‘Star Trek’ fans know about the long-running rumor that William Shatner allegedly had an alien encounter. The legend goes that Shatner saw a UFO in the Mojave Desert in 1967. In a video, Shatner sets the record straight, once and for all.
Shatner Sat Down on Camera to Talk About the UFO
In the video above, Shatner clarifies the murky truth about the 1967 UFO incident.
Shatner admits to reporting the 1967 incident, although the video doesn’t make clear to which people or authorities Shatner made said report, beyond ultimately telling the story on camera (but more on that later).
He immediately clarifies that while it is true he made the report, the story itself was false.
“What happened was, I hit my head on my motorcycle, knocked myself out,” Shatner explains, before pausing to correct himself. “Not quite. But I fell into a hole….I had to push my bike because it stopped working.”
Shatner goes on to explain how the story eventually got picked up by the tabloids and became a legend among Star Trek fans.
According to Shatner, the producer of One Step Beyond was working on a pilot version of the series that would feature celebrity stories. He sat down with Shatner, recorded the segment, and then the press got a hold of the story.
Does William Shatner Believe in Aliens?
In the 2014 video above, Shatner speaks with Larry King about whether he believes in UFOs.
When asked point-blank by King about his belief, Shatner dodges the question a bit, answering King’s question with one of his own: “What are they doing?”
Shatner goes on to wonder, if UFOs did exist, why do they appear in places like “Casper, Wyoming” and not New York City? If they’re “hiding” from humanity in some way, why is that?
King appears to follow Shatner’s logic, adding on: “Why haven’t they abducted a President?”
While Shatner doesn’t come out and say he believes in UFOs or intelligent alien life in the clip, it’s certainly an interesting take from the man who played Captain Kirk, standing alongside fictional aliens for much of his career.
Wait, Who’s John E Mack?
Shatner mentions a man named John E. Mack multiple times in his interview with Larry King. Mack was a psychiatrist who worked at Harvard University. The Lancet reports that by the 1990s, Mack had amassed a group of patients, all of whom claimed they were victims of alien abductions. But what shocked the medical community was that Mack believed his patients. He published some of his early findings in the 1994 book Abduction: Human Encounters with Aliens.
PBS interviewed Mack, and asked him to explain his work, and his views on whether UFO and alien abductions were real, or part of some kind of delusion.
“I’ve interviewed airline pilots who have had sighting—close up sightings of UFOs. They will not report it, because they will be removed from their work,” Mack told PBS. “Even if they’ve had abduction experience, they will not talk about it…25 to 30 percent of airline pilots…have had close up sightings, but will not discuss it.”