September 27th, 2012
11:05 AM ET
10 years ago

Samuel L. Jackson: 'Wake the F*** up' for Obama

(CNN) - Actor Samuel L. Jackson entered the political fray this week, starring in a new web video that parodies his own audio recording of the mock children's book, "Go the F*** to Sleep."

This time, however, Jackson is reaching out to voters–not frustrated parents–urging Americans to "Wake the F*** Up" and vote for President Barack Obama. (Obviously, not work safe without headphones, but there's also a bleeped version.)

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In the nearly four-minute video told like a children's book, Jackson narrates a metrical tale of disenchanted Obama fans who have since dialed down their support.

"In the silvery moonlight that bathes every town,

The people lye dreaming so safe and so sound.

They're warm in their beds, snuggled up in their sheets,

But four years before, they were out in the streets."

The story features a girl named "Little Susie," whose family once actively campaigned for Obama but now sits on the sidelines this election year.

"We canvassed and phone banked with passion and pluck.

It matters this time, but their eyes are shut."

Funding for the project came from the Jewish Council for Education and Research, a super PAC supporting President Barack Obama. The group has made other humor-based videos, including a video last week on Voter ID laws that featured a brash performance by comedian Sarah Silverman.

The new video also takes a comical spin. As Little Susie's parents brush her off during her childlike pleas for activism, Samuel L. Jackson appears in the family's dining room–with an in-your-face, though still rhythmic, approach.

"Sorry, my friend, but there's not time to snore.

An out of touch millionaire just declared war

On schools, the environment, unions, fair pay.

We're all on our way if Romney has his way.

He's against safety nets. If you fall, tough luck.

So I strongly suggest, that you wake the f*** up."

The video continues with a storybook pace interrupted by Jackson's rather blunt, yet lyrical, pep talks. Jackson, for example, took issue with the excuse made by Little Susie's teenage brother, who argued he's not involved because he thinks "all politicians are the same."

"They're all the same? Big brother, please!

Obama sent SEALS to Bin Laden's Place. Romney sent jobs overseas.

How about that student loan overhaul? It's going to save you thousands of bucks.

Mitt will cut that sh*t in a second. My dude, Wake the f*** up."

Last year, Jackson made headlines when he narrated the audiobook version of "Go the F*** to Sleep," a satirical children's book that strikes a chord with frustrated parents who try to tuck their kids in at night.

When Audible Inc. released the 6-minute recording as a free download, it received 160,000 downloads in 48 hours. Audible also saw a sharp spike–up to 160% increase–in downloads of their apps for smart phones during the same time window.

The original book, written by Adam Mansbach and illustrated by Ricardo Cort├ęs, originally was slated for a fall 2011 release. The PDF version of the book, however, was leaked and went viral. It became so popular that Akashic moved the release dates for the print book and e-book up to June of that year.

- CNNMoney's Julianne Pepitone contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • President Obama
soundoff (223 Responses)
  1. on StreetWise

    Samuel L. has SOUL... Romney has ZERO!

    September 27, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  2. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    @jack 3

    Samuel L jackson also voted for Clinton, Gore and Kerry. So what's your point?

    September 27, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  3. Lee

    When has the country had any other choice than to vote for a white candidate???

    September 27, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  4. Carlos Rivas

    "Wake Up People", Samuel L . Jackson is actually on the record saying that he voted Obama because he's black. Enough said!

    September 27, 2012 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  5. davey

    Sorry sammy, just another person who spends their whole life pretending to be someone else and thinks that that gives them some sort of platform to spew their beliefs which incidentally are no more important or valid than anyone else.
    Keep trying to stay relevant while your career wanes.

    September 27, 2012 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  6. Mary

    I like Samuel L. Jackson in most of his movies.
    But his political preference doesn't sway me one way or the other.
    He's a hollywood actor, and he's a good one, but that doesn't make him any more knowledgeable than the rest of us about politics or political figures. I might lean toward assuming he's a liberal and I wouldn't then agree with some of his beliefs anyway.
    So go ahead Sam. Make your video. It doesn't change my mind.

    September 27, 2012 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  7. Critical Thinking

    Samuel, nice mouth. You kiss your mother with that mouth...nah. I think you kiss something else with that mouth

    September 27, 2012 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  8. on StreetWise

    And for Mike Rowe goes, he took his dirty job yet speaking in support of Romney. LOL getting that 47%'ers watching his show again... look for the polls start falling, for both. Former FAN!

    September 27, 2012 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  9. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer


    Never mind them! When segregation was outlawed in America in the 1950s and white kids started coming home and telling their parents how their best friend was black and that blacks were cool, some of them finally started to view blacks in a different way. Perhaps it would be up to the white kids of this generation to enlighten their parents and remind them that the old ways of viewing the world are a thing of the past. Of course some people will never change.

    September 27, 2012 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  10. Libacryte

    Edtrowell – if you'd actually research the quote (which was taken out of context), he meant that 47% will vote party line, no matter what. About the same percentage will vote for the OTHER party as well.

    The deciding factor are the "swing voters" (independents, undecideds, etc). No matter what, the extreme left will never vote Rep and the extreme right will never vote Dem.

    Also, for the folks talking about "free" health care, etc – it is NOT "free" – somebody has to foot the bill. That means higher taxes. Also, when the Gov decides to take something over, it "flattens" it out so that it's "equal" for everyone, so if you had GREAT coverage b4, you'll only have "good" coverage after. The ONLY ppl who would benefit are the ones w/ NO coverage, but most others will actually be worse off (either in the form of higher taxes, higher premiums, worse coverage, or a combination of all of the above).

    September 27, 2012 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  11. TY

    Haters in the house. You right wingers fools are just haters. I tell you want the hollywood hut does not want anything in return when they endorse Obama. But this rich cats like Koch and the Las Vegas fool want something in regulation and war. So go back to the drawing board. You need to WAKEUP because Unfit Mitt and Lyin Ryan is not into you.................................

    September 27, 2012 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  12. durundal

    man I love surveying the ignorance that is the comment board. Most clueless, baseless, and populist drivel that made me chuckle so far:

    1) Here's an idea: When you fall into the safety net, climb out of it. It is not a hammock for you and the next five generations of your progeny to laze about in.

    2) Look! Another multi-millionaire one-percenter excused from scrutiny because he is involved in sports or entertainment.

    -Its hard to take pride in our country when the people that inhabit it are so, so sad

    September 27, 2012 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  13. Howard

    Another foul mouthed obama stooge celebrity in the tank for Dear Leader.
    Obama is destroying America ... America is more important than obama.
    Obama is expendable and replaceable ... America is not.
    Dump obama in November !!!

    September 27, 2012 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  14. Mtheumer

    Carlos Rivas
    "Wake Up People", Samuel L . Jackson is actually on the record saying that he voted Obama because he's black. Enough said!


    Didn't he say that as a character in a cartoon? Your an idiot!

    September 27, 2012 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  15. Mtheumer


    Th e only one who EVER said anything about "free health care" has been republicans!

    September 27, 2012 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  16. Cogito

    Obamney is not a real choice. GARY JOHNSON is the real choice. WAKE THE F*** UP Samuel !!!

    September 27, 2012 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  17. Sniffit

    "Samuel L jackson also voted for Clinton, Gore and Kerry. So what's your point?"

    His point is that he's white and scared of becoming a minority as the demographic shifts take place over the next couple decades.

    September 27, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  18. Mtheumer

    I'd rather have Sam L. telling it like it is than Eastwood talking to an empty chair!

    September 27, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  19. lance corporal

    let the hate fest flow

    he's a celebrity, a liberal AND he's black.......... oh lord

    September 27, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  20. Wake up people!

    I'm still wondering why they are all hating on Sam when Eastwood just made a complete Azz of himself at the RNC and they love his old shoe leather looking self ??? And let's not forget everyones favorite repub president Ray Gun! Why all the hate for Hollywood NOW??

    OBAMA 2012!

    September 27, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  21. Don

    Awesome – funny – straight forward – and clear. Well done – all around. Almost a shame that the President's opponent has already beat themself.

    September 27, 2012 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  22. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer


    If Samuel L. Jackson is voting for the President because he's black, then why did he vote for the white candidates? Let's face it, Democrats don't vote race, we vote for the candidate that have a better vision and plan to the country. As your white candidate said, his job is not to worry about 47% of the American people. But I 'd rather vote for the white guy or in this case, the black guy who's job is to govern for 100% of America.

    September 27, 2012 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  23. mdcisneros

    Sammy just stick to acting.

    September 27, 2012 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  24. timinfla

    he's black, obamas's black (kinda) so me vote for obama. case closed. Now go get your foo stamps and cell phones like the cleveland lady says LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

    September 27, 2012 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  25. Anonymous

    Well Samuel, we all know what you are about and why you are doing this.

    September 27, 2012 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
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