Tony Wosk & Donna Wong-Juliani on the set of The Green Chain

One of the world’s biggest movie stars is in two films at the cineplexes this weekend and even if you’re one of the six people in North America who hasn’t checked out Samuel L. Jackson in The Avengers yet, I’m hoping you’ll be buying tickets to his other movie — The Samaritan.

A few years ago Tony Wosk joined with Donna Wong-Juliani to do something crazy and produce a movie consisting entirely of monologue about trees, my movie, The Green Chain. Today Tony has a new movie in the theatres — a modern film noir starring Jackson, Tom Wilkinson, Luke Kirby, Deborah Kara Unger and Gil Bellows and directed and co-written by David Weaver. I asked Weaver about directing Jackson. This was his response: “SLJ is unique on this earth. Most actors look to the director for reassurance — and why wouldn’t they? They have a camera sometimes only inches from their nose for twelve hours a day. But Sam is different. He has an almost totally complete notion of his character. So as the director you’re thankfully relieved of the role of analyst/cheerleader and you concentrate on shaping what’s already there. It’s thrilling.”

The movie’s opening everywhere — and hey, Roger Ebert popped his thumb up for it — so where-ever you are, buy a ticket and check the movie out this weekend because that’s when everyone’s counting the tickets and deciding whether or not to keep the movie in theatres for a second weekend.

For my story on why first weekends matter so much please check out my new piece for Backofthebook.ca

I’ll be in the line for The Samaritan this weekend and if you’re watching the film at Tinseltown in Vancouver, maybe I’ll see you there, heck, I’ll be happy to share my popcorn.

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