Paul Wesley says William Shatner has been nothing but supportive about his role as Kirk


Paul Wesley had some pretty big shoes to fill when he was cast as Lt. James T. Kirk on Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. Eventually, that rank will become captain, and William Shatner filled that role in the 1960s, doing such a phenomenal job that, to this day, the 93-year-old actor is identified with that character. So it's understandable that Wesley, in an interview with New York Post, said he did feel the pressure of the role.

Wesley wondered if he should do an impression of Shatner or be his own Kirk. The actor chose to go is own way, and the executive producers were okay with that. He acknowledges, though, that the character may "slowly develop into more of the Shatner version of Kirk.”

When asked if he'd spoken with Shatner after taking the role, Wesley revealed he had done so many times as the two used to be neighbors. He called Shatner "a lovely guy" who has been "nothing but supportive." That support means a lot to Wesley as he knows playing such an iconic character is a big deal, just as he knows some people are going to like his portrayal of Lt. Kirk and some won't.

"“The writers and executive producers are very smart, very kind and generous. They let me run with it. I certainly know this is one of the most iconic characters in the history of television. I don’t take that lightly. It’s a huge pressure. But, I’m also going to do what I’m going to do. And some people are going to like it. Some people aren’t. That’s just all art, ever.” "

Paul Wesley

I'll admit I had some doubts about Wesley's ability to portray a young Kirk that would be believable as the older Kirk. After my first time seeing him, I still had my doubts, but over the course of the past two seasons, Wesley has impressed me (and many other fans) with his way of playing the character. He's created a version of Lt. Kirk that is likeable and brash enough to have some aspects of what the future Kirk is going to be like. Shatner's support is obviously well-founded.

dark. Next. Paul Wesley would helm a show as Captain Kirk but not any time soon because of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. Paul Wesley would helm a show as Captain Kirk but not any time soon because of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds