What better way to start the week than with a swinging 60’s Leonard?
I bought this beautiful candid photo on eBay. Leonard is wearing a groovy deep red Nehru jacket as he visits back stage at a performance of Macbeth. This was taken almost 50 years ago on January 12, 1969!
I loved the picture and that gentle smile so much, I made a black and white copy too, to see more detail. Leonard was one cool, cultured dude!
If you’ve ever seen Baffled with Leonard Nimoy and Susan Hampshire you might have noticed Nimoy wearing this brown bucket hat in a couple of scenes:
Susan Hampshire and Leonard in The Hat’ in ‘Baffled’ 1973
Well, I always thought it look a little goofy on him, but when I found out the history of the hat, it made me laugh, so here goes:
The hat wasn’t part of his wardrobe, but a piece owned personally by Nimoy; or so it seemed, since he wore it in public a year later while working on his stage performance in Fiddler on the Roof…
Great Photo by Bobbie Reno
But wait! Turns out Nimoy was not the original owner! It belonged to singer Pat Boone! According to legend, during Leonard’s recording career, he was using the same studio as crooner Pat Boone. At one point, Leonard spied the hat and took a fancy to it. So much so, it went home with him…
Here’s the photo Pat wearing the hat on a TV appearance in the early 60’s:
And Leonard must have loved it a lot (sans original feather) for he still had it in 1984 during a college appearance! 🙂 Did Pat give it to him? Did he ever get it back? The world may never know.
William Shatner’s latest book, Leonard: My 50 Year Friendship with a Remarkable Man, will be released on February 16th, just a week and a half shy of the one year anniversary of Nimoy’s death. Surely this is an excellent marketing move by Shatner’s publisher, as Nimoy’s fans will be thinking of him as the anniversary approaches.
Yet I am reluctant to buy this book. I’ve read a few excerpts on Amazon.com, and there is some good, thoughtful writing in it as Bill , with help from David Fisher, recalls his half century of friendship with his co-star. I have no doubt that Bill loved his friend, and that Leonard loved him. We can see how they related through their similar religious and cultural backgrounds, and they were there for each other through good and bad.
Sadly, the takeaway from early reviews is the revelation that Leonard Nimoy “froze him out” from their friendship in the last few months of his life; only relating to Shatner on business matters concerning Star Trek. If this is true, it’s a tragic development. Unfortunately, Nimoy is not here to tell his side of the story, and we, as well as Shatner, are left to wonder Why? It’s a biting frustration that Shatner will have to live with, and it is a blow to all of our us who imagined that these two men were as devoted to each other as their iconic characters were. I hope Shatner will find solace in memories of the good times of their friendship.
But this revelation, and the fact that this book comes out so relatively soon after Nimoy’s passing, makes one wonder about Shatner’s motives here. Is it a true tribute to his friend or a quick money grab to bring Bill and his storied ego back into the spotlight? I truly hope it’s the former.
I won’t be buying the book, but I’ll be content to wait for it to come to the local library. And I give Shatner credit for baring his soul and his heartbreak over the loss of his friend, as well as for still having so many irons in the fire at age 84. (He’s even reconsidering playing Kirk again!) I wish him good health and happiness. If all the proceeds from this book went to charity, I’d snap it up, but for now, I think I’ve sent enough cash his way. Good Luck, Bill.
Leonard made a Christmas appearance on the game show You Don’t Say! in 1967 with host Tom Kennedy and June Lockhart (Lost in Space) He even wore a Santa hat, and June can’t stop playing with his pom-pom! Oh how I envy the little girl on his lap! I hope someday a video of this turns up!
I’m a fool for original TOS Publicity Photos! These are just GOLD! I just came across these from the site Addicted to Sci-Fi. The funnything here is, of course, that Rand and Spock rarely had any scenes together (and were hardly this snuggly) on the series!
RIP Leonard and Grace, your smiles are with us always <3
If there is any up side to Mr. Nimoy’s passing, it’s that we’ll see many more pictures that we’ve never seen before! Like these beauties from the 70’s. (Disco Leonard?) I think the burgundy was a beautiful color on him.