The original X-Men film is largely credited for kickstarting the successful series of comic book blockbusters, but it wasn’t the easiest of shoots for all involved. In fact, Anna Paquin has now spoken up about how much physical hardship Hugh Jackman had to endure while filming, along with what he ended up meaning to her.
While talking to SiriusXM, Paquin, who played the mutant ability-absorbing Rogue in the adaptation, chatted about shooting the superhero trailblazer and what kind of challenges Jackman faced, saying:
“Hugh was definitely my best friend on the first one. Then they actually started bringing in cast members that were close to my age, so there was a kind of younger little gaggle of late teens, twentysomethings, but Hugh was the person that I was close to because I had all my scenes with him and he’s just wonderful. We spent so much time together in the first one and he is still a lovely, gracious human being. He got put through the wringer on that first one and never, ever complained. Like minus 40, he’s being dropped off some building onto his back over and over and over again. He still had all the time in the world to be a nice, normal person.”
She also recalled a specific incident between the pair of them where how much you can trust a person was truly tested, explaining:
“While we were doing the truck stuff in the very beginning, he had his claws out but he’s also supposed to be smoking a cigar, so I did have to pick the cigar out of his teeth because he couldn’t do it with his claws without causing personal damage. But what are friends for?”
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As Paquin states, Wolverine and Rogue spend a great deal of time together on screen, due to their meeting in the frozen wilderness of Alberta and being brought to the X-Mansion at the same time, where they both learn that they’re mutants. In addition to this, the backbone of the story involves Wolverine growing increasingly protective of Rogue and feeling responsible for her safety as he abandons his own solitary nature to help those who need him.
Despite the hero’s aggressiveness being an integral part of his character, and one that Jackman channels perfectly, in real life, the actor is the exact opposite. In fact, he has a reputation for being one of the nicest people in Hollywood, coming off as humble despite his success while the genial personality he presents seems to be utterly sincere. It’s encouraging to know that such a nature extends beyond that which is presented to the cameras of media outlets, and that even in the face of some evidently torturous filming while making X-Men, he still managed to remain a decent and friendly person.