The Wolverine chains
The first five words I wrote on the script were “Everyone I love will die.” This is a movie about that. (James Mangold)

Talking to James Mangold, director of The Wolverine, you get a sense this guy gets it. Not only has he directed films in almost every genre, and made Oscar-winners of several of his stars, he believes a great superhero movie needs more than a title and some explosions. “Calling something ‘comic book’ has a danger,” he said. “It’s too easy to take a brand and shovel a movie out where it doesn’t all add up, but people are going to show up anyways, because it is a comic book and a brand. My whole thing is take it seriously. Take it seriously like you were making a western or another kind of film of classic lineage.”

In April, 20th Century Fox invited /Film to speak with the director and see the first 20 minutes of The Wolverine. After watching the footage, it’s pretty obvious Mangold is being incredibly serious. The first reel of the film has some big set pieces, but also sets up what may be a surprisingly complex movie dealing with topics like immortality and genocide. It’s a film he hopes will redeem the character from X-Men Origins: Wolverine and maybe even set the stage for the bigger Fox Marvel Universe, even though it’s very much a standalone story.

Below, watch a non-spoiler video blog discussing the first 20 minutes of the film and read a bit more about Mangold’s intentions with The Wolverine from our in-depth interview. Read More »

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Fox has released more than a few posters for The Wolverine, from director James Mangold, but the best have been a couple of images that employ a style based on traditional Japanese sumi-e ink paintings. Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) was front and center on one and the Silver Samurai featured on another. Viper and Yukio also got their own ink renderings.

Now Jean Grey (Famke Janssen), whose presence in the film was once merely rumor, takes center stage on the latest poster. Check it out below. Read More »

Wolverine Samuari

Man of Steel opens this weekend, but don’t forget you have one more superhero movie coming this summer. That’s James Mangold’s The Wolverine, the return of Hugh Jackman as everyone’s favorite immortal, adamantium-clawed X-Man. This time Logan, dealing with the events of the original X-Men films, finds himself in Japan and posed with an incredible proposition. If he can become mortal and live a normal life, would he give up what makes him special?

Of course that spawns plenty of mutant, ass-kicking action and this latest international trailer might be filled with the most effects shots we’ve seen from the film yet. Tons of shots of Viper (Svetlana Khodchenkova), massive battles, and a few previously released stunner moments featuring the Silver Samurai. Check it out below.

UPDATE: Check out the first TV spot as well.

Read More »

The Wolverine

On November 1st 2012, I visited the set of The Wolverine in Sydney, Australia. To give you an idea of the timeline of my visit, Hurricane Sandy had just wreaked havoc in New York, and I woke up early one morning from the constant noises coming from my computer because I was getting so many notices of the breaking news that Disney had purchased LucasFilm and was making more Star Wars movies.

It is five in the morning and I’m standing in a street lined with Japanese houses covered with snow. The elaborate set was  built in a huge parking lot that was built for the 2000 Olympic games. Flakes of snow fall as ninjas run and ride motorcycles along the rooftops. Hugh Jackman is hanging off the top of a snow plow as it barrels down the street, away from a crowd of masked ninjas. Jackman, employing safety harnesses, flips to his feet on top of the snowplow and “activates” his claws. The second unit director calls “cut”, and Hugh notices our little grouping of press off in the corner and yells out “So you guys a pulling an all nighter? Why don’t you put some ninja suits on and get in the action?”

After the jump you will find a compilation of interesting facts I learned while visiting the set.

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‘The Wolverine’ Trailer #2

Wolverine chain

James Mangold took his sweet time releasing the first trailer for The Wolverine, but since then he (and Fox) haven’t been shy about showing off. The second domestic trailer for the comic book sequel, revealed today, has some more new footage still.

As if that weren’t enough to tempt you to keep reading, we also have two artsy new character posters for Yukio (Rila Fukushima) and Viper (Svetlana Khodchenkova). Check it all out after the jump.

Read More »

Wolverine chain

Generally, doing a Q&A on Twitter is futile. With only 140 characters total, accurately conveying the question and answer in a single tweet is a challenge. The other option, spreading the answers over several tweets, just looks bad. It’s one of the reasons why Reddit AMAs have become more of the go-to for the interative, online question and answer session with the fans.

Hugh Jackman did a Twitter Q&A for The Wolverine on Thursday and actually came up with a clever new spin. He read tweeted questions and shot video responses to them. He discussed all matter of the July 26 film, as well as X-Men: Days of Future Past. We’ve embedded all eleven questions below. Read More »

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James Mangold‘s take on Marvel’s popular character hits later this summer, in July, and we’ll probably see at least one more meaty trailer before the opening date. But for now, the one-minute trailer for The Wolverine that premiered at CinemaCon is now online, and you can watch it below. (This is most of the CinemaCon reel, at least — attendees also saw a bit of the train fight sequence, which isn’t here, and I believe a couple other minor bits, too.)

There’s a lot of footage here we’ve seen already, but there’s also enough new stuff to merit a look. The new footage doesn’t contribute much to our understanding of what the film’s full story arc covers, but it does give you a better look at the Silver Samurai and also offers a neat shot of Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) seemingly overwhelmed by ninja.

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The Wolverine EW

The speed with which interest in James Mangold‘s The Wolverine really seemed to deflate after the first trailer debut was pretty shocking. But then, that trailer wasn’t quite what people expected — the bullet chain sequence and the basic plot setup weren’t what many expected to see out of this Japan-set story. We still don’t know how the film really plays out, and won’t for a while, but after an intense swell of interest in The Wolverine I think the film has to regain audience trust.

There isn’t a lot of new footage in this Japanese trailer for The Wolverine — aka Wolverine: Samurai in Japan — and so this isn’t likely to be the trailer that turns things around. But the couple bits that are there might be of interest to hardcore fans. Read More »

The Wolverine set photo (header)

Maybe it’s because Iron Man 3 is coming so soon, maybe it’s because we’ve started to speculate about the rest of Marvel’s Phase Two, or maybe it’s because X-Men: Days of Future Past is on the way. Whatever it is, my level of excitement for James Mangold‘s The Wolverine has started to dissipate in the last few weeks. It probably has something to do with the first trailer, which didn’t quite wow audiences, and seemed to go away from the original Chris Claremont story we’d believed The Wolverine was based on.

The film can certainly still save itself. It won’t be out until July 26, and the film’s director took to Twitter to show some interesting behind the scenes photos from the shoot. No Hugh Jackman here, but you do get an idea of some of the film’s gorgeous location filming and supporting cast. They’re extremely promising.  Read More »