As “Captain Kirk”, William Shatner became a “Star Trek” icon. Now the actor actually flies into space. At the age of 90 he will now be the oldest person who has ever been in space.
It should be a successful PR coup for the Amazon founder. Jeff Bezos sends the “Stark Trek” icon William Shatner into space with his space capsule this Wednesday. The 90-year-old Canadian actor became famous in particular as “Captain Kirk” on the “Starship Enterprise”. Now he has a ten-minute excursion into space ahead of him and thus a record in his sights.
Actually, the flight should have taken place on Tuesday, but had been postponed to this Wednesday due to stronger winds. Here you can see the start in the live stream:
William Shatner is a passenger on the second manned flight of the capsule “New Shepard”. The first in July, Bezos himself was on board, along with his brother Mark, an 82-year-old former US pilot and an 18-year-old Dutchman. Together with Shatner, the former NASA engineer Chris Boshuizen, the entrepreneur Glen de Vries and the deputy head of Blue Origin, Audrey Powers, took off.
According to the New York Times report, Shatner, citing the company – unlike Boshuizen and De Vries – did not have to pay any money for his ticket and was present as a “guest”. The space flight of the former “Captain Kirk” is seen as a PR coup for Bezos and his company Blue Origin.
1979: William Shatner as Captain James T. Kirk, Commander of the spaceship Enterprise, and Leonard Nimoy as crew member Spock from the planet Vulkan (source: dpa)
In 1966 Shatner first took on the role of “Captain James T. Kirk” in the science fiction series “Star Trek”. During his decade-long career, the actor repeatedly commanded the “Spaceship Enterprise”.
In the space capsule from Blue Origin, which flies largely automatically, it does not go through the “infinite expanses” of space and into “foreign galaxies”. It only flies about ten minutes about 100 kilometers above the earth above the west Texas desert, at times in weightlessness. Then the reusable capsule is slowed down by large parachutes and lands again. The International Aviation Association and other experts see 100 kilometers above the earth as the limit to space, but there are no binding regulations.
In advance, Blue Origin published a photo of the four participants of the all excursion in blue spacesuits and a video that shows Shatner during the preparations and together with Bezos via the short message service Twitter. The adventure is “life-changing” for him, says Shatner. “It seems like there is a lot of interest in the fictional character ‘Captain Kirk’ actually going into space – so let’s go with it and enjoy it.”