Sam J. Jones - with a mighty hand, a mighty heart
It was on my birthday that I received a personal email from Sam J. Jones, responding to my request to interview him about Richard Amsel's FLASH GORDON poster while at ComicCon Palm Springs later in the month. "Yes of course," he wrote, "looking forward to it, a great artist."
Naturally, I was thrilled. 1980's FLASH GORDON is a fantasy classic, and a fond memory from my childhood. It also has gained considerable fandom and a new appreciation over the years; like BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA, audiences are finally recognizing the film's unique sense of fun and humor. FLASH is no longer a guilty pleasure -- it's a really good movie!
I'm happy to say that Mr. Jones is every bit as gracious and generous as his film counterpart. Watching him interact with fans -- including fellow military servicemen, whom he'd greet with a warm "Semper Fi!" -- and take his time posing for photos without any attitude or condescension, makes me wish that more cinematic heroes would follow his example.
On Amsel's poster, Mr. Jones said, "Are you kidding me? Look at that! This is the number one at my table. Out of all the posters to choose from, Richard's is the number one. It's got everything going for it -- it's rich, it's vibrant..." He then laughed, "It has ME!"
Mr. Jones even donated a signed copy of one of his Amsel poster reproductions for us to include in our forthcoming crowdfunding campaign. Three times I had offered to pay for it, and each time he refused to accept my money. He even signed another poster, personalizing it to me -- and yet again, he refused my offer to pay for it.
Yeah, that's a mighty guy all around.
Special thanks to www.heroesforhire.us for helping me contact Mr. Jones for this interview.