After posting the above image with the statement, "WOLVERINE... ONE LAST TIME. HJ", Hugh Jackman sent the internet buzzing about what it meant. Did he mean he would play Logan one last time in the scheduled Wolverine sequel? Will he appear in the upcoming X-Men: Apocalypse? Does that rule out any cameos he may make in future movies? All we know for sure is that he's rumored to be in the next X film and is definitely scheduled for the Wolverine sequel. During an interview with Cigar Aficionado Magazine this past February, Jackman stated how watching Michael Keaton in Birdman inspired him,
"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." Now that doesn't sound like someone who wants one last go at Wolverine? Not to us it doesn't. But, hey, everyone is entitled to change their minds and move on to other things. It should be noted that during Jackman's 15 years playing the X-Mens resident badass, he has made 19 other movies with 4 more in the pipeline. That coupled with his hosting the Oscars, Tonys, and making 192 other televisions appearances, has kept him quite busy!
With that being said we realize that as much as he'd like to play Wolverine forever, that's an impossibility. So, we here at The USN have come up with a list of actors who could attempt to fill the huge void Jackman would leave in the X franchise should he depart. In no particular order here they are.
Yes, Bane himself. Hardy was slated to play Rick Flagg in DC's [Suicide Squad](movie:2283363) movie, but dropped out due to "scheduling conflicts". Doing one DCU movie doesn't mean he's a DC fixture. Therefore we figure with the intensity he showed in Bronson, the fighting from Warrior & This Means War, and the all out action from the upcoming Mad Max; Hardy seems an ideal choice to play the surly Canadian.
Doing action roles such as in Riddick, Dredd, Doom, Pathfinder, and Bourne Supremacy should make handling the fighting scenes, necessary for the Wolverine character, a piece of cake. He's also no stranger to comic book films with his role in the critical hit Dredd. His "nerd" cred will only go up with this role in addition to his Star Trek and Lord of The Rings runs.
With roles in Avatar, Clash of the Titans, and Terminator, Worthington is no stranger to big budget action films. He would be just fine working with a younger cast and lending some grit to the franchise. The only thing we could see being an obstacle is his commitment to 3 more Avatar sequels coming in the future. But, the chance to play an iconic character like Wolverine in a big franchise may to good to pass up.
An unknown in the U.S. aside from fans of his Cinemax action show Banshee. He's mainly done TV shows in New Zealand and had a few tiny appearances in U.S. films. Playing Wolverine would be a massive promotion and vote of confidence in his ability to play the brooding bad boy of the X-Men family. Keep in mind Hugh Jackman was a relative unknown as well when he strapped on the claws in 2000. Take a look at any of his fight scenes in Banshee to see the raw brutality he could bring to the Wolverine character.
Casting a lesser known actor would be ideal. There would be less worry of them leaving for a big payday after a movie or two. Fox would be able to lock them up for a 4 or 5 movie deal and put some consistency in the role unlike DC's multiple Batmen (Keaton, Kilmer, Clooney, Bale, Affleck). Without Hugh Jackman Wolverine won't die, with the right casting and story Marvel can continue to have the adamantium one gracing the silver screen for years to come.