Over the course of his illustrious career, Samuel L. Jackson has appeared in a lot of iconic projects such as Do The Right Thing and Pulp Fiction among many others. Out of all those memorable appearances, the one that solidified his presence in the popular consciousness was his entry into the Star Wars universe as Mace Windu – a high ranking Jedi Master who once served as their leader.
The image of lightsabers instantly pop up in one’s mind anytime Star Wars is mentioned, with avid fans constructing their unique modifications of the wildly beloved weapon used in the films. A survey even declared the lightsaber as the most popular weapon used in all of cinema history which is not a small feat at all, considering the number of unique cinematic weapons that have been popularised through the years.
Jackson played the role of Mace Windu in the Star Wars prequel trilogy, opposing the training of Anakin because he could already see the apocalyptic potential of the young man. Windu was one of the strongest Jedi Masters of his time who even managed to best the omnipotent Palpatine in combat but was struck down when Anakin barged in, resulting in the beginning of the end.
Fans have always connected Windu’s combat prowess to the unusual colour of his lightsaber; purple. Until then, fans were used to seeing red lightsabers in the hands of the bad guys and green ones used by the good guys as a symbolic differentiation between the two conflicting ideologies observed in the film. One exception to this was Obi-Wan Kenobi whose lightsaber was blue.
Although a lot of lore has been written around Windu’s use of a purple lightsaber from an amethyst kyber crystal, the artistic choice happened pretty randomly when Jackson asked George Lucas about changing up his lightsaber colour on set. Lucas responded by mentioning the ideological difference between the green, blue and red lightsabers but Jackson suggested purple which interested Lucas.
Jackson wanted to change his lightsaber because he wanted to find himself in a big battle scene with a lot of identical glowing swords. Although Lucas was resistant to the idea at first, Jackson convinced him by saying: “Yeah, but I want a purple one. I’m like the second baddest Jedi in the universe next to Yoda.” Eventually, he got what he wanted and the purple lightsaber became an iconic addition to the legacy of Star Wars.
Watch the exact moment when Samuel L. Jackson got his purple lightsaber below.