Star Trek actor William Shatner is to be launched into space – and he will become the world’s oldest astronaut.
Kirk, 90, who plays Captain James T. Kirk in the science-fiction series, will have a real blast next week aboard billionaire Jeff Bezos’s Willie-shaped rocket.
At the beginning of each episode Shatner, who famously said “to go courageously where no man has gone before”, revealed yesterday: “I’ve heard about space for a long time.
“I am taking this opportunity to see it for myself. What a miracle.”
The Canadian said: “I’m going to be a ‘Rocket Man’!”
He will board a New Shepard rocket from Blue Origin, the space company founded by the world’s richest man, Bezos.
Amazon’s founder, 57, was launched into space on it in July – but the voyage was ridiculed because his vessel resembled a giant penis.
Shatner will explode over West Texas with three other crew members for a ten-minute flight on October 12.
He is also reportedly making a documentary about his journey in space.
The Emmy and Golden Globe winner, who is also a writer, director and singer, has enjoyed a career spanning 60 years in Hollywood.
Shatner first starred in Star Trek in 1966 as Captain Kirk with Leonard Nimoy as his Vulcan sidekick Spock.
The show – following the Interstellar Adventures of the Starship Enterprise – propelled Shatner to superstardom before being canceled in 1969.
He later returned to star in seven films, starting with Star Trek: The Motion Picture in 1979.
Blue Origin’s rocket first took off on July 20 with Bezos, his brother Mark, 51, Dutch teenager Oliver Damen, 18, and former test pilot Wally Funk, 82.
They were driven 66 miles above Earth in a ten-minute, ten-second journey. At that time, Funk had become the oldest person to fly in space.
Broadcaster Dan Katz said: “Congratulations to Jeff Bezos on his successful rocket launch. And also for not completely overcompensating for anything.”