Reggie on 'Naked Gun' run-in with the Queen

June 30th, 2019

LONDON -- The Red Sox and Yankees did not make it past the gates of Buckingham Palace during their London Series visit, though managers Aaron Boone and Alex Cora witnessed the changing of the guard earlier this week. Hall of Famer can claim a royal brush of sorts that was captured on celluloid.

In the 1988 comedy "The Naked Gun," Jackson plays himself as a California Angels outfielder who is programmed to assassinate Queen Elizabeth II during the late innings of a pivotal game against the Seattle Mariners. The plot is foiled by the film's star, Leslie Nielsen, who masquerades as an umpire to get close to the action.

Jackson, 73, chuckled when asked if his only line from that film -- "I must kill … the Queen" -- prompted any hesitation as he accompanied the Yankees on their European trip.

"No, no, no. That was a comedy," Jackson said. "But she looked a little bit like her, she really did. I was honored to do that stuff. They called up my agent, and it was a privilege to be asked to do stuff like that and participate. It's not quite like the Yankees, but when Hollywood asks you to be around, it's a nice feeling to get inside."

Jackson had played his final season with the Athletics in 1987, and said that it was fun to put his old Angels uniform back on and patrol right field at Dodger Stadium during the four-day shoot. He remembers spending time with several stars of the film, including Leslie Nielsen, George Kennedy and Priscilla Presley, but said that he does not recall seeing O.J. Simpson on set.

Since the release of "The Naked Gun," Jackson has appeared in numerous films, most recently "The Benchwarmers" (2006).

"I just saw Adam Sandler, who was sitting in Suite 44 [at Yankee Stadium]," Jackson said. "I visited with him and he said, 'When are you going to do another movie with me?' I said, 'Well, you've got to ask me. I can't just call you up and tell you I'm in a movie.' He said, 'OK, all right, in 2020 we're doing one.' It would be fun."