20 Jan

This is a reposting bout Leonard Nimoy  from an earlier date to tribute Star Trek this week.



William Shatner

Leonard Simon Nimoy is perhaps the best known and best-loved of all the characters of the Star Trek genre.  He is the only one of the actors of the series to star in every episode.  Even William Shatner has not appeared in all of them; he wasn't in the first pilot, "The Cage".   His unique approach to playing an alien with no emotions and pointed ears was truly inspirational to all science fiction actors since.  Battling the double-sided upbringing of a Vulcan-Earthling existence, he learned to deal with the fact that he could not suppress his human side.  He often found the opposite problem off set, unable to be recognized as a man, and not Spock; as he later described in his two autobiographies "I Am Spock", and "I Am Not Spock".


Nimoy was born on March 26th, 1931, in the west end of Boston, and began acting at 8 yrs old at a local neighborhood theater.  Once he did, he never wanted to do anything else.  His parents were Jewish immigrants from Iziaslov, Ukraine.  Max, his father, owned a barbershop in the Mattapan section of Boston.  He went to Boston College for Drama and sold vacuum cleaners, and also worked in an ice cream parlor.   In 1953, Nimoy enlisted in the United States Army Reserves, serving 18 months and leaving as a Sergeant.  During this time, he worked on shows he wrote, narrated, and emceed.   He began his acting career in his twenties, teaching acting classes in Hollywood, and making minor film and television appearances through the 50's, playing several roles in B movies and television, such as; Perry Mason, Dragnet, Wagon Train, Bonanza, Rawhide, Untouchables, Gunsmoke, Outer Limits, "Them" and "Zombies of the Stratosphere".

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In 1965, he made his first appearance in the rejected Star Trek pilot "The Cage", playing sidekick to Jeffery Hunter, as Captain Pike.  He continued to play the role of Spock through the entire series, until its demise in 1969, followed by 8 more Star Trek movies, and guest slots in various spin-off series.  He received three Emmy nominations for his portrayal of the character, and was picked up by "Mission Impossible" as a replacement to Martin Landau for two seasons, and also hosted the paranormal series of "In Search Of" and "Civilization IV", and also guest-starred in "Fringe" in later years.


William Shatner and Leonard became close friends, first working together on an episode of "The Man From U.N.C.L.E", where they portrayed characters from separate sides of the iron curtain.  When Shatner was offered the opportunity to work with him on Star Trek, he jumped at the chance.  Spock created the Vulcan salute from watching Jewish priests offering their blessings and basically used "Live long and prosper" from them and created the Vulcan neck pinch and Death grip on his own.


After Star Trek, he had two guest appearances on "Night Gallery", and starred in "Catlow", opposite Yul Brynner and Raquel Welsh.  He also played several stage roles on Broadway, produced a play and movie about the Holocaust, and directed "Star Trek III: The Search For Spock", and "Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home."

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He also had several other talents, such as his singing career, in which he produced 5 albums, including renditions of "I Walk The Line" and "Ruby", as well as more eclectic tunes such as "The  Ballad of Bilbo Baggins, which is his tribute to "The Hobbit", and his analysis of the human race as Spock in "Highly Illogical."  He was also an avid photographer and owned and flew his own private plane.  He was married twice to Sandra Zoler, an actress, and later to Susan Bay, cousin to Director Michael Bay.


On February 27, 2015, he died from contracting Chronic Obstruction Pulmonary Disease, after years of smoking, at the age of 83.  He is survived by two children, six grandchildren, and a great-grandchild.


When he died recently, I felt that I had lost a friend as well.  Although I didn't know him personally, I grew up watching lots of shows he was in, and remember a lot of those small parts he had in them.  When he became Spock, his mannerisms were a hoot, and still are.  I saw both of the new films, and his contribution to them was one of the things that made the films, not to mention the superb job Zach Quinto did as his younger self.  I will miss that old Vulcan, a legend in his own time, and an excellent human being.  Goodbye, Old Friend, and Shalom."

Monday, I will be back with a brand new series.  If you as readers have ideas for future series, please send them in the comments section.  I am starting to run out of ideas and could use a little help.  Until then, here are today's links:





HIGHLY ILLOGICAL VIDEO            https://youtu.be/Ru9e2rTHeuk

BILBO BAGGINS  VIDEO              https://youtu.be/LR-MSZSLC5w

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