This weekend he's the guest of honor at a taping of a Comedy Central Roast that will air on the network next Sunday night, August 20th, at 10:00 PM.
Those assembled to poke fun at the erstwhile Captain of the Starship Enterprise include Andy Dick, Greg Giraldo, Lisa Lampanelli, Artie Lange, Patton Oswalt, Kevin Pollak, Jeffrey Ross, Sharon Stone, Betty White and Fred Willard, as well as a couple of people who actually have something to do with his career... fellow "Star Trek" cast members Nichelle Nichols and George Takei.
Of course, when he's not being roasted, Shatner likes to pass the time passing (and selling) kidney stones, auditioning for inappropriate roles, singing inappropriate songs, bestowing kudos on "underground" filmmakers and otherwise engaging in some silly stunt his publicists have cooked up to promote his latest venture, The William Shatner DVD Club.
We know this because multiple copies of Shatner press releases perform somersaults through our virtual in-box with great regularity. Doesn't this Emmy-winning actor have better things to do than record your outgoing answering machine message?
His latest stunt, however, seems to me to have one fundamental flaw.
Shatner's people announced last week that they're holding an online contest "to find the most talented sci-fi personality in the United States." To enter, you must create a short video clip that shows that you have what it takes to be a great sci-fi actor, director, film critic... whatever.
Online voting will help choose the finalists, but Bill will have the final say. The deadline for entering is September 30th and full details can be found at The William Shatner DVD Club website.
"This is an opportunity for new faces and new voices in the science fiction world to be seen and heard. Plus, this is a chance for passionate fans to be the first to discover the next M. Night Shyamalan or Brandon Routh, and help propel them into stardom."
Wait a second... Brandon Routh does just one major film and they're already looking for the next Brandon Routh?
And please, the world does not need any more M. Night Shyamalans!
The winner of this "Sci-Fi Challenge" will receive a thousand bucks (the press release - without a hint of sarcasm - refers to this as "a large cash award") and will be named the "Official Spokesperson for the William Shatner Science Fiction DVD Club."
And there's your fundamental flaw, Jim.
Isn't the whole point to having a "William Shatner DVD Club" that you have, um, William Shatner as your spokesperson?
[Previously: DVD Clubs: The Final Frontier]