Hugh Jackman finally hung up his Wolverine claws following the release of Logan this year and his tenure as Wolverine is officially over. Not that it's going to happen anytime soon, but Fox is open to rebooting the character at some point. Tom Hardy's name has come up quite a bunch when it comes to replacing Jackman. As it turns out, Tom Hardy was already in mind to play Wolverine in another X-Men movie when Matthew Vaughn was working on his follow-up to X-Men: First Class.
Matthew Vaughn recently spoke with Deadline in order to promote Kingsman: The Golden Circle. He talked a bit about his time with the X-Men franchise and revealed a bit about what his second entry in the franchise would have been. He wanted to do another movie before doing X-Men: Days of Future Past, but Fox wasn't having it. Had he been afforded the chance, he would have featured a young Wolverine in this second movie. The name he decided to drop? Tom Hardy.
"When we finished it, I remember saying to Simon Kinberg and Emma Watts; guys, this feels like it should be the third of the trilogy. It's such a big concept. Why don't we do another, one set in the '70s, because of Young Wolverine, and then the third one is Days of Future Past, where you're seeing the Young Wolverine with, let's say it's Tom Hardy, and Hugh Jackman and all the other characters were together. For me, that's the end of a trilogy. How do you beat that? And I got told no, and when I'm in my sandpit, I don't like hearing no if I think it's a good idea."
Much in the way that Patrick Stewart and James McAvoy's versions of Charles Xavier were able to come face-to-face in X-Men: Days of Future Past, this could have happened with Hugh Jackman's Wolverine and a young Wolverine, possibly played by Tom Hardy. That's pretty tough to beat. Granted, it is pretty well established in the franchise that Wolverine ages quite slowly, which is why Hugh Jackman was able to play the character for so many years, so a young version of the character may not have made sense. But it would have been cool. Even though Matthew Vaughn didn't get to see this vision through, he harbors no hard feelings.
"I adore Bryan, and I thought, you know what, I'm going to hand the baton to him. Bryan was nice enough to give me the baton to run with. And I ran with it, and didn't fall over, and I handed it back."
Indeed, Matthew Vaughn did not "fall over" with X-Men: First Class. Many consider it to be among the best X-Men movies and it helped set up X-Men: Days of Future Past beautifully. That said, it's hard not to wonder what Vaughn's version of a young Wolverine with an actor like Tom Hardy would have looked like. Maybe Fox can bring him back when and if they ever do decide to bring Wolverine back?