William Shatner Interview; A Phony Critic's Controversy


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Captain Fantastic Free Enterpriseis a new film directed by Robert Meyer Burnett, and it's playing at theArt Greenwich starting Aug. 6. The film is a sort of coming-of-age story abouta couple of Trekkies and their misadventures with wine, women and more women. The movie features EricMcCormack, who also stars in a television show called Will & Grace.Some show I've never seen because the premise just sounds way too dumb.A gay guy and a straight girl sharing an affordable apartment in New York. Yeah,right. There are no affordable apartments in New York. The film's got a lotof other actors who play swell Trekkies. But the movie's real star is CaptainKirk. He's billed in the picture as "Bill," and the credits listhim as William Shatner. Why? I have no fucking clue. Anyway, Shatner does a greatjob playing some actor from Canada who at one time or another in his careerplayed a starship captain, but who's now looking to do a musical basedon the life and times of Caesar. I got to speak with JamesKirk via telephone. I assumed he was on his ship, his voice transported by subspacefrequencies. But his agent said he was in L.A. Hello? Hi! Captain Kirk! How areyou? Good, thanks! Are you inNew York, or here? Oh, New York. On Earth. What newspaper is this for? NYPress. We're kindalike the Village Voice, only... Yeah... Whatever happenedto the Voice? Oh, nothing. They just sucknow. Yeah, you don't hearabout them anymore. Okay, you're in thismovie, Free Enterprise. Uh huh. Yeah. So you're listedin the credits as "William Shatner." What's up with that? Whydoesn't it list your real name, Captain James T. Kirk? Because Captain Kirk isthe property of Paramount Studios, and belongs in a science fiction film calledStar Trek. This is Free Enterprise, and the story is two youngguys coming of age who always referred to William Shatner as their guru. Theyfinally meet him and he's very uncool-like. He's very un-guru-like. Well, speaking of propertyand stuff, I'm in a punk band called Furious George... That's you? Yeah, we're being suedby Houghton Mifflin, the owners of Curious George. And I was wondering if youknew what I should do. I mean, you probably have some experience in this sortof thing... What's their lawsuit? That "Furious"sounds too much like "Curious." Um, I would concentrateon the fact that you have "George" in common. And because the pervadingemotion is "furious," you would say George is no longer "curious,"he's "furious." The George you have in common, but the emotionis different. That seems to me to be the rationale on how to handle this situation. Thank you, Captain Kirk! [laughs] In Free Enterprise you doa great rap about Caesar. I didn't know they still had hiphop in the 23rdcentury. They don't. But thosewere my salad days. How did they find you forthe film? I thought Malcolm McDowell killed you. They found me under a largerock. And before you have any comment on that, the rock was actually rock 'n'roll. [laughs] You and Spock arelike the Big Jews in Space, right? We try to proselytize asmuch as possible. Right. How come the Enterpriseisn't shaped like a giant Star Of David? I mean, the saucer sectiondoes look like a bagel with lox, but... I was hoping you wouldn'tsay gherkin. Right. So, um, did you shaveyour chest back in the day? I shaved and oiled my chest. See, I wanna do that too!It looks really good! As a kid growing up, I always talked about doing thatto look like you and everyone would laugh at me. I bet it gets itchy, huh? Not if you use the rightoil. And what kind of oil isthat, Captain Kirk? Olive oil. It's kindof an old Italian secret. But you're Jewish! I know, but there are Jewish-Italians,you know. Do you think chicks dugyou because of your shaved chest, or was it the whole Jewish-captain-with-the-large-warp-drivething? No, it was my full mouth. Okay. I just finished readingyour book Get A Life! Plus now I'm reading your Star Trek Odyssey bookwith The Ashes Of Eden, The Return and Avenger. You're doing your researchafter the fact, huh? No. Actually I've beenreading them for a long time. It takes me fucking forever to read a book. Videogames keep interrupting. Anyway, I gotta ask you something. I gotta know thetruth. Did all those things really happen to you? To Captain Kirk? It all happened. Every wordI write has an element of truth behind it. Okay then, who gets morepussy, you or Captain Picard? Well, Captain Picard stickshis bald head where no man would go. So I guess he's irrational in hissearch. Nurse Chapel was reallyhot and... Oh, I can't wait tosee this in print... Nurse Chapel is hot. Sois that Yeoman Rand. Did you ever do a threesome with both of them? Um, no, they couldn'tcount to three. [laughs] Where the fuck was the bathroomon the Enterprise? What if you had to take a leak? Or go number two? We took a pill and vomitedin a closet. Is there punk rock in the23rd century? Well, um, there is punk.But rock has long since been disassociated. But there are a lot of punks around. If you fuck aliens fromother planets, do you still have to wear a condom? Safe sex is best practicedthroughout the universe. One last question... I hope so. Really, it is. Why doesStar Wars suck so bad? Because they have a glottalflap and they can't get the air down their throat as fast. Thank You Captain Kirk.Or William Shatner. Whatever. Oh, it's been my dubiouspleasure.





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