Wolverine has yet to appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it seems like Disney already has big plans for Logan. The last time we saw Wolverine in 2017’s Logan, Hugh Jackman’s take on the character was violent, gritty, and decidedly rated R. Under a new studio, Wolverine might be a bit more reined in than we last saw him, but this comes with new opportunities, like a possible Hulk vs. Wolverine film.
Geekosity is reporting that Disney will make any upcoming Wolverine films PG-13, which shouldn’t be a surprise, since the Marvel Cinematic Universe has never released a film with a higher rating, and Hulk vs. Wolverine would include a film only known from PG-13 films. Despite Logan, Wolverine has also only ever appeared in PG-13 films in his over fifteen years in the X-Men franchise. However, with Logan making over $619 million worldwide – the second highest-grossing X-Men film to feature Wolverine – one could understand if Disney did want to continue this darker version of Wolverine in the future.
But the real reason why future Wolverine films will be PG-13 is so that the character can easily interact with other characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. As Geekosity also mentions, Wolverine-focused films will likely feature appearances from other known characters, particularly the Hulk. While Hulk vs. Wolverine has happened many times in comic books, animated films, and other media, it’s unclear if the two will be on the same side or if they will be rivals in whatever future project they appear in together.
It also seems incredibly unlikely that a Hulk vs. Wolverine would be coming within the next few years, considering that the X-Men haven’t even been set up in the Marvel Cinematic Universe yet. Odds are, Marvel would want to introduce Wolverine in another film before giving him his own film. That could mean Wolverine could appear in a theoretical X-Men film, or appear in a different Marvel Cinematic Universe film before getting his own solo film, similar to Black Panther and Spider-Man in Captain America: Civil War.
But a Hulk vs. Wolverine film could be mutually beneficial to both properties. Mark Ruffalo has been open in the past about wanting to lead his own Hulk film, although films like 2003’s Hulk and 2008’s The Incredible Hulk have both shown how difficult it is for Bruce Banner to star in his own film effectively. Mostly, Ruffalo’s Hulk has been a supporting character, with his most prominent role being in Thor: Ragnarok, where Hulk went head-to-head, then teamed up with Thor.
In an interview earlier this year with Variety, Ruffalo discussed the future of his Hulk, in which he said there’s an idea for an interesting project that could be in the works. While it isn’t clear if Ruffalo is discussing a potential Hulk vs. Wolverine, he does make it sound like the project he’s talking about would fill in the blanks for where Hulk has been in between the films. But Ruffalo does also mention that it’s possible Hulk could make a cameo in Disney+’s upcoming She-Hulk series.
If Hulk vs. Wolverine is on the way, it won’t arrive for quite some time, at least until after the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Phase Four is concluded. It’s not even clear who will play Wolverine in this next iteration of the character. Speaking with ComicBookMovie.com, Avengers: Endgame co-director Joe Russo even said he thinks Wolverine should take a break for a while before he is introduced to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But if a Hulk vs. Wolverine film is in development, it will be great to see these two iconic superhero characters battle each other in a film for the first time.