Today, William Shatner boldly went where he’d never been before, The Oprah Winfrey Show. Shatner was featured as one of Oprah’s ‘TV icons’ series. The show also included Happy Days’ Fonzie, Henry Winkler and soap opera singing sensation Rick Springfield (who was also Zac on the original Battlestar Galactica). No big news (besides seeing Shatner using a cane) and no questions about the new movie, but was still interesting to see Shatner in this environment.
UPDATE: VIDEO of Shat on Oprah
Shat’s got a new hip
The Shatner segment began with a retrospective his characters, from Star Trek to Boston Legal. It is unfortunate that during this video montage, Oprah, who utilizes her show to bring more understanding and compassion, chose to present stereotypical images of Star Trek fans. When Shatner did appear, it was to an enthusiastic audience, although many were surprised to see him walk in with a cane. Shatner would explain during the interview that he had his hip replaced about four weeks prior to the show. Shatner began by discussing wife Elizabeth’s (in attendance) and his fascination with Oprah. He admitted to having her show on his TiVo and keeping issues of Oprah his bathroom, which he mentioned was a compliment.
Shatner and Oprah (you can see the cane on the left)
Shatner: I ‘used to be’ Kirk
Shatner talked briefly about Star Trek and Captain Kirk. He said that he “used to be Captain Kirk,” perhaps an indirect expression of regret about not being in the new film. He also said “I guess I am here because I was Captain Kirk. The celebrity it brought me made everything else possible.” It is interesting to compare Winkler’s very positive feelings towards The Fonz to Shatner’s somewhat lukewarm description of his character.
As is her custom, Oprah gave away a free copy of the first season of the original Star Trek on HD DVD to everyone in the audience. She showed a few scenes of the remastered show, telling the audience about the new visual effects and picture quality.
You get a TOS DVD and you get a TOS DVD and you get a TOS DVD
Shatner’s charity and bio
Shatner though showed his charity mindedness, which is one his most genuine and endearing traits. He explained that after passing his kidney stone, his doctor said “I’ve got it.” Shatner replied, “Give it to me. It’s mine!” He was contacted by a gambling website interested in purchasing the stone for display, and Shatner negotiated a price of $75,000. His friends at Boston Legal donated another $20,000, and Shatner donated $95,000 to Habitat for Humanity. The result? A house was purchased for a family in the New Orleans area.
Shatner also talked about his May 2008 book entitled Up Till Now (see related Trekmovie.com story). The book includes a list of qualities he used to hope for in his wife when he was a younger man. When Oprah asked if he ever met a woman with these qualities, he looked at his wife and affirmed that he did marry the ideal woman.
Shatner returns soon to film more episodes of Boston Legal and begins work on his new talk show very soon.
A short clip of Shatner behind the scenes is available on on Oprah’s Youtube channel:
“Up Till Now” is available now for pre-order at Amazon