Boston Legal Biography - William Shatner From The TV MegaSite
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Boston Legal Biography

Shatner as Denny Crane

William Shatner


by Suzanne

Shatner in the 1950'sWilliam Shatner was born in 1931 in Montreal, Quebec, in Canada.  He did Canadian radio as a child. and attended McGill University.  When he was a starving young actor, he trained to do Shakespeare on stage, and then he started doing films and small television roles. Shatner was a very handsome leading man type.  His first big movie was the classic "Brothers Karamazov".  Later he also had a small part in the great film "Judgement at Nuremberg". He did many great TV shows in the 50's and 60's, including classic episodes of "The Twilight Zone". He starred in a show called "For the People" that was not on the air very long.

Shatner became famous when he starred as Captain Kirk in the scifi show "Star Trek". Although not a hit, it was on for three seasons and later went into syndication, where it became very popular and a huge pop culture hit for decadesShatner as Captain Kirk in the 1960's (and still is going strong).

Shatner did many movies and TV shows in the 70's, including the hit TV show, "T.J. Hooker".  Later, he wrote and starred in "Tek War", a syndicated scifi hit in the 80's, as well as the Tek War books.  He has written many books, including some very good Star Trek novels. He also starred in 6 Star Trek movies from 1979-1994 and continued to do many TV show and other movie appearances.

Shatner as T.J. Hooker in the 70'sShatner was criticized and ridiculed by many for his acting style, especially during Star Trek, and also for his hairpieces, his singing, and his weight. Undeterred, he showed his humor on many occasions, including The Tonight Show and a famous appearance on Saturday Night Live where he told Star Trek fans to move out of their parents' basements and get a life.  As Star Trek nostalgia never died, and Shatner continued to work and show how funny he could be, eventually he was able to become a successful pitch man for Priceline commercials as well as guest-starring on The Practice as nutty attorney Denny Crane.  This turned into his hit character on the successful series "Boston Legal", where he continues to make us laugh, cry, and watch in awe.

He has been nominated 5 times for an Emmy and won twice, as well as many other acting awards.  Besides acting and writing, Shatner also produces. His hobbies have included horseback riding and tennis. You can find more info at TV Guide.


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Updated 2/22/08 

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