Actor William Shatner on Thursday said he was struck by the “fragility of this planet” during his trip to the edge of space, calling on the public to start focusing more on taking care of the earth.
“The realization once again, the fragility of this planet, the coming catastrophic event, and we all have to clean this act up now,” Shatner told NBC’s “Today.”
Shatner, who is most famous for playing Captain Kirk on “Star Trek,” launched into space on Wednesday aboard Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket and capsule, taking a 10-minute trip to the edge of space, where he experienced three to four minutes of weightlessness.
The trip, which launched at roughly 8:50 a.m. local time from a launch site in Texas, made Shatner the oldest person to blast into space.
Blue Origin Vice President of Mission and Flight Operations Audrey Powers and two paying crewmates, Chris Boshuizen and Glen de Vries, accompanied Shatner on the trip.
“I was overwhelmed with the experience, with the sensation of looking at death and looking at life, and this, you know, what has become cliché of how we need to take care of the planet,” Shatner said.
“But it's so fragile. People say ‘Oh, it's fragile.’ No, no, no, there's this little, tiny blue skin that is 50 miles wide and we pollute it, and it's our means of living,” he added.
Shatner was emotional on Wednesday after exiting the capsule from his historic trip that traveled roughly 66 miles from the earth's surface, telling Blue Origin founder Jeff BezosJeffrey (Jeff) Preston BezosDorsey's exit shakes up Twitter future The dangers of anarchy in space Health risks of space tourism: Is it responsible to send humans to Mars? MORE, “Everybody in the world needs to do this.”
He thanked Bezos for providing him with "the most profound experience I could've asked for" and said he was "so filled with emotion" about the trip.
"I hope I never recover from this. I hope I can maintain what I feel now. I don’t want to lose it," the actor said. "It’s so — it’s so much larger than me and life."