William Shatner’s not signing anything outside of a convention – and he’s not sorry for it.
The 87-year-old actor took to Twitter Thursday going back-and-forth with followers on why he refuses to sign autographs when fans approach him for one.
The extended discussion between the Montreal native and his followers erupted Tuesday after one user remarked to him, ‘You must be a very pleasant person to ask for an autograph. People, don’t ask him for one. You’ll probably just get yelled at.’
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Sign off: William Shatner, 87, actor took to Twitter going back-and-forth with followers on why he refuses to sign autographs when fans approach him for one. He was snapped in LA last year
Shatner responded, ‘How about you just don’t ask me? Most who follow me know I don’t give autographs in public.’
Another user shot back to Shatner, ‘Yeah God forbid a fan somehow cares about you enough to want an autograph. How dare they!’
The Star Trek actor, who played Captain James T. Kirk on the series, was not moved, writing, ‘You don’t like that…don’t follow me.’
When another tried to soft sell the veteran entertainer on the idea – calling it ‘a simple thank-you’ and ‘the highest compliment’ he can get – the Boston Legal actor rattled off a variety of circumstances that made signing things a pain in the neck.
Well hardly ever: One fan showed Shatner signing for fans at an Idaho convention, the only circumstance in which he’s fine using his pen
Ironic: Shatner’s most famed role on Star Trek as Captian James T. Kirk has spawned thousands of collectible items people try to get him to sign
‘It’s hardly “simple,” the T.J. Hooker star responded. ‘If I’m out & about with family or waiting for a plane & I do it for one; an instant line 50 forms. So if I say no to #1 or #21 it’s the same – I’m a jerk. So to save time the answer is no.
‘There’s a time and place for everything & conventions are that place.’
One user, irritated by Shatner’s views on signing, told the actor he’s ‘openly rude’ to his fans, reminding him, ‘We may not pay you, but we gave you that pedestal.’
Shatner held his ground, enlightening the fan that ‘actors are paid when they do their job (i.e. film the show/series.),’ adding that ‘most TV is underwritten by advertising dollars.
Candid: The actor made clear he did not feel obligated to sign for fans outside of conventions
Using the Yiddish phrase for nothing, he replied, ‘You give bupkis to me, my dear.’
The actor noted that he doesn’t go out of his way to be nasty to autograph seekers in declining their requests.
He said: ‘I say no. I don’t yell. I don’t scream. I don’t make funny faces. I simply say no. I send out thousands of autographs each year but that doesn’t matter because those that interrupt my private time think they can.’
Amid his responses, Shatner made clear he was annoyed being inundated for photo and autograph requests while out in public.
No thanks: Shatner rejected suggested alternatives such as business cards and self-addressed stamped envelopes
‘I’m supposed to care about people who sneak up behind me to have someone grab a photo, who interrupt my private times enjoying my grandchildren, who bother me in restrooms & who even interrupt my calling my wife at the airport in order to request a photo or autograph?’ he asked. ‘Anytime I’m out in public I’m doing something- going to a meeting, taking my grandchildren to the park, having a meal, traveling to a meeting or an event, etc… I value my personal time above all else.
‘That’s why I go to conventions & come here – to make myself accessible.’
One user suggested a less confrontational approach – sending Shatner a self-addressed, stamped envelope containing what they want him to sign – but the actor swiftly shot it down.
‘I get over 100K requests each year for autographs,’ he said. ‘I give priority to 501c3 and registered charities and I still leave many charity requests unanswered so chances are slim.
‘I sign autographs constantly for charities and other organizations. I’m just not going to take autograph or photo requests in public because one leads to fifty which leads to hundreds which I don’t have time for.’