Hugh Jackman on Playing Wolverine: “I’m loving it and feeling rejuvenated by it”
Hugh Jackman might be the only actor who will ever be able to impress both comic book fans and musical theater lovers. Though he began his career singing on a stage — and still sings from time to time, as I’m sure you’ve noticed — Jackman really broke through in film by portraying Marvel Comics superhero Wolverine in X-Men. In an interview with The Associated Press, Jackman spoke about starring as Logan in the upcoming sequel The Wolverine and next year’s X-Men: Days of Future Past.
When asked if he was concerned about fans’ reaction to the first Wolverine solo movie, which wasn’t well received, Jackman responds, “I’m never afraid of that. I think the fans know I’m so grateful and very blessed to play the part. I love them. We try our hardest to get everything right, and I’m happy to hear from them. I learn from them. One of the main things I hear from fans all the time is we don’t see enough of the berserker rage, and I really took that to heart because, to me, that is one of the key things I love about Logan.”
The Wolverine features yet another scene of Logan naked in a giant tub, something which has surprisingly become standard in every X-Men movie. When asked if those scenes are stipulated in his contract, Jackman jokes, “All I say is it has to be a minimum of a minute. It’s only a minute. That’s all. I love a bit of nudity. It’s a funny scene. The movie is darker in tone, and more restrained in a way. As long as we can get away with it, it’s nice to have those fun moments. In all seriousness, no, it’s not in my contract.”
Of course, The Wolverine is the sixth time Jackman is appearing in a film as the titular hero, but he’s already involved in a seventh turn as Wolverine in next year’s X-Men: Days of Future Past. Jackman admits that the reason he keeps coming back to the Marvel superhero is that he loves playing him and still feels he can do more with the character. He explains, “You may find it surprising to hear, but I’m loving it and feeling rejuvenated by it. For me, and I’m well aware there’s way greater powers at play than me and my decision, it’s more about: Do I still have something to offer to it? Is there something different we can explore? Is there a reason to tell another story? Without that, I won’t do it. Secretly, I know it’d be like achieving peace in the Middle East, but I would love a way for all the Marvel characters to come together.”
However, he admits that he knows that one day he won’t be able to physically pull the role off — Wolverine might be immortal, but Jackman is not. On the prospect of having to turn the role over one day, he says, “Wolverine is like Bond. These roles are greater than I am as an actor. It will always live on and outlive me. It’ll be passed on, and I’ll be in the old people’s home, showing my old movies and telling anyone who will listen that I was much better than whoever is playing it now. In all seriousness, it’s the way it should be. I would be sad to think if I stopped playing it, Wolverine wouldn’t be seen. It’s too good a part.”