AFTER playing claw-wielding superhero Wolverine seven times on the big screen, it’s no surprise that Australian actor Hugh Jackman has become something of an X-Men oracle on set.
But, as the actor points out, being your colleagues’ go-to man for all things X-Men can be a little trying, even if the colleagues in question happen to be acting legends.
He is joking, of course, but you can imagine that if anyone was in need of a refresher on the film franchise, he’d be a safe bet to approach.
Hugh’s a very familiar face among the cast, having worked on the series, based on the popular Marvel comics, for the last 14 years.
For the latest film, X-Men: Days Of Future Past – which sees Wolverine and fellow characters from the original trilogy sent back in time to reunite with their younger selves in a bid to change history – he’ll be reunited with Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender and Nicholas Hoult, his co-stars from X-Men: First Class, as well as Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen and Halle Berry.
Despite having played Wolverine for almost a decade-and-a-half, Hugh, who started his career in musical theatre, is still brimming with enthusiasm for his impressively sideburned alter ego.
“If you go to the comic books, there’s a lot of very strong character points about Wolverine,” he explains. “He’s the loner. That tough, bad ass, cool guy who does what he wants and doesn’t follow anyone else’s lead. “He’s a good guy but not a nice guy. Those are some of the things that I love about him.
“Each person who takes him on gives him slightly different colour, and hopefully over the 14 years, I’ve given him different colours.”
By the sounds of it, Hugh’s Wolverine journey isn’t over yet, either.
“I haven’t officially signed on to anything else,” says the Sydney-born actor. “But I am also part of the process of developing another Wolverine movie and also X-Men: Apocalypse, which is the follow-up to this movie. I don’t know what role I’ll play in that.
“If I was a betting man, I’d say this X-Men is not the last (for me), but there has to be a very compelling reason for me to do it,” he adds. “I love the character. I love the series. I would never take it for granted or do it for the hell of it.
“I have to feel like I really have something to offer and we’re going to take Wolverine on a slightly different journey. Otherwise it’ll be time to hand over the claws to someone else, and I’m sure there will be many lining up to do it.”
X-Men: Days of Future Past (12A) is released in cinemas on Thursday.