The man who originated the role of Captain Kirk on “Star Trek” in 1966 is boldly going where many have gone before: to a theater near you.
William Shatner’s critically acclaimed one-man show, “Shatner’s World,” will be presented for one night only on Thursday, April 24, at 7:30 p.m. local time in nearly 700 theaters across the U.S., including two theaters in Tulsa.
The show can be seen at the Cinemark theaters at 71st and Highway 169 and the one in Broken Arrow.
The two-hour event will take audiences on a retrospective tour through Shatner’s life and career through humor, Shatner’s signature storytelling and select musical numbers. This is the same one-man show Shatner has performed on Broadway and in cities across the U.S., and has called “one of the highlights of my life.”
“The core of the show is to say yes to life,” Shatner said during a conference call.
“To give this idea, this concept that life is precious and it needs to be embraced with both arms and smothered by you, because it’s over so quickly.”
Though there are emotional moments in the show, and deep secrets of the universe such as the eternal mystery of what happens after death are discussed, it’s also undeniably funny.
Shatner won’t brag, though, when asked how he developed his sense of humor.
“You’re born with a sense of humor, and it develops by practice,” Shatner said.
“I think that most animosity can be assuaged by humor. That’s the operating principle, I guess.”
For a man known as an award-winning actor, director, producer, writer, recording artist, philanthropist and horseman, one might think, what else is there?
For Shatner, the answer is everything.
“I haven’t done anything in life- I feel I’ve done nothing,” Shatner said.
“Being a performer, once the performance is over, it’s gone. It’s in the ether somewhere. It’s a challenge of redoing a performance that only you can remember, and the challenge is also whether or not there will be an audience.”
The original Captain Kirk marvels to this day at the storytelling that was so integral to captivating an audience at the beginning of the “Star Trek” franchise, and discussed the difference between movies then and the science fiction and fantasy on television and in movies today.
“The way technology has bloomed is extraordinary,” Shatner said. “In the epic films of today, where Cecil B. DeMille may have had 10,000 people in a shot, now they have 10.”
“And everything else is computerized. From that point of view, it (science fiction and fantasy on television and in movies today)’s far superior.”
Shatner emphasized, however, the essence of great science fiction is its humanity.
“We had some wonderful writers on ‘Star Trek,’ in many of the iterations of ‘Star Trek,’ who wrote human stories. Certainly the series that I was in had very bad special effects, compared to today. But that didn’t matter. The story suspended your disbelief and you accepted the wobbly sets and the silly spaceship.”
Tickets for “Shatner’s World” are available at participating theater box offices and online at www.FathomEvents.com.