David Hasselhoff as Nick Fury

To many Marvel fans, Samuel L. Jackson is Nick Fury. Not only has Jackson played the character in five different MCU films over the past five years, the Ultimate version of the character was actually modeled after Jackson — years before Iron Man came out.

But there was a time long ago (well, 1998) when David Hasselhoff was Nick Fury. And while most people seem to have forgotten that by now, the Hoff hasn’t. In fact, he’s pretty sure that he’s still the better Nick Fury, and he’d like the chance to play the role again.

Hasselhoff portrayed the leather-clad warrior fifteen years ago in a made-for-TV movie called Nick Fury: Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. The film was quickly forgotten; at this point, most people probably assume that Jackson was the first to play that Fury.

However, Hasselhoff is eager to set the record straight. ”I was the first Nick Fury,” he said in an interview with Yahoo.

Stan Lee put me in that. He gave me the best line ever: ‘Guys like you tend to cling to the bowl no matter how many times you flush.’ Stan Lee came on the set and told me all about Nick. He said ‘You’re the ultimate Nick Fury’. He gave me the greatest compliment ever.

“The ultimate Nick Fury” is a terribly ironic phrase considering what the Ultimate Nick Fury looks like, but that’s neither here nor there. In any case, Hasselhoff isn’t too taken with Jackson’s more recent portrayal.

You know, it wasn’t Nick Fury. They take these shows and they make it the way they want to make it and unfortunately, they should have had Stan Lee on the set and let him kick him into gear – whoever directed [The Avengers] decided they wanted to go that way. But it’s their prerogative. He’s still a great actor.

This isn’t the first time Hasselhoff has criticized Jackson’s casting. While promoting Piranha 3DD in 2012, he told Movieline, “My Nick Fury was the organic Nick Fury that was written and discussed with Stan Lee before anyone got in there to change it.”

This time, Hasselhoff quickly took to Twitter to clarify his comments.

But as the Express points out, it doesn’t seem like Jackson was much a fan of the Hoff’s earlier performance, either. Explaining to EW (via ComicBook.com) last year how he’d prepared for the role, Jackson said, “I watched David Hasselhoff… and decided I was not going to do any of that.”

Despite Hasselhoff’s apparent frustration at being replaced, he says he’d be willing to strap on that eyepatch again.

I was hoping to have played him in the movie. And then Samuel L. Jackson came in and he was a great Nick Fury but he wasn’t really the consummate Nick Fury, the way he was written. And I think that’s a shame because he’s a great character and a funny character… I’m hoping to do it again sometime.

Okay, Mr. Hasselhoff, but we don’t recommend you hold your breath.

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