William Shatner plays the part of Denny Crane on the series.
|Also known as:||Bill Shatner|
|Born:||March 22, 1931|
|Birthplace:||Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, Montreal, Quebec, Canada|
|Related to:||Farla Shatner (sister)|
Joy Shatner (sister)
|Spouse(s):||Gloria Rand (1956–1969) |
Marcy Lafferty Shatner (1973–1994)
Nerine Kidd-Shatner (1997–1999)
Elizabeth Anderson (2001–present)
|Appeared on:||Boston Legal|
|Character played:||Denny Crane|
William Shatner OC (born March 22, 1931) is a Canadian actor, author, producer and director who appears as attorney Denny Crane, one-third of the Boston area-based law firm Crane, Poole & Schmidt on Boston Legal. Best known amongst TV/film viewers for his roles as Capt. Kirk on Star Trek:The Original Series, as well as subsequent big screen cinematic features based on the original TV series released from 1979 to 1994, and as police detective Sgt. T.J. Hooker from the 1980's ABC-TV series, William's acting career has lasted for more than six decades.
Biography[edit | edit source]
Early life and education[edit | edit source]
Shatner was born in the Notre-Dame-de-Grâce neighborhood of Montreal, Quebec, Canada, the son of Anne (née Garmaise) and Joseph Shatner, a clothing manufacturer. He has two sisters, Joy and Farla. His paternal grandfather, Wolf Schattner, anglicized the family name to "Shatner". All of William's grandparents were Jewish immigrants (from Austria, Poland, Hungary and Ukraine)  and Shatner was raised in Conservative Judaism.
Young William attended three schools in Montral, Willingdon Elementary School in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (NDG), Baron Byng High School, and West Hill High School in NDG, and is an alumnus of the Montreal Children's Theatre. Shatner also studied economics at McGill University in Montreal, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce degree. In June 2011, McGill awarded him an honourary doctorate of letters. The Students' Society of McGill University building on McTavish Street is popularly (though not officially) named "Shatner".
Shatner has said that he faced anti-semitism while growing up in Montreal.
Acting career[edit | edit source]
With a slew of wives and decades of adventures under his ever-widening belt, William really isn't that different from his legendary TV alter ego, Captain James Tiberius Kirk on the original Star Trek. Before he rocketed (literally) to fame, Shatner did Shakespeare on stage and a host of small-screen guest spots. When he signed on to play Kirk in 1966, it was just another gig. Its cult wasn't born until the '70s when the show found new life in syndication. ST spawned a multitude of movies, small-screen spin-offs, books and conventions, thanks in part to Shatner, who played Kirk in seven ST films between 1979-1994. William did take on other projects including a starring role on the cop series T.J. Hooker and a stint as host of Rescue 911. Yet Shatner and Kirk remained inextricably linked and soon the actor — beloved/ridiculed for his stilted speech patterns and parade of toupees — embraced his campy place in pop culture, spoofing his image in myriad TV shows, recordings, books, even a series of commercials for Priceline.com. At age 73, Shatner reinvented himself yet again with a recurring role as a nutty attorney on the last season of Boston Legal's parent series, the ABC-TV series The Practice, which snagged him his first Emmy in 2004 and another in 2005 for playing the same part on the spin-off Boston Legal.
References[edit | edit source]
- Multicultural Canada, Multiculturalcanada.ca, November 2, 1951, first accessed September 13, 2009.
- Schattner Genealogy Page , Home.comcast.net, first accessed September 13, 2009.
- Up Till Now: The Autobiography, With David Fisher, 2008, ISBN 0-283-07058-7; page 7
- Beam me up, Moses: William Shatner album tells Exodus story in spoken word, song, Jewishsf.com ,April 18, 2008 article, first accessed September 13, 2009.
- Reunion honours 75th anniversary of Montreal Children's Theatre, by Kathryn Greenaway,  first accessed March 7, 2012, published by The Gazette, October 3, 2009.
- Capt. Kirk is now Dr. Shatner with McGill degree, The Canadian Press, June 2, 2011, first accessed June 24, 2012.
- William Shatner: The ESQ+A, by Scott Raab for Esquire magazine, May 2012, vol. 157, #5, first accessed May 28, 2012.