A gig William Shatner has had for 14 years is about to end, and it won’t be pretty, the Associated Press reports. Shatner’s long tenure as spokesman for Priceline will see the former “Star Trek” captain die a fiery advertising death, according to the report.
The end to Shatner’s role as the Priceline Negotiator will air Monday, in an ad that shows the actor rescuing vacationers on a teetering bus. "Save yourselves — some money," he says, giving his mobile phone to a passenger as he and the bus fall off a bridge. An explosion follows, the story notes.
"I’m in grief mode," Shatner said in a phone interview, according to the piece. "It’s not the first time I’ve had an iconic character die off." He called the gig "a great run" and added, "If the management says this is the end, this is the end."
The demise of Shatner’s Priceline character is part of a strategic shift by the company. Priceline.com is moving away from the negotiation model for setting prices to a fixed-price model, the story reports.
Priceline.com CEO Christopher Soder said of Shatner’s explosive sendoff: "The challenge is harder to get people’s attention than it used to be. … So we decided to do something really over the top to get the message across."
Soder hinted that the new spot will be part of the Super Bowl ad lineup, the story notes.