Laurence Fishburne is considered one of the best actors in Hollywood, having played many roles over five decades of work in cinema. His resume is replete with memorable performances, including Ike Turner and Morpheus. But, like any actor, the graduate of the Matrix at one time refused several fruitful roles. One of these roles was the hired killer Jules Winnfield in the cult classic “Pulp Fiction”, which became the breakthrough role of Samuel L. Jackson. Two decades after the film became a pop culture phenomenon, Fishburne explained why he doesn’t regret turning down the role of Jackson.
The Oscar-nominated actor was asked about the iconic role during an interview for the podcast Jemele Hill is Unbothered. When Quentin Tarantino wrote about the foul-mouthed shooter, he imagined Fishburne. Unfortunately, nothing worked out: both men named different reasons why the actor did not appear in the indie classic. Despite the huge success of the film, the star of “Infection” does not regret that he missed the chance to play Jules.
I refused to read Pulp Fiction and I don’t regret this decision at all. Do you know why? Because it turned out to be a stellar role in Sam Jackson’s career. It was this role that made Sam Jackson a star. And I contributed to this by staying away.
What a mature take on a cult role. At the time, Jackson was still seething in Hollywood, while Fishburne already had a track record in Hollywood with films like “Apocalypse Now,” “Guys in the Hood,” and “What’s Love Got to Do with It.” Things got better when Jackson received his first and only Oscar nomination, which he lost to the late Jack Palance for “City Dudes.” Fishburne received recognition for his roles in the films “Higher Education” and “Othello” in 1995. So in the end, both actors succeeded.
After Jules changed the career of actor Nick Fury, Hill commented that Fishburne should constantly remind Jackson about giving up his favorite role. The “John Wick” star remained humble as he revealed that the two actors never brought up the subject.
We never talked about it. But I don’t regret any of this.
Both men have starred in countless films with memorable roles since the Oscar-nominated film premiered in 1994. Then the actor explained why he refused the cult classics. He said there are some elements in the script that he disagrees with. Fishburne paid tribute to Tarantino for creating several funny scenes in an unusual drama.
Fishburne’s career has not waned since he turned down the famous role. Along with the Matrix and John Wick film series, he starred in other famous films, including Aquila and the Bee and The Mysterious River. The year 2022 was no exception: the Oscar-nominated actor appeared in the films “All the Old Knives” and “School of Good and Evil” (available by subscription on Amazon Prime Video and Netflix, respectively). He will play the Bowery King again in the movie “John Wick: Chapter 4”, which will be released in theaters on March 24, 2023. In the meantime, watch his best roles on television and in movies, as well as his most Oscar-worthy roles.