Born in the midst of WWll, Jackson Bostwick grew up reading the Golden Age comic books featuring Superman and Captain Marvel and watching the Lone Ranger on B&W television. The imagery and morals of those heroic characters were very influential in shaping Jackson’s life. Because of his starring role as Captain Marvel, Bostwick was able to meet American Heroes Buzz Aldrin, Clayton Moore, Kirk Alyn, and the father of his character’s name’s sake, CC Beck.
Born the son of a neurosurgeon and Burdines Department Store model mother, Jackson’s early years were filled with much happiness, love, and support. Comfortable in either the swankiest of country clubs or camouflaged duck blinds, Jackson’s humble nature influenced his lifetime of career accomplishments and achievements.
Jackson attended the University of Alabama from 1961-1965 where he was classmates with future New York Jets Hall of Famer, “Broadway Joe Namath”, and Bear Bryant's first years at Alabama. After serving time in the Army, Bostwick then attended the University of Southern California, 1969-1973, as an original member of their Master of Fine Arts Theatre program. Both Jackson and “Three’s Company” star John Ritter, who was an undergraduate at the time, were both part of the theater classes at USC.
Meeting producer Robert Chanault on his very first interview on the final day of casting with the four finalists, (including Mark Harmon) (They had been looking for four months for a Captain Marvel) Jackson was selected on his first walk-in interview (when it's meant to be, it's meant to be...).
After auditioning against actors such as Mark Harmon, Jackson Bostwick won the lead role of Captain Marvel on the CBS Saturday Morning TV show, "Shazam!" The show debuted on September 7th, 1974 with Bostwick appearing in the first 17 episodes. Jackson is credited with engineering Captain Marvel’s seamless flight scenes, stunts, and suggesting to add the morals at the end of each episode.
Some of the many fan letters for Captain Marvel.
After leaving the show Shazam!, Jackson continued to make personal appearances and was a huge hit at the Comic Con scene where he appeared alongside CC Beck, Kirk Alyn, Clayton Moore, and numerous other screen legends. National hero Buzz Aldrin co-hosted a major fundraising event with Jackson where the pair became lifelong friends. Continuing to work in Hollywood, Jackson appeared in 13 movies for Walt Disney studios including Gus, Secret of Lost Valley, and Tron. Besides appearing on screen, Jackson also did voice-over work. Jackson continues to be a working actor and is excited about the prospect of future projects.
Jackson financed his own independent films, Southern Fried Shakespeare (1991) and Blood Mary-Lite (2006) for which he produced and starred.
Recently completing the restoration of the Big Red Cheese Mobile, arranging the mementos for his virtual museum, finishing his autobiography, and preparing for the upcoming 50th Anniversary of the show Shazam! in 2024, Jackson is maintaining a very busy schedule.
As the “World’s Mightiest Mortal” and oldest actor to portray a Golden Age Super Hero, Jackson’s stature within the hobby continues to be elevated as he looks forward to continuing his tour of public speaking, corporate events, celebrity hunting/fishing/golf, and charity fundraising.
Corresponding with the debut of the show Shazam!, Jackson Bostwick’s 1974 Chrysler Imperial was restored to serve as a monument to the Golden Age of Comics and a memorial to Captain Marvel. True to CC Beck’s vision of the character, the color was perfectly matched to the red of the heroes’ costume and the main Captain Marvel door figure was taken from a cover personally drawn by the creator.
Jackson Bostwick and the Big Red Cheese Mobile are available for personal appearances, fund raising events, and educational experiences.
Some items from a lifetime of experiences as Captain Marvel.
I’m completing my pre-run stretches on the dirt road that runs into the top of my circular dirt driveway. The driveway leads up the hill from my cabin on Lake Martin in Alabama. This connecting dirt road winds around for a mile and a half and before intersecting with State highway 63. I take this run up and back to the highway every other evening. RATTLE, RATTLE…! I’m hearing this sound - loud enough to be a heavy toy baby rattle – the whole time from when I exit the house to when I’m walking up the driveway to the dirt road. RATTLE, RATTLE, the nonstop sound continues.
Okay, curiosity has persuaded me to take a look-see. To me it doesn’t have the higher pitch of a rattlesnake’s warning rattle, which I’ve encountered several times during my woodland outings. No, this sound is much heavier and louder. As I go back down the sloping driveway towards my house, I notice the sound is coming from a collection of fallen trees and limbs in a hollow to my left. As I start down the slope to the ravine, I see my cat, Patches, up on a fallen tree peering intently down towards a pile of logs and branches. I call out to him, but he doesn’t move a muscle. I stop and try to see what he’s locked into visually. He’s facing towards the wood pile where the baby rattle sound is coming from. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to figure out the situation. It’s got to be a rattlesnake... and a big one at that.
I follow the sound, as I approach the wood pile. I look back up at my cat and trace his stare down to the other side of an up rooted tree trunk. Quietly, and cautiously, I move up to the trunk and peer over it. There in a flat circular coil is a magnificent, dark-colored Timber Rattler. The only thing moving are it’s rattles, that are violently quivering and sounding like my daughter’s baby rattle. Everything else about this bad boy is dead still.
I stay focused on the snake, because I don’t want to lose him. Normally, I don’t bother these snakes, but this one is a little to close to my house...and he’s a keeper. I slowly back away from the tree stump and then haul butt up to the house and grab my rifle; a Winchester semiautomatic .22 that I had previously loaded with shorts. I had been doing some nighttime frog hunting with these light loads along the shoreline of our slough. I wouldn’t have wanted to use a long rifle cartridge at this range, so the shorts were perfect; not to do much body damage. Oh yeah, this beauty is going to be mounted. As I’m turning, rifle in hand, and running back down into the draw, I call out to my, then, wife, Elizabeth, that there was a monster rattle snake in the gully.
My cat hasn’t moved from his observation post. I slow down and, quietly, approach the fallen tree. I ease up to it and, slowly, look over to see that the snake has not moved, save the constant rattling from it’s 11 rattles. I, quietly, lift the rifle over the log and aim it down at it’s head. I’m, quickly, going over in my mind where the brain is located on a snake. I’m thinking, you draw a line between it’s eyes and then imagine an equilateral triangle pointing towards it’s body, and the brain should be at the apex of the trigon. Or is that for a crocodile? Anyway, bang! I drill him, as I have calculated.
Nothing! Not a single twitch of the body. I mean “dead still.” “I couldn’t have missed,” I’m thinking. The only clue was no more rattling. I still wasn’t sure, so I popped him, again. Still no movement, whatsoever. I waited about five minutes, or so and, then, took the rifle muzzle and carefully poked it’s head with it. Still, nothing. Dead still, literally. I, finally, conclude that this fella is toast. I, gingerly, reach down and, quickly, grab him behind the head and then lift him over the log. What a beauty. I had to hold him up high, he was so long.
I took him back to the house and laid him out on the side walk. I wanted to get some pictures with Patches, and me, and the snake, so I asked Elizabeth to snap a couple of shots. Wrong! The cat went unhinged, when I tried to get him in the picture close to the snake. He shredded my arm and leg and let out a horrific feline hiss and growl and tore off into the night. We took a couple of pictures without him and, then, I configured the snake into a coil and, carefully, wrapped him up in double plastic grocery bags and then, much to Elizabeth’s horror, put him in the freezer. He stayed frozen from freezer to freezer for 16 years, as we moved to different addresses, and until I gave him to, Troy Kinunen, at my address in Mt. Juliet, TN. He, then, along with his friend JR, took it out of my freezer and transported the beast in an ice chest back to Wisconsin, where he had the stunner mounted, and where it remains to this day.
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