Samuel L. Jackson 'racially profiled' during Pulp Fiction
Samuel L. Jackson has revealed he was racially profiled by police officers in 1993, when he was in the midst of filming Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction.
The actor sat down with Vanity Fair to share his own experiences of the black identity within Hollywood, relaying a particular incident that took place during a brief break from filming.
"In the interim, I did a play at the Coast Playhouse, on Santa Monica Boulevard, an old, 99-seat theater," Jackson described. "One night, after the play, I went with some friends to a restaurant down the street, Hugo's."
"When we were done, we walked outside and stood on the corner for a while, just talking. All of a sudden, five sheriff's cars screeched up.
"The policemen surrounded us, guns pointed, lights in our face: 'Get on the ground!' There we were, lying facedown in the middle of Santa Monica Boulevard. I finally said to the cops, 'Why are you doing this?'"
"One of them said, 'Oh, we got a report of five black guys standing on the corner with guns and bats.'
"I said, 'So when you pulled up and didn't see a bat-I mean, maybe we could've had a gun concealed on us, but you didn't see anything that looked like a bat. What-ever.'"
"I was thinking to myself, I'm in Hollywood now, on the verge of breaking through, and this is still going on. It kind of put my feet back on the ground in terms of 'O.K., you're still just another n****r working in town, so you still got to walk softly.' And I still do. Just an object lesson for life in L.A."
Indeed, to put Jackson's story in context; his role as Jules Winnfield in Tarantino's film went on to earn the actor an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor, and helped to cement his total rise to fame.
He also discussed his longstanding friendship with Sidney Poitier, his background in theatre in the '70s and '80s, and his own penchant for golf.
The actor features in the upcoming The Legend of Tarzan, which hits UK theatres 8 July.