There has been lots of speculation that an illegal bootleg copy of the X-Men Origins: Wolverine movie that appeared online could result in a failure at the box office for the movie. The early reviews from the people who watched the download were mixed, ranging from people saying it won’t appeal to comic book Wolverine fans to absolute rave reviews. One of those Wolverine rave reviews was from a Fox News journalist, who subsequently parted ways with Fox News over the fact that he reviewed a pirated copy of the film. Also, after comic book movies dominated the summer of 2008, there has been a string of recent comic book movie flops. The Spirit, Punisher: War Zone, and The Watchmen all failed to live up to expectations at the box office. Could Wolverine be the latest in a series of comic book movies to struggle at the box office? Or is all the speculation overlooking one huge part of what often makes a comic book movie successful? Many of the most successful comic book movies are the ones that have crossed over from just being a fanboy movie to appealing to the general public with superstar actors. Iron Man was a virtually unknown superhero to the general public, but an outstanding performance by Robert Downey, Jr. made it a hit with both comic book and non-comic book fans. While Batman was much better known, it was the superstar performance of the late Heath Ledger that helped propel The Dark Knight movie from being just a big hit to being a hit of epic proportions. Spider-Man has been a hugely successful franchise in large part due to the mass appeal of Tobey Maguire. Spider-Man is not just a superhero movie, but it also has romantic elements that make it an acceptable date movie. While The Watchmen was a great movie for many fans of the comic book, it lacked the crossover appeal that would bring in the general public. It simple wasn’t a movie that people could take the kids to see or that the spouses or girlfriends of fanboys would have any interest in seeing. How will the bootleg copies and some of the early negative reviews affect the opening weekend box office? Let’s face it, this is the first full length feature film of Wolverine, one of the most popular characters ever in comic books. Twentieth Century Fox had the ticket sale of every fanboy on the planet at hello. Good or bad, comic book fans are going to see this movie just so they can talk about it with their friends. However, the elements that will likely make the X-Men Origins: Wolverine movie into a monster hit are the elements that make it appeal to more than just comic book fans. There are a lot of females that will go to see Wolverine with their husbands or boyfriends just because Hugh Jackman looks really hot rising up out of the water with his shirt off. Even though the film has a PG-13 rating, most people will interpret that rating as being mainly for comic book violence, so there are also lots of kids that will get brought along with their parents. As the first big action movie of the summer, X-Men Origins: Wolverine will also appeal to the segment of the population that just likes to watch stuff blow-up. Most of the early criticisms of the pirated version of the Wolverine movie had to do with dialogue and plot. Most early reviews also seem favorable in regards to the action sequences and Hugh Jackman’s performance. If Jackman shines and the movie is action-packed, then that will be good enough for most summer time moviegoers. While X-Men Origins: Wolverine has little chance of doing Dark Knight numbers, it should finish in the same league as Iron Man, which was a monster hit and the second biggest movie of last summer.