It’s where my stuff is (in storage) — although I’ve been traveling around doing freelance jobs for a bit and haven’t been there in months. It will likely be Toronto again, unless the New York Times comes calling… although I’ve always wanted to try a stint in the UK…

That totally didn’t answer your question.

How ’bout you?

199. DM - July 19, 2011

Years and years ago, sometime in the early to mid 70′s. Koenig and other cast members appeared on the “Tomorrow” show with Tom Snyder. A still fairly young Koenig remarked how tired he was on Star Trek fandom and conventions in general. Keep in mind, this was sometime 1974-1976!!

Here he is, almost 40 years later, still doing the rounds. Embracing fandom, for every last buck he can made.
Yet he still blames Shatner for acting like he was the star of Trek all those years ago. Well originally, he was! Until Nimoy’s popularity skyrocketed!
Only years later, did it become an ensemble cast.

Let it go Walter, no one is perfect!! Shatner was simply being Shatner.

200. Harry Ballz - July 19, 2011

Hey, I live in Toronto! Wow! When you read this, Jack (if you do), come join us in Live Chat! It’s a friendly place…..don’t worry I’ll vouch for you!

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