Jackman indebted to Crowe
HUGH Jackman has Russell Crowe to thank for his Hollywood success as Marvel comic hero Wolverine.
Thanks to the Gladiator actor turning down the lead role, Jackman was called in to play the mutant superhero in the X-Men franchise.
“Bryan (Singer, X-Men director) was a friend at the time and he was putting the pressure on,” the star said. But Crowe said his Gladiator character’s association with wolves turned him off the idea. “If you remember, Maximus has a wolf at the centre of his cuirass, and he has a wolf as his companion ... which I thought was going to be a bigger deal [at the time],” he explained. “So I said no, because I didn’t want to be ‘wolfy’, like ‘Mr Wolf’.”
While Singer was disappointed, he came around to his recommendation of Jackman for the role.
But it turned out the whole drama was over nothing — most of Crowe’s ‘wolf moments’ in Gladiator were left on the cutting room floor.
One person who’s not disappointed with how things turned out is Jackman.
“Russell (Crowe) has given me advice several times at key moments in my life,” he said. “I owe him because two of the biggest roles I’ve ever had in my life, he turned down — and suggested me.”
Hugh Jackman as the iconic X-Men character, Wolverine. Inset, Russell Crowe