Honestly, we can now no longer imagine anyone else playing the role of Wolverine in place of Hugh Jackman. Ever since 2000’s X-Men, fans have been going crazy over the actor’s portrayal of the mutant and when he declared that he was retiring from the role, it’s safe to say that more than a few hearts were left broken.

Hugh JackmanHugh Jackman and Ryan Reynolds on the set of Deadpool 3
But all is good again as Hugh Jackman will be reprising the role in Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Deadpool 3. The actor will appear alongside his long-time frenemy, Ryan Gosling, in a film that marks their MCU debut. Needless to say, we are all quite excited. However, we might not have gotten to see Hugh Jackman as Wolverine if X-Men director Bryan Singer got his way during the film’s casting.

Another Actor Almost Replaced Hugh Jackman for Wolverine

Russell CroweRussell Crowe

Long before being a part of Chris Hemsworth’s Thor: Love and Thunder, actor Russell Crowe had an opportunity to play a Marvel character – Wolverine. X-Men director Bryan Singer himself offered the role to the talented actor, which he denied for a bunch of reasons.

For starters, Crowe didn’t feel the timing was right and he also stated that he was never much into comics to go ahead and play a comic book character. (Of course, that has changed now, since he will be playing Nikolai Kravinoff in the upcoming, Kraven the Hunter.)

Another reason why Crowe turned down the offer was because he did not want to be known as the guy who plays ‘Wolf’ roles. During his appearance on the Australian radio show, Fitzy & Wippa, Crowe stated,
“Bryan [Singer] was a friend at the time. And he was really putting the pressure on. It didn’t feel right at the time, plus I’ve never been a comic person. If you remember [in Gladiator] 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. So I said no because I didn’t want to be ‘Wolfy the General’ then ‘Wolfy the Other Bloke’ and become like ‘Mr Wolf Man.’”
While there is no doubt that Crowe would have done a fabulous job in the role, just like he does in every other project of his, we simply cannot see anyone else as Wolverine other than Hugh Jackman. Yeah, we are a little biased when it comes to him!

Russel Crowe Believes He Couldn’t Have Done It Better Than Hugh Jackman

Hugh Jackman as WolverineHugh Jackman as Wolverine
Despite missing out on what went on to become one of the biggest and most loved roles in the superhero genre, Crowe has no regrets. In fact, he believes that the job went to the right person as he does not think he could have done a better job than Jackman.

In an interview on The Howard Stern Show, Crowe stated,

“There’s no way I would have ever done that. Even if I’d done the film, I wouldn’t have carried it through with the grace and the direction the Hugh gave it.”
As for Jackman, he will remain grateful to Crowe for passing on the role and giving him the opportunity of a lifetime. Talking to Entertainment Weekly, the Logan actor stated,
“I owe [Russell] because two of the biggest roles I’ve ever had in my life, he turned down — and suggested me for themOn X-Men, he was Bryan Singer’s first choice for Wolverine, and he mentioned me also for [Baz Luhrmann’s] Australia. He really is incredibly smart and generous.”
Well, Jackman’s fans know who to thank now! if it wasn’t for Crowe denying to play Wolverine in the 2000 film, perhaps we wouldn’t be seeing Jackman making his MCU debut twenty-four years later.

Deadpool 3 releases in theatres on May 03, 2024.