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June 06
2024

ISSUE

Summer 2024

WILLIAM SHATNER: HONORING AN ICON

By NAOMI GOLDMAN

Captain James Tiberius Kirk in Star Trek: The Original Series.(Image courtesy of CBS Studios/Paramount)

Captain James Tiberius Kirk in Star Trek: The Original Series.
(Image courtesy of CBS Studios/Paramount)

William Shatner has boldly taken audiences to the final frontier throughout his remarkable seven-decades-long career. As an Emmy-and Golden Globe-winning actor, director, producer, writer and recording artist, Shatner remains one of Hollywood’s most recognizable figures. With his portrayal of Captain James T. Kirk in the legendary science fiction television series Star Trek: The Original Series and in seven Star Trek movies, Shatner is the originator of one of the most iconic science fiction characters in history.

“William Shatner has been at the center point of compelling stories that use visual effects to enhance unforgettable storytelling for decades, and his work continues to leave an indelible mark on the cultural landscape,” said Nancy Ward, VES Executive Director.

For his exceptional work in the epic Star Trek franchise and in recognition of his cinematic legacy that continues to touch new generations of filmmakers, creatives and audiences, the Society recently honored Shatner with the VES Award for Creative Excellence at the 22nd Annual VES Awards.

The Twilight Zone episode “Nick of Time.” (Image courtesy of CBS Photo Archive)

The Twilight Zone episode “Nick of Time.” (Image courtesy of CBS Photo Archive)

With James Spader in Boston Legal.(Photo: Carin Baer. Courtesy of ABC)

With James Spader in Boston Legal.
(Photo: Carin Baer. Courtesy of ABC)

Shatner became the oldest person to fly into space at age 90 after completing his mission on Blue Origin NS-18 on October 13, 2021.(Image courtesy of Blue Origin/Reuters)

Shatner became the oldest person to fly into space at age 90 after completing his mission on Blue Origin NS-18 on October 13, 2021. (Image courtesy of Blue Origin/Reuters)

The Twilight Zone episode “Nightmare At 20,000 Feet.” (Image courtesy of CBS Photo Archive) With James Spader in Boston Legal.

The Twilight Zone episode “Nightmare At 20,000 Feet.” (Image courtesy of CBS Photo Archive)

T.J. Hooker. (Image courtesy of Sony Pictures Television)

T.J. Hooker. (Image courtesy of Sony Pictures Television)

With friend Seth MacFarlane backstage at the 22nd Annual VES Awards after receiving the Society’s Creative Excellence Award.(Image courtesy of the VES)

With friend Seth MacFarlane backstage at the 22nd Annual VES Awards after receiving the Society’s Creative Excellence Award.
(Image courtesy of the VES)

Seth MacFarlane, award-winning actor, creator of Family Guy, The Orville and Ted, gave an epic tribute in presenting the Creative Excellence Award to his longtime friend: “Star Trek laid out a vision as relevant then as it is today, of a future where we all aspire to be nobly forward-looking and to improve the human condition. It continues to live large in our collective consciousness and remains relevant for generations of viewers. But Star Trek’s center of gravity has always been William Shatner. Bill has done something we all can only hope to do. He has made a permanent mark on this industry that is all his own. His work will endure for as long as there is an entertainment industry. He is a colossal talent, a great performer who has never lost his sense of curiosity or adventure.”

In accepting his award, Shatner remarked, “This industry is filled with the most creative people; every one of them is an artist who is always thinking ahead. The work is progressing at such a great speed, and it’s amazing what visual effects can bring to life. In the beginning [of Star Trek], it was just a flashlight and a cardboard Enterprise! Visual effects have become a truly visual organic and immersive experience, and I accept this award for those great artists – men and women – who work beyond the imagination. Thank you to the Visual Effects Society for bestowing me with this honor.”



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