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Old April 4 2013, 02:47 PM   #1
137th Gebirg
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So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

There are a number of autobiographical books by Shatner: "Star Trek Memories", "Movie Memories", "Shatner Rules", "Up Till Now", etc. He's also been heavily involved with the Biography Channel, doing his "Raw Nerve" and "Aftermath" shows. If the Bio Channel decided to use those books as a framework for a telemovie about Shatner's life (and there is a TON of material they could draw from), I'm curious what actors does anyone think would be asked to portray him in various stages of his life? It occurred to me that it may be difficult finding people to accurately portray him - his unconventional personality and speech patterns, which is why I think Chris Pine kind of did his own thing, not trying to imitate a Shatner-like Kirk, but preserving some small mannerisms and gestures. Thoughts?
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Old April 4 2013, 03:00 PM   #2
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

The only person who could convincingly play William Shatner is William Shatner.
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Old April 4 2013, 03:02 PM   #3
137th Gebirg
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

Heh - agreed. I could easily see him playing himself in the sections exploring the latter part of his life (changing his toupee design, depending on the decade), provided he was still alive if/when such a project was produced. I'm just curious what actors might be viable to play a younger Shatner.
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Old April 4 2013, 03:14 PM   #4
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

They'd probably get some nobodies to play Shatner, Nimoy, etc., like they did with the retrospective tv movies on "Batman" (with younger actors as Adam West and Burt Ward), and Gilligan's Island.

And it would suck just like those did.
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Old April 4 2013, 03:26 PM   #5
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

I'm not too sure.

There have been some other really good (I think) biographical telemovies in a similar vein - "The Late Shift" which showed the battle for the top late night talkshow spot between Leno and Letterman pending the stepping down of Carson (ironic to look at that now in light of what's going on with Leno and Fallon), who took the path of using relatively unknown actors and going out of their way to make them up to look a lot like the people they were portraying, as well as duplicate their mannerisms and speech patterns (they asked Rich Little to do a REALLY good Carson - something he was quite famous for at the time).

Then there was "Pirates of Silicon Valley" that didn't quite concern themselves about making the actors look and act exactly like the people they were portraying, as much as trying to deliver an effective story with a higher level of general acting ability with a more well-known cast of players.

Both films had definite strengths, but took two very different paths concerning the talent they used to portray the key figures.
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Old April 4 2013, 03:38 PM   #6
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

Melakon wrote: View Post
They'd probably get some nobodies to play Shatner, Nimoy, etc., like they did with the retrospective tv movies on "Batman" (with younger actors as Adam West and Burt Ward), and Gilligan's Island.

And it would suck just like those did.
It's almost like a train wreck waiting to happen - although I hope it doesn't.
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Old April 4 2013, 04:11 PM   #7
137th Gebirg
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

^^^ I think if such a project were undertaken while Shatner was still alive, it would likely ensure a higher level of accuracy and quality, particularly if he were directly involved. If not, then anything could happen.

Another pair of good examples in recent memory, was "Too Big to Fail" and "Game Change". Again, taking more of the "Pirates" path, bringing in some bigger name actors to deliver relatively decent and well-paced dramas based on particular major events. I think it could work, if properly written and executed. Again, Shatner's books are full of such comprehensive and detailed information, the challenge would be more focused on picking the major things and getting them to flow properly rather than writing new things collected from disparate sources. The hard work has already really been done by the man himself.
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Old April 4 2013, 05:34 PM   #8
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

Capt Kirk is my favorite Star Trek character, and I'm a big William Shatner fan - in all his guises.
Having said that, I hope they never do a telepic on his life; no one could play him like Shatner could, and I'm sure any producer would be tempted to over-dramatize many of the events in his life - to make such a project more saleable. I just don't see it being a profitable venture. Besides, sometimes you can know too much about a person or subject; you may not like all the warts, real or contrived - in my opinion.
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Old April 4 2013, 05:47 PM   #9
137th Gebirg
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

^^^ Fair statement. Makes sense.

However, in recently re-reading his two "Memories" books (which is what actually prompted me to create this thread), he did a pretty good job elaborating on many of the negative aspects of his life experiences (at times of his own doing), particularly as they apply to Star Trek, and the period of epiphany and introspection he went through during the course of researching material for his projects. This all started with Nichelle Nichols keeping him from leaving after interviewing her for the first book, saying, "Wait - I want to tell you how much I hate you now", or something like that. To his credit, he left a lot of that in there with an admission that her frustrations with him were valid (as well as some of the frustrations that other cast members had with him) and I think, if done properly, could really generate some really good dramatic scenes.
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Old April 4 2013, 06:32 PM   #10
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

I can just imagine the cattle call -- dozens of young hopeful unknown actors on an empty soundstage, all doing their best Shatner imitations at once, like the auditions for Springtime for Hitler in The Producers.

Melakon wrote: View Post
They'd probably get some nobodies to play Shatner, Nimoy, etc., like they did with the retrospective tv movies on "Batman" (with younger actors as Adam West and Burt Ward), and Gilligan's Island.

And it would suck just like those did.
Hey, I thought the TV-movies about Batman and Gilligan's Island were fun. Even the Three's Company one wasn't too bad.
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Old April 5 2013, 01:42 AM   #11
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

scotpens wrote: View Post
Hey, I thought the TV-movies about Batman and Gilligan's Island were fun. Even the Three's Company one wasn't too bad.
Agreed. And another case was The Partridge Family. Come On Get Happy and The David Cassidy Story were both behind-the-scenes dramatizations, with new actors playing the original actors.

There's no reason a similar TV movie couldn't be made about TOS. Roddenberry's sexual antics with every female regular and some of the guests would provide all the spice it needs. Then you have Nimoy becoming an alcoholic, Shatner's divorce and three little daughters, his pranks on Nimoy, his flying off a motorcycle while romping around the Mohave desert... lots of material.
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Old April 5 2013, 02:52 AM   #12
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

^ And just for shits and giggles, have the Abramsverse actors play the TOS actors. Meaning: Chris Pine as Shatner, Zach Quinto as Nimoy, etc.
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Old April 5 2013, 02:56 AM   #13
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

Hell, reading about the original series' production, there is probably several seasons worth of drama to be found.
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Old April 5 2013, 04:45 PM   #14
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

scotpens wrote: View Post
I can just imagine the cattle call -- dozens of young hopeful unknown actors on an empty soundstage, all doing their best Shatner imitations at once, like the auditions for Springtime for Hitler in The Producers.

There's our SHATNER !!


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Old April 6 2013, 05:38 AM   #15
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Re: So, Shatner's Written a Lot of Books...

But did he actually write them?
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