William Shatner Joins the App Crowd

Originally published November 1, 2012

By Ian Sherr

Did you ever have something you wanted to say, but didn‘t know how to say it? Now William Shatner has an app for that.

The iconic actor of the Star Trek series and performer of spoken word albums is starring in a new role as the voice of a new app, called “Shatoetry.“

The app, which costs $2.99 for the iPhone and was released Thursday after more than a year of development, relies on Mr. Shatner‘s trademark larger-than-life voice and mixes one of around 400 words together into a very Shatner-esque sentence, which the developers call a “Shatism.“ The app was made by Blindlight LLC, a Los Angeles-based company that spent about $300,000 to develop and market the product.

Mr. Shatner said when he was approached to work on the app, it seemed like a lot of fun. “There‘s nothing else like it in the market,“ he said in an interview, noting that the idea of having him say any combination of words put together like a refrigerator magnet is hysterical.

The way the app works is that customers are presented with a screen of words from which to search or choose. People can drag and drop words together, tapping on them to choose their dramatic reading, until they‘ve created the ideal sentence. There‘s a way to add a pause, naturally, for Shatner‘s signature acting style.

Then comes Mr. Shatner‘s voice, for which customers tap the “Shat that!“ button. One combination of words: “This is absolutely…“ with “magical“ at a whisper.


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(Published November 1, 2012, in The Wall Street Journal.)