In 2002, Johnny Cash took a Nine Inch Nails’ song and turned it into a heart-wrenching classic. The iconic country singer spun the song into a somber, slow recollection of his past - and the music industry responded to the cover with awe. Since its release, Cash’s rendition of “Hurt” has launched itself in the pop culture zeitgeist, and now, the single has even appeared in the first trailer for Logan, the final Wolverine film.
Earlier today, the trailer for Logan was released to the excitement of fans. However, their unbridled enthusiasm was muddled by the video’s emotional and ghostly background music. Director James Mangold spoke to Empire about why he chose to use Cash’s cover for the trailer and said it had to do with differentiation.
“Obviously I have a connection and a fondness for Johnny Cash, and his tone and his message and his music,” he said. “But the real driver in all these decisions is trying to separate ourselves, in an accurate way, from the other superhero movies.”
“We think we’re going to deliver something a little different and we want to make sure we’re selling audiences on the difference. Sometimes even when a movie’s a little different, the studio’s trying to market the movie just like all the others. [Cash’s] music, in a way, separates us from the standard, bombastic, brooding orchestral, swish-bang, doors opening and slamming, explosions kind of methodology of some of these movies.”
If you’ve watched the trailer, then you already know how different the footage is from other projects of the superhero persuasion. The video focuses less on explosive action and more on character development, dystopian angst, and familial bonds. The trailer feels like a goodbye, something which many fans have noted considering Logan will feature Hugh Jackman’s final role as Wolverine.
Mangold talked about how he and Jackman approached Logan as a franchise bow-out. He said, “Hugh and I have been talking about what we would do since we were working on the last one, and for both of us it was this requirement that, to be even interested in doing it, we had to free ourselves from some assumptions that had existed in the past, and be able to change the tone a bit.”
“Not merely to change for change’s sake, but also to make something that’s speaking to the culture now, that’s not just the same style — how many times can they save the world in one way or another? How can we construct a story that’s built more on character and character issues, in a way as if it almost wasn’t a superhero movie, yet it features their powers and struggles and themes?”
Logan hits theaters on March 3, 2017 followed by Deadpool 2 on January 12, 2018. Movie versions of Gambit, New Mutants, and X-Force are being developed.