William Shatner To Guest Host UK News Comedy Show + Fights Tinnitus Aquired Filming Star Trek

Not content with sitting idle, 81 year old Star Trek veteran William Shatner is set to guest host an episode of the long running UK panel show "Have I Got News For You." More details on that below, plus video of Bill’s latest appearance on The Tonight Show, and find out how Shatner is fighting the tinnitus he got fighting a giant lizard on Star Trek.


William Shatner To Guest Host UK News Comedy Show

William Shatner is set to take up hosting duties for Have I Got News For You for the episode to be aired on Friday 25th May 2012 at 9pm on BBC One. The current affairs panel show is airing its 43rd series (or season as they say in the colonies). Have I Got News For You is a comedy panel show which pokes fun at the news headlines of the past week, and has had a rotating guest host for each episode for the last few years. Regular team captains include the editor of a current affairs magazine Ian Hislop and stand-up comedian Paul Merton. The show is treated as a light-hearted look at the news.

This isn’t the first time that Star Trek and the show has crossed paths, Benedict Cumberbatch, who is guest starring in the, as-yet untitled Star Trek sequel film, hosted the show last year:

Have I Got News For You airs on Fridays at 9pm on BBC One in the UK, with an extended edition – Have I Got a Bit More News For You, is broadcast on Saturday evenings (check listings for exact time). As always, the show is available on the BBC iPlayer for 7 days after it is first broadcast (UK only, sorry everyone else).

By the way, Bill will be in Europe the week before his appearance on Have I Got News For You as one of the Star Trek guests for the annual FedCon convention in Dusseldorf, Germany.

Bill Fights Tinnitus He Got Fighting The Gorn

In other Bill news, Shatner has created a support team for this years Jack Vernon Walk to Silence Tinnitus. The team is raising money to fight the disease and each contribution is matched. On the team page, Bill explains his fight with the ear-ringing condition and how he can blame Star Trek for getting it:

My tinnitus began while I was filming the Star Trek episode “Arena.” I was too close to a special effects explosion and it resulted in tinnitus. There were days when I didn’t know how I would survive the agony. I was so tormented by the screeching in my head I really thought I would not be able to go on. But then a ray of light burst into my life – the American Tinnitus Association. The help they gave me literally saved my life.

Shatner suffered from tinnitus ever since he blew away the Gorn in "Arena"

 Shatner on Tonight Show

Finally, Bill was on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno last week. This time instead of doing "Can You Thrill Bill?" he was a guest and talked to Jay about his latest horse competition wins, turning 81, Priceline and more. Jay also showed a clip of Bill singing about getting stoned on the Dinah Shore Show. Watch both parts below (if you are in the USA).




Source: Digital Spy.


Ronan O’Flaherty is an Irish-based Star Trek fan and broadcaster. You can hear him worldwide every Saturday, 4pm to 7pm (BST) on Buzz Radio.


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Anohter Shatner story? Really?

I would have guessed Bill’s tinnitus was from the planet set on “That Which Survives.”
He’s set to guest star on the season three premiere of “Rookie Blue.” Promos already running. I think that airs May 24th…

Darn! You beat me!

Yea, what the hell does Shatner have to do with Star Trek anyway.

More than Stewart anyway ;-)

Far more than non-trek movies.

Great. Always.

I’m sorry to hear Bill Shatner got tinnitus from “Arena.” “Arena” is one of my favorite TOS episodes. Plenty of action. Thought provoking. Love the questions of whether the Federation was right. That’s great Star Trek.



Ever notice the story similarities in “Arena” and the movie “Predator”? Except the Predator was a sore loser… *beep… *beep… *beep…

When it comes to Star Trek. The Shat will alway’s be a part of it. Even if he is not currently in the new movie. So I say to Anthony. Keep all of the Shat Stories coming. For those who don’t like the Shat. Don’t read the Article.

10 minutes into “Have I Got News For You” clip, they start joking about Klingon politics. It’s a funny show and Brits seem to know more about trek than the average Yank.

Go William Shatner!

Well, we’ve had stories about Leonard Nimoy on this site and it turns out that his tweets most likely had nothing to do with ST sequel and more to do with Fringe, which is NOT Star Trek.

William Shatner played the best captain in all of Starfleet – Captain James T Kirk! Nuff said.

Anyway, I like hearing about William Shatner’s charity work. Keep up the good work, Bill!

Whatever faults Shatner had in his earlier years, I think he has overcome many of them, and seems these days to be a very genuine person. He’s certainly much more honest about himself, and much more forthright. I’ve actually grown to like Bill a lot more over the years.

That being said, I still don’t want to see him in the new Trek film.

13. Me too. I used to despise the guy and he’s grown on me in the last decade or so. The self-mockery helps (and it’s made him a ton of money).

It’s always disappointing when actors aren’t like their characters (Bea Arthur used the c-word when describing TV buddy Betty White), which is almost always, or aren’t like they are on talk shows.

Star Trek: The Next Generation was/is very popular in Britain. It helped that the captain was played by a very English Patrick Stewart – good bit of casting there. Patrick Stewart has appeared at least twice on Top Gear (UK) within the last couple of years or so and both times he couldn’t avoid being reminded of being a certain Captain Jean-Luc Picard. The cheering from the live audience, of mostly car enthusiasts, was immense.

TNG developed the Klingon culture, which is why many Brit Trek lovers would be more familiar with it than perhaps other aspects of the Star Trek *universe*.

I remember reading way back that the tinnitus occurred during ‘That Which Survives’ too- there were quite a few explosions in that episode. Either way, that sucks for Shatner.

15. Keachick – not sure how this relates to William Shatner…? Though I will not dispute your facts.

Oh, I get it now. Sorry, I’m slow today.

I have mildish tinnitus, but have gotten used to it. His must’ve been bad to consider suicide.

It would be funny if Mr. Shatner’s character on Rookie Blue was T.J. Hooker.

I have tinnitus after many years of playing in bands that were louder than God. By the time I started wearing earplugs, it was too late. No matter where I go or what I do the ringing/buzzing is always with me. Sometimes getting to sleep is nightmarish. Sometimes I want to scream but I’m sure the volume would only aggravate the ringing.
When you have tinnitus — for which there is no cure — you have to learn to ignore it and try to “hear beyond it.” High blood pressure can make your ears ring, so you stay away from salt, or other things that can raise your blood pressure.
It’s a real pain in the… um, ears…

20. I hear he’s supposed to play a drunk driver. Probably not T.J. Hooker, but maybe he’ll do some hood jumping…?

Nimoy got tinnitus at the same time, but it didn’t affect him as much, according to Shatner: http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20122183,00.html

Shatner has it in his left ear and Nimoy has it in his right. There’s an explosion that lines up that way in Act I of Arena, after Shatner’s line, “We’ll have to make do with what we’ve got.” Ironically, when the explosion goes off, the actors are much farther from the camera than the stunt double who later performs Kirk’s dive into the foxhole.

#21 Technobabble:

I also have tinnitus after exposure to weapons fire and equipment noise in my military career over the last 25 years. It sounds like crickets in my ears all the time. Hopefully there will be a cure someday.


I wonder if Shatner has ever commiserated on this issue with Pete Townshend — another famous tinnitus sufferer and prevention and treatment advocate.

#21 & #23

Hate to sound like one of those medicine commercials, but have you guys tried Quietus? My dad says it helped his tinnitus.


#25 – Vultan

Yes, it is bogus. Multiple doctors both civilian and military say there is no cure. It Quietus really worked they would prescribe it.

My wife, God bless her, ordered some for me and I tried it for months with no relief.


The weird part about tinnitus is that my mother has it as well and yet, as far as I know, she was never exposed to loud music, gunfire, explosions etc. It drives her mad at times as well. She can’t hear what people say to her – we have to shout, or the TV and yet at other times, she is better and tells me not to shout…Ugh. I guess the noise in the ears is not as loud, as bad as at other times.

I’ll check out whether the company in NZ that makes homoeopathic remedies has something for tinnitus. Didn’t think of that…thanks.

Tinnitus and partial deafness from childhood after eating an entire bottle of orange flavored baby aspirin. I am just glad it wasn’t orange flavored Tylenol.
Adapted to it over the years, use white noise devices such as fans or radio /TV at a low level to help with sleep.

CNN- helping Tinnitus sufferers [and insomniacs] since 1980…

Bill on HIGNFY will be great. I may just have to watch from behind a cushion though. Paul and Ian can be pretty sharp. Bill is going to have to be on the ball.

13. Shilliam – he didn’t impress me much as a human being over the years though he was always good entertainment value. I revised my opinion largely over his compassion for animals, commencing from reading his autobiography where he describes getting involved with a bear hunt for a TV programme. Describing the moment of killing the creature, he expressed with great honesty his self-loathing at performing such a stupid, senseless act.

It certainly gave him another dimension rather than just as a flippant, self-absorbed individual. It comes across in his book that a lot of that exterior is a self-defence mechanism. That can often be the case with those who are at their core are more sensitive, feeling beings than they generally let on.

It’s not a weakness to show that.

This site will always cover The Shat…he is and will always be my captain.

…and The Sisko too

And I want to thank Ronan O’Flaherty for submitting the article. He will be doing some of our UK news. He helped out back with the London premeire back in 09 as well.

@Keachick– Your post reminded me of something I thought I’d never say after Nemesis (but time heals all wounds):

I wish there would be another TNG movie. It would be cool if they did a theatrical or TV movie in the era just before Spock goes back in time/alternate timeline. With Data commanding the Enterprise, Picard an Admiral, Riker on his ship….

I know… Brent Spiner is too old to play Data… but… surely he can say that he has implemented “aging” sub routines to better fit in with his colleagues.

Thanks Anthony for the welcome! I’ll try to help out when I can :)

A damn good Shat.

(Anyone who saw Cumberbatch’s edition of HIGNFY will get the joke!)

I thought that Shatner, Nimoy and Kelley all got tinnitus from filming in Arena — I always figured it was from the explosion where they were shooting the Legg’s panty hose thing at the beginning of the episode.


Do you know what has become of the sisko since his DUI? Did he get probation did he get a suspended jail sentence? Rehab? I have been trying to find out info since that first article

33. Anthony Pascale – May 9, 2012

This site will always cover The Shat…he is and will always be my captain.

Thanks much for that, Anthony. It saddens me how little respect some folk here have for Trek history, and Wm. Shatner is at THE center of that history. Best…Capt….period.

1. The kind of moron I absolutely hate being stuck on a bus with, yet never seem to avoid.

Re: 34

Or they could just make Spiner younger via CG. The technology for that is getting better.. Then he wouldn’t have to wear the contacts — which are very uncomfortable.

33 — “This site will always cover The Shat…he is and will always be my captain.”

Bravo, Anthony Pascale! Bravo!

$512. I hope Jay comp’d Bill for the dinner.

Always fun to spend time with the Shat. Probably won’t get to catch the new cop show, because I’m still working gawdawful early, but glad he’s on it.

Love Bill.
81 Eh? I bet he has’nt worked out for one day in his life.

And riding horses don’t count.

You have to be pretty fit to ride horses, especially as he does for competitions. I am amazed that William Shatner is still able to ride since his hip replacement. He also has arms of “steel” – that requires weight training – press ups, chin ups etc and he has always done running.

^44. “81 Eh? I bet he has’nt worked out for one day in his life.”

He was impressively in shape at age 47 in Star Trek: The Motion Picture. The much-derided uniforms hid nothing and Shatner made sure there was nothing to hide. He looked better than he did during much of the original series 10 years earlier.

A British ‘series’ is a bit different from an American season in that they have more than one series per year. HIGNFY is in its 43rd series but has only been running since the early 1990s. I’ve been to the artists’ entrance where they tape this show but don’t know I’ll go for him – from what I heard he refuses to sign autographs unless he’s getting paid at an event like a convention.