It’s hard to imagine anyone other than Hugh Jackman playing Wolverine in the X-Men movies and spinoffs. However, for better or worse, Jackman is hanging up the claws after the third Wolverine film and we now know who to blame — Jerry Seinfeld.
On “Live with Kelly and Michael“, “Jackman was asked why he decided to end his run as Wolverine and he said, “I was having a chat with [Seinfeld] about a year ago, at his birthday, and he was talking about why he finished [“Seinfeld”]. He said he’d always had this feeling and belief that you never know when either your energy or the audience’s energy is going to dip over into people [saying] ‘Oh, please go.'”
It’s understandable Jackman might think it’s time to go. He’s played the role for over 15 years, and the physical requirements of the role force him to stay in incredible shape which is increasingly demanding as he ages, and Seinfeld’s advice makes a lot of sense. Jackman has defined a character for a generation, and when he was originally cast in the role, no one gave him a chance of doing well. Now, he has the opportunity to go out with people wanting more.
Jackman went on to talk about why he’s so excited for the upcoming Wolverine sequel adding, “It’s the greatest feeling. I’m more excited about this movie than ever before, and I just know in my gut it’s the right thing. Hopefully in five years, I’m not coming back here going, ‘Why did I do that?'”
He sounds sincere in his desire to end his run as Wolverine. I’m guessing the only thing that could change his mind is the improbable scenario of Marvel and Fox working out their significant differences. I’d love to see Jackman pop the claws once again in a future Avengers film, but any talk of this happening now seems entirely out of the picture, but a fan can dream, can’t he?
We’re still probably a few years away from knowing Fox’s future plans for the character. In the upcoming Marvel comics relaunch of the Wolverine series, the character is actually going to be a woman. This could give Fox the excuse to really go in a unique direction with the character, allowing a logical transition to a new character taking up the Wolverine name. Otherwise, I believe it might not be a bad idea to retire the character for a long while.
The last guaranteed time we’ll get to see Jackman in the role is with the untitled third Wolverine film that’s scheduled to release March 3, 2017.