For years, Wolverine and the Marvel Cinematic Universe were mutually exclusive – Hugh Jackman’s enraged mutant operated under the shadow of Fox, while Kevin Feige and Co. nurtured the MCU into one of the biggest film franchises in Hollywood history.
But on December 14th, everything changed. Bringing an end to weeks of heated speculation and alleged false starts, Disney and 21st Century Fox reached a $52 billion deal that will, in time, redraw the superhero genre as we know it.
Characters like Deadpool and Fantastic Four, who were originally offloaded by Marvel in the ’90s, are headed home, while the Mouse House also gained control of Alien, Predator and a number of other big-name franchises. And don’t even get us started on the TV front.
What does this all mean for Wolverine? Well, the character will surely be recast, but who will take the role next is the million dollar question. There are a few names being floated around, mind you, and one that seems to keep popping up is Tom Hardy, and it’s not hard to see why. The intense, charismatic and extremely talented actor would make an absolutely perfect Wolvie and in case you’re not convinced of that yet, we’ve now got some new fan art (seen in the gallery below) to help sway you.
Of course, just because he’s perfect for the role doesn’t mean it’ll one day be his. After all, Hardy is now pretty occupied with Sony’s Marvel universe, headlining Venom for them. Granted, that doesn’t completely rule him out here, but with the recasting of Wolverine still so far off, all we can do right now is speculate.
One thing we know for sure though is that it won’t be Jackman bringing the character to life in the MCU. After nine movies in 17 years, the actor is ostensibly finished with the clawed mutant, though he does hope that Disney’s acquisition will allow for a younger star to come in and offer his own spin on Wolverine.
“I think unfortunately, the ship has sailed for me, but for someone else I would like to see Wolverine in there,” the actor said.
And we couldn’t agree more. Alas, even if Hardy is too busy Venom, there are plenty of other equally exciting options out there should Marvel decide to cast a younger Wolverine. Failing that, there’s always X-23.