Christopher Reeve playing Superman. Robert Downey Jr. with Iron Man. And Hugh Jackman as Wolverine. All three actors took their roles seriously and locked into the iconic nature of the comic book characters they were portraying. They were in it for the long haul. By embracing the comics' history and fanbase, they all became as legendary as the superheroes themselves.
Actor Hugh Jackman has shown an amazing level of stamina and dedication in portraying [Marvel](channel:932254) Comics' Wolverine. The Australian actor has played the role seven times since 2000. The transformation of his body into a real life action-figure over the past fifteen years has become legendary as well. In a conversation with E! he explains where his motivation to continue redefining himself and the role comes from.
"I always want to be in better shape than I was for the last one. I don't believe in stagnation. People say they try to maintain the status quo. But I believe the natural cycle means you're either advancing and getting closer to something or you're receding. Every time I play Wolverine I want to go further, physically and emotionally."
Jackman's words aren't just hopeful thinking either. If you watch the X-Men films in order, you can easily see Jackson's transformation. Jackman has had a firm grasp of the character since he was introduced smoking a cigar in a cage match. While he has continued to redefine the characterization, he has simultaneously pushed his body to do things that people assumed was only possible in comic book pages.
Jackman's tenure as Wolverine was assumed to be winding down after [X-Men: Apocalypse](movie:1194267) (his participation has not been formally announced) and the next solo Wolverine movie. Recently in the comics, "Old Man Logan" and "Death of Wolverine" storylines have added to the mythology of Logan with new stories of Wolverine's golden years. With fresh source material to mine, the cinematic possibilities have suddenly broadened.
Fox Studios lucked out when they cast Jackman, due to his acting ability, work ethic, and genetics. Jackman continues to find ways to challenge himself with the role and really seems to understand how fortunate he is to play such a popular superhero. His newest inspiration came from watching Alejandro González Iñárritu's [Birdman](movie:780317) of all places. It got him reflecting on his own career and life after hanging up the superhero tights.
"I said to my wife, 'The moral is that I should never stop playing Wolverine. I've got to find a way to keep playing him until I die.' I know that someday they'll recast the role with another actor…I'd be happy if the role was eventually recast. It would mean that it had become iconic."
Birdman is a self-aware examination of a former movie star who had lost his popularity, after leaving his role as a popular superhero. It seems the flick has given Jackman a reinvigorated appreciation for the opportunity that he has been afforded by playing one of the most iconic roles in the Marvel universe.
It's also interesting that Jackman made his remarks on the heels of comments made by Matthew Vaughn, regarding recasting the role of Wolverine. Vaughn created the story and was originally going to direct [X-Men: Days Of Future Past](movie:203942), the follow-up to his X-Men: First Class. Last week Vaughn revealed to MTV his original plans for the time-travelling film, which included recasting a younger Wolverine.
"I had a whole different idea of how X-Men should go. I thought Days of Future Past should be the next one and be set in the '80s. So, when I wrote the treatment, I then wrote Kingsman and got confused about which film I should direct next. Then I said to Fox, 'Let me do Kingsman now, get somebody else in and we'll do the '70s version, recast Wolverine, and the we do Days of Future Past with the new Wolverine AND Hugh, and make it the biggest spectacle we've ever seen."
Perhaps, the prospects of coming face to face with his replacement made Jackman appreciate his superhero mortality. With the timeline being reconfigured in the X-Men universe, it is possible for him to age with the character in a way that we haven't ever seen before in a superhero series. Jackman is hands-down the biggest star and draw in the X-Men universe, so it is likely that he will be able to go out on his own terms. And who could resist an Old Man Jackman movie twenty years from now?
Do you like the idea of Hugh Jackman aging with Wolverine? Or is it time to give a new actor the chance to put his stamp the character? Let us know below!
Source: Point of Geeks