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William Shatner says he looks forward to seeing 'the vastness of space' on Blue Origin flight

When asked how he would prepare for the Oct. 12 mission with Jeff Bezos' space travel company, the 90-year-old Star Trek actor jokingly said, "I had some apple pie last night."
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William Shatner said Tuesday he was looking forward to his historic mission next week with Jeff Bezos' space travel company, Blue Origin.

In an interview with NBC's "TODAY" show, the "Star Trek" actor revealed he was approached by Jeff Bezos' team to launch to the edge of space.

"They called me," Shatner said. "I’m going to see the vastness of space and the extraordinary miracle of our Earth and how fragile it is compared to the forces at work in the universe — that’s really what I’m looking for."

On Monday, Blue Origin announced he would blast off from West Texas on Oct. 12, making him the oldest person to travel to space. Shatner, who played Capt. James T. Kirk in the "Trek" universe, will be joined by three other passengers on the New Shepard NS-18 rocket: Audrey Powers, Blue Origin's vice president of mission and flight operations, and two paying customers.

Unlike the Enterprise’s five-year mission, Shatner’s trip will carry him to space for just a few minutes.

When asked how he would prepare, he jokingly said, "I had some apple pie last night."

It will be the company's second launch with a crew. Bezos was aboard the inaugural flight in July, alongside his brother and two others.

Shatner portrayed Kirk in the original "Trek" series as well as seven feature films.

In an interview with NBC News in July, Shatner dismissed criticism of Bezos and British mogul Richard Branson for using their fortunes on space travel instead of investing in social causes.

Shatner said he believed Bezos and Branson could spend their fortunes however they pleased: "It’s their money. They can do what they want with it."

However, Shatner teased people who want to visit Mars.

"What’s his name wants to colonize Mars? That’s ridiculous," Shatner said of Elon Musk, the founder and CEO of SpaceX.

"It takes a year and a half to get there. People will think it’s like we’re on a trip, on a cruise line. No, man! You’re in zero gravity and it’s hotter than hell and the air is putrid. 'Help me, I’m dying, but I’m dying slowly!' What a terrible fate."