Samuel L. Jackson recalls the time his Avengers script was stolen, and Marvel set up a covert operation to buy it from the thief.
Many studios, in a bid to uphold the suspense and excitement of their projects, have started taking drastic measures to combat the ever-increasing issue of spoiler leaks. Marvel Studios has been notoriously known for employing strategies such as providing partial scripts to actors, yet even they are not impervious to accidental leaks. In fact, Samuel L. Jackson, known for his role as Nick Fury in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, recently talked to Entertainment Weekly about a situation where his script was illicitly printed out and appeared for sale online.
“I remember when we got ready to do Avengers, someone printed out a copy of my Avengers script that had my watermark on it, and put it online for sale. I was shooting in Canada and Marvel came to Canada. It had been printed in the production office…They found out who it was, dude quit, left the country. They set up a fake buy for the script, dude didn’t show up.”Samuel L. Jackson
Marvel’s willingness to establish a sting operation underscores the studio’s extreme seriousness about averting any form of leaks. As Samuel L. Jackson revealed, during the filming of Secret Invasion, unwanted drones were seen hovering over their sets. Demonstrating a zero-tolerance policy, the folks at Marvel unhesitatingly took measures to shoot them down whenever possible.
Emilia Clarke, who co-stars with Samuel L. Jackson in Secret Invasion, expressed her fear ignited by Marvel’s intense efforts to prevent leaks. She confessed to Entertainment Weekly that the studio’s commitment was so overwhelming that she removed the SIM card from her phone during the initial days of filming. Her precautionary measure stemmed from the worry that avid fans might use it to locate her.
It’s also worth noting that Clarke likely observed first-hand Marvel Studios’ management of renowned actors like Tom Holland and Mark Ruffalo, who are known for their occasional slips. Holland, famed for his role as Spider-Man, has been humorously tagged as a “spoiler machine” due to his several inadvertent slips.
This led the studio to pair him with co-stars during interviews as a form of spoiler control. Similarly, Ruffalo, who portrays the Hulk, was once fake fired by the Russo brothers on Twitter for unintentionally live-streaming a portion of the Thor: Ragnarok premiere, showcasing Marvel’s playful yet earnest approach to managing spoiler leaks.
At the moment, the potential spoiler leaks for Secret Invasion are the least of Marvel’s concerns. Premiering on June 21 with Samuel L. Jackson reprising his iconic role as Nick Fury, the series has received mixed reviews from critics. It currently sits with a score of 66 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, marking it as one of the lowest-rated MCU shows on Disney+.
While Secret Invasion has drawn some criticism, the performances of its cast, especially Samuel L. Jackson, Emilia Clarke, and Ben Mendelsohn, have garnered praise. The primary concern from viewers thus far has been the series’ slow pace, but this perspective is based on just one episode.
Given its innate narrative potential, there’s strong optimism that the series will pick up speed in the forthcoming episodes.
Secret Invasion revolves around Nick Fury and Talos battling against the Skrulls, who have insidiously made their way into the highest echelons of the Marvel Universe. The series boasts an impressive cast, including Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn, Cobie Smulders, Emilia Clarke, Kingsley Ben-Adir, Killian Scott, Christopher McDonald, and Dermot Mulroney.
The second episode is slated to premiere Wednesday, June 28, on Disney+.