Over the past few days, there was increased chatter about William Shatner, better known to Star Trek fans as Captain Kirk, going to space on the next Blue Origin mission. That’s still in the cards, even if the passenger list for New Shepard’s 18th mission (NS-18), recently announced by the space company, doesn’t spell out the man’s name just yet.
Jeff Bezos’ space business announced on Monday the mission, its second with passengers onboard, will be taking off on October 12 from the usual Launch Site One in West Texas. It also named two of four people that will be on board for the ride.
The first is Dr. Chris Boshuizen, a former NASA engineer who helped set the basis of Earth-imaging company Planet Labs. Accompanying him is Glen de Vries, Dassault Systèmes’ vice-chair for Life Sciences & Healthcare, and founder of clinical trials technology company Medidata.
We said William Shatner is still in the cards for a trip to space because Blue Origin has not ruled him out just yet, and is also set to announce the names of the other two private astronauts. We’re told their identities will be revealed over the coming days, so we’ll keep you posted.
If Shatner is on the list, he will become the oldest person to take a trip to space, albeit a very short one, not the kind a full civilian team took on board the Crew Dragon recently. At 90 years old, the actor will thus dethrone (and quite fast) aviation legend Wally Funk, who at 82 took the title back in July, when Blue Origin first took peopke up there.
The Canadian could also become the first actor who played a spaceship captain to actually make it to space, and that’s cooler that all other titles made possible by the trip.