Is Sam the Man the ultimate fanboy actor?

Cary Ashby
Mar 29, 2010


I obviously think so.


Granted, Samuel L. Jackson has been in a TON of movies. Not always great flicks, but he's always been memorable, if not great, in whatever he's done.


To nobody's surprise, Jackson's "Iron Man" after-the-credits cameo as Nick Fury, the main man (i.e. director) of Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement, and Logistics Division (SHIELD for short) got fans seriously pumped.


Not only did it feature fan fave Jackson, the scene was short and sweet, especially since it let audiences know Marvel Studios was being intentional about its film continuity. The scene just oozed sequel potential.


Besides, how cool is it the person who was the inspiration for the Ultimate Universe version of Fury actually got to play him on-screen?


So why do I say Sam the Man is the ultimate fanboy actor?


First, the guy has the balls to call up George Lucas and go on various late night interview shows to have a role in the "Star Wars" prequels — before they were even cast.


Then he gets it, ultimately playing one of the most powerful Jedi Masters in the SW Universe. (Cool cred goes for Mace Windu almost single-handedly taking down the Emperor and being killed in battle by the newly, er, christened Darth Vader.)


We'll give him a pass as The Octopus in "The Spirit," but street cred for being in a Frank Miller project (evenly as badly as it apparently was). He probably was the best thing in it, doing what he could with what he had available.


I may just catch "The Spirit" someday on DVD — simply because Sam is in it. And my natural curiosity in all superhero films …


Naturally, I was bummed when I heard last month Jackson's contract negotiations with Marvel had broken down. (The LA Times "Hero Complex" has a nice take on this; read it here.) The recession was cited as one of the issues.


Fans everywhere mourned — and griped about Marvel's lack of commitment and vision.


On my Twitter account Feb. 16, I implored Marvel execs to "get this deal done w/ Samuel L. Jackson's reprise as Nick Fury. A casting must. Open the purse strings."


And reach deeply they had to, considering Jackson recently signed a staggering nine-picture deal to play Fury in among others, "Iron Man 2," "Thor," "The First Avenger: Captain America," of course, "The Avengers," and who knows what else.


While the amount hasn't been released, as I "tweeted," imagine the amount of zeroes on that deal. You read it that right, nine movies!


Now how's THAT for fanboy commitment? Sam the Man not only talks the talk when it comes to being a fan, he can walk the walk — and could choose never to work again afterwards.


And my readers say … ?!?