Hollywood icon Samuel L. Jackson and his wife LaTanya Richardson have been together for over 50 years. Although the details of a relationship that’s lasted as long as theirs could get a little hazy from time to time for anyone, Jackson admitted he doesn’t remember much because “he was on drugs” during his recent appearance on The Jennifer Hudson Show.
After clearing up bogus Hollywood rumors about his 42-year marriage to Richardson, the actor shared their engagement story with Hudson and her live studio audience. “My story was I came home one day and she already had these invitations printed up and she gave me a stack and said, ‘Be here,'” he said. Only that’s not what really happened. The 74-year-old Oscar winner went on to share his wife’s version of the story.
“I actually had to go and talk to her grandfather ’cause he told her he wanted to walk her down the aisle before he died and her living in sin with this man,” he told Hudson. “So I went and asked him for her hand.”
He added, “That’s probably what happened, ’cause I was on drugs. I don’t know what the hell was going on in my life then.”
Although Jackson admitted his wife may have had a better grasp of the reality at the time, he jokingly stated that he liked his version better. Jackson continued telling the story, stating that the real problem began after the storied proposal. “The problem was she had 23 bridesmaids and I didn’t have 23 friends,” he said. “I had my friends and then I had my friends ask their friends if they were doing anything. It was on a Monday because we were both working.”
Their extravagant wedding, which Jackson describes as a “production,” was reviewed in the theatre section of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Best show in town that night,” he said. “We killed it.”
In an interview with People magazine last year, Jackson opened up about his years-long struggle with drugs, giving credit to his wife — who along with their daughter, found him passed out on the floor of their home, drunk and clutching his drugs — for turning his life around. “She could’ve just said, ‘Get out,’ and left me into the world, let me go and be whatever I was going to be,” he said.
Instead, Richardson turned to God, telling the outlet she “couldn’t do that because I felt as though God had spoken to me and said, ‘Now, you can’t leave this young man like this. Give him some help. And then, if you feel like leaving afterwards, we’ll talk about it.'”
The couple will celebrate their 43rd wedding anniversary on August 18, 2023.
Watch the clip of Jackson’s appearance on The Jennnifer Hudson Show below: