Sept. 04, 2013 | 12:00 p.m.

X-Men 50th anniversary: 50 images from the Marvel mutants’ evolution

X-Men: 50 images (featured image)
A correction has been added to this post. See below for details. The X-Men’s 50th anniversary arrives in the inimitable style of Marvel’s uncanny mutants, with a comics crossover event, “Battle of the Atom,” that involves team members from past, present and future. As “X-Men: Battle of the Atom” No. 1 lands today, Hero Complex takes a look back at the first 50 years of the mutant franchise’s evolution, with 50 images and detailed captions (which you can turn on and off) in the gallery above. There are major moments here across multiple media — classic story lines, key introductions, hit movies — but also a few notable false starts. It’s a journey that begins with Stan Lee and Jack Kirby’s “X-Men” No. 1, dated September 1963, and follows the “Strangest Super-Heroes of All” from their important but low-selling early […]
Aug. 03, 2013 | 11:27 a.m.

Wolverine: Len Wein on Hugh Jackman, comic book movies, getting paid

“The Wolverine,” the latest film starring Hugh Jackman’s rage-fueled mutant Logan, offers a more intimate exploration of the character — one Jackman and director James Mangold attempted to fashion based on an influential comic book arc crafted by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller in the 1980s. But it was Len Wein who first introduced Wolverine to comic readers in 1974, when the character appeared in “The Incredible Hulk.” Wein recently spoke to Hero Complex to share his thoughts on the latest movie, the joys of being a fan and the frustrations of sometimes standing in the shadows while iconic characters of your creation enjoy robust onscreen lives. Hero Complex: Twenty, thirty years ago, could you have imagined a point where we’d see so many superhero films? At this point, they’ve become a genre unto themselves, and there’s so much variety […]
July 25, 2013 | 5:01 p.m.

‘Wolverine’: James Mangold on Hugh Jackman’s outsider with a heart

With “The Wolverine,” Hugh Jackman reprises his role as the rage-fueled Logan, though with this latest stand-alone film, director James Mangold partnered with the actor to create a more intimate portrait of the gruff mutant at the center of the “X-Men” universe. The filmmaker recently spoke to Hero Complex about his long-running friendship with Jackman and how that helped fuel their rapport on the “Wolverine” set, how he took inspiration from films like “The Outlaw Josey Wales” and “The French Connection” and whether he’d be interested in tackling another comic-book-inspired project in the future. HC: You must be thrilled that the film has generated so much early positive buzz. JM: What I’m very gratified by is that people seem to be getting what we set out to do. When you do something different — obviously this is a comic book […]
July 25, 2013 | 6:00 a.m.

Hugh Jackman gets to the heart of ‘The Wolverine’

Hugh Jackman, photographed July 22, 2013 in San Diego, Calif. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)
SAN DIEGO — Striding into a cramped hotel room at the beginning of what will be a long day at Comic-Con International, Hugh Jackman glad-handed onlookers and flashed his million-dollar smile. He’d arrived at North America’s biggest pop culture expo to talk up his new film, “The Wolverine,” which arrives in theaters Friday, and he moved with a seriousness of purpose, one that seemed all the more striking in contrast to the exuberant mirth of the Stormtroopers, Klingons and other costumed revelers flooding into the city’s convention center 12 floors below. For Jackman, though, “The Wolverine” isn’t just another sequel in the long-running “X-Men” franchise, another chance to flay bad guys with adamantium claws and deliver pithy one-liners. The new film offers a definitive look at the character that propelled him to stardom, examining the pain and brains beneath the […]
July 24, 2013 | 3:16 p.m.

‘Wolverine’: Hugh Jackman had ‘more fun than ever’ on new film [video]

How did Hugh Jackman feel returning to the character of Logan for “The Wolverine”? “I had more fun than ever,” Jackman said, sitting down at San Diego’s Comic-Con International for an interview with Hero Complex. “I don’t know what it is, maybe being a little older helps playing a character who is two or three hundred years old.” In the new film opening in theaters Friday, Jackman and director James Mangold (“3:10 to Yuma,” “Walk the Line”) adapt Chris Claremont and Frank Miller’s revered 1980s comic book. Logan’s latest screen adventure sees him travel to Japan only to find himself embroiled in intrigue and falling in love with a beautiful heiress (Tao Okamoto) even as he’s wrestling with his grief over the death of Jean Grey (Famke Janssen). Jackman was one of the biggest stars to appear at Comic-Con this […]
July 20, 2013 | 7:08 p.m.

Comic-Con: Entire ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’ cast greets Hall H

Actors Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen promote "X-Men: Days of Future Past" during Comic-Con International. (Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Hugh Jackman wasn’t the only “X-Men” star to travel to San Diego to appear at Comic-Con International this weekend — the entire cast of Bryan Singer’s upcoming “X-Men: Days of Future Past” assembled on the Hall H stage during the Fox panel Saturday afternoon. Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Anna Paquin, Ellen Page, Peter Dinklage, Michael Fassbender, Halle Berry, James McAvoy, Evan Peters, Shawn Ashmore and Omar Sy joined Jackman and elder statesmen Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen, along with director Singer, writer/producer Simon Kinberg and producers Lauren Shuler Donner and Hutch Parker, to thunderous applause. Sy joins the cast as Bishop, and Peters will play Quicksilver. A short segment of moody, evocative footage from the film, which is still in production in Vancouver, was screened for the audience, and the returning actors genially chatted about reprising their roles for the […]
July 18, 2013 | 3:49 p.m.

Comic-Con 2013: In San Diego? Look for the Hero Complex magazine

Hugh Jackman has his claws out on the cover of the latest Hero Complex print magazine — the summer issue features an in-depth interview with the actor on his latest starring turn as Logan in “The Wolverine,” and it’s available for free at Comic-Con International all weekend. This time out, we pay special tribute to the Man of Steel. As Superman turns 75, we look at 10 of the most memorable comic book covers in the character’s storied history; there’s also a quiz to test your knowledge about the Last Son of Krypton. We also talk to Guillermo del Toro about the making of his Jaeger vs. kaiju epic, “Pacific Rim,” and “District 9” star Sharlto Copley about his latest project with director Neill Blomkamp, the upcoming “Elysium.” On the television side, critic Robert Lloyd appraises the legacy of “The […]
July 16, 2013 | 4:47 p.m.

‘Wolverine’ star Hugh Jackman on Logan’s explosiveness, restraint

Hugh Jackman in "The Wolverine." (20th Century Fox)
For Hugh Jackman, “The Wolverine” has been 13 years coming. The Oscar-nominated Australian actor first discovered Chris Claremont and Frank Miller’s landmark comic book exploring Logan’s past when he was shooting Bryan Singer’s 2000 mutant movie “X-Men.” Immediately, he was struck by the moody, introspective qualities of the saga and the nuanced portrait it offered of its angry, violent antihero. Now, two “X” sequels, a prequel and a spinoff movie later, the story of Logan struggling with his animal instincts while abroad in Japan is finally heading to theaters. “The Wolverine” will open July 26, with Jackman’s “Kate and Leopold” director James Mangold at the helm. Mangold is perhaps best known for films such as “Cop Land,” “3:10 to Yuma” and “Walk the Line,” not standard comic book fare. But with “The Wolverine” functioning neither as an origin story nor […]
July 12, 2013 | 5:20 a.m.

‘Hunger Games,’ ‘Divergent’: The new wave of strong female-led sci-fi

Superheroines (featured image)
Katniss Everdeen never intended to become an icon for a struggling people. Yet the scrappy, resourceful heroine at the heart of Suzanne Collins’ bestselling “The Hunger Games” trilogy, with her signature braid, incomparable archery skills and defiant spirit, became a rare sort of pop-culture touch point precisely because she came to be embraced by a sometimes lost, sometimes achingly restless tribe: adolescents. But the wily teen, played by Jennifer Lawrence, who trades places with her sister only to emerge as the unlikely victor in a battle to the death, didn’t only inspire Collins’ readers and the filmgoers who turned up for Gary Ross’ 2012 movie adaptation of “The Hunger Games” to the tune of $408 million. Her success has also helped fuel a continuing, voracious appetite in Hollywood for sci-fi inflected tales featuring young women in empowered roles. “I’m a […]
July 10, 2013 | 8:01 p.m.

‘Wolverine: Origin’: Logan’s tragic tale gets animated

Wolverine is probably the most popular mutant in the Marvel Universe, and maybe one of the most popular characters ever — but there was a time when the X-Men’s resident slasher-turned-headmaster was a total enigma, his story as shrouded in mystery as his missing memory. Then came “Wolverine: Origin,” which spelled out a lot of Logan’s back story. The Shout! Factory has teamed up with Marvel once again to give the comic book an animated treatment in Marvel Knights Animation’s “Wolverine: Origin.” The story tells the tale of Logan as a boy, the circumstances of his somewhat privileged early life and how his powers tragically manifested — hundreds of years ago. It goes on to show his always-tempestuous relationship with Sabretooth, his service in many armies, his adventures from the Canadian wilderness to the back alleys of Japan, and other […]
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