As sad as we all are that the Hugh Jackman era of Wolverine is over, there is no doubt that the Hollywood studios will be looking at actors to replace him moving forward. With rumours brooding that Disney is closing in on a deal to purchase 21st Century Fox’s movie and television production operations, Richard Armitage would make perfect sense as Wolverine in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
For most fans, Richard Armitage is not a name that they initially recognise. However, it was recently announced that Richard, who made a name for himself by acting in films like Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit (as Thorin Oakenshield) and TV shows like Spooks and Hannibal, will be lending his voice to the X-Men character in Marvel’s first-ever scripted podcast, Wolverine: The Long Night. The announcement was a dream come true for many fans as the 46-year-old British actor has long been a fan-favourite to replace Jackman due to the striking resemblance between the two (both rough-but-handsome and grizzled) and his interesting acting methods.
As a method actor, Armitage tends to keep “character diaries” with entire biographies for the characters he plays. “It was important to me to put in a background for my character that would be useful for the whole journey. A lot of that is secret and no one gets to read that. It’s what is useful to me. If you are playing something long-running and a role that has a future [beyond the initial series], it’s almost like you have to plant a garden which you will need to come back to at some point. If you don’t put in early, it can jar with you.”
Zack Snyder initially met with Richard Armitage for the role of Batman. Sadly, even after emerging as a front-runner to play the iconic character, he lost the part in Batman v Superman to Ben Affleck. Perhaps he’ll get the opportunity to show off his acting chops as a replacement to Jackman’s Wolverine?
He definitely has the looks. At 6’2″, the theatre-trained actor has a deep, rich voice, and genuinely has the acting ability to play just about any character he wants. If you think he is too tall, remember he has played a dwarf before.
There aren’t many actors who are able to step into the shoes of the legendary Hugh Jackman, but Armitage might just be able to pull it off. When you consider the characters possible move from Fox back to Marvel, he certainly seems like a suitable choice. Just imagine Wolverine fighting alongside the Avengers or appearing in a Spider-Man film. For now, we can only dream.