Brie Larson and Samuel L. Jackson have a friendship that I think everyone wishes they had with their co-workers. Their collaboration started on the 2017 monster flick Kong: Skull Island, and they have gone on to make five more films together over the course of six years. The two love talking about each other and their bond, and they have opened up about how they have gotten so close over the years. Apparently, their friendship was born out of a difficult filming situation on Kong: Skull Island, and it has continued throughout their shared participation in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Filming Kong Skull Island Was A Difficult Experience
According to many stories from the cast of Kong: Skull Island, the production experience could be miserable at times. The movie was shot on location in Hawaii, Vietnam, and Australia, where the ensemble experienced bad weather, tons of bugs, and a long, grueling production schedule. Brie Larson talked about the weather conditions to the Hindustan Times saying:
Over the course of six months we dealt with every type of weather - so there’s like one scene every time I look at , I’m like, ‘That was 120 degrees’ I remember we were all dying and other scenes I remember it hailing and being freezing cold but it all looks the same scene.
Samuel L. Jackson also hasn’t been shy about his feelings on what it was like shooting the action film. However, out of that uncomfortable experience, his bond with his co-workers grew even stronger. He said to IndieWire:
It was a really tough shoot, and we were in a lot of remote locations and trying to figure out where we were, what we were doing, how it was happening, you know what I mean. You don’t have cell reception, you kind of have to interact with each other and talk, and you hang out, and you fight bugs together. We did that and we really enjoyed commiserating and kind of supporting each other.
It’s nice to know that even though the grueling shoot really took it out of them, the cast of the film was still able to find joy in their shared experience. It may sound pretty negative, but sometimes the tough stuff is what really brings people together.
How The Kong: Skull Island Experience Evolved Into A Lasting Friendship
As Jackson told IndieWire, the difficult production experience tightened the bond with his co-workers on the film. However, it seems that the filming situation particularly fueled his relationship with Larson. The Nick Fury actor talked to Rolling Stone about how even though they were both struggling on the film, the friendship at the end of it made it all worthwhile. He said:
Brie’s a stronger person than people give her credit for. We had done Kong together, which was not the most wonderful experience for either of us. We became great friends during that particular experience because we were having such a hard time. Then, when she was doing her movie [Unicorn Store] and trying to get a particular actor, I was in the makeup trailer with her and was like, 'Why are you trying to hire this other actor and not trying to get me to do your movie?' She said, 'I didn’t think you’d ever do it… so, will you?' And I was like, 'Let’s do it.'
The Unicorn Store was a directorial debut for Larson, and the film got relatively positive reviews after premiering on Netflix in 2017. Clearly, Jackson cared an awful lot about his co-star to make time out of his busy schedule to work on a small indie film for the (at the time) up-and-coming star. The Hateful Eight actor has since evolved into her number hype man and supporter, and we truly, love to see it.
Apparently, their bond has also evolved into a mutual dislike of people they have worked with. Brie Larson appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! back in 2019 to promote Captain Marvel, where she revealed that she and the Pulp Fiction actor have secret code words and share secrets, including people they both dislike. While she didn’t reveal who these codes were about, she did remain coy about whether these were co-workers on Kong: Skull Island. She said:
Well, we’ve done three movies together, so there is a lot of people to hate in three movies.
We will never know for sure the length of the difficulties of the Kong shoot, but we do know that we got a meaningful connection between collaborators out of the whole ordeal. Sometimes true friendship comes out of a unique shared experience, even if that experience was a negative one.
Samuel L. Jackson And Brie Larson’s Continued Bond While Working On Marvel Films
Kong: Skull Island wasn’t the end of their franchise collaboration. Both actors are major players within the MCU, and their characters, Captain Marvel and Nick Fury, have intertwining stories. Therefore, Larson and Jackson still spend an awful lot of time together. The actress even told Jimmy Kimmel that she has traveled more with the Star Wars alum than anyone else in her life. She said while promoting Captain Marvel:
It’s the best. Between Kong- filming Kong, where we shot in Hawaii, Australia, and Vietnam- the press tour for that movie [Captain Marvel] and the press tour for this, he is without a doubt the person I have traveled with the most out of any person in my life…. That love is real. You can’t fake that stuff.
It seems like the feeling is mutual for Jackson, who recently opened up about his care for the Oscar winner, and how much he admires her strength. He also revealed that he was the one who urged her to join the MCU, which has been a major part of Larson’s career over the last few years. He said of his co-star to Rolling Stone:
Then, when she got Captain Marvel, she called me and was like, 'They want me in the Marvel Universe. Should I do it?' And I was like, 'Hell yeah! Let’s do it!' But she’s not going to let any of that stuff destroy her. These incel dudes who hate strong women, or the fact that she’s a feminist who has an opinion and expressed it? Everybody wants people to be who they want them to be. She is who she is, and she’s genuinely that.
I think it’s unbelievably sweet that Jackson was super encouraging about Larson joining the MCU, and continued to support her throughout her complicated journey within the franchise.
They frequently show love for each other's projects on social media too, and Larson saw Jackson on Broadway back in January. He also confirmed that their characters continue to have a wonderful relationship, just like their own in the MCU. I’m so here for this duo, and I hope they continue to work with each other in the future.
They are both expected to appear in upcoming Marvel movies including The Marvels, which is on the 2023 movie schedule and heads to theaters on November 10. So, fans of this friendship have a lot to look forward to. Fans should also check out their previous work together, like Kong: Skull Island, which is currently available to rent on Amazon, and Captain Marvel, which is now streaming for Disney+ subscribers.