Shatner Unsure If He Will Be In Trek XI – Thinks It Would Be Cool

In the recent MTV interview with the Trek writers, there was a mention of a recent meeting with William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy. asked the folks at Shatnervision to ask Mr. Shatner about this meeting…and they were kind of enough to do so. 

The saga of is he or isn’t he in the film has gone on longer than the Abrams directing thing. At some times Shatner seemed to be very excited about the project, and at others totally disinterested. The latest interview with Orci and Kurtzman raised expectations that perhaps Shatner and Nimoy have been cast, but this video makes it clear that things are still not decided. Also apparently Oh and that bit with him and the cell phone was great! "the guy in a red shirt is gonna die"    


Transcript of the relevent bit…

Question: There is a rumor that you & Leonard Nimoy recently met with the production staff of the next Star Trek movie. Can you tell us about it?

Shatner: Leonard, I believe met with him, I met with them. A producer and director and presumably one of the writers….JJ Abrams. And nothing really occurred…as far as I was concerned, and I am sure for Leonard as well. It was an exploratory talk. I have no idea what the script is. I have no idea what they are doing. I have no idea whether they want me to be in it in some small way or not. As for me wanting to be in it, I think it would be cool but it would have to be meaningful in some small way. And that is really the truth of everything. And they want to go next fall, so as is apparent I will be working here [Boston Legal] so if they ever wanted me some arrangements would have to be made.

VOTE: Shat Yes or Shat No?

do you think he should be in the film…vote in the latest poll (sidebar)


UPDATE: Calls into question aspects of MTV article
The original passage from the infamous MTV article which inspired the above question to Shatner is as follows…

Speaking of the old guard, Shatner and Nimoy recently visited with Orci, Kurtzman and Abrams. According to the writers, the meetings went well. "It was pretty much the most stressful thing ever, but it was wonderful," Kurtzman said. "They were amazing."

That sounds like there was a recent meeting with both Shatner and Nimoy, but Shatner makes it clear that they never met all together. Also has learned that it wasn’t all that recently and it is likely that this meeting is the same one that Shatner spoke about having many months ago. The reason to pick these nits with MTV is that it shows how they may not have chosen their words very carefully. In this case ‘Shatner and Nimoy recently met’ is actually two seperate meetings from last year. Bear that in mind when you freak out over MTV’s usage of the word ‘reimagining’

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I still maintain the film should be a two hour slow zooming closeup on the Shats swollen face.

I look at it this way, when you consider Voyager, Enterprise, Insurrection, and Nemesis, ANYTHING Abrams could possibly do with this film could not be anyway worse than what we have been spoon fed the last few years.
Alot of people said the same thing after Insurrection, how could it get worse?
I don’t really think there is a danger of that that phenomenon here for the simple fact the law of averages, the Jew qoutient on this new film, (if you want a magnificent Trek film, hire some Jews, and I don’t say that facetiously, I’m quite serious) and the fact it will defy ALL pre-concieved expectations and notions, will guarantee at least something different.

At the very least, we are getting away from the same visual appearance of Trek that we have experienced the last 15 years so that will be something new.
And with a new composer, production designer, director, actors, and script-writers, this new Trek should on paper at least be unlike anything previously seen, despite existing within the same universe as the former.

From rock bottom there is nowhere to go but up.

i am still not sold on how this can work

Shat is the man, but he will be a distraction from the new kids

I can’t stand it when you people dis recent Star Trek. Not everyone shares your narrow view of how Star Trek should be.

I say NO. A Shatner cameo would serve as a distraction, either timeline-wise, or due to trying to explain why Kirk is no longer dead. Neither Nimoy nor Shat would accept a light-hearted cameo. When he says “meaningful,” he means what Shat and Nimoy always mean: My character has to have a good deal of screen time and character development, and my character’s actions MUST be integral to the story. Oh yeah, and let’s negotiate a hefty paycheck for that as well.

Nimoy rejected a role on Generations because he considered it a meaningless cameo, as did De Kelley, Takei, and Nichols. I suspect that Shat would not have accepted a part in Generations if he hadn’t been promised a glorious death scene.

So, to sum up, I think that all factors are working against Shatner and Nimoy having cameos. 1. It’s a distraction; 2. It’s inconvenient for the writers; 3. It’s highly doubtful that the actors would accept small cameos.

Their actions in the past regarding salaries, script input, screentime, and ego-stroking set a consistent pattern in how they’ve dealt with Paramount and a “new” movie.

I agree with you TiberiusK(#4). Very good points.

Leave Shatner and Nimoy out of the new movie and start fresh! It would be like having Sean Connery pop up in Casino Royale to have a chat with Daniel Craig! No friggin’ way!!

#1 – While I disagree with your view on modern Trek, I do share your optimism for ST XI.

I kind of hope they do something cool… like let Shat and Nimoy split the “Space the final frontier…” speech in voice-over. Beyond that, I really think this film doesn’ t need to “pay homage,” “tip its hat” or do anything else that covers for Hollywood raping its own heritage.

Oh… Josh… I suppose you meant your comment as a compliment, but somehow it came out way harsh. Not very IDIC. IMHO. (Actually, I prefer IHOP, I humbly offer preferences…)


That’s quite alright JoeB, alot of us can’t understand or fathom can anyone can in good conscience apologize for recent Star Trek, so it all works out pretty much the same.

Speaking purely out of intellectual curiosity, I’m genuinely wondering, in all truth and candor, you seem to be a fan of recent Trek, kindly share with us that resent it what there was to like, I’d hate to think I was missing out on something significant the last 15 years.


I agree with your second point there. Shatner and Nimoy have always been deal killers. Take Nimoy for example:

ST1: I won’t play Spock unless Paramount settles my legal disputes and pays me royalties for the use of my image over the last 10 years

ST2: I won’t play Spock. I’m done. Oh? A death scene? OK, in that case…

ST3: Either let me direct, or you won’t get Spock.

STIV: Let me direct and guarentee that I be allowed to direct 2 other films, or you won’t get Spock.

STV: Either make every change in this script that I demand, or you won’t get Spock. Also, I need a huge raise.

STVI: Either let me write it with Meyer, or you won’t get Spock.

Generations: You won’t get Spock. He’s only in 25 minutes of this movie!


As Josh said, after the last Star Trek movies (except First Contact), you can’t get any worse. And it’s a totally new team so it’s even better news.

I think they should cast at least Shatner if not Nimoy. And seeing the recent advertisement on Youtube of Shatner and DirectTV ( ), It’s nice to see the Shat in starfleet uniform one more time! He can still look good with some minor CG tweaking, but he still has it! A few minutes on screen would be enough – he doesn’t have to steel the show.

Plus, this is the best opportunity they will ever get to bring back Kirk from the dead after that stupid death in Generations. What a nonsense movie that was! And they even screwed up the cannon! (if you guys noticed – concerning Scotty)
I just hope they will come up with an ‘intelligent’ way to bring him back. And with that energy ribbon called the Nexus he died in, which is a temporal anomaly, it’s not that hard to come up with something with just a little imagination.

Again, I hope it’s not the last appearance of Kirk while he still looks good!

Shatner and Nimoy could have significant parts that aren’t necessarily large.

Shatner and Nimoy would be the best thing for this movie. Period. It would be a hell of a gift from Abrams. This video said absolutely nothing new.

Bottom line–Shatner + Nimoy = $$$$$$

#1, #10 Josh,
For what I could read of your comments (“kindly share with us that resent it what there was to like”), IMO it looks like you are baiting people into arguments.
I won’t speak for JoeB, but picking up his thread, he is correct in saying that yours isn’t the only opinion of how Trek should be. Without going into things that have been pointed out over and over on this site, TNG, DS9, VOY and ENT all had their shining moments. Was very episode an Emmy-winner? No. The same can be said of TOS. Were the movies Oscar-winners…no. Inspirational… at times. Were some of them dogs? Hell yes, for both TOS and TNG. I’d watch a weak episode of any Trek (TOS to ENT) before watching 90% of the current crop of “Quality TV”.
Frankly, no one need apologize for what they like on TV (#10). We all have likes and opinions and they are all valid as long as you don’t believe your opinion is the universal truth.

I understand your opinion about “correcting” Kirks death in Generations. You aren’t the first to consider it. But why is it needed? If Shatner’s not in it, there’s no need and if he is.. does it matter? Taking a half to a third of XI to explain that “Kirk really didn’t die, it was a fake Kirk, etc” will surely kill the flow of the film for most but the most ardent fan-boy or girl.

Tiberius hit the nail on the head with both posts

Get Shatner + Nimoy back no matter what.

The idea that they would be a “distraction” in some way is just silly.

They are Star Trek and their presence gives this film a sense of legitimacy it would not have otherwise.

Besides, Kirk deserves a better ending than falling off a bridge.

Let’s keep the story line simple… no multiple Kirks belly bouncing off each other through a TOS era Enterprise. No “meeting your younger- self” paradoxes. I want an adventure, not a rewrite of Trek history to correct a movie plot – line from 14 (?) years ago.
Blame Shat… is was him that fell lamely off a bridge. He got paid to do it and knew what is was when he first read the script. Perhaps he was blinded by the desert sun and $$$ in the eyes.

I remember the year long speculation of getting Shatner on Enterprise..My feeling is hes on a Emmy Award winning show . Hes moved on for so long without Trek and done it successfully . The Commercials and Boston Legal are doing well.

I don’t see him as James Kirk anymore…James Kirk is a action Hero …
75 year old men do not play action hero’s. It looks silly. it was looking silly by the end of Generations.
Do you know anyone that age using karate chops or Kicking the feet under their enemies? Presence or a simple cameo wont be enough.

The execs concerned over the films budget might just shut this down as much as Abrams might literally beg on his hands and knees for them to appear. it all come down to is money and how much Paramount has.

I really like Kirk but i like him in his prime and and when he was facing his mortality in the first 6 films. To me its becoming a beat up cliche to bring him back from the dead. Yes we brought Spock back but now anyone that dies have these legion of cult followers that want their favorite character back. Yeah Its Science Fiction everybody has to live no matter what… or people become very upset and turn blue.

When the writers want to grasp on more action..(Watch Nemesis) the whole idea of developing the character or more importantly a simple plot further is just unrealistic for a 2 hour movie.

A recast is something that has to happen unfortunately its going to look like a impression. Impressions are best left to vaudeville acts.

………. James Tiberius Kirk…………

Let his future self rest in peace.
Let his younger self do what he
does best, entertain us with his
adventures as a young starship

Please let William Shatner have the class to pass the torch to the next generation of Star Trek actors and allow them to move the legend forward with their contributions.

The only impression concerning the next Star Trek film is the one we’re left with after watching it! I don’t want to see imitators of Shatner and Nimoy, but talented actors bringing their own INTERPRETATION to the roles!

I think their roles would be to be respectfully celebrated as the originators of the roles while endorsing the movie in publicity campaigns

#18 Xai

I agree. If the rumor is true that XI will focus on Kirk’s first mission as captain of the Enterprise, then bringing in a time travel or Nexus or blah blah weird sci-fi concept that allows young and old Kirk to meet would be a huge distraction from what could potentially be a very nicely written straight-forward adventure story that establishes the characters in a new light (while giving the franchise a new lease on life).

Plus, unless they find an actor who is spitting image of Kirk when he was 30, then the audience would have the same reaction as with Nemesis:

That’s a younger Kirk? It looks nothing like the older Kirk! What a gimmick! Wow, Matt Damon didn’t age very well.

Basically, if Bill’s not in it – I’m not interested.

#19 – Beautifully stated, thanks.


I see alot of you think Shatner shouldn’t be in the movie. And yet, 63% of people checking out these boards have voted that he should be in it as Kirk.

I think the majority have spoken! Shatner should be in the movie.



I have no interest in baiting anyone into an argument, nor do I percieve my opinion to be the only one, and have never stated that, it seems more often than not people shift the focus and attention to ME somehow rather than I bringing attention to myself.
Be that as it may, I am genuinely curious for someone that enjoys the later Trek series to attempt to explain to me how those series can be equated in any way,shape, or form with TOS, or even Next Generation for that matter in quality, relevance, and cultural impact.
It isn’t an attempt to be trite or callous, I’m genuinely curious.
Are supporters of these shows so embarassed to try to explain why they infact like the show that they immediately assume someone wanting to know why they like it is trying to ellicit an argument?
If someone asked me why I enjoy Star Trek, I would be banned for spamming, such would be the length of my personal dissertation on my affinity for Trek. I would go on and on.

So again, why do people that enjoy Voyager, Enterprise, Insurrection, or Nemesis infact enjoy it? What are the percieved redeeming qualities, what stands out, what impacts, what is worth remembering?

Before someone is bashed for wanting to know, at least explain the reasons for liking these shows, and maybe we can figure out why they were cancelled or tanked at the box office, and what is ultimately to blame. For if these shows and films didn’t stink to high heaven and back, then there must be a greater problem going on with Star Trek.

To me what’s really important is that the next Trek movie has a great story, regardless if Shatner and Nimoy are involved.

TOS was and will always be more than just Kirk and Spock. When I here people clamoring to have them in the new movie I think…what about the other original cast members?

TOS was great because of the ensemble cast of great characters, and the many find performances of not only Shatner and Nimoy, but all the actors from TOS.

I would truly like to see ALL the surviving TOS members take one final curtain call in this movie, but in cameo roles only. This way they don’t have to come up with a script that brings Kirk back from the dead etc.

Though I didn’t like the movie version of Lost in Space at all, I did like that all the surviving original cast members were invited to have small cameo roles in the film. That’s what I would like to see happen in Star Trek XI.

Mike :o

Why is everyone dissing on the fatness that is The Shat?

I’m flabbergasted.

William Shatner has more Trek in his left his ass cheek than most of us have combined in hours spent watching the series, dollars spent on video games, toys, memorabilia, potential dating partners missed because we are geeks, etc etc.

You talk about traitorous, disloyal….stabbing him in the back the first chance you get…..I……wouldn’t have believed it.

I’m sensing a generational thing going on here.
It seems those chiming in slandering the fatness that is the Shat were raised on diet Trek, Trek-One, just one calorie Trek, Quasi-Trek, while those that experienced full-fledged Shatness yearn and long for his bloated return in glory to glory.

This film should BEG the fat Shat to be in it. To shine in it. To swagger and waddle his girth through every frame, belching clipped dialogue like only someone reading from a cue card can.

How can it be Star Trek without Fat Shat?
We have gone down that long road before, getting from there to here, and there was a fork!

Star Trek doesn’t seem to work very well without his bloatedness. People can cry and bitch about that apparent reality, but at the end of the day after your prayers are said, the apparent truth remains, lest they wouldn’t be resurrecting the character.

No one cares about John Luck Pickard
No one cares about Benjamin Cisco ( That shit should be illegal)
No one cares about kathryn Lameway
No one cares about Jonathon Asser (Would you serve someone named Jonathon?? How effiminate can one be?)

The truth is rarely popular at first. Certainly not accepted. That is an axiom.
There is a REASON modern era Trek failed and the producers and those that make the decisions are going back to Kirk and crew. It WORKED.

How many are old enough to remember New Coke? That shit lasted all of two months, yanked from the stores.

If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.

With all of the multitudes of things one given a blank check could do within the Star Trek universe, why Kirk and crew? Especially someone as talented as Abrams? Why?
It worked.

People can accuse me of being a bully, talking for everyone else, etc etc ad yawnium, regardless of what one thinks of me, the message remains, modern Trek failed, it wasn’t deemed successful, it’s time to move on.

Can you make a Superman movie without Superman?
Can you make an Indiana Jones movie without Indiana Jones?
Can you make a Gremlins movie without Gremlins?
Does Nascar NOT suck?

They tried making films without Kirk, it didn’t blow over very well.

When in doubt, It’s time to get back to basics.

If they don’t put these guys into the new movie, why don’t they just go the Direct-to-DVD route and make a movie with these two staring in it. Sure it wouldn’t be released in theatres, but so what. Guaranteed it would be the best selling Direct-to-DVD movie of all time!

…and heck, they could even make a sequel or two with Shatner and Nimoy if the Direct-to-DVD movie was successful. Shatner and Nimoy would stand to make much more money going this route than with cameos in the new movie, and Paramount would make tons of cash.

Ya don’t tug on Supermans cape, ya don’t spit in the wind, ya don’t pull the mask off the ole Lone Ranger and ya don’t make Star Trek films without Shatness.

I offer an olive branch to all the Neo-Trekkers out there that don’t want his Shatness in the film, or who prefer modern Trek to Classic Trek –

If Shatner can just bless the film by rubbing his ass all over the script so it has that distinctive stench of Shat, I’d be content.

I’d say that’s a fair compromise.

Josh T… dude, I have got to hand it to you…. you have written two of the funniest, most entetaining lines I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading on a message board:

1. William Shatner has more Trek in his left his ass cheek than most of us have combined in hours spent watching the series….

2. If Shatner can just bless the film by rubbing his ass all over the script so it has that distinctive stench of Shat, I’d be content.

HAHAHAHAHHAA…. I’m laughing again, even I cut and paste them here. Keep those funny, passionate, hysterical posts coming.

And yes, I did go through a period several years back where I began to hate Shatner as much as I love Kirk. But of late, I find the SHATNESS growing on me… like one of those really nice cases of jock itch… you know the kind I mean… where you wait all day to scratch, because you know that when you finally do, it’s gonna be heaven….

Oh my God… am I REALLY going to post this? Hahahahahah!

Josh T is effin right! There is no way star trek can survive without the fat shat, and since abrams version won’t feature him whats the point?!

The script is going through a budgetary rewrite = No Shatner and no Nimoy. Put their 10 million paychecks back into production.

So he’s down to “meaningful in some small way.” Sounds like the studio folks are not being pushovers.

If Shatner and Nimoy want to make their own Star Trek flick, there’s nothing stopping them. Fan films are made all the time. “Of Gods and Men” is being released next month on the web.

I’m sorry… but the thought of someone else playing the parts of Kirk and Spock remind me of when Robin Curtis was brought in to play Savik. Don’t get me wrong… I love Robin Curtis, but her interpretation of Savik just didn’t work for me. Kirstie took that part and made it her own. After her, anyone else playing it would be a letdown. The same holds true for Shatner, Nimoy, Doohan, etc. They took their characters and made them their own. Part of the legacy of these characters is because of the actors that were playing them. Having them played by someone else is just asking for disappointment.

So my question is… why the prequel in the first place??? Is Hollywood having a writer’s block? Is the only way they can make something interesting is to take existing characters and explore their past? What fun is an impending doomsday moment when you know the character is going to survive??? HAS TO SURVIVE because if he didn’t… well… there goes 40 years of continuity. I had the same issue with George Lucas going back and making three prequels to the original Star Wars. Wasn’t much fun for me… I knew Darth was going to die in #6, Obi-Wan was going to die in #4… so it didn’t matter what peril they were put into during the three prequels… you knew they were going to survive. Well, anything they put this “new” TOS cast into is going to be the same…. maybe lots of adventure, but you already know the outcome. At the most, we might find out the exact moment when the Enterprises’ nacelles were changed from spikes to rotating disks with pulsing light. Or maybe we’ll see the maint. crew come in and remove the gooseneck devices from the bridge.

I guess maybe I just don’t get it. My friends could never understand why I never saw Titanic. I told them there was no use… I knew what happened at the end… the ship sank. They told me there was so much more to it.. a love story… adventure. Didn’t matter for me… I already knew the ending of the movie… the ship sank. So no matter what happens in ST:XI… I guess I won’t need to see it… I pretty much know what happens… Kirk survives until ST:GEN, Spock lives on to unify Vulcan and Romulus; Sulu moves up in rank to take command of the Excelsior.

Eleven other ships in the starfleet waiting to have their stories told (at least the ones that weren’t destoryed in TOS). If we must go back into the Star Trek past, I’d rather see something about these other ships. Then I could concentrate on the movie instead of spending my whole time comparing the new Kirk to the old Kirk.


Kirstie Alley was demanding a paycheck higher than what Nichols, Koenig, and Takei were getting COMBINED. It was outrageous. According to your logic, Paramount should have accepted her outrageous demands, gone over-budget, and made less profit. That is just unreasonable from a studio point-of-view.

I never said that Paramount should have brought her into STIII. What I did say was that Kirstie took the Savik role and made it shine. There is no denying that the Savik role was a great part of the movie. Should Kirstie’s demands have been given in to to bring her back into STIII? No. Should they have taken the Savik character out of STIII and put another character in it’s place? Yes. Unlike STII, the Savik character was “weak” in STIII, and changing that character to some other character would not have been difficult. It would have made for a more enjoyable viewing experience. I remember the first time I saw STIII in the theater, and during the movie, there was a lot of grumbling from the audience about how the Savik character had changed. If they had just changed the character to someone else, the audience would have accepted it better.

The more I think about it, the more I would rather see Shatner and Nimoy in a Direct-to-DVD movie. I normally don’t do this sort of thing, but what the hell. Here is what I would do:

1. Get David Carson to direct the film (he directed Generations, and is a good director of Trek). This would make it easier to use footage from Generations.

2. Start the DVD film with the deleted Orbital Skydiving Kirk scene. This would be a fun way to start the film, and lets you have a brand new scene with Scotty and Chekov in it.

3. Use the Enterprise B scenes (with some minor edits) to show how Kirk gets into the Nexxus.

4. Move the story 10 years into the future from Kirk’s disappearance. Have Spock trying to solve what happened to him. You could even have him (or Uhura) interviewing survivor Guinan to gain knowledge on the incedent.

5. Have Spock go to the Excelsior to see Sulu with Chekov and Uhura. Have them track down the Nexxus and try to retrieve Kirk. Have them almost succeed, but then fail.

6. Travel 70 years into the future (after NEMESIS) . Spock feels himself being drawn to the Nexxus by Kirk. He travels to it and finds a way to safely enter it and retrieves Kirk.

I would rather see this than a cameo in a new Trek film. This could also allow the old crew to make a few Direct to DVD sequels if they wanted too! Plus, as well as using existing footage from Generations, they might be able to use the new Enterprise bridge set from TREK 11 for some scenes inside the NEXXUS, where Kirk visits his old ship.

#39: “Kirstie Alley was demanding a paycheck higher than what Nichols, Koenig, and Takei were getting COMBINED. ”

That Alley’s salary demands were exorbitant was what the usual suspects claimed, and credulous fans just go for that kind of thing.

If it’s true that Alley wanted more money than Nichols, Koenig and Takei were getting combined – that would *not* have been an exorbitant or outrageous demand. She was worth every penny of that, given her part in ST II and the potential her character represented for the Franchise…potential that was, of course, calculatedly pissed away in the following films so as not to interfere with the gravy train.

Shatner and Nimoy will play their own grandfathers – the only way it could work

I agree Dennis. Kirstie’s interpretation of Savik had great potential. It would have been interesting to see if her playing Savik in ST:III would have changed the “mood” a bit… given it a little more “umph”. But this brings me back to what I was trying to say… once an actor takes a character and makes it his or her own… and for the amount of time that the TOS actors have “owned” their characters, it is hard to find the line that separates the two. Given the amount of time that separates TOS from the first movie, I think I could handle having a new cast taking the roles AFTER TOS rather than before it.

Shatner would impeach a new Kirk’s performance

Shatner is telling Abrams (with these bi weekly videos) that he wants into ST XI.

Get it done.

Kirk deserves a better ending.

84% of the people want Shatner back in ST XI.

The people have spoken.

I really don’t see where it’s up to anyone to sell you on the merits of the younger Trek series. I and others have answered your questions in the past on and you either don’t see the response or choose not to answer. I suspect no one can satisfy your query to your satisfaction, so why try again?
And I don’t understand your posts. First you want someone to answer your curiosity because you genuinely want to know, then in a following post you say no one cares for _____ (list of misspelled ST captain’s names).
Speaking for myself. I enjoy all the Treks, TV and Movies. Some had more to offer than others, some were dogs, some shone brightly. The rest of my opinions on Trek have been posted regularly for the past several months.

Having Shatner be a narrator would be a major disappointment. Anyone can be a narrator. I can be the narrator. Only William Shatner can play an older Kirk. I do agree that it’s not necessary to have Shatner play a scene with younger Kirk. That’s not important. Shatner’s scenes should be in the future era.