Samuel L. Jackson Interview: Captain Marvel

Samuel L. Jackson is a legendary actor who has been on the silver screen for decades.  He has played an assassin, a cop who doesn’t play by the rules, and a Jedi Master. In Captain Marvel, he reprises his iconic role of Nick Fury, agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Screen Rant: Amazing job on this film. I know that Nick Fury has seen some s*** now. Because from the way he is in Iron Man, and the way he is in Captain Marvel, completely different characters. So I have a question. Where is he, at his life, when he's in Captain Marvel? What's his mindset?

Samuel L. Jackson: Oh, a desk jockey. Kind of sitting there wondering, “I've been in war, I’ve been in the spy game, I was doing stuff. Now I'm sitting at a desk trying to figure out who the next person is. Where's the threat? Is it the China? Is it Russia?” The game is boring. And all of a sudden, he's here, and he's thrown into a game changer. And you know, as a cop you hear a lot of stuff. I'm sure that's not the first person he's encountered who told them they were from outer space. So, they'd been abducted or whatever. And, you know, “Chick, you look like me, come on, you're not an alien.” And then all of a sudden, “Do something to let me know you're an alien,” and she's not. But there's something else doing something. It's like, “Wow, what is that?” And then he sees the real thing and it's kind of, “Okay, it's green and it doesn't look like me. And the organs are very different. So, okay, this is genuine. There are people from somewhere else.”

Screen Rant: I love the fact that we get to see this side of Nick Fury as well. Because it's something that maybe I just probably never thought I would see, because he's just a little looser, a little happier. You know?

Samuel L. Jackson: Well, yeah. He's not world weary and he's not as paranoid, as he is, that we know him to be. And he's not as manipulative. In his, “People are keeping stuff away from us, but I know things they don't know too.” So, that chip’s not on his shoulder yet.

Screen Rant: Exactly. You're also reunited with Phil Coulson in this one. Phil Coulson's the new guy in the squad, it seems like.

Samuel L. Jackson: Rookie.

Screen Rant: He's a rookie. Is that their kind of like buddy cop dynamic a little bit?

Samuel L. Jackson: The beginning of it. He's that guy who was there when he made that discovery. You know, there are other people out there. And they had that moment. I mean, there's a moment there where, I mean, Coulson could have killed him. And there's something about his relationship and them seeing each other that lets them know that they have a bond that nobody else has in SHIELD.

Screen Rant: You've always been a pretty big advocate of [Brie Larson], especially with her joining the MCU. My question to you is, as an actress, because I'm excited to see her lead the MCU just as much as anybody else. So, what do you think she brings to the table of the MCU?

Samuel L. Jackson: There are a lot of-- It's bad to say she has a lot of the qualities of Carol Danvers, because then it's like, “Oh, well. That's just type casting.” You know, she's a forthright person, she's outspoken, she stands up for not just her own rights, but for the rights of women and young girls all over the world, and this country especially. And she's not afraid to use her platform to advance their cause. And you have a woman here, in Captain Marvel, that does receive all these powers. But when she starts realizing who she was, she understands that she was a very strong woman in her own right, before any of that happened. Once you start getting to it and you go, “Okay, I succeeded in a male dominant society as a pilot, and not only did I do it, my best friend did.” And they're so supportive of each other. When they see each other, and that moment and when they have those conversations among each other about who they are and what they mean to each other. And her daughter looking at them saying, “You guys are my role model, so you need to do something special. So I have something to aspire to.” It's a whole different kind of level of what happens in a superhero movie and what it means to people that are going to idolize her in a way. Because we had some conversations about what happens when you join the MCU and you become a superhero. And what that means in terms of fan following and all that other stuff. But now that I've seen the movie, I see now, you know, that the young girls and women are going to put her on the wall. She's going to be something to aspire to in a real-world kind of way, outside of the fantasy way of she's a superhero. She's an accomplished woman that did a lot of stuff before these other folks started telling her, “You are what you are because of what we gave you.” And then when she realizes that, “You didn't give me anything. I already had this, I got knocked down ten times, I got up eleven.”

Screen Rant: Well, I want to be Captain Marvel now. But thank you so much for your time. Amazing job.

More: Gemma Chan Interview for Captain Marvel

Key Release Dates
  • Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
  • The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
  • Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019
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