Leonard: My Fifty-Year Friendship with a Remarkable Man
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Leonard Nimoy and William Shatner first crossed paths as actors on the set of The Man from U.N.C.L.E. Little did they know that their next roles as Spock and Captain Kirk, in a new science fiction television series, would shape their lives in ways no one could have anticipated. In seventy-nine television episodes of Star Trek and six feature films, they grew to know each other more than most friends could ever imagine.
Over the course of half a century, Shatner and Nimoy saw each other through personal and professional highs and lows. In this powerfully emotional book, Shatner tells the story of a man who was his friend for five decades, recounting anecdotes and untold stories of their lives on and off set, as well as gathering stories from others who knew Nimoy well, to present a full picture of a rich life.
As much a biography of Nimoy as a story of their friendship, Leonard is a uniquely heartfelt book written by one legendary actor in celebration of another.
cast. Several years later, Filmation obtained the rights to produce an animated version of the show. They hired Leonard and me, and they hired Jimmy Doohan to play Scotty and do all the other male voices and Majel Barrett as Nurse Chapel and the other female voices. Their explanation for not hiring the other actors was that they were working on a limited budget and couldn’t afford them. When Leonard learned about that, he said he wouldn’t do the show. “This isn’t Star Trek,” he told them. “Star
later was that even he was not as prepared for Spock’s death as he thought he would be. He remembers thinking as he walked onto the set, “I think I have made a terrible mistake.” What saved him, he said, was that as we got ready to film the scene, Bennett asked him if there was something he could add that would give the studio a thread that might be used to keep Spock alive. Alive? Nick Meyer acknowledged that we all knew our characters better than he did, so there was quite a bit of
a Lifetime, which is simply a long conversation between Leonard Nimoy and me about our lifelong journey to places no man had gone before, we are together in his den. Earlier in this film, we were looking at a framed photograph of us in our Star Trek costumes on the cover of TV Guide. “This is us,” he’d mused. “Siamese twins.” I agreed, “Yes, you and I. Joined at the hip.” A few seconds later, I added, “You and I have spent more than half our lives together. I think of you as one of my dearest
ever gone before.” Proving, of course, that there never was a way to escape Star Trek. And maybe that’s what Leonard saw when he mounted his last great project, which he called Secret Selves. It was based, he said, on a story he’d read about the Greek philosopher and playwright Aristophanes, who was searching for an explanation for human anxiety. He finally surmised that once humans had come into this world as double people, attached back-to-back with two heads, four arms, and four legs. Since
the highlight of his musical career, brought together two iconic worlds, Star Trek and Lord of the Rings. Talk about when worlds collide. Leonard was a big fan of The Hobbit, so it was not at all surprising that he decided to record “The Ballad of Bilbo Baggins.” It was on his second album, and he performed it on several TV shows, including American Bandstand and a short-lived variety show hosted by Ricky Nelson called Malibu U. When asked about it, Leonard described it as a delightful kids’ song