From the beginning, Nick Fury has been set up as one of the most important pieces of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. After debuting in the after-credits tag of Iron Man, the hard-edged Fury went on to be one of the most featured characters in the entire franchise, but Captain Marvel reveals that wasn't always the case. This version of Fury that audiences will be introduced to isn't quite as experienced, and is far less jaded than the one-eyed super spy we've grown to love. And, since the story is set in the '90s, he's physically younger as well, an effect achieved thanks to the de-aging technology the producers of the film utilized.
During a recent Q&A session with the cast of Captain Marvel, Samuel L. Jackson spoke about what it's like to play a younger version of the character, and if the de-aging had any effect on his performance.
Jackson describes his fresher-faced secret agent as "kinder, gentler, not so cynical world-weary chip on his shoulder Nick Fury. Who hasn't met anyone from another universe just yet, and is sort of looking at the crazy lady and wondering why she thinks she's an alien. It's kind of fun to not be the all-knowing angry persuader that Nick Fury always is. Even more refreshing than that was having two eyes, so I didn't have one covered up while I was learning my lines."
Utilizing the technology Marvel Studios has been refining in other films like Captain America: Civil War and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Samuel L. Jackson and Clark Gregg were both digitally de-aged for the film. That means they had to act with sensors attached to their faces to better track their performances. But according to Jackson, none of that had an effect on his performance. "They're not really an on-set process. They put the wig on me and dots on my face, so I kind of felt like I was in Wakanda," he quipped. "They started exploring other things I'd done before so they could use facial expressions that were already there. Fortunately... I'd done, like, three movies before this one. So they had stuff to refer to. It was cool. It was just me with dots on my face, having fun with Brie [Larson]."
"the technology is spectacular," Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige added. "We've done it in a number of films, and I think this represents the peak. However, the two people up here that we did do it to, Sam Jackson and Clark Gregg, are the two human beings who don't need it. If you Google them in 1995, it's almost identical. So we saved a lot of money."
Directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck from a script they wrote with Liz Flahive, Carly Mensch, Meg LeFauve, Nicole Perlman and Geneva Robertson-Dworet, Captain Marvel stars Brie Larson as Carol Danvers, Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Jude Law as Mar-Vell, Clark Gregg as Phil Coulson, Lee Pace as Ronan the Accuser, Djimon Hounsou as Korath the Pursuer, Gemma Chan as Minn-Erva, Ben Mendelsohn as Talos and Lashana Lynch as Maria Rambeau. The film arrives Mar. 8.