Recasting the role of Wolverine is not going to be an easy task. Hugh Jackman will forever be associated with the beloved mutant. As such, finding his replacement in the Marvel Cinematic Universe will be challenging, to say the very least of it. That's why Joe Russo, the co-director of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame, has compared it to recasting Batman.
The Russo brothers are currently promoting the release of their new movie, Cherry, which stars our current Spider-Man, Tom Holland. During a recent appearance on the Lights Camera Barstool podcast, Joe Russo discussed someone else stepping into the role of Wolverine, even though it's not something he officially has any say over, given that the Russos aren't currently working with Marvel Studios. So far as we know anyway. Here's what he had to say about it.
"To realize him on screen, it's very hard because Hugh Jackman's performance is definitive. It's like Batman; you have to really think of a way to, you have to really find the right actor to come in and give a really different take to that character. But I would really love to see him on screen."
Batman is at the very top of the list in terms of recognizable and beloved comic book characters. So having Wolverine anywhere near that makes it a challenge, in terms of bringing a new version to life. But Hugh Jackman played the character for nearly two full decades, starting with 2000's X-Men, right up through Logan in 2017. After that, he hung up the claws. Jackman has remained adamant that he will not return to the role in the years since.
No actor has played Batman for that long in live-action. Kevin Conroy has voiced the character since the late 80s, though that is a bit different. So while comparisons to Batman can be made, this is a unique situation. Speaking further, Joe Russo explained that a break is probably the best way to go before introducing a new iteration. Russo also expressed his desire to take a crack at bringing Wolverine to the MCU.
"I think the best thing is to take a break, without question. You need a [palate cleanser], you need to rinse the towel a little bit, let everyone enjoy what was, and then come up with something new. But I'd love to take a crack at Wolverine at some point."
We've had nearly four years worth of palate-cleansing. In that time, Disney purchased Fox and gained the rights to the X-Men franchise. Given some of what has been going on in the MCU, specifically in WandaVision, we have every reason to believe mutants are on the way sooner rather than later. That means, eventually, we're going to get to Wolverine. An actor will have to step up and try to fill the shoes left behind by Hugh Jackman. That will be no easy task. You can check out the full interview with Joe Russo on his episode of the Lights Camera Barstool podcast.