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How friendship imploded for ‘Star Trek’ icons Shatner, Nimoy

Are the core values of “Star Trek” too far out of this world?

The hit tv and movie franchise — which marks the fifty fifth anniversary of the unique collection premiere with Star Trek Day on Wednesday, Sept. 8 — has lengthy preached the progressive mantras of inclusivity, respect and friendship. But for William Shatner, who performed Captain (and later Admiral) James T. Kirk, and the late Leonard Nimoy, as Vulcan science officer Mr. Spock, friendship wasn’t at all times a stellar success.

In a Paramount+ interview to tease remastered variations of the primary 4 franchise movies — “Star Trek: The Motion Picture,” “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan,” “Star Trek III: The Search for Spock” and “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home” — Shatner opened up about his and Nimoy’s five-decade bond since their present first debuted in 1966.

William Shatner (left) as Captain James T. Kirk and Leonard Nimoy as Mr. Spock within the authentic “Star Trek” collection.
©Paramount/Courtesy Everett Collection

“Leonard was my dearest friend. I loved Leonard Nimoy. We had success, envy, anger, love, passion,” Shatner shared about his friendship with Nimoy, who died in 2015 at age 83.

“I loved Leonard as my dearest brother,” he continued. “When he died, a part of me died.”

Their on-screen portrayals even paralleled that. In his tear-jerking loss of life scene in “The Wrath of Khan,” Nimoy’s Spock faced a sorrowful Admiral Kirk and proclaimed, “I have been — and always shall be — your friend,” earlier than passing to the good Vulcan past with a droop (and uttering his iconic phrase, “Live long and prosper”).

However, “always” was apparently not the case for Shatner and Nimoy.

Nimoy’s son, Adam Nimoy, instructed The Post in 2016 that their relationship had its supernova moments, regardless of Shatner’s starry image.

“I think Bill and Dad loved each other, but they had their ups and downs,” Adam, 65, mentioned. 

Shatner even missed his supposed BFF’s funeral, saying he felt “really awful” about it however had a prior charity commitment to fulfill instead.

And Shatner — who at 90 continues to be working his butt off — revealed in a 2016 e-book, “Leonard: My Fifty-Year Friendship with a Remarkable Man,” that he and his oft-castmate have been estranged within the final 5 years of Nimoy’s life. In the e-book, Shatner chalked it as much as making an attempt to incorporate Nimoy in a “Star Trek”-related documentary with out his permission.

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter that year, Shatner referenced the doc however finally claimed ignorance about their rift. “I don’t know why he stopped talking to me,” calling the flip of occasions “sad” and “permanent.”

He added that he had however one trinket with which to recollect his good friend.

“I have nothing of Leonard’s. I have no ‘Star Trek memorabilia at all.’ I have a picture of him and me laughing in my office,” a seemingly forlorn Shatner instructed THR. “I have the echo of the laughter that we had between us but that’s all that I have.”

From left: DeForest Kelley, Walter Koenig, William Shatner, James Doohan and George Takei within the 1984 franchise movie “Star Trek III: The Search for Spock.”
John Shannon / ©Paramount / courtesy Everett Collection

Of course, Nimoy wasn’t the one one who has reportedly scorned Shatner.

“Star Trek” actor George Takei, 84, has famously carried a grudge together with his former co-star for many years and has referred to as him “very self-centered.” Shatner, in the meantime, has once more claimed ignorance of their dustup, saying of Takei: “There’s such a sickness there, it’s so painfully obvious that there’s a psychosis there. I don’t know what his original thing about me was, I have no idea.” 

And 84-year-old actor Walter Koenig, who performed Ensign Pavel Chekov within the authentic collection, declined an interview with The Post’s TV Editor Michael Starr for a biography of Shatner that he was writing in 2016. “Unless you will have several photos in your book showing Mr. Shatner having sex with a horse, I must politely decline,” Koenig tartly replied to Starr’s request. Shatner also reportedly blocked Starr on Twitter and “put the kibosh” on an interview with one of many actor’s longtime associates.

More just lately, the household of the late collection creator Gene Roddenberry continues to be miffed with a December 1986 “Saturday Night Live” skit wherein Shatner — enjoying a disgruntled himself at a sci-fi conference — instructed “Star Trek” cosplayers to “get a life … For crying out loud, it’s just a TV show. I mean, look at you. Look at the way you’re dressed. You’ve turned an enjoyable little job I did as a lark for a few years into a colossal waste of time.”

In an interview timed to Star Trek Day and the present’s fifty fifth anniversary, Roddenberry’s son, Rod, final week instructed the Hollywood Reporter that whereas he didn’t “condemn” it and referred to as it “all fun,” he additionally “never really appreciated that skit because I think it was demeaning to the fans,” including that it was “disrespectful.”

Diehard Trekkies, nevertheless, could not even care anymore.

For the present’s anniversary — and the franchise’s still-starstruck fan base — Paramount+ has lined up a two-hour livestreaming celebration — kicking off at 8:30 p.m. ET Wednesday from LA and hosted by “Star Trek: The Next Generation” alum Wil Wheaton and Mica Burton, daughter of “Next Gen” actor (and would-be “Jeopardy!” visitor host) LeVar Burton. The occasion will include greater than a dozen panel discussions and different occasions with cast members and creatives from the franchise and can function “surprise appearances, announcements and reveals.” (Count on beforehand unseen clips and trailers for upcoming exhibits.)

The free livestream will probably be obtainable at StarTrek.com/Day, on Paramount+ and on the network’s Twitch page. It can even be obtainable in a while Paramount+ and its YouTube web page.

In addition, for each one who tweets utilizing the hashtag #StarTrekUnitedGives that day, $1 will probably be donated by Paramount and the Roddenberry Foundation to organizations that “do the real-world work of championing equality, social justice, the arts and innovation.”

Star Trek Day panels will embody:

  • STAR TREK: PRODIGY,” with series voice cast together with Brett Gray and Dee Bradley Baker, together with government producers Kevin and Dan Hageman and co-executive producer/director, Ben Hibon.
  • STAR TREK: DISCOVERY,” with series stars Wilson Cruz, Blu del Barrio and Ian Alexander and co-showrunner and government producer Michelle Paradise.
  • STAR TREK: STRANGE NEW WORLDS,” with collection stars Anson Mount, Rebecca Romijn and Ethan Peck, who will probably be joined by co-showrunners and government producers Akiva Goldsman and Henry Alonso Myers.
  • STAR TREK: LOWER DECKS,” with voice cast members Noël Wells and Eugene Cordero alongside collection creator, showrunner and government producer Mike McMahan.
  • STAR TREK: PICARD,” with series stars Patrick Stewart and Jeri Ryan, co-showrunner and government producer Akiva Goldsman and a particular dwell efficiency from Isa Briones, singing “Blue Skies,” which was featured within the PICARD season one finale.
  • RODDENBERRY LEGACY PANEL, that includes a dialog with Gene Roddenberry’s son and the CEO of Roddenberry Entertainment, Rod Roddenberry, alongside Gates McFadden (“Star Trek: The Next Generation”), LeVar Burton (“Star Trek: The Next Generation”) and George Takei (“Star Trek: The Original Series”), as they talk about the “Star Trek” creator’s indelible affect on science fiction and tradition.