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Leonard Nimoy in 'no more Spock' shock

He's boldly gone on long enough

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Leonard Nimoy has announced his retirement - and this time he means it.

"Countless times, I thought it was done," he told the Toronto Sun, referring to his 60-year career. But now it is. Done, that is.

He can now revive the title of his first autobiography, I Am Not Spock, published in 1977 when he was trying to distance himself from his oh-so-popular role as the Starship Enterprise's first officer (promoted to that rank by Captain James T Kirk when that brash young fellow took command of the Enterprise in 2265).

It was 44 years ago when Nimoy first donned the impressive ears, penciled in the sharply sloping eyebrows, and adopted the air of mildly amused detachment required for his long run as the son of Vulcan ambassador Sarek and earthing teacher Amanda Grayson.

And now he's calling it quits. As he told the Sun: "I want to get off the stage. Also, I don't think it would be fair to Zachary Quinto," meaning the youth who assumed the role in last year's Star Trek prequel.

"He's a terrific actor, he looks the part, and it's time to give him some space," said Nimoy, presumably with characteristically dry Vulcan punnish humor.

Nimoy did appear in that 2009 movie, but not as Spock - that was Quinto's responsibility - but rather as Spock Prime. But he won't appear in the sequel to the prequel, currently set for release on June 29, 2012.

Although Nimoy's 1977 autobiography was his personal retreat from Spockdom, he later embraced the responsibility of being one of the best-loved rocketmen of all time - so much so that he titled his 1995 autobiographical update I Am Spock.

And now he's not. Nimoy told the Sun that he'll also wean himself from the personal appearances circuit. He'll attend this weekend's Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo, but that meet-and-greet "could be the last go-round for that too," although he does have a few more appearances on his calendar.

But before he goes to Calgary, he'll make a stop in Vulcan, Alberta, for a visit to that tiny town's Trek museum, where he'll have his renowned Vulan hand sign immortalized in what the Sun calls a "handprint ceremony," and attend the unveiling of a bronze bust of first officer Spock.

At age 79, we can only hope that Nimoy will enjoy the both halves of the Vulcan salute: "Live long and prosper." ®

Bootnote

Although William Shatner of James T Kirk fame didn't get to add his ... oddly ... halting ... verbal ... stylings to the 2009 Star Trek prequel, he did handily best Nimoy in one other long-running performance: in 2000, Nimoy became spokesvulcan for long-forgotten dot-bomb Networds, shortly after Shatner got his still-healthy pitchman gig at Priceline.com.

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