After much waiting, Twentieth Century Fox has now fully kicked off the marketing campaign for next year's Logan, the solo Wolverine film that marks Hugh Jackman's final time portraying the famous character. Spending much of the month teasing fans with cryptic images teasing characters and locales from the film, the studio finally unveiled the first trailer and it's safe to say the reaction has been positive. Set to Johnny Cash's "Hurt," the preview firmly established the gritty superhero movie by way of the Western tone director James Mangold was striving for. After Jackman promised an installment that's "very different," viewers now know he was telling the truth.
One aspect of Logan that received much attention earlier this year was the announcement that it would be R-rated, freeing the creative team of the limitations presented by the PG-13 classification that all other Wolverine appearances have had. The prospect of a fully unleashed Wolverine has excited fans, but the U.S. trailer that was released earlier today was green band and didn't include any "adult" moments from the movie. However, the international trailer (which you can watch above) adds a shocking moment of violence that illustrates Logan won't be for the faint of heart.
For the most part, the preview plays the same way as the domestic one, but there's new footage shown towards the end. During a confrontation, Wolverine stabs a villainous henchman through the head with his claws, killing his enemy immediately. This is the kind of action beat that the earlier X-Men films would either cut away from or not even imply at all. Wolverine's berserker rage while defending the mansion in X2: X-Men United was intense for the time, but the sequence was bloodless and had to find a compromise in order to meet the intended PG-13 rating. Mangold doesn't have to worry about any of that and can fully embrace the opportunities that are presented by going for the R. If this trailer is any indication, he won't be holding back.
Though the films are radically different in tone, Deadpool probably had a lot to do with Fox green lighting an R-rated Wolverine movie. The Merc with a Mouth's solo vehicle rode waves of positive buzz to record breaking box office numbers, making $782.6 million worldwide. It will be interesting to see if Logan can reach those figures, but Deadpool's performance certainly suggests that there's a wide audience for comic book movies geared more towards older moviegoers. In all likelihood, Logan should do fine commercially when it premieres next March, especially if the rest of the promotional materials are as well-received as the first teaser. In a crowd of shared universe installments looking to appeal to the masses, Deadpool and Logan come across as breaths of fresh air.
Jackman has been the face of the X-Men series ever since the first film came out back in 2000, so Logan has a sense of bittersweetness attached to it. It will be tough for longtime fans to see the actor step away from the role, but it looks like his swan song will be a memorable and resonate offering. As the old saying goes, all good things must come to an end, and if Jackman's time as Wolverine truly is done, it's great to see he's leaving nothing on the table.
Source: Twentieth Century Fox