Wolverine is coming to X-Men: Apocalypse! His surprise inclusion was announced dramatically, in the style of Spider-Man in Captain America: Civil War, with a fleeting but unmistakable shot at the end of the final trailer from Monday: His claws zing out.
WTF is Wolverine doing there? Singer just couldn't leave him alone, despite telling us from the beginning that Wolverine would not be appearing in Apocalypse. But those familiar three blades do mean we get to see Hugh Jackman doing what he does best. They also act as a precursor to next year's Wolverine 3 and may signal some exciting news.
In an interview with Empire published yesterday director Bryan Singer said of Wolverine in the trailer:
"Make of that what you want. I will say, it’s not simple. There’s something more pivotal that occurs with that. It hints to a sequence that again fits within the canon of all six movies, and the birth of a new direction. It’s not insignificant, nor is it simply just a throw-in. It’s not the only shot you’re gonna see, let’s put it that way.”
Let's unpack this a bit. Being 'not simple' means there will probably be a lot more than a whispering claw of Wolverine — it's 'not the only shot' after all. Indeed, he will fit 'within the canon of all six movies'; he must have enough on-screen time for his story to be told.
Empire notes how the corridor seems to be the same as the one in X2 from 2003 where Logan received his Adamantium skeleton from Stryker. Perhaps it will reference his origins.
However, the number Singer gives of 'six movies' may mean that while Apocalypse develops the story of Logan in the past six X-Men movies — from X-Men (2000) to The Wolverine (2013) — he will not feature in upcoming pictures. These future films include Wolverine 3 and other developing spin-offs from X-Force and New Mutants comics, as well as movies on Deadpool and Gambit.
It wasn't as if Apocalypse was lacking characters. To battle Apocalypse (Oscar Isaac) and his Four Horsemen the X-Men team already had Professor X (James McAvoy), Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), Beast (Nicholas Hoult), Cyclops (Tye Sheridan), Jean Grey (Sophie Turner), Havok (Lucas Till), Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee), and Jubilee (Lana Condor).
In another interview with Empire published in March this year, Singer had revealed Wolverine would not take a leading role in the action of Apocalypse. He said:
"[as a central character, he didn’t fit into this particular story."
The likeliest scenario, given his apparent irrelevance to the film on the whole, is that Wolverine will pitch up for an exciting claw-y action scene or two, say his piece to illuminate why he's there, then run off again. But what is given may break new ground and herald a fresh dawn for the mutants.
Wolverine was not recast for Apocalypse, despite many wondering whether director Bryan Singer would use the opportunity of the '80s setting (jumping ahead from the '70s of predecessor X-Men: Days of Future Past) to choose a new actor.
Jackman dropped the bomb himself via his Instagram. Mystique says to Cyclops with characteristic sass:
"Well you've been busy."
They are in a corridor strewn with at least six unconscious guards. It looks similar to one in X2.
Jean Grey is standing next to Cyclops, looking a little shocked. Cyclops says:
"We had uh, a little help."
The shot flicks to Wolverine's fist. Out shoots the blades. The guards (seen previously unconscious) run along the corridor towards him with guns pointed. We can assume Wolverine has dispatched them.
Watch the post: