The Wolverine’s Red Underwear Clip

HBO cornered star Hugh Jackman and director James Mangold and somehow convinced them to talk about their latest collaboration, The Wolverine, and introduce a new scene from the action film.

Looks like fun — even if the pool gag has been done before.

The Wolverine opens this weekend.

New Wolverine Trailer Has… Fighting

Here’s a trailer cut to dramatic music that makes The Wolverine look like a non-stop balls-to-the-wall action flick! There are no plot hints here, just lots of Hugh Jackman popping his claws and fighting. Of course, on the downside, all the bluster makes the movie look very generic; what makes this Wolverine?

You’ll have to wait until July 26 to see The Wolverine.

We Could Have Guessed The Wolverine’s Plot

So, after months of teasing in an attempt to build fan buzz for a movie sequel that no one asked for, the first real trailers for James Mangold’s The Wolverine have surfaced — and the one slated for international exposure is much better than the U.S. domestic clip.

First, take a look at the U.S. trailer, which does explain what the movie is about:

Now consider the international trailer, which features a couple of tiny glimpses of the Silver Samurai (Will Yun Lee) in his comic book costume, which is entirely absent from the U.S. footage. It also does a better job of telling us what the storyline is:

The deadly chick with the red hair is Yukio, played by newcomer Rila Fukushima, and the old dude making Logan the offer is Yashida, portrayed by Hal Yamanouchi (whom some of you may remember as the evil father in the underrated Chris Evans/Dakota Fanning mutant movie, Push).

I have to confess that I groaned when I heard Yashida offer Wolverine a way to take away his healing factor. Does every X-Men-related movie have to be about coming up with a way to “cure” the mutants? It’s so boring to see the same plot used over and over and over. Plus, hello, they’re mutants — they were born that way. How could there be a cure for that?

New Trailers Headed to a Theater Near You!

Man-of-Steel-poster-handcuffsDec. 14, just one week from today, will be a big day for fans of movie trailers, as three highly anticipated trailers for big 2013 movies will make their debut. Conveniently, in most regions these should all be attached to The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which opens that day.

Here’s what to look out for next Friday:

  • Star Trek Into Darkness
  • Man of Steel
  • The Wolverine

If you are lucky enough to catch The Hobbit at an IMAX theater, Paramount is showing a nine-minute preview of Star Trek Into Darkness – but if you’re stuck in a conventional theater, you’ll just get a normal trailer. I am not so much looking forward to The Wolverine, but maybe some great footage will convince me to give the flick a chance.

During the last week of December, you can expect to see the trailer for The Hangover 3 – in which the producers give up and just move the whole Wolfpack formula back to Las Vegas.

Also, stay on your toes and keep an eye peeled for Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim trailer. He plans to drop it this month, but there’s no telling when it will happen. So be on the lookout for giant robots and monsters!

Suddenly, ‘The Wolverine’ is Looking Up

I was — and remain — truly skeptical about The Wolverine,director  James Mangold’s sequel to 2009’s simply silly X-Men Origins: Wolverine, but some recent developments have led me to be a little less negative about its prospects: set photos.

Today, we get to see some spy photos from the set that reveal a glimpse of the Silver Samurai’s costume — and it looks a lot like the comic book version (at least from the back)! A little faithfulness to the source material will go a long way toward placating comics fans and help lower the static of negativity that can be generated. There’s also a clear image of actor Will Yun Lee out of his Silver Samurai armor. I can’t wait to see the front of the costume, because so much already has been changed about Wolverine that I’d enjoy seeing something clearly recognizable. (Hopefully fellow villain Viper’s costume will be loyal to the printed page, as well.)

If the villain’s costume retains all (or at least most) its comic book style, let’s hope the Silver Samurai’s powers remain the same, too. Kenuichio Harada is a mutant with the ability to charge his sword (and other objects) with energy that enables it to cut through anything — with the notable exception of adamantium. Luckily, Wolverine is full of it. Adamantium, I mean.

Speaking of the feral X-Man’s skeleton, in another shot here, we see Wolvie actor Hugh Jackman’s stunt double wearing practical claws on his hands — suggesting that this movie returns to the using real props instead of fully CGI claws, as in XO:W. I call that taking a step forward by taking a step backward.

The Wolverine opens on July 26, 2013, here in the United States.

ETA: Here is a photo of Svetlana Khodchenkova (Tinker Taylor Soldier Spy) as Viper. I don’t like the blonde hair.


The Wolverine: All Claws and Abs and Veins

Look, I enjoy a good comic book movie (say, Captain America: The First Avenger) as much as the next guy — and X-Men Origins: Wolverine was not a good comic book movie. It was such a bungled mess that I couldn’t stand it.

However, despite the odds, it made enough money to warrant a sequel, dubbed simply The Wolverine. What we have here is the first official photo of Hugh Jackman in character as… the Wolverine. It is unusual in that he isn’t screaming at the camera, but I think that’s because it takes so much concentration to make all your veins bulge like that!

Jackman looks skinnier than ever before, so I wonder about the timing of this sequel. Does it follow directly from XO:W, or is it set at a later date? And, as long as this solo series is apparently rebooting the character, how about using some of that Lord of the Rings shrinking technology to cut Jackman down to Wolverine size?

And hey, director James Mangold, how about giving the fans something that would really get them excited: a glimpse of the Silver Samurai?!?!

Finally: a Synopsis for The Wolverine

Seems like we’ve been hearing about The Wolverine — the sequel no one demanded to the wet-noodle 2009 flick X-Men Origins: Wolverine — for almost forever, but specific details about the flick have been lacking. Until now.

The (otherwise lame) official Facebook page for The Wolverine now offers a story synopsis. To wit:

Based on the celebrated comic book arc, The Wolverine finds Logan, the eternal warrior and outsider, in Japan. There, samurai steel will clash with adamantium claw as Logan confronts a mysterious figure from his past in an epic battle that will leave him forever changed.

The flick is still shooting under the direction of James Mangold (Cop Land), and (of course) stars Hugh Jackman, who insists the movie is not connected to X-MO:W. He told an interviewer:

“We’ve deliberately not called it Wolverine 2 because we want it to be placed and feel like a standalone picture. With an all-new cast and setting it in Japan, it’s going to give us a whole new visual aesthetic. The approach to character means we won’t be overloaded with mutants and teams and the like, so it’ll be more character-based. I think in many ways it will fell like a completely different X-Men film.”

Word is the storyline is based on Chris Claremont and Frank Miller’s 1982 Wolverine comic book miniseries, which would be jake in my book. Starting with a good comics story at least gives the movie a solid base on which to build. (Something X-MO:W lacked.)

The Wolverine is slated to open July 26, 2013.