Shatner Is Everywhere, Shatner Is Everything: The SequelBy Michelle
April 26, 2007 - 9:34 PM
William Shatner (Captain Kirk) is a busy man. In addition to his role as Denny Crane on Boston Legal, which ABC recently announced will return in the fall for a fourth season, he is involved in several charity and philanthropic events as well as a number of public appearances.
StarTrek.com has posted a round-up of Shatner news and appearances, including a charity horse show this weekend and a June appearance on a new reality series where celebrities drive stock cars.
This year's Hollywood Charity Horse Show, the 17th, takes place on Saturday, April 28th at the Equestrian Center in Burbank. Activities include horse stunts and equine entertainment, a silent auction including Star Trek memorabilia and a dinner party featuring Grammy-winning Western music and comedy group Riders in the Sky. The fundraiser benefits therapeutic programs for handicapped and underprivileged children. Though tickets to the dinner are $250, admission to the arena show are only $20 and Shatner states that every penny goes directly to the charities, with event costs covered by sponsors like Wells Fargo and other sponsors. HorseShow.org has more information.
Shatner was recently honoured for his philanthropic work in the US and Israel at a black-tie gala near Palm Springs. The ninth annual Rick Weiss Humanitarian Awards raised more than $3 million for charity along with a silent auction and celebrity golf tournament. Shatner noted that it was a privilege to use his fame to do good work, saying that he believed fundraising to be a necessary burden.
For fans looking for some Shatner fun, the actor will take part in Fast Cars & Superstars, an ABC summer series where athletes and entertainers are taught stock-car racing by well-known drivers. The celebrities, including quarterback John Elway, tennis pro Serena Williams and singer Jewel, will compete against each other during the finale. "I jumped at the chance to be involved in the Gillette Young Guns Celebrity Race...it's every American boy's dream to get behind the wheel of a stock car," Shatner said on the 2007 Gillette Young Guns web site.
Shatner will also be featured in two museums: the UPPERCASE Gallery in Calgary, Alberta, which plans "The Shatner Show," starting in June and featuring art inspired by Shatner from illustrators across North America. In the words of illustrator Genevieve Simms, "If I had to compare Bill to an inanimate object and/or substance it would be polyester — an incredibly durable fabric that may not always be so fashionable but will continue to cycle itself through second-hand stores and vintage shops to continuously be discovered by new admirers for all of eternity."
Shatner has endorsed the project, explaining, "Every artist has their muse. Leonardo was inspired by the ceiling in the great chapel. Michelangelo found his art in the Italian marble. Who am I to stand in the way of all these fine artists and artisans who want to use my lumpy, aging face for inspiration?" Sales of the artwork will benefit the Hollywood Charity Horse Show; information may be found here, along with images of Shatner from the exhibit.
In addition, Riverside, Iowa - the self-proclaimed future birthplace of James T. Kirk — is hoping to construct a Star Trek museum. The town already hosts an annual festival each June celebrating its most famous not-yet-born resident, and a local bar boasts a plaque claiming that Kirk will be conceived on the premises.
And for people who like to see Shatner promoting space: the final frontier, the actor will visit Chicago in July to speak on "Outer Space: Beyond the Planet" at a World Transhumanist Association conference. The gathering attracts inventors, policy leaders and self-proclaimed futurists. Actor and environmentalist Ed Begley Jr. (Henry Starling) will speak at the conference as well. Transvision2007.com has more information.