Hugh Jackman Says They May Shoot Both PG-13 and R-Rated Versions of THE WOLVERINE

     October 10, 2011


Hugh Jackman is currently doing press rounds for Shawn Levy’s Real Steel, which means he’s constantly being asked about The Wolverine. After a rocky start, James Mangold is set to direct the sequel to 2009’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which will take place mostly in Japan. Jackman recently talked to Steve a bit about how much of Darren Aronofsky’s original version of the script is intact in this new iteration, and now the actor has revealed that there’s a possibility that we might see an R-rated version of the film:

“James Mangold and I talked about [an R-rated version] and we’re like ‘Look, let’s not put it off the table.’ There’s even talk about us doing two versions, as in finding a way to do both while you shoot it, which could be really cool. But you need to have a really good reason to exclude those fans.”

We got a glimpse of a NSFW Wolverine with Jackman’s glorious cameo in X-Men: First Class, so I think everyone would agree that an R-rated Wolverine would be a very good thing. Hit the jump to see what else Jackman had to say about the possibility of going R.

x-men_origins_wolverine_movie_image_hugh_jackman_01Honestly, the fact that Jackman and Mangold have seriously discussed making an R-rated Wolverine is pretty damn surprising. Most directors wouldn’t even float the possibility of making an R-rated version of a big-budget franchise film, let alone a sequel to a PG-13 original. Mangold definitely deserves some credit for not taking the idea off the table. Speaking with MTV, Jackman said that he’s always been fascinated by the idea of an R-rated iteration of the character:

“There is such great temptation to make an R-rated Wolverine. I’ve always felt that, I know a lot of fans would like that, and if there’s ever gonna be a superhero that’s gonna be R-rated it’s Wolverine.”

hugh-jackman-wolverine-imageAs great as this sounds, it’s extremely unlikely that an R-rated cut of The Wolverine will be the one hitting theaters. Besides the fact that it significantly lowers the gross ceiling for the studio, Jackman talked about the many, many younger kids (10, 11, 12) who look up to Wolverine as a hero. Though the R-rated version of Wolverine is certainly enticing, Jackman admitted that it would be hard for him to exclude those fans.

Best case scenario, I’m hoping that Mangold and Jackman go ahead and shoot the R-rated version of The Wolverine and release it as a separate cut on the Blu-ray/DVD. Though it would be insanely cool/ballsy for the theatrical cut to be R, it’s definitely not expected. Interviewer Josh Horowitz brought up how Christopher Nolan has been able to make his Batman films extremely dark while still adhering to the PG-13 rating, and Jackman commented that that will definitely be their goal:

“What’s R-rated about him is, yeah he’s violent but it’s his attitude that’s the coolest thing about him. So if you can be inventive and find a way around those laws, we’ll try and do it.”

All in all, it sounds like Jackman and Mangold are cooking up a pretty cool Wolverine pic. Production on the film is set to get underway later next year after Jackman wraps Les Miserables.

Here’s the video of the interview:

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  • teejay

    I can see where a studio come sfrom on wanting to have films like Wolverine and x-men be pg-13. However there are die hard fans that are well over 18 that would love a true R rated film. I dont see why they havent thought of this before shoot two versions of the film and release one in theaters and another on dvd or if your wanting to chance it do the both versions in theaters. That being said I still think it would be cool to wait about five to six more years reboot Wolverine strictly call it Weapon X and do a hard hard true to comics R rated Weapon X, and still keep Jackman just have him a little older so he looks more like Wolverine. I think the older he is getting the better he is looking for the part. If you go back and watch the first X-men again Jackman looks way to young to be Wolverine. Oh and P to the mother fucking S I agree with Arnofsky that Jackman needs to put on a ton more bulk and look like a fucking animal for Wolverine.


    About time they did this!!! Weird that only today, (and for years past) I have been saying many PG 13 movies should be filmed as an alternative hard R, or just more adult less shmultz directors cut. Since Phantom menace. Have a Jar Jar version for kids and lose that chump for the older OT fans. Simple solution to a horrible recurring problem.

    I spoke of it today because i read a review of REAL STEEL, that said it went a bit kid friendly mushy, where the premise of that film i thought could have lso been a gritty adult version.

    I remember Spawn being released here in the UK as both a PG film, and as a hard R rental. That ws the last of its kind that i know of, (maybe Daredevil?)

    Imagine how many films that turned to kid friendly cash grabs that had an element that appealed to the older generations that could have simply had 2 edited/alternate scenes versions of the movie.

    Great to see this happen again, and i hope its the first of ALL future films to do this. Infact, they could even sell more dvds this way!

    • Sloth

      Totally agree! Films like Robocop-3, AVP, Terminator 3 etc, etc, would have all benefitted critically from having a hard R rating aswell as the diluted, watered down versions we ended up with. The list of lower rating films, not just PG13, that should have had an alternative R cut is endless.

      Its not just about filming more adult/gory/violent etc themes… It should also be about eliminating some of those childish corny “family film” kid friendly moments. Good call, on removing Jar Jar and silly kiddy scenes from the prequels. 2 versions would sell double the movies.

  • Tj!

    “The Dark Knight” was about one F word away from an R. Seriously, that movie was pretty damn hard core for PG13…you don’t need gallons of blood, guts, and the seven dirty words to make a good Wolverine movie. You need good writers, directors, and editors who appreciate the character. Frank Miller wrote a hard R “Batman Year One” script for Arronofsky that was complete and utter shit. Go find it on the nets, it’s out there and it would have been God awful. Wolverine, Ghost Rider, Spawn, Daredevil, would all fall well under an R rating but if I was 10 years old and my Mom and Dad wouldn’t take me to see a Wolverine movie because it was R rated I would be PISSED. Please, won’t someone think of the CHILDREN????!!!!

    • Thomas

      Usually for me, more adult versions are the best. They just feel more real, and not ‘realistic’, just real. The characters aren’t diluted, the writing sucks less and the dialogue and plot isn’t cookie cutter. It’s nice to think about kids, but even better to write with the characters in mind and from your heart, THEN think of the market and how much cash grab you might be doing.
      Sure, one guy’s script might not have pleased you, but there’s others out there.
      I think it’d be good to have to rating cuts out there. I want a R rated Wolverine. BRING it.

  • reut

    Like 2d and 3d films, why can’t they release two different versions of the film? PG13 in one R in the other. Would it cost that much more to do? Movies all ready monoplize over 3000 screens across the country. If it’s already filmed why the hell not. Appease the PG13 and R crowds. Everyone is happy, no one is left out. huh? huh?

    • The Dude


  • will

    I’d release both cuts in theaters. A PG-13 cut and an R-rated cut, like 2D and 3D. The cumulative gross will go for both. An R-rated Wolverine would be incredibly badass. Ridley Scott’s talking like he may go a similar route with Prometheus, too, so this isn’t new.

  • LiamH

    Everyone saying why don’t you release both PG13 and R like 2D and 3D. That’s because 2D and 3D are the same movie.

    If the difference between R and PG13 is just censored blood/gore than that’s pretty pointless. Type of content and how a movie is shot should determine if it needs an R rating but if that’s the case than you’re totally gonna have 2 different movies.

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  • adam

    when the tim curry clue movie came to theaters they released 3 versions each with a diffrent of the 3 endings avilable now they should release both cuts in the theater at the same time (Prometheus too) the fans can choose!!! (ok is there any OTHER clue movie dunno y im empahzing Curry LOL)

  • Phil123

    I agree that you don’t need an R to be good e.g. Dark Knight, but Wolverine has blades that come out of his hands. They are generally his only weapons. he would be slashing peope up with them. can’t really do that well without an R. loved Xmen 1 and 2, but wolverine did very little with his claws compaired to what i imagine would really happen – not that it would obviously

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  • Anonymous

    NOT RATED R! I agree with Tj!