There are two types of people in this world — those who love William Shatner as the “Priceline Negotiator,” and those who love him as space philosopher and Adonis Captain James Tiberius Kirk. We tend to side with the latter. No one pauses during a speech like old Jim, commanding his fleet with the wisdom of an ancient sage (when he wasn’t busy wooing space’s female population). Today is Shatner’s 84th birthday, so join us in remembering these philosophical musings from one of pop culture’s greatest characters. … Read More
Leonard Nimoy’s death prompted an almost universally positive outpouring of remembrances in the media Friday, but the backlash against his Star Trek costar William Shatner sounded a more sour note. This weekend, Shatner came to social media to express his sorrow over the loss of his costar and friend, and lamented his inability to attend Nimoy’s funeral due to a charitable commitment in Florida. For this, he was rewarded with a “Captain Jerk” headline by the tabloids. … Read More
The first thing I said after the New York Times alert appeared on my phone this afternoon was, “Spock can’t be dead!” And in a way, that’s true. Spock isn’t dead; characters don’t die.
But I struggle, as he struggled, to separate the actor from the role. Leonard Nimoy, who died this morning at age 83, alternately embraced and shrugged off his connection to the iconic Star Fleet officer, from his 1967 record Leonard Nimoy Presents Mr. Spock’s Music From Outer Space (an album that bears no resemblance to anything the canonical Spock might have created, but which was certainly — and charmingly — from outer space) to his 1977 autobiography, I Am Not Spock, to his 1995 follow up, I Am Spock. He didn’t have the self-seriousness of his friend William Shatner, who felt Kirk hang like a millstone from his classically trained shoulders. Nimoy would never tell a Star Trek fan, even in jest, to “get a life.” I think he understood that this, the world he helped create, was a kind of life. … Read More
Well, there’s going to be a new Alien movie, and for some reason, this is good news. Word broke yesterday that Neill Blomkamp, writer/director of District 9 and the forthcoming Chappie, closed a deal with 20th Century Fox to helm a new film in the sci-fi/monster franchise, and everyone is very excited, somehow ignoring the fact that Ridley Scott’s 1979 original has yielded exactly one good sequel (James Cameron’s Aliens) and no fewer than five more that are varying degrees of terrible (Alien 3, Alien: Resurrection, Alien vs. Predator, Alien vs. Predator: Requiem, and Scott’s own Prometheus). That’s a 16 percent sequel success rate, kids, so let’s maybe keep it in our pants for a minute — particularly as Variety is reporting that the Blomkamp Alien is “separate from Prometheus 2, which Fox is still making with Ridley Scott.” Oh, cool, so they’re making like a whole Alien Cinematic Universe, awesome idea, A-plus you guys. But here’s the more pressing issue: in this era of mega budgets and limitless effects possibilities, why has science fiction fallen so specifically prey to the endless sequel-remake-reboot machine? Where are the new sci-fi franchises? … Read More
Justin Lin, the director of The Fast and the Furious movies, has been announced as the director of the upcoming film Star… Read More
We’ve been anxious to set eyes on the new George Takei documentary, To Be Takei, ever since our own Jason Bailey reported good things from Sundance earlier this year. He wrote: “Director Jennifer M. Kroot’s film mostly aims simply to entertain (and it does so), hopscotching through Takei’s unusual life, complimenting it with his own commentary (often accompanied by his distinctive, throaty laugh), and documenting his relationship with [his husband] Brad.” The actor and activist has been an outspoken voice in the LGBT rights movement, lending his whip-smart sense of humor and wisdom to the running Internet commentary. To celebrate the release of To Be Takei, we’re looking back at some of the former Star Trek icon’s greatest quotes about activism, LGBT rights, and more. … Read More