Entertainment Weekly recently spoke to Hugh Jackman, getting him to answer some much buzzed about topics such as another go at Wolverine, his upcoming film Chappie, and whether or not he’ll do some more movie-musicals. The entire article is a good read about his professional future, so I highly recommend checking it out (or at least the parts I underlined).
Just as The Wolverine claws its way toward DVD/Blu-ray on Dec. 3rd, talk is heating up about a possible sequel. For his part, star Hugh Jackman has neither confirmed nor denied whether he’ll sign on to play muttonchopped mutant Logan for an eighth time… but the odds are looking good. “I was on the phone with Jim Mangold last night,” Jackman told EW. “There are some really cool ideas that I’m dying to tell you, but that would be giving away a secret that is not even [fully] formed yet.”
Jackman insists that his lapsing contract with Fox, which reportedly will need to be renegotiated after X-Men: Days of Future Past premieres in May, doesn’t mean he’s leaving the franchise in limbo. “I started with a two-picture deal on the first two [X-Men films], and from that point on, it’s been movie by movie — not just me, but Fox and Jim and everyone,” he says. “I do want to do it with Jim and with [producer] Lauren Shuler-Donner because we had such a great experience. I’m really proud of The Wolverine.”
The star believes he’s mentally more committed to the character than he’s ever been. “I kind of am enjoying him more than ever… Being older helps playing Wolverine. He’s 200 or 300 years old — no one really knows — and he’s sort of world-weary. The actual working out gets harder and harder, I’ll admit.”
Deadline broke the news earlier today that director James Mangold (Kate & Leopold) is in talks with Fox to direct a follow-up film to The Wolverine. With strong international numbers for the recent Japanese saga ($413 million worldwide), Fox is apparently interested in exploring more of the character. Mangold is currently making a deal to write the treatment, while “X-Men franchise matriarch” Lauren Shuler Donner is already attached to produce should the project move forward.
The storyline is being kept under tight wraps, but is anyone else interested in seeing Hugh tackle Old Man Logan? I think it’d be a perfect way to bow out of the franchise, if he’s thinking of storing the claws for good in coming years.
It’s been a while since Hugh Jackman’s attended a Broadway opening night, but he’s gone back to his theatrical roots: on November 3rd, he was at the opener for the new hit show, After Midnight. Starring Fantasia Barrino, the show is “a heart-pounding new musical brings the sexy, smoky glamour of Harlem’s Golden Age to a whole new generation.” Hugh’s friend Warren Carlyle – who choreographed Hugh Jackman: Back on Broadway – also worked on After Midnight. Photos of Hugh bundled up on the red carpet have been added to the gallery.
Hugh Jackman joined his wife, Deborra-Lee Furness, and mother-in-law for the 2013 Angel Ball on October 29th, which was held at Cipriani Wall Street in New York. The ball is an annual event for Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation, which celebrates humanitarian and philanthropic contributions for cancer research. Deb’s mother, Fay Duncan, was being honored for her work as chairman of Australia’s Fight Cancer Foundation. This year’s event – which had performances by Usher and Pharell – raised three million dollars. Check out what Hugh told Entertainment Tonight about the Ball and his mother-in-law:
“It means everything to me. It’s a fantastic ball. What [Denise Rich, the Grammy-nominated songwriter and philanthropist who started Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation] has created is amazing, and her foresight to honor this incredible woman – my mother-in-law – and I’m not just saying that to get brownie points, she really is incredible. She started the Fight Cancer Foundation in Australia with her colleagues… It’s amazing what they’ve done.”
Empire has just debuted several new film stills for X-Men: Days of Future Past. Only one featured Hugh Jackman, but it’s a great shot: him lounging as Wolverine – shirtless, no less – with a chest full of bullet holes. Check out the source for more stills, including looks at Jennifer Lawrence, Patrick Stewart Ellen Page, Shawn Ashmore, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, and director Bryan Singer.
The first trailer for the film drops on Tuesday, October 29th. Until then, enjoy a six-second teaser on Instagram.
Hugh Jackman has mentioned that there’s been recent movement on the previously stagnant The Greatest Showman on Earth, but now it seems the future musical on P.T. Barnum is breathing once more. Although Jenny Bicks (“Sex and the City”) wrote the original screenplay for the film, Oscar-winning writer and director Bill Condon has signed on to rewrite another draft. Condon’s most notable works include Chicago and Dreamgirls, so this new musical should be in good hands under his supervision.
The Hollywood Reporter also stated “commercials director and visual effects wizard Michael Gracey is on board to helm the biopic about the legendary showman who created the three-ring circus and loved to hoax a gullible public. A focal point of the movie is Barnum’s infatuation with opera singer Jenny Lind, dubbed the Swedish Nightingale. No actress is attached to that role yet.”
Vulture recently released their annual list of the 100 Most Valuable Stars — and Hugh Jackman made an appearance. At #11, he is up 20 places from last year’s position. His stats include a studio value of 9/10, 73% likeablity (that’s all?!), 55 on the critics’ score, and a tabloid value of 7/10. Stars ahead of Hugh include (in order, from 1-10) Robert Downey Jr, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Sandra Bullock, Brad Pitt, Will Smith, Christian Bale, Denzel Washington, Tom Hanks, and Johnny Depp. Read what Vulture had to say about Hugh:
11. Hugh Jackman
He rises on this list by mixing genres and making blockbusters that are especially powerful overseas.
Hugh Jackman has surged over the past year: On our 2013 Most Valuable Stars list, he was ranked a genial No. 31, but this year, he nearly threatened to storm the top ten. It’d be hard to think of someone more deserving, since Jackman has had a pretty phenomenal twelve months. Last winter, he won his first Oscar nomination for Les Misérables, which took in $441 million worldwide, his second biggest hit ever. This summer, U.S. audiences were just so-so on his X flick The Wolverine, which made a disappointing $131 million here… but overseas, it was the biggest X-Men film ever, taking in $242.8 million. Even Prisoners, a relentlessly bleak kidnapped-kids drama, has thus far taken in $76 million worldwide.
But there’s more to draw from Jackman’s last year than box-office receipts. Few actors can prove so convincing in action, drama, and musicals, and Jackman pulled it all off within nine months, promoting each film with grinning brio. In an era during which new stars are hard to come by, he puts in the sort of globe-trotting promotional time that used to be the sole provenance of Will Smith and Tom Cruise. That’s won him high awareness and likability scores; it’s also prompted studio executives to assign the same points to Jackman that they do Sandra Bullock and Angelina Jolie. Jackman always looked the part of an A-list superstar; now, it seems, his career has finally caught up with him.
The day after Hugh Jackman attended the Beijing press conference for The Wolverine, he made an appearance at the premiere. It was the final destination for the movie’s promo tour. Although he was the only cast member on hand, the celebrations were not neglected; a large cake was on-hand for Hugh’s 45th birthday, which had only been a few days prior. There are a bunch of images from the event in the gallery now.
To finish off the press tour for The Wolverine, Hugh Jackman headed to one final destination: Beijing, China. On October 14th, he attended a press conference for the James Mangold-directed film and was interviewed in a solo panel with press on hand. You can check out the 20-minute video below, which is not dubbed over, so English-speaking fans might find it of interest. He, of course, talks about the film, including nice insight on (im)mortality — and how his mortality makes playing Wolverine pretty difficult.