Samuel(The Ghost and the Darkness 1996)

Samuel is a main character and major supporting protagonist of the 1996 action/adventure/thriller film The Ghost and the Darkness. He is an African muslim and native worker who is trusted by all he meets.

Background Edit

Not much is known of Samuel's past, other than that he was born in Tsavo and married four different women. He became a muslim, and eventually met the legendary big-game hunter and tracker Charles Remington, who he hunted with many times for lions, and became a good friend of his. In 1898, he set up camp for the building of a bridge in the Tsavo region.

The Ghost and the Darkness Edit

Samuel made his debut in the film at Tsavo, greeting Colonel John Henry Patterson, who was to build a bridge over the river there, showing him to the site, explaining along the way that Tsavo was the worst place in the world. Later, they went to the hospital, where Patterson learned of the presence of a man-eater, which he dispatched later that night. The next day, as it was being brought in, Samuel announced to the camp that the nights were now safe again. Over the next nine weeks, the building of the bridge goes smoothly, and Samuel presented Patterson with a necklace with the claws of the lion he shot strung on it, saying it was for courage. Unfortunately, their good luck was not mean't to last, as another man-eating lion appeared, and killed and devoured Mahina, the foreman and strongest man in camp, leaving Samuel and the rest of the camp besides Patterson terrorfied. After a second victim is taken, Samuel tried to settle down the crowd of angry and afraid workers who didn't want to work, with Patterson arriving quickly. Samuel told him how they prevented lions away from his village, with Patterson ordering him and half of the workers to build boma fences around the camp. For a week, no further people were killed, and one night, Samuel told his friend Angus Starling that he was beyond converting to Christianity, as he was a muslim and had four wives. Not long thereafter, Samuel took Patterson a letter from his wife, admitting that he didn't like any of his wives after the latter answers that he liked his very much. Quickly, the lion attacked in broad daylight, with him, Starling, and Patterson approaching it cautiously, only to learn that it had a partner, who killed Starling and escaped with its brother. Afterwards, Samuel mourned his friend's death.

One day, a train carrying Patterson's employer, Robert Beaumont, arrived, with Samuel pointing him in the direction of Starling's coffin. At the hospital, Samuel informed him, in native style, of the man-eaters' presence. After Beaumont left, Patterson continued to fail in killing the man-eaters, until one day, Samuel had to defend Patterson against the angry workmen and their leader, Abdullah, being aided by his good friend, Charles Remington, who was hired by Beaumont to help kill the lions. Greeting Remington with a hug and agreeing to his Masai hunters' price of ten head of cattle, Samuel surprised Patterson that he knew the legendary hunter. Later that night, Samuel agreed to join Remington on the hunt before, after he went to join his Masai in their bravery celebration, explaining Remington's tragic past to Patterson and the others, as well as stating that Remington did not need him with him truly, as he knew full well that Samuel was afraid of lions. On the hunt, Samuel joined Remington and the Masai in the thicket, while Patterson took the upper position. However, the attempt failed, and the Masai left, believing the lions to be demons, as Samuel explained to Patterson. Later, Samuel and Dr. Hawthorne, camp doctor, were given orders by Remington to stay in their tent and keep the fires mean't to keep the man-eaters away burning high. However, later that night, the lions attacked the new hospital, and the Samuel couldn't keep the doctor from going to help, resulting in his death. The next day, all the remaining workers fled Tsavo on a train, leaving Samuel, Remington, and Patterson alone to deal with the lions. That night, Samuel and Remington are alarmed by the sound of the lions roaring in the night, which Patterson proposed using a machan(Indian hunting platform), to kill the lions from. After it was built, Samuel and Remington supplied him with a baboon, which lions hate, as bait, and Samuel took up his hunting position on the bridge, with Remington in a tree, and Patterson on the machan.

After Patterson and Remington kill one of the lions, as they all celebrate, Samuel, noticing the remaining man-eater roaring alone in the night and his friends laughing at it, asked them why they were doing so, before taking a seat. As the trio talked over lost goals, Samuel expressed his wish to remember building the railroad, before laughing with Remignton and Patterson, at the latter's humorous joke about the former. The next morning, Samuel was devastated to find that the last lion had dragged away Remington and killed him. He and Patterson cremated his remains and boxed the lion in with fire. After dark, Samuel, after Patterson confronted the lion and emptied his weapons, at first started to take aim, but fled with him, before tossing Patterson Remington's double rifle, which fell. However, he still managed to get it and kill the lion. In following days, Samuel notified Patterson that his wife and son had arrived to see him. All the workers returned, and Samuel and Patterson went on to build the bridge, and part their ways. 

Skills Edit

Having hunted many times with Charles Remington, Samuel, despite his openly confessed fear of lions, is an experienced and skilled lion hunter, who survived the ordeal of the two man-eaters at Tsavo while trying to build a bridge there. He was able to help Patterson and Remington during the hunt, and devise ways to guard against the lions. Given his quick progress on the railroad and ability to help build the bridge at quick pace, Samuel was very skilled in physical labour as well.

Personality Edit

Samuel is very friendly and polite to others and has shown to be a caring friend, as after both Angus Starling and Charles Remington were killed by the lions, he mourned their losses. He also helped to cremate Remington's remains and, upon first seeing him in the film, greeted him with a hug, displaying that the two were very good friends from all their hunting years. Samuel liked Colonel John Henry Patterson very much as well, calling him a "fine, Irish gentleman and brilliant engineer". He also has a sense of humor, as when Patterson asked if he spoke English, he replied "And very poor French". As a muslim, Samuel believed in having multiple wives, having up to four at a time. Ironically, he openly admitted in the film that he didn't like any of them.

Trivia Edit

In the film, there is a character named Abdullah, who was actually real, but different than in the film. In reality, he was a soldier and had two wives, and was killed by the Tsavo man-eaters. The real Abdullah was probably the basis for Samuel's character.