William Shatner Reveals Devastating Health Announcement That Has Fans In Tears

William Shatner, age 91, is coming to terms with the fact that he is going to die someday.

By Jessica Scott | Updated

william shatner

William Shatner’s latest interview with Variety has fans worried. The 91-year-old Star Trek veteran shared some insight into his life, his work, and his legacy, and he also shared some hard truths about his mortality: “I don’t have long to live,” he says. But, before you get out the box of tissues, Captain Kirk is not checking out just yet.

William Shatner didn’t receive a devastating medical diagnosis or anything of that nature, it is simply a scientific fact that a man of his age will, inevitably, die someday. “Whether I keel over as I’m speaking to you or 10 years from now, my time is limited,” he concludes.

But what brought on all this tragic talk about William Shatner’s dying in the first place? The accomplished actor is releasing a documentary that covers the highlights of his career called You Can Call Me Bill, which will premiere at the South by Southwest film festival this year. The movie is not just a look at his famous roles in Star Trek, T.J. Hooker, and Boston Legal, but it also delves into who his personal acting idols were (Marlon Brando and Laurence Olivier), as well as the topic of mortality in general.

The documentary, William Shatner explains, is a way to leave a legacy behind him. It is not just a look at insignificant little things about his life, it is a way for him to “discover something I’ve never said before or find a way to say something I’ve said before in a different way, so I can explore that truth further.” He says that when people die, they don’t take their personal items or even their ideas with them, so he wants to share them with the world while he is here so that all of his thoughts aren’t just lost to the void when he’s gone.

Heavy stuff, I know. But it’s not all doom and gloom. William Shatner may be aware that he is not going to live forever, but instead of getting down about it, he is going out and experiencing life to the fullest. He is doing things he has never done before, like watching a musician record an album just to see how it works. He even went into space in 2021 on Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin space shuttle.

That experience was particularly profound for the actor. When he came out of the space shuttle, William Shatner had an unexpected reaction: he couldn’t stop crying. He said he was grieving for the world, which he says is going extinct. He said we humans are “destroying this gorgeous thing called the Earth. Doesn’t that make you angry? Don’t you want to do something about it?”

That is the kind of truth William Shatner wants people to think about as they watch his new movie. Whether they are ready to have such a deep conversation about heavy topics like that is another topic, however, as most people have been reacting to William Shatner’s “announcement” that he doesn’t have long to live with sarcasm, and not even the thinly veiled kind.

On a tweet by Daily Mail Online on the topic, one commenter wrote: “Even if he was the picture of health that would still be the case [that he won’t live much longer]. HE’S 91 YEARS OLD!”

Another wrote: “Hardly news is it? He’s 91!”

And one more deadpanned: “Wow, really? So young.”

So, while William Shatner’s mortality may not come as much of a shock, the important thing is what the actor is doing with the time he has left, which is creating another film that will help his legacy live on long after he’s gone.