Leading up to the release of the first live-action X-Men movie in July 2000, Marvel fans were incredibly excited to see it, but they were also apprehensive about whether or not Hugh Jackman would make a good Wolverine. This was because the Australian actor was a complete unknown, at that time. No one in the States had seen him act in anything. He wasn't even the Bryan Singer's first choice, as the director had initially cast Dougray Scott, but the Scottish actor dropped out due to scheduling conflicts with Mission: Impossible II. Plus, his tall, lean frame was the opposite of his short and stout comic book counterpart.
Nevertheless, many people left the theater that summer gushing about Jackman's performance and expressing a desire to see more of him as the bad-tempered, Adamantium-clawed mutant. Now, after seventeen years and numerous appearances in 20th Century Fox's X-Men film franchise, many are struggling to come to terms with Logan being Jackman's final Wolverine performance.
On Friday, while promoting the film on The Graham Norton Show, Jackman took a moment to thank Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart — both of whom were guests on the program as well — for being especially kind to him on the set of X-Men (2000).
"I wanted to say thank you to you for all these years," Jackman said while looking directly at McKellen. "I'm sure I have. I hope I have. I was very nervous on that first [X-Men] film; I started three weeks in; it was my first movie. And there was a lot going on and a lot of people. And I remember you pulling me aside and saying, 'This at times is going to feel uncomfortable. It’s going to feel overwhelming. But you’re in good hands and everything’s going to be okay.'
"And you, both of you (looking over at Stewart), were such heroes of mine," he continued. "I was a little starstruck. It was the first day I met you (looking back at McKellen) and you saying that to me... I never ever forgot it."
McKellen quipped, "I think I was in love with you."
In 2024 the mutant population has shrunk significantly and the X-Men have disbanded. Logan, whose power to self-heal is dwindling, has surrendered himself to alcohol and now earns a living as a chauffeur. He takes care of the ailing old Professor X whom he keeps hidden away. One day, a female stranger asks Logan to drive a girl named Laura to the Canadian border. At first he refuses, but the Professor has been waiting for a long time for her to appear. Laura possesses an extraordinary fighting prowess and is in many ways like Wolverine. She is pursued by sinister figures working for a powerful corporation; this is because her DNA contains the secret that connects her to Logan. A relentless pursuit begins … In this third cinematic outing featuring the Marvel comic book character Wolverine we see the superheroes beset by everyday problems. They are ageing, ailing and struggling to survive financially. A decrepit Logan is forced to ask himself if he can or even wants to put his remaining powers to good use. It would appear that in the near-future, the times in which they were able put the world to rights with razor sharp claws and telepathic powers are now over.
Logan stars Hugh Jackman (Logan), Boyd Holbrook (Donald Pierce), Patrick Stewart (Charles Xavier), Dafne Keen (Laura Kinney/X-23), Doris Morgado (Maria), Stephen Merchant (Caliban), Elizabeth Rodriguez (Gabriela), and Richard E. Grant (Dr. Zander Rice). James Mangold is directing and helped on the screenplay along with Scott Frank and Michael Green.
Logan hits theaters on March 3, 2017.