An era in the comic book film genre is coming to an end in 2017. Aussie actor Hugh Jackman will be hanging up his claws after Wolverine 3 completes production, an emotional end to a beloved Marvel character that helped shape the successful genre.
Director Bryan Singer and writer-producer Simon Kingberg (Star Wars: Rebels, Star Wars: Rogue One, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, The Martian) have weighed-in on the impossible task of recasting the iconic role, while speaking with Digital Spy.
For all the recasting that’s already gone on in the X-Men series, Singer and Kinberg were unanimous on one point: recasting Wolverine would be impossible. “I do think you would want to figure out how to tell more Wolverine stories,” Kinberg allowed. “So either we would try to entice Hugh to come back and eat more chicken and work out for a few months, or we would have to figure out a creative way to move forward. Honestly, I can’t imagine anybody else playing the part, and there’s not too many characters I can say that for.”
The pair seem oddly optimistic, when mentioning a possible attempt to convince Jackman to come back after Wolverine 3, Hugh did previously state he’d play the role until he was dead. He then flipped on that statement, committing to only doing one more film, then retiring the character.
Rather than trying to find a way to recast the role that would make sense to the jumbled timeline. Even though, it’s beyond odd already that has Jubliee, Psylocke and Archangel are walking around in the 80s, when they were previously established in the original trilogy, along with a complete reboot of Colossus. If they could do that with those characters, why not with Wolverine?
Jackman has mentioned his desire to see Tom Hardy (Mad Max: Fury Road, Inception, Dark Knight Rises, The Revenant) takeover the role, but I’m sure folks would like to see other candidates like Scott Eastwood (Fury, Suicide Squad), and Richard Armitage (Hobbit, Captain America: The First Avenger, Strike Back) in the mix as well.
Fox understands Wolverine is their main mutant, they won’t keep him off-screen for too long, if audiences are still willing to pay big bucks to see him. The good intentions of Singer and Kinberg are one thing, but the studio could end-up pushing a recasting on their own accord, Fox ultimately makes the call here concerning hiring a new actor.
It’s also alluded to in the interview that X-Men: Apocalypse could be the last X-Men film for Bryan Singer, even with rumors speculating that he has one more left. There was another rumor circulating that Fox was considering rebooting the entire franchise after Wolverine 3. It’s extremely possible that New Mutants could be that reboot, and then all this sweet talk means nothing.
We’ve previously talked about our hope that they’d reboot the character by focusing on Logan’s extensive military and black ops background, which was overlooked/fast-tracked in Origins and The Wolverine. I would love to see Wolverine fighting Nazis during World War II in Europe, or running global black ops operations during the Cold War. This would be a great way to explore the character without having to throw him into the X-Men lineup straight after the recasting. As much as Singer and Kinberg want to be respectful to Hugh, there is clearly a bunch of Wolverine’s story still left to be told.
Another avenue that could help out Fox with the tricky aspect of recasting, is using another character that could fill that void until they could figure out a new actor. That could be Laura Kinney aka X-23, she recently has taken over the Wolverine comic book mantle after Logan’s death and it might be a good idea for the films as well.
Deadpool director Tim Miller recently name-dropped the fan-favorite character, as a potential addition for the sequel. She could also make an excellent addition to Josh Boone’s New Mutants or X-Force, the latter needing major script rewrites according to Rob Liefeld.
All three projects could be perfect for Laura’s introduction in the franchise, another angle could be giving her own origin solo flick. I’ve heard, producers are indeed looking to develop even more solo X-Men films in the future. Along with a Psylocke spin-off, an X-23 movie could help boost Fox’s surprising lack of female driven superhero projects. Even though, the X-Men rights give the studio access to a majority of Marvel’s heroines, which they’ve relegated to supporting roles.
Who would we want to see play the role of Laura Kinney?
I don’t think it would make financial sense for a studio to hire someone in their early teens to play the role, when they could easily hire a well established actress that could handle leading a franchise role. Gambling on audiences rallying around a super-young version of Kinney, might make sense to fans making sure it’s super faithful to source material, but it’s not realistic. Then they’re stuck with a child actor, and it could be problematic if the studio wants to flash forward in the timeline, like they have with the First Class trilogy. This doesn’t mean they couldn’t have flashbacks to her origins, or have a different young actor for those scenes.
My choices include Oscar nominated Swedish actress Alicia Vikander (The Danish Girl, The Man From U.N.C.L.E, Ex Machina, Son of A Gun), Force Awakens actress Daisy Ridley who has links to producer Simon Kinberg, Canadian actress Tatiana Maslany (Boston Strong, Orphan Black), who was twice overlooked for Star Wars lead roles, and Walking Dead‘s Lauren Cohan.
SOURCE: DIGITAL SPY