One of America’s most well known science fiction celebrities left the Earth’s atmosphere for the first time on Oct. 14.
Actor William Shatner, who played Capt. James Kirk in the original Star Trek series, made a real-life visit to space.
He described the feeling of weightlessness and celestial view of the planet’s horizon as his “most profound experience.”
“Everybody in the world needs to do this, everybody in the world needs to see,” he said according to the Associated Press. “The covering of blue, this sheath, this blanket, this comforter of blue that we have around, we say, ‘Oh, that is blue sky’–and then suddenly you shoot through it all, and you are looking into blackness.”
The remarks came after Shatner disembarked from his 10-minute journey on Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin carrier near Van Horn, Texas.
The actor and three other passengers ascended 66.5 miles (107 kilometers) above sea level. They spent about three minutes in space before safely parachuting to Earth.
“In an instant you go, ‘Whoa, that is death,'” Shatner said.
These remarks drew parallels with some of his most well-known “Star Trek” quotations: “Risk is our business–that is the whole point of this ship.”
Bezos openly calls himself to be a big “Star Trek” fan. He reportedly sent Shatner into space with a cargo filled with original tricorder and communicator movie props. He previously made a cameo appearance as an alien in a recent franchise movie.
“This is a pinch-me moment for all of us to see Capt. James Tiberius Kirk go to space,” Blue Origin launch commentator Jacki Cortese said before liftoff according to the newswire agency.
Shatner was startled by his explosive ascent, and experience with forces six times greater than Earth’s gravitational pull.
“Bang, this thing hits–that was not anything like the simulator,” he said. “Am I going to be able to survive the G-forces?”
Blue Origin expects to fly many more passengers in future through commercial space tourism.