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'The Wolverine': Hugh Jackman talks Blu-ray release, 'Days of Future Past' teases

Hugh Jackman is coming up on 15 years — and a possible eighth film — playing macho mutant Logan, a.k.a. The Wolverine in the X-Men films. But, the actor told EW, he couldn’t be happier about it: “I kind of am enjoying him more than ever.” Given the $414 million global box office take of this summer’s The Wolverine, fans would tend to agree.

Though there are still four long, wintry months between now and the May release of X-Men: Days of Future Past, Jackman says there’s plenty to hold over X-men obsessives in The Wolverine‘s at-home release (out in Digital HD™ now, and hitting stores Dec. 3 with a 4 Disc Unleashed Extended Edition Blu-ray and 2 Disc Blu-ray), which just so happens to include Days teases curated by director Bryan Singer himself. Read on… READ FULL STORY

'The Wolverine' first look: Behind the scenes of the bullet train -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

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Movie magic is taken to another level when it comes to comic book films. What looks like an amazing fight sequence between mutants ends up being a few guys on a sound stage standing in front of a green screen. For example, how did director James Mangold and his crew make it appear that Hugh Jackman was fighting on top of a moving bullet train in The Wolverine? Well, it wasn’t easy. Think powerful fans, green screens, more fans, and some impressive stunt choreography.

We’ve got an exclusive look behind the scenes of the bullet train action below: READ FULL STORY

Hugh Jackman on 'The Wolverine' sequel, Neill Blomkamp's 'Chappie,' musicals he's eyeing

Just as The Wolverine claws its way toward DVD/Blu-ray on Dec. 3 (with a Digital HD release on Nov. 19), talk is heating up about a possible sequel. For his part, star Hugh Jackman has neither confirmed nor denied whether he’ll sign on to play muttonchopped mutant Logan for an eighth time… but the odds are looking good. “I was on the phone with Jim Mangold last night,” Jackman told EW. “There are some really cool ideas that I’m dying to tell you, but that would be giving away a secret that is not even [fully] formed yet.”

Jackman insists that his lapsing contract with Fox, which reportedly will need to be renegotiated after X-Men: Days of Future Past premieres in May, doesn’t mean he’s leaving the franchise in limbo. “I started with a two-picture deal on the first two [X-Men films], and from that point on, it’s been movie by movie — not just me, but Fox and Jim and everyone,” he says. “I do want to do it with Jim and with [producer] Lauren Shuler-Donner because we had such a great experience. I’m really proud of The Wolverine.”

The star believes he’s mentally more committed to the character than he’s ever been. “I kind of am enjoying him more than ever… Being older helps playing Wolverine. He’s 200 or 300 years old — no one really knows — and he’s sort of world-weary. The actual working out gets harder and harder, I’ll admit.”

Still, Jackman insists the creative circumstances would have to be right for him to resume his grueling diet-and-exercise regimen in order to don the white tank top again: “I don’t want to dive into another one until we have a compelling reason to do another one,” says Jackman. “I love the character, he’s kind of like a best friend to me, and I don’t ever want to take [him] or the fans for granted. … I think we’ve got a great opportunity to make something really cool, but it has to be great. That’s what we’re all working toward.”
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'The Wolverine' director James Mangold in talks for sequel

Twentieth Century Fox is moving ahead with another Wolverine standalone movie. The Wolverine director James Mangold is in talks with the studio to write a treatment and longtime X-Men producer Lauren Shuler Donner will collaborate again, as Deadline reported. The storyline is being kept under wraps for now, and Hugh Jackman is waiting to see a script before he commits to another go as the shredded mutant.

Jackman’s Wolverine will play a major role in next May’s X-Men: Days of Future Past, bridging the original X-Men franchise with the younger First Class crew. But that movie also completes his contract to play Wolverine, a role he’s been associated with for more than a decade. He’s not currently obligated to another Wolverine movie and would likely negotiate a healthy raise for a new adventure.

The Wolverine was a modest blockbuster in the U.S. this summer, but it earned more than twice as much abroad and grossed more than $413 million altogether.

Box office update: '2 Guns' blows past 'Smurfs 2' with a $10 million Friday

Here’s a tip: Never bring a Smurf sequel to a gun fight.

The Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg action pic 2 Guns proved to be a stronger contender this weekend than originally expected and walked away with an estimated $10 million on its first Friday in 3,025 theaters. Directed by Baltasar Kormákur (The Deep), the $61 million movie finds a DEA agent and a naval intelligence officer on the run together after a failed attempt to infiltrate a drug cartel. At least at first, neither knows that the other is also undercover. Kormákur’s Contraband, which also starred Wahlberg, opened in January of 2012 at $24.3 million. While Wahlberg may be an erratic performer at the box office, Washington is more reliable — the actor’s last six movies all opened above $20 million. As recently as Thursday, Universal predicted a $20 million opening, which seems modest now, as 2 Guns will likely easily win the weekend with at least $30 million.

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Box office preview: Will 'The Smurfs 2' beat 'The Wolverine' and Mark Wahlberg?

[UPDATED] On the surface, this weekend’s face-off between a sequel based on a Saturday morning cartoon and an R-rated action flick called 2 Guns sounds almost like a parody of the state of summer movie offerings.

The Smurfs 2 opened wide Wednesday, and the generically titled Mark Wahlberg and Denzel Washington feature hits theaters on Friday, and both will likely net out with similar earnings. Ultimately, even though neither movie seems destined to flop, both could be arriving a little too late to an over-saturated market. We’ve already seen a number of buddy action movies, including Pain and Gain, which also starred Wahlberg, and White House Down, and families have had at least a few animated options this summer alone.

Here’s how the weekend might play out:
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Box office report: 'The Wolverine' earns $55 million; Plus 'Despicable Me 2' crosses $300 million mark

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Sometimes even earning the No. 1 spot can be seen as a modest disappointment, or at least that’s what the new narrative around The Wolverine (CinemaScore: A-) would have you believe.

With no competition this weekend, The Wolverine pulled in about $55 million domestically in 3,924 locations — on target with studio estimates, but far below tracking projections, some of which went so far as to predict an $80 million weekend. With the majority of screens showing the Fox tentpole in 3-D, the movie averaged about $14,016 per screen on an estimated budget of $120 million, so this weekend’s performance is really nothing to scoff at. Interestingly, at $55 million, the film is right in line with 2011’s X-Men: First Class which made $55.1 million in its first three days at the box office in early June. But so far The Wolverine is holding steady as the second lowest opening of all of Fox’s six X-Men movies — that title goes to the first in the series which opened at $54.5 million. But X-Men was also released 13 years ago with no 3-D surcharges, so it’s not an entirely fair comparison.

The Wolverine opened internationally this weekend as well to grosses of $86.1 million, playing on 15,152 screens in 101 territories, bringing its worldwide total to about $141.1 million. Fox estimates that audiences were about 58 percet male, and 42 percent under the age of 25.
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Box office update: 'The Wolverine' claws its way to a $21 million Friday

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This weekend was always going to belong to The Wolverine. As the only film opening in wide release, James Mangold’s dark take on the clawed mutant opened strong and walked away with about $21 million on Friday, which includes the $4 million it made in theaters that began showing the movie at 10 p.m. on Thursday night. Also, 3,063 out of its 3,924 locations are showing the X-Men pic in 3-D. The $120 million Hugh Jackman-starrer should easily make at least $60 million by the end of the weekend, slightly lower than some estimates — including ours — which placed it in the $70 million range. The opening is not quite as strong as 2009’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which had a $34.4 million Friday, and did not benefit from 3-D surcharges. Out of all the X-Men films, The Wolverine is tracking on the low end of the franchise, sitting between 2000’s X-Men which opened at $20.8 million on a Friday in mid-July, and X-Men: First Class which had a $21.4 million Friday.

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Box office preview: Can 'The Wolverine' save the summer box office?

Wolverine is all by his lonesome, tortured, extremely ripped self this weekend at the box office, and big things are expected. As the single new nationwide release, all eyes will be on the Fox juggernaut to see if it might actually be the summer movie to break through the box office slump with a strong opening. It’s not a question of whether or not it will win the weekend, it’s a question of just how brutally it will crush the recent big budget disappointments like The Lone Ranger, R.I.P.D., Pacific Rim, and White House Down. If anyone can take the pressure, it’s probably the clawed mutant.

Here’s how things might play out:
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'X-Men,' 'Wolverine,' 'Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' previewed as the Fox panel gets swarmed by famous mutants

The Projects: If the time-travel mechanics of the upcoming Bryan Singer-directed double-casted X-Men: Days of Future Past don’t mess with your sense of continuity, feast your brain on this: Two of the three movies presented at Fox’s Comic-Con panel today were sequels to prequels, while the third is a spin-off sequel featuring one of the main characters of one of those prequel-sequels. Whoa. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the follow-up to 2011’s surprise summer hit Rise of the Planet of the Apes that will bridge the narrative gap between that film and 1968’s classic Planet of the Apes, was the first to screen footage, followed by The Wolverine, the Japan-set Hugh Jackman solo adventure hitting theaters this coming Friday, and it was all capped off by a huge parade of famous mutants for the X-Men panel. READ FULL STORY

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