'Star Wars' Drafts 'Action' Jackson

The Force was with presenter Samuel L. Jackson at Saturday night’s MTV Movie Awards. When “Star Wars” director George Lucas accepted the prize for Best Action Sequence for the pod race in “Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace,” he said that next year he hoped to see Jackson win the trophy for Best Fight. Jackson, who had a small role in “Episode I” as head of the Jedi council, knew he’d be back for the next episode (which will begin filming in Australia this summer) but was delighted to hear — along with the rest of Saturday’s audience — more about his role. “According to George tonight, it sounds like I’m going to get to turn my light saber on,” Jackson, 51, said backstage. This summer, the actor will be seen in the new version of “Shaft.” And how will his portrayal of the crime-buster vary from that of Richard Roundtree’s in the 1971 original? “We’re different heroes for different times,” Jackson said. “And I smile a lot when I get to shoot my gun.”

  • In other news of “Star Wars,” Lucas said it was “good acting” that won 19-year-old Hayden Christensen the coveted role of Anakin Skywalker. The filmmaker also called the ongoing controversy over the Jar-Jar Binks character, which some critics called a racist stereotype, “ridiculous.”
  • For more on the MTV Movie Awards, click here.
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