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With Hugh Jackman’s final outing as clawed X-Man Wolverine on the way, fans have been clamoring for an adaptation of modern classic Old Man Logan by Mark Millar. It became one of the most prominent suggestions from fans when Jackman asked them what they wanted from his next film, and the actor himself made a crack about Old Man Logan over the summer that got everyone talking. That said, the graphic novel features numerous elements that Fox would not have the rights to, but according to the author, that’s irrelevant.
Millar recently sat down with IGN and explained that Old Man Logan could still work on the silver screen, despite the elements of the greater Marvel universe that it features:
Honestly, the continuity stuff is the most boring side of it. I kind of like it, keeping it in the X-Men universe a little, too, because comic fans are different from the mainstream world. I know this stuff backwards because I've lived my whole life loving this stuff, but most people don't know the entire minutia and everything so I think keeping it simplified and keeping it generally X-Men universe is a smarter thing to do.
In summation, despite the fact that Old Man Logan involves Wolverine encountering characters like Red Skull and Hawkeye, the film adaptation does not necessarily require them to work. Fox could easily take characters that they have the rights to, and use them to fill similar roles. As a hypothetical, Millar suggested replacing Hulk with Blob, or including Cyclops in the main story of the film – both of which would be major alterations from the comic, while still allowing Logan to go through the character arc he requires for the story to work. Fox has experienced a recent hot streak with their Marvel characters, so the odds of them striking any sort of deal with Marvel to share properties – see: Sony and Spider-Man – seems slim to none at this point.
Making changes from source material has worked well for the X-Men franchise before. While X-Men: Days of Future Past maintained most of the core elements and themes of the comic upon which it is based, the film took characters more relevant to the X-Men films and put them at the forefront of the story. In that instance, Kitty Pryde (Ellen Page) took a backseat to Jackman’s Wolverine; the story fundamentally changed from its origin, but the spirit of Days of Future Past remained true.
At this point nothing has even been confirmed regarding the story of Jackman’s final outing as the clawed Canadian mutant. Perhaps Fox will choose to adapt Old Man Logan, but then again maybe they won’t. If they decide to go that route, fans should keep in mind that the film will likely not directly resemble the graphic novel they have come to love – and that’s ok.