Sam J. Jones

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Sam J. Jones
Jones in April 2016
Samuel Gerald Jones

(1954-08-12) August 12, 1954 (age 67)
Years active1975–present
Lynn Eriks
(m. 1982; div. 1987)

Myrtille Blervaque (m. 1987; div. 1990)
Ramona Lynn Jones
(m. 1992)
Military service
Allegiance United States
BranchUnited States Marine Corps
RankE-2 insignia Private First Class (PFC)

Samuel Gerald Jones (born August 12, 1954), known professionally as Sam J. Jones, is an American actor. He has arguably become best known for having portrayed the title character in the 1980 film Flash Gordon and for starring in the short-lived TV series The Highwayman (1987–1988).

Early life[edit]

Jones was born in Chicago, Illinois, and grew up in Sacramento, California. In 1972, after high school, Jones enlisted in the United States Marine Corps where he played American football.[1] With service in the Corps completed, he moved to Seattle with the ambition of joining the Seahawks but was turned down.[2] Instead, in 1976, he played for their practice team, the Flyers, as a semi-professional.[3]

To supplement his income, Jones also began modeling. Starting in 1975, he appeared full-frontal nude under the alias "Andrew Cooper III" as the centerfold for a photo-spread in the June issue of Playgirl magazine.[4] He also starred in TV commercials for a sporting goods store in Seattle before finally moving to Los Angeles in 1977.[5]


Jones made his first film appearance in the 1979 romantic comedy film 10.[6] His appearance in 10 allowed him to beat Kurt Russell and Arnold Schwarzenegger for his most famous role, that of Flash Gordon in the 1980 film of the same name.[7] Jones' hair was dyed blonde for this role. The film was moderately successful at the box office grossing $27.1 million in North America, and $22 million in the UK, double its $20 million budget. However, a falling-out between Jones and producer Dino De Laurentiis led to the scrapping of a planned film trilogy.[8]

After the release of Flash Gordon, Playgirl reprinted his 1975 nude photo spread in its January 1981 issue, this time using his real name. He went on to play Chris Rorchek in the TV series Code Red (1981–1982). He had guest roles in other TV shows including The A-Team, Hunter, and Riptide. In 1987, he played the lead role in a TV adaptation of Will Eisner's comics character The Spirit.[9] He also played the title character in the short-lived NBC sci-fi series The Highwayman.[9] In the late 1980s and early 1990s he portrayed Johnny Valentine on the HBO series 1st & Ten.[10]

Jones starred in the 1986 theatrical release My Chauffeur and the straight-to-video movies Jungle Heat (1985), Jane and the Lost City (1987), Under the Gun (1988), Silent Assassins (1988), Whiteforce (1988), Driving Force (1989), and One Man Force (1989). In the 1990s, Jones had roles in films including In Gold We Trust (1990), Maximum Force (1992), Fist of Honor (1993), Hard Vice (1994), Enter the Shootfighter (1995), Texas Payback (1995), The Killer Inside (1996), Earth Minus Zero (1996), Baja Run (1996) and American Tigers (1996), and guest roles in the TV shows Baywatch, Diagnosis Murder and Walker: Texas Ranger.[11]

In 2001, Jones was cast in Animal Planet's family series Hollywood Safari as a park ranger. He appeared in "Deadman Switch", an episode of the television series Stargate SG-1. In 2002, Jones retrained and, when he is not acting or working autograph booths on the ComicCon circuit, he works as a high-end security professional in San Diego, protecting traveling executives to Mexico. In his words "I became a security professional 15 years ago. My wife looked at me and said, 'You've been waiting for the phone to ring. The phone isn't ringing. We have kids. There's the door. Don’t come back until you’re providing.' That’s why I walked away from labels years ago. Actor? I'm a working man. Whatever it takes to provide, I'm a working man".[12]

In 2007, he played the prisoner Krebb in the Sci Fi Channel original television series Flash Gordon. He also had extended cameos (as himself, with his blond Flash Gordon hairstyle) in both the 2012 comedy film Ted and its 2015 sequel, Ted 2.[13] Jones then starred in, and served as an executive producer of, Life After Flash, a crowdfunded feature-length documentary about Flash Gordon.[14] The documentary, which chronicles the original film's production and cult following through interviews with fans and members of its cast and crew, including Melody Anderson, Brian Blessed, Peter Wyngarde, Mark Millar, Robert Rodriguez, Stan Lee and Brian May, also explores how Jones' falling-out with De Laurentiis impacted his life and career.[8][15]

Personal life[edit]

Jones married Lynn Eriks in 1982; they had two children and divorced in 1987. Following the divorce from Eriks, he married Myrtille Blervaque, a French actress he met when he was filming on the island of Mauritius. They were married in Nevada on August 15, 1987, and divorced three years later. [16][17] He married Ramona Lynn Jones on June 26, 1992; they have three children.[18]



Year Title Role Notes
1979 10 David Hanley
1980 Flash Gordon Flash Gordon
1985 Jungle Heat Gordon
1986 My Chauffeur Battle Witherspoon
1987 Jane and the Lost City Jungle Jack Buck
1988 Under the Gun Mike Braxton
1988 Silent Assassins Sam Kettle
1988 Whiteforce Johnny Quinn
1989 Driving Force Steve
1989 One Man Force Pete
1989 Trigon Fire Dr. James Ford
1990 In Gold We Trust Jeff Slater
1992 Maximum Force Michael Crews
1992 The Other Woman Mike Florian Direct-to-video
1992 Night Rhythms Jackson Direct-to-video
1993 DaVinci's War Jim Holbrook
1993 Fist of Honor Fist
1993 Lady Dragon 2 Reb
1993 South Beach Billy
1993 Thunder in Paradise David Kilmer Direct-to-video
1993 Expert Weapon Janson
1994 Hard Vice Joe
1995 Ballistic Braden
1995 Fists of Iron Tyler Green
1995 Texas Payback Louis Gentry
1996 Where Truth Lies James
1996 American Strays Exterminator
1996 The Killer Inside Steve Davis
1996 R.I.O.T.: The Movie Jimmy O'Brien Direct-to-video
1996 Earth Minus Zero Marshal Heller
1996 Baja Run Carl Brubaker
1996 American Tigers Sergeant Major Ransom
1997 T.N.T. Greel
1998 Evasive Action Convict
2000 Down 'n Dirty Stanton James
2001 Dead Sexy Rackles Direct-to-video
2001 Gangland Sgt. Richards
2001 Van Hook Uncle Dwayne
2002 Cold Sweat Mondo Direct-to-video
2002 Psychotic Dr. Donald Westlake
2002 Redemption The Brick Direct-to-video
2007 Revamped Jake Hardcastle Direct-to-video
2012 Ted Himself
2015 Ted 2 Himself
2017 Head Games Spokesman Short film
2018 Fury of the Fist and the Golden Fleece Flash / Man with the Golden Fleece
2019 One of the Good Ones Billy
2019 Axcellerator Brink
2019 The Silent Natural Jacob Hoy
TBA Edgar Allan Poe's Decapitarium Dean Usher


Year Title Role Notes
1980 Stunts Unlimited Bo Carlson TV movie
1981–1982 Code Red Chris Rorchek 17 episodes
1984 The A-Team Eric Episode: "Semi-Friendly Persuasion"
1984 No Man's Land Eli Howe TV movie
1984 Hunter Lance Lane Episode: "The Hot Grounder"
1984 Riptide Rick Beeber Episode: "Be True to Your School"
1985 Hardcastle and McCormick Grant Miller Episode: "Too Rich and Too Thin"
1985 This Wife for Hire Tommy Sellers TV movie
1986 1st & Ten Johnny Valentine 6 episodes
1987 The Spirit Spirit / Denny Colt TV movie
1987–1988 The Highwayman The Highwayman 10 episodes
1989 L.A. Takedown Jimmy TV movie
1991 Shades of L.A. BJ Makowski 2 episodes
1991 P.S. I Luv U Luke Episode: "I'd Kill to Direct"
1992 The Hat Squad Victory Smith Episode: "Pilot"
1993 Key West Commander Beauregard Richards Episode: "The Greening"
1993 Cobra Sgt. Clay Miller / Royce 2 episodes
1993 Baywatch Ken Jordan 2 episodes
1993–1995 Renegade Haggerty / Nicky Griffin / Earl Lyons 3 episodes
1993–1997 Walker, Texas Ranger Mick Stanley / Tommy Williams / Samuel J. Bodine 2 episodes
1994 Thunder in Paradise David Kilmer 2 episodes
1995 Diagnosis: Murder Lt. 'Buck' Denton Episode: "Sea No Evil"
1995 Ray Alexander: A Menu for Murder TV movie
1996 Pacific Blue Rolf Episode: "Burnout"
1997 Conan the Adventurer General Knorr Episode: "The Ruby Fruit Forest"
1998–2001 Hollywood Safari Troy Johnson 23 episodes
1999 L.A. Heat Randy Harden / Sullivan 2 episodes
1999 Silk Stalkings Sidney 2 episodes
1999 Stargate SG-1 Aris Boch Episode: "Deadman Switch"
2001 Black Scorpion Space Case Episode: "Photo Finish"
2007 Flash Gordon Krebb Episode: "Revelations"

Video games[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1993 Return to Zork Blind Bowman


  1. ^ Adams, Casey (March 17, 2017). "'Flash Gordon' actor Sam J. Jones shares impact of role, character and visit to Salt Lake Comic Con". Deseret News. Retrieved 8 April 2019.
  2. ^ "Sam Jones credits Clint Eastwood for 'Flash Gordon' career at Tidewater Comicon". May 25, 2016. Retrieved April 9, 2019.
  3. ^ "Sea-Tac Flyers (1973-1977) Burien Flyers (1978-80)". Greater Northwest Football Association. Retrieved April 9, 2019.
  4. ^ Lodge, Jack (1992). Hollywood: Sixty Great Years. New York: Barnes & Noble. p. 572. ISBN 978-1-5661-9606-2. Retrieved June 22, 2013.
  5. ^ Wilson, Karen E (December 1980). "Sam J. Jones: A New Career is Born for the Latest Portrayer of America's Original Space Hero, Flash Gordon". Starlog. 41.
  6. ^ Ebert, Roger (1987). Roger Ebert's Movie Home Companion. Andrews, McMeel & Parker. ISBN 978-0-8362-6212-4. Retrieved September 8, 2013.
  7. ^ "Mike Hodges: "Flash Gordon was a bumpy ride… "". Total Sci-fi Online. Archived from the original on August 25, 2010. Retrieved August 28, 2010.
  8. ^ a b Feldberg, Isaac (February 11, 2019). "Actor Sam J. Jones talks about 'Life After Flash' documentary". The Boston Globe. Retrieved February 11, 2019.
  9. ^ a b Sam J Jones interview: Flash Gordon , Ted 2, Flash remake
  10. ^ Jayson, Jay (September 6, 2017). "Happy Birthday! Sam J. Jones Turns 62 Years Old Today". Retrieved February 1, 2019.
  11. ^ McKenzie, Steven (September 10, 2013). "Flash Gordon: Actor Sam J Jones on the Skye connection". BBC News. Retrieved August 15, 2015.
  12. ^ Pinchefsky, Carol (November 8, 2017). "Flash Gordon star Sam Jones looks back on the film, his career mistakes and personal Triumphs". Syfy Wire. Retrieved April 9, 2019.
  13. ^ Valcourt, Keith (September 11, 2016). "'Flash Gordon' star Sam J. Jones on Seth MacFarlane and 'Ted' films". The Washington Times. Retrieved February 1, 2019.
  14. ^ "Life After Flash". Retrieved April 8, 2019.
  15. ^ Lopez, Kristen (February 23, 2019). "'Life After Flash' Acts As A Dual Celebration And Redemption Of Flash Gordon's Leading Man". Forbes. Retrieved February 23, 2019.
  16. ^ "The Girl in the Video: "Endless Summer Nights" (1988)". Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  17. ^ "Join Ancestry". Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  18. ^ "Sam J Jones". Empire. 91: 44. 1997.

External links[edit]