Actor Hugh Jackman is intrinsically linked with Wolverine, having played the character in nine X-Men films, dating back to the original X-Men in 2000, and while he still regards the character highly, he's happy to see another actor take over the role for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The original X-Men film helped revive the superhero concept for a new generation, with the characters gaining enough momentum to launch the MCU in 2008 with Iron Man, but competing movie studios owning the rights to different franchises made it seem impossible to see the X-Men appear in a Marvel Studios film, but even that opportunity isn't exciting enough to entice the actor back to the role.
"If seven years ago that had happened I'd be like, 'Oh yeah!' but I knew it was the right time for me to leave the party — not just for me, but for the character," Jackman shared with The Daily Beast of Disney acquiring 20th Century Fox. "Somebody else will pick it up and run with it. It's too good of a character not to. It's kind of like, you're on your way home and your friend rings you and goes, 'Oh, dude, a new DJ just came on and the music is awesome, are you going to come back?' And you say, 'Sounds good but… no.' They're fine with someone else."
With both Marvel Studios and Fox successfully delivering audiences their own adaptations of Marvel characters, it seemed like the universes uniting was nothing more than a pipe dream, despite fans being desperate to see the X-Men take their rightful place alongside the Avengers in some way, shape, or form. Jackman made it quite clear that he was leaving the character behind with Logan in 2017, but the potential for the stories that could be told with the X-Men now being incorporated into the MCU seemed like an opportunity too great for Jackman to pass up.
Jackman, meanwhile, sounds happy to have left the role when he did.
The nature of fandom means that audiences have been hoping to see the X-Men somehow appear in an already-announced adventure, though no word has emerged from Marvel Studios that such an opportunity has presented itself. With the coronavirus pandemic having stalled production on all movies and TV shows around the world, and with MCU films all having their releases delayed, it's unclear when we'll next get to see Wolverine and the X-Men in a live-action project.
Stay tuned for details on the future of the X-Men.
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