Happy Birthday 80th William Shatner and Happy 70th birthday to your hair!
William Shatner is enjoying the kind of success that come with years and years of Hollywood longevity — although he’s not as old, in a way Bill Shatner is a male version of Betty White. Given the difference in life expectancy between men and women in the USA, Shatner at 80, is indeed a male version of Betty White. He’s the brunt of many jokes and he seems to enjoy it especially the recent Comedy Central Roasts. He also hosts his own talk show, has up until recently beeen a regular on several high profile Prime Time dramas and makes appearances in vast amounts of commercials — in other words, he has come a long way from being just Captain Kirk — although that is his biggest claim to fame.
What people don’t know about William Shatner is that he holds the record in the USA and perhaps the world, for being a man who has worn a wig or toupee for the longest time in history.
“According to our records, William Shatner has been wearing a toupee for seventy years,” said Shel Hartunis, the President of Male Patter Baldness Centers for Cosmetic Study.
“Records obtained from Cote Saint Luc, Montreal Canada where Shatner was born and raised. The records prove that Shatner was balding at age 9 and started wearing a hairpiece from Pierre LaTour’s handmade wigs and toupees of Montreal. A sales receipt book dating back nearly 8o years that was purchased by Leonard Nimoy from LaTour’s estate sale following the famous wigmakers death last January at 101 shows that the Shatners , a conservative Jewish family, had purchased a child-sized wig for their son William.
“LaTour’s wig company made wigs for children who had lost their hair to lice, but these children had hair that grew back and the wigs were purely temporary. Little William, on the other hand, needed a wig because he had been receding since he was only eight years old.”
According to Hartunis and his colleagues, Shatner’s wig wearing has gone through several incarnations. In his childhood years he wore a toupee that was very obvious. Then as an actor in Star Trek back in the 1960s, he wore a very understated hairpiece and nobody suspected that it was a Hollywood high-tech wig. Then he bounced back in TJ Hooker with an atrocious wig that is today being mocked in TV ads for TJ Hooker reruns (Shatner doesn’t seem to mind) — the newest toupee incarnation for Shatner is a white and grey very conservative piece that looks good, but since it’s been known for so long that Shatner is a wig-wearer, this toupee is also mocked by comics.
Shatner, an actor’s whose ego has been reviled by some of his former costars, takes this all in stride and with good humor.
Seventy years is a long time to be wearing a wig, but he’s made it to the 80 year mark, so maybe there’s something rejuvenating in that hair glue.
“We used to kid him in class about his toupee,” said Claude Franbeau, of Shatner’s from Willingdon Elementray School in Montreal who is now on life support but willing to talk about the good old days when he an Shatner were kids growing up in Quebec, Canada.
“We didn’t have much to do back then because of the war (World War 2) but we loved to kick Billy’s hairpiece around the schoolyard and tease him about it — that and the fact that he was Jewish. We really made his life miserable — but you couldn’t get him down. He thought he was a Shakespearean actor or something and he acted like he was better than us even though he was a bald kid. We used to luagh and laugh — what a great life we had, but to tell you the truth, I hated him.”