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Ask Stacy -- Week of 10/18/14

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DEAR STACY: Is it true that William Shatner is going to be in the next "Star Trek" movie? — Faith H., Cedar Rapids, Iowa

DEAR FAITH: Well, it seems a lot more likely than when J. J. Abrams rebooted the franchise back in 2009 with Chris Pine as James T. Kirk and Leonard Nimoy in the cast — when Shatner told me that he felt like "a wallflower ... not invited to the dance." Now, according to what Shatner said before an audience at the Wizard World Nashville Comic Con, Abrams did reach out to him, saying that Roberto Orci, who is going to direct the next "Trek" film, has an idea that would involve him. No doubt Shatner wants to be a part of this generation of films, but he's stipulated all along that he wants to do something "meaningful," not just a cameo. He is not ruling out playing a different role from James T. Kirk in the movie that's slated for 2016 release. So, we'll see.

DEAR STACY: Can you give an update on Joan Lunden? How old are her children and what is she up to these days? — Janet S., Springfield, Missouri

DEAR STACY: I see that you are not aware the long-time "Good Morning America" host is in the midst of a courageous — and very public — breast cancer battle. She posts updates on her progress on her blog at JoanLunden.com, which has pretty much become an anti-cancer headquarters, with lots of information, patient inspiration, diet and exercise tips, links to various events and such.

Lunden underwent chemotherapy before having a lumpectomy in September. Since her surgery, she's made appearances such as the Susan G. Komen Knock Out Cancer night on the WWE's Monday Night Raw earlier this month. Lunden's offspring from her first marriage are now 34, 30 and 28, while her two pairs of twins are now 11 and 9 years old.

DEAR STACY: I was saddened to learn that Meshach Taylor had died. He was rather young, wasn't he? What did he die of? I lost track of him after "Designing Women." — A.L., San Bernardino, California

DEAR A.L.: Taylor, who died of colorectal cancer this past June at age 67, compiled a long list of credits after "Designing Women," including a Broadway outing as Lumiere in "Beauty & the Beast" opposite Toni Braxton in 1998, and his series roles on "Dave's World" and "Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide." He had played the memorable role of Joe Mantegna's character's former sergeant on "Criminal Minds" a few years ago and reprised the character in an episode that aired in January of this year. The well-liked actor left his wife of 31 years, Bianca, and their four children.

DEAR STACY: Is Robert Gossett related to Louis Gossett Jr.? I believe there is a resemblance. — Suzie A., Huntington, West Virginia

DEAR SUZIE: The "The Closer" and "Major Crimes" actor and the Oscar-winning film star are cousins.

COPYRIGHT 2014 STACY JENEL SMITH?

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