Optimum Customers: Your Newsday access has been extended until Oct 1st. Enroll now to continue your access.

LEARN MORE
TODAY'S PAPER
72° Good Afternoon
72° Good Afternoon
EntertainmentCelebrities

William Shatner responds to death hoax: ‘I’m not planning on dying’

The “Star Trek” icon calls out Facebook for an ad suggesting he was dead.

William Shatner attends an NBCUniversal event in

William Shatner attends an NBCUniversal event in Beverly Hills, Calif., in 2016. Photo Credit: Getty Images / Matt Winkelmeyer

Despite a since-removed Facebook ad suggesting he was dead, William Shatner has not boldly gone to the final frontier.

After a fan notified the science-fiction icon on Twitter about an ad from Avocet Retail Sales with Shatner’s photo and the text “Fans will always hold a special place for ‘Captain Kirk’, after William was found . . . ” and “Beloved Sci-Fi Actor Found D . . . ,” Shatner responded. “Hey @facebook,” tweeted the star, who turned 87 on Thursday, “isn’t this your messenger app? What’s up with you allowing this Acocet [sic] Retail Sales ad to pass your muster? Thought you were doing something about this?”

Rob Leathern, Facebook’s director of product management, replied soon afterward, “Hi, I’m from Facebook. Thanks for letting us know about this. We have removed this ad and Page from Facebook.” As of Thursday, the Avocet Retail Sales Facebook page carries the standard text “Sorry, this content isn’t available at the moment.” No Twitter account could be found for the company.

It was unclear which of several firms named Avocet — the species name for a type of long-legged shorebird — was the culprit. Avocet Sales & Marketing of Oakland, California and Avocet Sports of the United Kingdom did not respond to Newsday requests for comments. An email sent to Avocet Sports’ American office in Palo Alto, California, was returned as undeliverable. A representative for the marketing firm Avocet Communications in Colorado said in a statement it “has no association with Avocet Retail Sales. … We are all quite happy to know that Mr. Shatner is indeed alive and doing well! May he live long and prosper.”

Shatner responded to Leathern, writing, “Thank you. I’m not planning on dying so please continue to block those kinds of ads.” When one Twitter commenter trolled the Facebook executive, writing, “Consider working somewhere else,” Shatner came to Leathern’s defense: “Hey @jrazzano ENOUGH of that! If I see anyone hassling Rob you are reported and blocked!” Leathern thanked the star and wished him happy birthday.

Shatner — whose most recent screen project, the NBC reality show “Better Late Than Never,” concluded its second season last month — will be the headline guest at Eternal Con at NYCB Live’s Nassau Coliseum on June 16 and 17.

More Entertainment

Important message for Optimum customers

Your Newsday digital access is changing as of 10/1

You recently received an email from Optimum’s parent company, Altice USA, informing you that Altice will no longer offer free Newsday digital access with Optimum's online service. Through an exclusive trial offer for Optimum customers, Newsday is pleased to extend your digital access at no cost until the end of the year.

I understand, no thanks