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|Also Known As:||Bill Shatner,William Alan Shatner||Died:|
|Born:||March 22, 1931||Cause of Death:|
|Birth Place:||Montreal, Quebec, CA||Profession:||Cast ... actor novelist director producer TV host playwright assistant theater manager spokesman horse breeder|
A pop culture legend and one of American television's most enduring stars, the multi-talented William Shatner started out as simply an actor. By the twilight of his career, however, Shatner successfully managed to transmogrify into something more. By turning his amiable persona into a one-man, multi-million dollar cottage industry, Shatner's legacy in show business survived for more than five decades. Breaking into show business during television's golden age of drama in the 1950s, Shatner became a regular face on the guest star circuit before landing the role that would forever immortalize him; that of the dashing, supremely confident Captain James T. Kirk of "Star Trek" (NBC, 1966-69). After "Trek" went off the air, Shatner became haunted by the persistent spirit of the Enterprise captain, despite starring in seven "Star Trek" features, most notably "The Wrath of Khan" (1982) and "The Voyage Home" (1986). Eventually, however, he made peace with his famous alter ego and even learned to embrace Kirk for siring a new career for the actor as camp persona, which he put on display on albums with spoken word renditions of "Mr. Tambourine Man" and "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds." In the 1980s, he enjoyed a successful television run as "T.J. Hooker" (ABC, 1982-85; CBS, 1985-87) and later in his career, did a series of camp commercials for travel website Priceline. Naturally, he received acclaim for his Emmy-winning role as the eccentric attorney Denny Crane on the hit drama, "Boston Legal" (ABC, 2004-08), which underscored his uncanny ability to confound critics and exceed expectations of his delighted fans.
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