Belfast Telegraph

Samuel L Jackson on Kong role: 'I'm not offended J.K. Simmons was the first choice'

Samuel L Jackson reveals the hot, buggy and muggy filming conditions on Kong: Skull Island.

Samuel L. Jackson isn’t bothered that J.K. Simmons was the first choice to play his character in Kong: Skull Island.

Samuel starred alongside Tom Hiddleston, Brie Larson and John Goodman in the monster ape movie, which hit cinemas earlier this year (17).

While 68-year-old Samuel was a natural fit for battle-hardened Lt. Col. Preston Packard, he wasn’t actually movie boss’ first choice.

"I wasn't the first choice for Kong: Skull Island. That was actually J.K. Simmons,” he told Britain's Metro newspaper.

“I don't care. A job's a job. When I first arrived in Hollywood, every script I ever touched had Denzel Washington or Laurence Fishburne or somebody else's fingerprints on it. It was fine. If they don't want to do it, somebody's got to do it. You still want to make the movie with me? Great let's do it."

The film was shot on location in Hawaii, with director Jordan Vogt-Roberts choosing to use as little CGI as possible when it came to the backdrop of the swampy island Kong inhabits.

"No it was very real,” Samuel assured. “It seems like they went out their way to make us uncomfortable. It was hot, it was buggy, in some cases muggy. We'd shoot in a big bamboo forest with the bamboos really close together so you had to elbow your way through it. Then you'd walk through some streams and get your feet wet for the day and you'd be like, 'Damn!'

“It was funny because in Hawaii, we were shooting where they shot Jurassic Park. We'd see people driving by in these RVs with their Jurassic Park hats on doing the tour. We'd hear, 'And now we're going to the raptor pen,' and they'd be staring at us wondering, 'Who are those guys?'"

It wasn’t all hard work though, with Samuel enjoying a spot of golf whenever he wasn’t needed on set.

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