By now, Hugh Jackman fully embodies Wolverine on the big screen. He’s played the Marvel antihero seven times, including in The Wolverine and the forthcoming X-Men: Days of Future Past – more than any other actor has performed as one superhero. However, he admits now that he got off to a rough start as the gruff member of the X-Men.
Jackman recently shared a “very embarrassing” story with MTV News regarding his first go as Wolverine in 2000’s X-Men. Jackman had arrived in Toronto three weeks before filming without a clue about actual wolverines. “Not knowing what a wolverine was, that it was actually a real animal, I was going past the IMAX, and I saw this. . . IMAX showing of wolves,” Jackman said. “I was like, oh, [it must be] a wolf sort of thing, so I went in there, and that’s where I had this whole [thing of facing down], like wolves smelling the ground while I’m looking.”
Jackman wanted to give an animalistic edge to the role with his wolf-inspired behavior, but X-Men director Bryan Singer wasn’t a fan. “[Singer] at one point said to me, ‘It’s a little weird physically. But it’s interesting,'” Jackman said. “And I said, ‘Yeah, man, I’ve been studying wolves and I think if we could bring that to the screen-‘ and he goes, ‘What? You’re not a wolf, man, you’re a wolverine.'”
Jackman was confused. “I said, ‘Yeah, but obviously there’s no wolverine,'” he said. “And [Singer] goes, ‘No, that’s actually an animal. It’s small. . . and [there’s] really no point in studying its habits and movements — it’s a more metaphoric idea.'”
The Wolverine opens tomorrow. X-Men: Days of Future Past is set for a May 23rd, 2014 release.