Shaka Zulu wrote:
It was a quote from an interview that he gave in 1964-1965, and it may have been truthful, for all we know; after all, he did star in Temple Houston two years previous.
was a western series. Westerns were very big business even in the early-to-mid 1960s, was held in relative high-regard and could lead to other things. "Space opera" was not thought highly off and many feared it could stop a career cold.
And again, many actors (even today) do pilots they hope will never be picked up or seen for the upfront money and to keep their faces in front of potential employers (you can't say "no" to everything).
As for Shatner, maybe doing movies like I Hate Your Guts and Incubus caused this to happen, as did the failure of his starring role in For the People in 1965.
Shatner, in many interviews, has stated he made some mis-steps and his career wasn't were he wanted or needed it to be (especially considering he had a family to support), therefore, he was saying "yes" to everything.
The Original Series cast didn't gain financial independence until they started making the films. Even then it took some longer than others.