We have some good news and bad news surrounding X-Men Origins: Wolverine - the movie set to kickoff the summer of 2009. The good news is that the movie will feature multiple secret “Easter egg” endings - meaning that when you see it, you may get to see something that others don’t. The bad news is that claims of additional footage to be featured in the theatrical version of the film compared to the leaked copy may not be entirely true.
If you’ve been following updates on the soon-to-open Wolverine-centric film (weren’t all the X-Men films Wolverine-centric?) or even just read the entertainment section of your favorite newspaper then you no doubt have already heard about the major leak of a complete early workprint of the Wolverine spinoff movie that made its way on the internet at the beginning of the month.
While there’s a debate as to whether or not the security breach will have a significant impact on the film’s box office numbers, the fact is, people who want to see it, still will. Fortunately for Fox, the workprint that made its way onto the home-computers of over a hundred thousand torrent users was nearly a month old at the time and missing a ton of special effects and incomplete edits as well as most of the score. In addition to that, Tom Rothman, chairman of Twentieth Century Fox, claimed that nearly 10 minutes of footage was missing from the leaked version.
Well, according to some reports, that may not be true.
I guess we could say this started when The Huffington Post figured out that film’s run-time for both the theatrical and leaked versions of the movie ran around the same 107 minute time frame. Are the numbers off? Was Rothman lying? Or did they just happen to edit out an entire ten minutes of footage and replace it with the same amount?
Later, a "source" of Ain’t It Cool News apparently had a chance to see the completed version of the movie and revealed that it was in fact, exactly the same as the workprint minus the obvious post-production work. If that’s true, Rothman was lying about the additional footage and probably saying that just to encourage folks who downloaded it to still see it (although, I’d imagine that most of those who did are hardcore fans and will see it anyway).
After all, Rothman and Hugh Jackman swore to not let the leak hurt the movie and said they’d do everything possible to ensure its success. That might explain the footage discrepancy - although I do not condone Rothman's outright lying (if that is the case). It also explains why we’ve seen Jackman popping up all over the world doing press events and appearances. Jackman’s certainly a hard-working guy and he put his heart and soul into this project from the beginning. Much respect to you, big guy - I hope this movie is good and turns out to be a box-office success.
Moving on to the good news, Alex at First Showing had a chance to see the film on the Fox lot in L.A. where director Gavin Hood spoke a little bit about the film and the differences between it and the leaked copy. Alex was quick to point out that Gavin did not mention any differences in footage but he did talk about the film having different prints with different secret endings. How many endings? They didn’t say other than it’s at least two (I sure hope it’s more than two, otherwise that’s a little disappointing). These secret endings show up after the credits start to roll (a la Nick Fury in Iron Man) and have no effect on what you see in the actual film.
That means, what you see at the end may differ from what I see. It’s a pretty interesting marketing strategy and it’ll be sure to get folks talking about it upon release. I’m a little disappointed that I won’t get to see it all when paying my $10 for a ticket but since it’s an after-credit bonus, I can’t really complain. In his screening, Alex got to see a 30-second clip that involved Deadpool.
The worst part about the leak for me, and I’m sure many other fans out there, is seeing all the rampant spoilers all over the web, most of the time with no warning. I don’t want to see the crap version and I’ve been waiting quite some time for this film to hit the big screen. If you have seen the workprint, keep it to yourself. Don’t be a jerk and ruin it for others.
A quick shout out to all the sites that have been covering Wolverine news. While not mentioned within my article, Peter at /Film has also been covering the movie step-by-step like us and some of his recent articles provided many sources which helped me in gathering information for this post.
What do you think of all this news and will you be seeing Wolverine in action this weekend like me?
X-Men Origins: Wolverine kicks off the summer season this Friday, May 1st and you know I’ll be there.
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