When we hear the name ‘Nick Fury’ we automatically think of the actor who so brilliantly brought the character to life – Samuel L. Jackson. Now, when actors are chosen to bring a particular comic book character to life, they have to resemble the character in order to sell it. However, things were a little bit different when it came to Nick Fury.
In the comics, initially, Nick Fury was shown as a Caucasian character, which was then changed by writer Mark Millar and artist Bryan Hitch. They decided to make the character Black and they based it on Samuel L. Jackson. And the resemblance is uncanny! What makes it even more interesting is that Samuel L. Jackson wasn’t asked before using his likeness for the character. When he found out, though, he wondered if Nick Fury will stay a Black character in the films or not.
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Samuel L. Jackson Talks about Nick Fury Looking Like Him
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During one of his trips to the bookstore, Samuel L. Jackson came across a comic book titled, The Ultimates, and immediately saw someone similar, himself. In an interview with Comic Book, Jackson recalled how the comic even mentioned the actor by his name. He stated,
“I still buy comic books, so I go to this store in L.A., Golden Apple, and I was in there one day and I’m passing the rack and I see this thing, The Ultimates, and I go, ‘Wow, it looks like me.’ So I started looking, and it’s like, Nick Fury looks just like me, and I’m reading, and he goes, ‘Well, if they make a movie about us, who do you want to play you?’ And Nick Fury goes, ‘Samuel L. Jackson.’”
Jackson then revealed that he wasn’t approached by anyone before using his face for the character and stated that no one had his permission for the same. When his agent called up Marvel to figure out the situation, they stated, “Well, we are thinking about making these movies and, hopefully, if we make them, he would play Nick Fury.”
In a separate interview with Mark Walters, way back in 2006, Jackson stated his concerns about the character staying black if they ever make a film with Nick Fury in it.
“Yeah, I’m looking forward to seeing if Nick Fury is actually gonna stay black when they get ready to make a movie.”
We all know what happened next! Jackson did an exceptional job as the founder of the Avengers and we cannot wait to see more of him in Secret Invasion!
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How Samuel L. Jackson Reacted to Nick Fury’s Look
Writer Mark Millar revealed how Samuel L. Jackson reacted to Fury being based on him. In an email to Business Insider, Millar stated that when he got to meet Jackson on a film set, the actor thanked him for the nine-picture deal.
“What we didn’t know was that Sam was an avid comic fan and knew all about it…we finally got to hang out on the set. The first thing I said was I hope you don’t mind me completely exploiting your appearance in my book thirteen years back and he said ‘f*ck, no, man. Thanks for the 9-picture deal’. He’s fantastic.”
Talking about why Millar turned things around for Fury in the comic books, he stated that he wanted the character to be an African-American because he was inspired by Colin Powell. Powell was the first African-American Secretary of State. Millar stated,
“I wanted an African-American Nick Fury to be director of SHIELD because the closest thing in the real world to this job title was held by Colin Powell at the time. I also thought Nick Fury sounded like one of those great, 1970s Blaxploitation names and so the whole thing coalesced for me into a very specific character…Sam is famously the coolest man alive and both myself and artist Bryan Hitch just liberally used him without asking any kind of permission.”
Millar also stated that since this happened in 2001, he never thought this might become a movie in the future. It’s super interesting to see how things ended up working out for Jackson. We couldn’t imagine a better Fury!
Samuel L. Jackson will be seen reprising his role as Nick Fury in Disney+’s Secret Invasion set to release on June 21, 2023.
Source: BigFanBoy.com; Comic Book