On Blue Origin’s second crewed flight on Wednesday, “Star Trek” actor William Shatner became a real space traveler, calling it the most profound experience of his life.
“It was unbelievable,” said the 90-year-old Canadian, who is best known among Trekkies as the brave Captain James T. Kirk, a role he initially played more than 50 years ago.
Three people accompanied him on the 11-minute excursion beyond Earth’s atmosphere and back: Blue Origin executive Audrey Powers, Planet Labs co-founder Chris Boshuizen, and Medidata Solutions’ Glen de Vries.
After two brief delays, a New Shepard rocket lifted off from the company’s West Texas site at 9:49 a.m. (1449 GMT), finally reaching a height of 66 miles (106 kilometers).
The crew members were greeted by Jeff Bezos as they climbed out of the capsule, which had parachute-landed in the desert, amid cheers and champagne.
Shatner, like the over 600 astronauts who have gone before him, was awestruck by the sensation of weightlessness and the breathtaking view of our planet from space.
Shatner, who is best known for playing lawyer Denny Crane in “Boston Legal,” among other roles, has previously commented about his often tense relationship with Star Trek and its fan culture.
However, in recent years, the actor has leaned into the celebrity that his most famous role has afforded him.
When questioned by AFP about the outpouring of support he has received from fans and the wider space community since the trip was revealed, Shatner stated, “I’m overwhelmed by the response.”