Hugh Jackman will always be Wolverine. He popularized the character, bringing Logan fully onto the scene with brutal instincts and gruff charm that worked perfectly on the big screen. He was everything you could ever want out of the character and more. But times change, people move on and franchises make pivots. That’s what apparently is happening within the Marvel Universe right now because it looks like for the short term at least, Wolverine is going to be a female character. That’s at least according to the most recent promotional material that came out from the comic book company.
This latest news about Wolverine looking anything like Hugh Jackman came from Marvel announcing the upcoming Hellfire Gala event that’s going down on the printed page. It’s a major, comic book crossover series that will span 12 issues over the course of the summer. The entire storyline, as it were, is meant to highlight X-Men fashion and new looks for a lot of tried and true characters. Check out some of the new styles for characters you’ve known forever, including Wolverine.
I don’t think this new version of Wolverine could look anything less like Hugh Jackman if they tried. You can see the newer version cuts an elegant cloth supporting high fashion in a way the rough and tumble Logan could have never imagined when we first met him living on the outskirts of the Alaskan wilderness. This new character is presumably different from the X-23 version we’ve met before in both the comics and on the big screen in X2. This appears a full rebranding of the character for a more modern time and an updated story.
The storyline for the Hellfire Gala revolves around a group of mutants, and others gathering on the island of Krakoa for the formation of the new X-Men. This group is being led by Cyclops and Jean Grey, both of whom are assembling those interested on the island where, according to the story, mutants are still welcome. I guess no one gave Hugh Jackman as Wolverine the invite. From a franchising standpoint, it does make sense for them to begin distancing themselves a bit from the on-screen character considering Hugh Jackman came to basically embody everything we know about Wolverine. He was nearly ripped right out of the pages of the comic books when he first appeared in X-Men.
Hugh Jackman played Wolverine in eight films, first coming into the Marvel scene all the way back in 2000. Over the years the character grew and essentially became the face of the franchise through its hits and its misses. His story came to a close with 2017’s Logan which gave the character a newer perfect ending, a bittersweet and emotional arc that few comic book characters are ever afforded. He deserved it.
Whether Hugh Jackman ever returns to the big screen as Wolverine remains to be seen. The Marvel Cinematic Universe is beginning to work the X-Men into the fold now. But it appears, for the time being, on the printed page the character will be a female and the move away from Jackman has begun.