Our Most Notable Personality: William Shatner

Grumpybear By Grumpybear, 9th Jun 2013 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Celebrities>Personalities

Actor, author, musician, songwriter, film director, spokesman, comedian, voice actor, William "Bill" Shatner is a pop icon that is one of the most widely recognizable celebrities of today. He also is just a man who is a father and grandfather.
He gained worldwide fame and became a cultural icon playing James T. Kirk in the World Premier movie version Star Trek, of the television series of Star Trek, which lasted only 3 seasons, but had a cult following of "trekkie fans".


Born March 22, 1931 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada in the Cote Saint Luc neighborhood. Son of Anne (Garmaise) and Joseph Shatner, a clothing manufacturer. He has 2 sisters, Joy and Farla. All of Shatner's grandparents were Jewish immigrants from Europe and Shatner was raised in Conservative Judaism. Wolf Schattner, his paternal grandfather anglicized the name to "Shatner".

Early Life

Shatner studied economics and graduated from McGill University in Montreal with a Degree in Commerce. He became the manager of the Mountain Playhouse in Montreal before joining the Canadian National Repertory Theatre in Ottawa. He studied as a classical Shakespearean actor.

Marriage and Children

In 1956 he married fellow Canadian Gloria Rand. They had 3 children. The marriage broke up in March 1969, when Gloria filed for divorce.


Shatner was first cast as Captain James T. Kirk for the second pilot of Star Trek, called "Where No Man Has Gone Before". The series lasted 3 seasons, from 1966 to 1969.After the series was canceled, Shatner took any work he could to provide for his family. In the early 70s he found it hard to find work as he was somewhat typecast from his role as Kirk. With very little money and few acting prospects, he began living in the back of a truck bed camper in the San Fernando Valley for a while until small roles turned into higher-paying jobs. Shatner refers to this part of his life as "that period", a humbling one during which he would take any odd job, including small party appearances, to support his family.
In late 70's, with so many of the world becoming Star Trek fans, he had a cult following that knew no bonds, Star Trek Premier Movies were made and there began a love affair of the people and William Shatner.

Shatner's Life

Fame has not changed William Shatner very much. He will still greet you with a smile. He is a passionate man over his causes. For many years he has cared about the planet and its environs. The Great Barrier Reef is one of his causes. A caring man he started a charity for handicapped kids and horses. Since 1990 he has been a leading force behind the Hollywood Charity Horse Show, which raises money for children's charities.
Shatner enjoys breeding and showing American Saddlebreds and Quarter Hoses, He has a horse farm near Versailles, Kentucky where he raises American Saddlebreds. The farm's activities help benefit the Central Kentucky Riding for Hope "Horses for Heroes" program.


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Meet the author

author avatar Grumpybear
Basically a pragmatist who is what you see is what you get kind of person. Interests:Religion, Health, Art, Reading, animals, and the environment as well as Photography. Easy Discouraged as right now.

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author avatar Mariah
17th Jun 2013 (#)

Remember him well in Star Trek, and in movies over the years. Great actor!
He sounds like a pretty good guy too, nice to learn that he adds his fame tag in doing so much good for others less fortunate.
Great read Grumpybear.

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author avatar Trillionaire
17th Jun 2013 (#)

He is a very nice person. Great write.

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author avatar sukkran
18th Jun 2013 (#)

thanks for introducing this great canadian artist. an interesting read.

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author avatar Delicia Powers
18th Jun 2013 (#)

I very much enjoy this article and am a long time fan of his...thanks Grumpybear...

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author avatar Terry Trainor
18th Jun 2013 (#)

One of my hero's. He is a very funny man too. He appears on QI often and makes the show. Great write, great person. Thank you.

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author avatar Johnny Knox
19th Jun 2013 (#)

Excellent biography and a interesting read!

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author avatar philpalm
19th Jun 2013 (#)

Good aspect about him loving horses. So saddlebreeds is just ordinary horses that people can ride?

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