Hugh Jackman to Wolverine fans: ‘The planets are finally aligned to make a great movie’

Feb. 01, 2011 | 6:38 a.m.

Hugh Jackman got on the phone Monday to talk to our Geoff Boucher about his upcoming projects. Here’s what he had to say about his return to the metal-clawed mutant persona that has been the signature role of his Hollywood career.

wolverine2 Hugh Jackman to Wolverine fans: The planets are finally aligned to make a great movie

Hugh Jackman as Wolverine. (Fox)

Geoff Boucher: I remember coming by your office back in the summer of 2009, and you were already talking about your hopes of making a movie out of Marvel’s 1982 “Wolverine” miniseries, the classic by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller. And now you’re doing just that — and with director Darren Aronofsky, of all people. You must be thrilled.

Hugh Jackman: I’m really, really pumped about it. I feel like all the planets are finally aligned to make a great movie. We finally have the character and with this mythology — ever since [the 2000 Bryan Singer film] “X-Men,” when I was kind of hanging around and reading all these comics,  because I was cast before I ever read any X-Men comics, so I was trying to get my hands on everything. I remember saying to [producer] Lauren Shuler Donner, “Lauren, I don’t know about you, but I’ve seen this Japanese story, and I think it’s so good. It’s just genius, it’s brilliant.” And we kind of always talked about it from there on. I sort of even wanted to do that in the third X-Men movie at first, but we thought, no, we really need to establish who he is at first, and we did that [with “X-Men Origins: Wolverine“], and now this is  sort of the cherry on top, to finally do it and have Darren Aronofsky direct it. I love his gung-ho attitude toward it and great vision. Straight off, it’s not a sequel, it’s a stand-alone, and I think we’re going to make one that people will describe as the best of the bunch.

wolverine Hugh Jackman to Wolverine fans: The planets are finally aligned to make a great movie

Frank Miller's Wolverine in a vintage bit of action. (Marvel Comics)

GB: Well, it better be, right? I mean with that revered source material and the director of “Black Swan” and “The Wrestler” — not to mention a script by Christopher McQuarrie, who wrote “The Usual Suspects” — the expectations are going to be pretty high for this one.

HJ: Right, absolutely, and Chris McQuarrie has done a script that is just phenomenal. I read a story once that said that he wrote “The Usual Suspects” in 15 days, and with this one he said to me, “I just knew what I wanted, and it came out real easy.” And he’s done an unbelievable job with it, and with Darren it’s just really exciting. I’m as excited as anybody to see what we come up with. I know we’re going to be met with huge expectations. The expectations will be high, but he’s one of the great filmmakers out there. I worked with him before [on “The Fountain“], and I knew as soon as I met him that he should be doing movies like this. He’s been looking a long time, and I’ve asked him to do other ones, and this time it worked out. I’m beyond thrilled.

wolverine1 Hugh Jackman to Wolverine fans: The planets are finally aligned to make a great movie GB: Are you going to have to go back to that intense diet, eating whole chickens so you can get that muscle mass back up?

HJ: I’m on it right now, mate, already doing it. It’s 6,000 calories a  day, it’s rough.

GB: How much you weighing?

HJ: Right now, I’m at 210.

GB: Wow, so you’re going to be bigger this time? Last time, you looked about, what, 190?

HJ: Yeah, right, I was 190, something like that. I don’t know how much I want to give away about it, but Darren said with the last one, ‘Hey you looked great, but you’re so tall that in those long shots you looked kind of like Clint Eastwood, and that’s not Wolverine.” He said that Wolverine, in the comics, is powerful, stocky, you know, he’s short and thick. So he said, ‘I want you to go there, get bigger.’ He’s going to come down after he gets done with all the black-tie events over and done with.

GB: That’s interesting because in comics, sure, Wolverine is quite short and almost hunched over at times, a sort of feral posture, and he’s bulky up high — he’s like the nasty bulldog of superheroes.

HJ: Yeah, he’s thick and it’s chunky and it’s powerful. I always think of Mike Tyson when he first came on the scene. Sometimes, he was a full foot shorter than his opponents and bent over [with this] massive build. There’s real power. You said bulldog, and that’s it exactly. Exactly. That’s what I’m going for, and if I have  a massive heart attack first, well, you tell everyone what I was going for.

GB: Well, if you die that’s not really an issue, they can just use CG these days.

HJ: That’s right, just take the four movies and the Oscars hosting and mix them together and they should have enough.

– Geoff Boucher

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Comments


35 Responses to Hugh Jackman to Wolverine fans: ‘The planets are finally aligned to make a great movie’

  1. Angel says:

    Hugh Jackman creating good buzzz with his Wolverine movie….. again.

    It better be true this time, dude.

    • Robin says:

      Hey i love the character he plays but is everyone just going to turn a blind eye to the diet? I hope a doctor is watching him, he’s fine just the way he is. Do some of the tricks they did in x-men one making him look short. 6000 cal. a day is not healthy for anyone, i love the movie but lets be a little more creative without putting him in danger. Did everyone forget he’s a good actor,DUH.

  2. Rebecca Honey says:

    I hope that in The Wolverine, they include Albert, Jessan Hoan, Itsu, Amiko Kobayashi, Rancor, X-23, Mariko Yashida and Yukio.

    I look forward to seeing some of the following villains in this:
    Bloodscream, Chimera, Abraham Cornelius, Cyber, Daken, Genesis, The Gorgon, Malcolm Colcord, Matsu’o Tsurayaba, Mister X, Nitro, Nuke, Ogun, Omega Red, Romulus, Roughouse, Shiva, Silver Samurai, Shingen Yashida, Weapon XI, Wendigo, Wild Child.

    • kthorjensen says:

      Yes because what the world really needs is an eleven hour long Wolverine movie.

    • Taylor Vassell says:

      The only characters that should and possibly are in this film are the Hand Ninjas, Mariko Yashida, Silver Samurai, Lord Shingen, Wolverine's Samurai Teacher, and Sunfire (who would make a great character who is outside of Mariko's family).

  3. Ellen says:

    Love it! :D Can't wait! I've loved Hugh as Wolverine every time. He's fabulous. That's a dedicated actor to put himself through such intense regimens to sculpt himself. And what a great guy too. He deserves every good fortune, and acclaim that can, and will come his way.

  4. Tmiller says:

    I'm officially too excited. It will probably disappoint me, but I'm looking forward to it.

  5. sophie says:

    I won't hold my breath.

  6. Ronald Williams says:

    I wonder if Liev Schieber will return

  7. Brian F says:

    Sounds awesome…

  8. Jays says:

    Of course, the reason this film will be good is because of the amazing Darren Aronofsky.

  9. daniel clavette says:

    I hope that sabretooth will return and the wolverine and also i hope that silver samurai yuriko,mariko, and many other mutant will the be on the wolverine sequls.

  10. Elsa says:

    No – no – no — Aronofsky is crazy and is going to ruin Jackman's beautiful body — it is not THAT necessary — he was fine already as Wolverine… it wasn't his body that people griped about, it was the script…

  11. Mark says:

    well atleast they can't ruin this movie with to many mutants/heroes/halle berry…becuase it's just the bada** of bada**es. WOLVERINE!

  12. wereviking says:

    It will be a great film with Aronofsky at the helm, though fans may be uncomfortable with Wolverine's "gay love scene".

    W

    Zephyr — a superhero webcomic in prose http://zephyr.warrenhately.com

  13. PBP says:

    "Nasty bulldog of superheroes?" How about the, you know, WOLVERINE of superheroes?

  14. AmbroseKalifornia says:

    "I'm the best there is at what I do. And what I do…isn't very nice"

  15. Murray says:

    Read the damn book! It's Logan, Mariko, Asano and Yukio… and a barrel of ninjas!! But that's it!! No sabretooth, no Silver Samurai! Good god, just read it! It's amazing!! And It better have the bear in it!!!

  16. Guido Merkens says:

    Hey, if they make enough Wolverine movies eventually one of them has to be good, even if it is just dumb luck, right?

  17. jtagliere says:

    Hugh Jackman's comments have been the exact same about every single one of the X-men movies. "THis is the best story.." "This is the most emotional story…" and then the film comes out and you realize what a showman he is – great salesman for a weak product. I'm not getting excited until I hear the reviews.

    • Jon says:

      The first two X-Men movies were great and were very strong products. Origins was a letdown, but it might not have felt like that while they were making it. Also, it wasn't Jackman's fault that Origins was weak, they had a non-action guy directing action scenes and it showed. The pacing and the general look of Origins was also weak. A problem they won't have with Arnofsky, who brings it with the visual style and has shown he can direct action.

  18. JAB says:

    I'm happy that Jackman is happy, but I was nicely surprised by his 1st stand alone Wolverine movie. I had read such tepid reviews that I passed up seeing it at the theatre, but a Wolverine-nut friend practically forced me to watch it on DVD & I was just about blown away by it. The "critics" really missed the boat on that one. I will certainly be looking forward to this next one.

  19. Back in November, my wife noticed that Hugh Jackman looks a lot like a young Clint Eastwood while we were watching “The Good, The Bad and the Ugly”.

    Hey Hollywood! You’re so jazzed on remakes, how about remaking “The Good, The Bad and the Ugly” with Hugh Jackman as the Man With No Name? I can totally see Hugh nailing this part. And there hasn’t been a good western out in a few years, so a big budget movie like this would probably pull in some major cash.

    Plus there were a few "Man With No Name" movies, so if the first one works, you can roll this out into a bi-annual series.

    Just sayin…

  20. catherine says:

    I absolutely loved "Wolverine-Origins" and don't think Hugh got enough credit for it, a great story and acting. Looking forward to the new one and hope Hugh gets an award for it!

  21. Wolverine costume says:

    It won't be great until they put Wolverine in his proper costume! We get it, Hugh's a star and covering his face would be such a shame. Yeah Wolverine has spent a fair amount of time in the comics without a mask and the stylists perfected the swoopy hairdo, but let's see Wolverine in his mask and either the yellow or brown costume. Is that too much to ask?

  22. Robin says:

    Hugh stop the diet please, you can make us believe you are the Wolverine without the extra bulk man. Knowone can play the part but you, you are fine. I'll help your wife care for you if you do get sick i'm not totally cold.

  23. marcus says:

    you people crack me up with the whole 6,000 cals isn't "healthy" crap. I'm sure his 6,000 cal diet is much cleaner than those of you who posted that stuff. People who have no clue about body building and jump to the conclusion that something isn't healthy, should probably research what your talking about first. I'm not talking about your typical "doctors" research either. I'm talking about people with real world experience, with blood work and testing to prove the "safety" of such dieting.

  24. marcus says:

    Looking forward to the movie btw, lol.

  25. Alex says:

    "I'm not getting excited until I hear the reviews. "

    This is the single most weakass line I have ever read in a comment about a movie.
    Just..wow. I hate people who take reviews as a measure for movies.

    Anyway I'm looking forward to the new Wolverine as well, I like the Origins movie quite a lot and Hugh made an incredible Logan on screen. If he can bring that into the japan story it would already be worth watching! I never even thought about comparing the comics Logan to the movie one in terms of statue and height but now that the article mentioned it, Hugh IS a bit too tall and sleek for the traditional Wolverine, though he pulled it off quite well. 6000 Calories+working out will make him quite bulky with a lot of muscles o.o would be very interesting to watch

    • Bradley says:

      What is it with people who angrily disregard reviews as if all critics are mindless drones connected to a singular queen bee who decides if a movie is good or not? When I read 50 plus reviews and 50 different people with 50 different points of view all unanimously agree upon certain elements that speak to a films quality, those points are usually accurate. If 25 real fans of cinema like something and 25 don't, than its a toss up and is THEN determined by personal taste.

      That said, true educated fans of cinema have plenty of reasons to be excited about this movie because the people involved have already proven to produce revered, outstanding material with no indication of selling out or becoming creatively lazy.

  26. Jessie says:

    I'm excited to see a more violent Wolverine, closer to the video game and comic. It's understandable how a character as extreme as Logan can be watered down for a PG-13 rating but if this movie is what I expect it to be there will be much more raw emotions that the previous movies. If it's done right I should be scared of how easily Logan can go crazy and just kill but still feel sorry for his struggle. Easier said than done considering how conditioned audiences are today towards violence.

  27. Jeru13 says:

    This storyline from the first wolverine comics is epic. I have read them myself and it is one of the best storylines ever written in comics. Wolvie killin mad Ninjas in Japan, whats better then that?

  28. kaaviyan says:

    i love woli.

    X-Men without claws- doesnt interest and dont drag me as the rest.

    im eagerly waiting for the claws to drag all fans and thrash all bad.

  29. ajanthaa says:

    WOW! CLAWS DRAGS MY SON INTO THE FILM. HE FEELS OF HAVING CLAWS LIKE WOLVERINE. HE ENJOYED AUSTRALIA SAYING THAT LOGAN MINUS CLAWS. A GREAT HERO TO DRAG HIS FANS AND THRASH THE EVIL AT THE SAME TIME

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