Samuel L. Jackson has clarified his controversial recent comments amount black British actors.
The actor’s original comments were made in relation to Jordan Peele’s new comedy horror film Get Out, which stars British actor Daniel Kaluuya as an African-American man meeting his white girlfriend’s parents for the first time.
“I think it’s great that movie’s doing everything it’s doing and people are loving it,” Jackson said. “But… I know the young brother who’s in the movie, and he’s British. I tend to wonder what that movie would have been with an American brother who really feels that.”
He also suggested that as a Brit, Kaluuya would not fully understand the difficulties of interracial dating experienced by African-Americans. “Daniel grew up in a country where they’ve been interracial dating for a hundred years,” he told US radio station Hot 97. “What would a brother from America have made of that role? Some things are universal but (not everything is).”
Following Jackson’s comments, Star Wars actor John Boyega hit back at Jackson on Twitter. “Black brits vs African American. A stupid ass conflict we don’t have time for,” he wrote.
Now Jackson has sought to explain his original comments about black British actors, telling the Associated Press: “It was not a slam against them, but it was just a comment about how Hollywood works in an interesting sort of way sometimes.”
He added: “We’re not afforded that same luxury, but that’s fine, we have plenty of opportunities to work.”
He also said of British actors: “I enjoy their work… I enjoy working with them when I have the opportunity to do that.”
A number of black British stars have been cast as African-American characters in Hollywood in recent years, with notable examples including David Oyelowo playing civil rights leader Martin Luther King in Selma and Chiwetel Ejiofor starring as Solomon Northup in 12 Years A Slave.
Jackson is currently promoting his latest film Kong: Skull Island, which is in cinemas now. He performed scenes from his many different movies in 11 minutes during his recent appearance on James Corden’s chat show.