Before the blockbuster success of director Bryan Singer’s original 2000 X-Men, Australian native Hugh Jackman was known mainly as a song and dance man and gained a lot of attention for his role in a 1998 Royal National Theater production of the musical Oklahoma! His casting as Logan/Wolverine was actually a last-minute replacement when original actor Dougray Scott had to finish filming Mission: Impossible 2.
The rest is essentially history. Jackman became a household name, and upon the release of X-Men: Days of Future Past, he will have played Wolverine seven times, including the three X-Men films, two solo outings, and a cameo in X-Men: First Class.
The marketing push leading up to DoFP‘s release has included rumblings from Jackman which suggest that the actor is ready to leave what has become his signature role. He’s gone on to say he’s “99.9% sure” that Wolverine 3 (which will shoot right after DoFP follow-up X-Men: Apocalypse) will be his last outing as everyone’s favorite clawed, regenerating Canucklehead.
Not too long after Jackman’s first comments on this subject, Marvel announced that they’re planning to kill Wolverine off in the comic books. Will the films follow suit? Jackman’s been less and less cryptic about giving up the role.
But hold on a minute. At the Australian premiere of Days of Future Past, Jackman told IGN the following:
“At one point, you’re right, I said I was pretty sure [that ‘Wolverine 3′ would be my last outing in the role]. But I’m less sure as it goes along. Because after seeing this movie, the whole thing feels fresher to me than ever. And during this movie…I don’t want to spoil anything, but it’s kind of like a clean slate, so who knows where it’s going to go. As long as I have the passion for it and the fans will have me.”
Where is this reversal coming from? It’s entirely possible that Fox paid close attention to what Jackman’s been saying and has made overtures leading to another multi-picture deal. DoFP‘s glowing early reactions may also have convinced Jackman that not only will the film be a success, but this intended “fix” to the series will pay off in expanding the universe.
Fans of the film series didn’t turn out to see the the solo Wolverine adventures in numbers equal to the original X-Men films (though The Wolverine did outgross X-Men: First Class), but given Jackman’s place as the acknowledged face of the franchises remarks here sound like an open-ended promise that Days of Future Past leaves the possibilities wide open.
What do you think, Screen Ranters? Are you game for more outings with Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine, or should the role be recast or even retired after Wolverine 3?
X-Men: Days of Future Past arrives in U.S. theaters on May 23rd, 2014, followed by Fantastic Four on June 19th, 2015, X-Men: Apocalypse on May 27th, 2016, The Wolverine 3 (not the official title) on March 3rd, 2017, Fantastic Four 2 on July 14th, 2017, and an unspecified Marvel film on July 13th, 2018.