This combination of 2012 and 2008 file photos shows actors Samuel L. Jackson and Laurence Fishburne. (AP Photo/Invision, Victoria Will; Kathy Willens)
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For black people, being mistaken for someone else can have a special sting, which may explain why the movie star Samuel L. Jackson eviscerated a white TV reporter for mistaking him for Laurence Fishburne.Blondes get mistaken for other blondes who look nothing like them.Which raises questions about why Jackson reacted so strongly, and whether it was an innocent mistake when TV reporter Sam Rubin confused Jackson with Fishburne.Did Rubin really think Jackson, known for his hard edge and foul mouth, was Fishburne, whose persona is more Shakespearean?Black people must navigate white environments far more often than whites find themselves surrounded by non-whites, so it can feel like black people get misidentified more often.Neal said Fishburne is an incredible actor but with the exception of Fishburne's starring role as Morpheus in "The Matrix" films, Jackson is a much bigger, more prolific movie star.It was not the first time Jackson had been confused with Fishburne -- although previously it was a spoof that mocked racial sensitivities and the idea that black people look alike.
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