Hugh Jackman, Will Yun Lee and James Mangold on The Wolverine

Now that the first trailer for The Wolverine has been confirmed as dropping alongside G.I. Joe: Retaliation on Wednesday, March 27th, it seems that 20th Century Fox are about to lift the publicity blackout on the upcoming solo sequel. Speaking to Total Film (via CBM), star Hugh Jackman offered up some thoughts on his latest X-Men adventure – specifically, how it differs from previous instalments in the superhero franchise:

“I’m thrilled the studio called it The Wolverine instead of Wolverine 2, because we’re trying to set it up as a standalone picture,” said Jackman, referring to 2009’s disappointing standalone spin-off X-Men Origins: Wolverine. “Tonally, it’s different from the other X-Men movies. It’s got massive action sequences, as people would expect, and it’ll be great fun. But it is a character-driven movie. It’s about a guy completely out of his element, in this world that’s foreign to him, and how he copes with that. I feel like we have the opportunity to deliver that badass, kick-ass Wolverine I know everybody wants to see.”

The Wolverine is based upon the classic 1982 limited series by Chris Claremont and Frank Millar, which sees Logan heading to Japan, where he clashes with Kenuichio Harada, a.k.a. the Silver Samurai. Portraying the villain in The Wolverine is Will Yun Lee (Total Recall), who briefly spoke about the film’s fight scenes:

I’ve seen playbacks of Hugh fighting different characters in the movie he’s no joke! He’s probably in the best shape I’ve ever seen him in all the X-Men [films]. The fighting style in the this movie is very Japanese-specific. The movie’s stunt team 8711 is probably one of the best in the business. In training they beat me up all day and I could barely even walk home! Because we’re dealing with weapons like swords and Wolverine’s claws, even though they’re fake, you’re still just a fraction away from getting hurt or getting hit in the eye… I was like, ‘Oh my god, I better not miss my timing.'”

Meanwhile, director James Mangold also detailed his approach to The Wolverine’s action sequences, stating that “I do want the movie to have an intensity. I don’t want it to feel just like a CG fest. I think so much of what’s badass about Wolverine is his physicality: the sweat, blood, passion and anger. What we trying to do in terms of the action is restore, or even for the first time kind of explore his physicality on a more visceral level.”

The Wolverine is set for release on July 26th, with a cast that includes Brian Tee (The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift) as Noburo Mori, Hiroyuki Sanada (The Last Samurai) as Shingen, Hal Yamanouchi (The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou) as Yashida and Svetlana Khodchenkova (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) as Viper, along with newcomers Rila Fukushima as Yukio and Tao Okamoto as Mariko.

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