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OPINION: Getting to know the REAL Samuel Johnson

He’s front and centre after winning the biggest award in Australian television, so what is Sam really like? A pretty inspirational guy.

By Amber Giles
The saying goes that a picture tells a thousand words, and if I could send out a proof sheet to the world of our photo shoot with Gold Logie winner Samuel Johnson earlier in the year, you would understand why.
You see, Sam isn't your average celebrity. In fact, he pretty much hates that word. So while many stars would be jumping in front of the camera to get their best angles shot, for Sam, it was his worst nightmare.
With Molly being such a big show in 2016, he understood why TV WEEK were asking him to take part in a shoot. He wasn't there for himself, he was there for anyone but him.
It was a shy, timid and awkward Sam who I met one Melbourne morning. Numerous news articles had been written about Sam commenting on his behaviour over the last 12 months, pointing out that he was erratic or a recluse. That's not the Sam I met.
He was shy, but kind. Quiet, but downright hilarious.
Bang. The first shot is taken. No smile, and still shy.
He was apologetic saying he isn't comfortable in front of the camera.
As soon as the camera wasn't pointing at him he started telling everyone on set how he has a lolly and chocolate addiction. Yes, lollies and chocolates.
He had the entire room in stitches as he explained how he sleep eats during the night – and only craves sugar – and wakes up in a bed of Starburst wrappers.

Bang. Second shot taken. No smile, a little less shy.
As we decided to switch locations, we are walking to the new set with Sam warming up now and telling us numerous stories about his work with Love Your Sister – the charity he set up in honour of his sister Connie Johnson who has been undergoing cancer treatments for the last 30 years.
He has met many people along his journey with the charity, and he casually drops into the conversation that Prince William and Princess Kate are among those.
"Oh yeah we spoke heaps about how you get chaffing 'down there' when you're riding a bike all day," Sam tells me.

Bang. Third shot taken. A smile, and a cheeky laugh.
With the photos finished and time for a chat, a new Sam arrives in front of me. All the shyness has returned as the recorder is turned on.
We chat about Molly and the nerves that came with taking on the role. How he didn't feel worthy even at the table reads, but just wanted to do it justice for his mate. We spoke about him retiring from acting. Why? Because his sister and their charity comes first.
He spoke from the heart, and while he did it was slightly breaking mine at the same time. Here is a man who has put his life on hold to make sure his sister's means something. He was blunt about how 'this is going to be a sh-t year' for Connie, and how he will step up in any way she needs.
I was in awe of Sam and how he can be so selfless and essentially doing all he can for others and never putting himself first. I want Sam to take this win and enjoy this moment, because he was the one on screen and brought Molly to life.
Sam, Australia voted and chose you as their Gold Logie winner this year, so I hope that you take a moment to sit back and realise this win was for you, for your amazing work both on and off the screen. Congratulations.

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