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In this cinematic world of trilogies, scarce is the non-James Bond actor who continues to take on the same role in film after film. Hugh Jackman is one of those rare performers who has repeatedly reprised the role that made him famous, having played the mutant Wolverine in six X-Men films, with the upcoming X-Men: Days of Future Past set to be number seven. So when it was recently reported that Twentieth Century Fox offered Jackman $100 million to come back to play Wolverine four more times, it wasn’t a big surprise. But as most things involved with superheroes tend to be, the news was all a fiction. Jackman himself has told Entertainment Weekly that the news of the studio's offer wasn’t true. He’s only been offered $99.99 million to do it. Just kidding!
While on the set of Days of Future Past, Jackman denied the reports, which were admittedly pretty sketchy already, having come from The National Enquirer. "No, it’s not true," Jackman said. "I would never do that. I’ve never done that mainly because, for the fans and for me, each time I’ve gone around there’s been a really good reason to do it and I don’t know what that reason is from here. I’m in the middle of making this and I just promoted the other and I’m really happy with the way The Wolverine came out."
While this most recent standalone film definitely wasn’t one of the summer’s money-gobbling failures, it did take a steep drop after its opening weekend in July. And while it will no doubt make its budget back here in the U.S., it wasn’t the massive success that will immediately green light more films. Even though this was a smaller story for the hero, it still cost $120 million to make, and though Jackman alone is a big draw for superhero fans, I doubt Fox thinks that signing him up for that many movies is a good idea. It would have put him playing the character well into his fifties, given the large amount of production time these films eat up.
Of course, given Robert Downey Jr.’s massive payday for The Avengers, I guess nothing that studios do these days seems crazy anymore. Then again, The Avengers did make over $1.5 billion at the global box office, which equals the earnings of all four X-Men films put together, excluding the Wolverine spinoffs. So his payday does seem like it was worth it.
The Wolverine is entering its fourth weekend in theaters. If you haven’t watched it yet, check the trailer below if you need that extra push.