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Is It Curtains for William Shatner’s Priceline Negotiator?

William Shatner plunges to a heroic — and humorous — demise in the latest ad from travel discounter

Mother of mercy — is this the end of discounts? Not exactly:

Turns out the Negotiator — Shatner’s pitchman for five of his 14 years with Priceline — was done in by a changing market. The company is “changing their business model from a name-your-price model to a fixed-price approach” [and] Shatner’s character was relentless in urging customers to name their prices on airfares and hotel rooms.
“We decided to do something really over the top to get the message across,” said Christopher Soder, chief exec of North America.
Mission accomplished! And it’s a great spot. Love the punchline. (A bus plunge is somehow fitting.)

William Shatner has been doing Priceline commercials since 1998, riding along through all the ups and downs of the dot-com era. The ads have stayed amazingly fresh. If this really is the end, he’ll be missed.

But it may not be the end:

Soder also dropped a hint about that big game that’s coming up: While the Negotiator’s death spot is running on the company’s website and online, he said, Priceline just might have something else explosive planned for the Super Bowl. Shatner, by the way, is still under contract.

I’m feeling Shatner rising from the ashes, phoenix-like, to bid another day.

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