Nick Fury may be the man with all of the secrets in Marvel lore, but the actor who plays him isn't.
In an interview with Collider, Samuel L. Jackson opens up about his absence from the loaded cast list for 2016's Captain America: Civil War, especially given that it was his cameo in the original Iron Man that kicked off the interconnected Marvel Cinematic Universe.
"It’s really great to be the connective tissue between so many different characters in so many different films, that brings those guys together. But I’m not in [Captain America: Civil War]," Jackson tells Collider's Christina Radish. "I can’t figure that out, but I’m not. I guess I’m still out there, trying to figure out what happened to S.H.I.E.L.D. and who these other people are."
Although ostensibly a solo film, Captain America: Civil War has all of the Avengers sans Chris Hemsworth's Thor and Mark Ruffalo's Hulk (although that actor vaguely implied otherwise). In addition, Jackson's Fury played key roles in the first two Captain America movies, albiet briefly at the mid-credits scene of Captain America: The First Avenger.
In 2009, The Hollywood Reporter announced that Jackson signed a 9-picture deal with Marvel Studios to continue playing Nick Fury in Marvel's Cinematic Universe. To date, Jackson has appeared in 7 Marvel Studios films in addition to appearances on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. In February, Jackson told IGN that he had two more movies under his current contract but hopes to work out a deal with Marvel to continue.
Although the Nick Fury character isn't a solo film franchise like Iron Man or Captain America, Jackson has talked about the potential for a solo Nick Fury film at some point. Fury, like Robert Downey Jr., is prone to openly talk about contract negotiations, and in 2011 The Guardian noted that Jackson was the highest grossing film star of all time with his roles in the Marvel movies, Star Wars, as well as roles in Pulp Fiction, Jurassic Park and Die Hard With A Vengeance.
Whether or not Jackson gets to continue playing Nick Fury past his current contract remains to be seen, but the actor maintains that his role has been an "amazing honor".
"But it’s an amazing honor to be that guy, to be Nick Fury, to be in that particular world, and to be a character that people believe. It’s great," says Jackson. "I’m as grateful for being in that, as I was being in Star Wars with George [Lucas] and to play a character that people remember, like Mace Windu. It’s all great. It’s hard not to be a part of something that you know, if people study film for the next 200 years, they’ll be talking about Star Wars and The Avengers series, and all that stuff.”