William Shatner criticizes Prince William for 'missing the point' of space travel

William Shatner was quick to defend his recent journey into space after Prince William's critical comments

William Shatner criticizes Prince William for 'missing the point' of space travel
(Image credit: Getty)

They may share the same name, but when it comes to space travel, Prince William and William Shatner have very different ideas. 

Star Trek actor Shatner has responded to the Duke of Cambridge’s recent comments on space tourism, shortly after the 90-year-old became the oldest person to take off from the Earth. 

Prince William slammed space tourism on Thursday, calling on entrepreneurs to invest their money in our native planet rather than exploring new ones. 

The heir to the British throne told BBC’s Newscast that the “world's greatest brains and minds” should be “fixed on trying to repair this planet, not trying to find the next place to go and live.” He also said he has “absolutely no interest” in traveling into space, adding that people need to consider the carbon footprint of rocket launches. 

Britain's Prince William, Duke of Cambridge speaks to Aston Villa players as he visits Aston Villa High Performance Centre at Bodymoor Heath Training Centre

(Image credit: Photo by Rui Vieira-WPA Pool/Getty Images)

His candid comments came shortly before the Queen was overheard criticizing world leaders for their slow response to the climate crisis. 

Shatner has now defended his historic journey, telling Entertainment Tonight that Prince William is “missing the point” of its mission. 

“He's a lovely Englishman. He's going to be king of England one day," he began. "He's a lovely, gentle, educated man, but he's got the wrong idea." 

Shatner flew to space on Blue Origin’s New Shepard NS-18 on Wednesday, as part of an all-expenses-paid trip with three other guests. The trip has garnered the Emmy-award-winner actor a huge amount of press attention—both negative and positive—but he insists it wasn’t organized as a shallow ego boost. 

Blue Origin vice president of mission and flight operations Audrey Powers (L) walks with Star Trek actor William Shatner to a media availability on the landing pad of Blue Origin’s New Shepard after they flew into space on October 13, 2021 near Van Horn, Texas.

William Shatner became the oldest person to travel into space on Wednesday

(Image credit: Getty)

“The idea here is not to go, 'Yeah, look at me. I'm in space.' The landing that consumed all that... energy and people to take a look and go, 'Oh, look at that.' No," he said. "I would tell the prince, and I hope the prince gets the message, this is a baby step into the idea of getting industry up there, so that all those polluting industries, especially, for example, the industries that make electricity... off of Earth.

"We've got all the technology, the rockets, to send the things up there... You can build a base 250, 280 miles above the Earth and send that power down here, and they catch it, and they then use it, and it's there," he added. 

"All it needs is... somebody as rich as Jeff Bezos [to say], 'Let's go up there.'"

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.