The upcoming X-Men film, X-Men: Age of Apocalypse will be Hugh Jackman’s eighth appearance as Marvel’s Wolverine, and his second last. Fans are taking it hard, mainly because Jackman has appeared as the same superhero for longer than any other actor.
It’s going to be tough to see anyone else in the role that Jackman excelled in over the course of fifteen years. After X-Men, X2, X-Men: The Last Stand, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, X:Men: First Class, The Wolverine, and X-Men: Days of Future Past, we still want more. So studios are on the lookout for Jackman’s replacement.
The new Wolverine could literally be any actor in Hollywood; we have no idea whether studios are looking for a younger version, or if they want to keep that mature and rugged look for the hairy superhero. There’s one thing we do know for sure; the new Wolverine has to be just as badass.
Here are ten actors who could replace Hugh Jackman as Wolverine because of their looks, their acting skills, and their general superhero vibes. It’s a big commitment to sign on as the new face of such a successful and illustrious franchise, but we’re positive any of these ten actors would jump at the opportunity to be the next Wolverine if they were offered the role.
10 Henry Cavill
Yes, there’s a conflict of interests when it comes to Henry Cavill stepping into Wolverine's shoes; he’s already known for playing Superman. The actor has recently signed on to reprise the role that he first played in 2013’s Man of Steel. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice will be out in 2016, The Justice League: Part One will follow in 2017, with The Justice League: Part Two scheduled to come out in 2019. But Cavill deserves to make this list because he would make a great Wolverine. Why? Just look at how the man can grow a beard.
9 Taylor Kinney
Lady Gaga’s soon-to-be husband, Taylor Kinney would definitely be able to tackle the role of the famous superhero. His high profile romance has put his face out there and his roles in films like Zero Dark Thirty and television shows like Chicago Fire show that the actor has the intensity and the mature look needed to portray Wolverine. From being a U.S. Navy Seal on the big screen to a lieutenant on the small screen, it won’t be a stretch for Kinney to play a character that saves lives and looks good doing it.
8 Joe Manganiello
It’s easy to imagine Joe Manganiello as the new Wolverine because we’re use to seeing him as a werewolf; his breakout role was in the HBO television series True Blood. Manganiello is making a name for himself these days and showing off his rugged good looks, starring in Magic Mike in 2012 and the upcoming sequel Magic Mike XXL. The actor is currently engaged to Modern Family bombshell Sofia Vergara. If he can land someone like Vergara, he can fight in any mutant war.
7 Jake Gyllenhaal
Jake Gyllenhaal is an Academy Award nominated actor, for his role as Jack Twist in Brokeback Mountain, so of course he would do his best to rise up to the challenge of portraying Wolverine. Audiences love seeing Gyllenhaal in dark roles, his most recent critically acclaimed film Nightcrawler was nominated for Best Original Screenplay at the Academy Awards. These darker films have shown he can play strong characters. We have yet to see the actor in the role of a superhero, and we believe he would make a great one.
6 Shia LaBeouf
It may be hard to picture Even Stevens as Wolverine, but Shia LaBeouf’s acting chops would no doubt make Hugh Jackman proud to pass on the title to the 29-year-old. Marvel may be looking for a younger actor this time around so that they can sign a long-term contract. After a few run-ins with the law and embarrassing moments, LaBeouf could use some stability in his career. Not to mention that his roles in films like Fury or the Transformers franchise showcase his diversity and his talent. LaBeouf can also grow some mean facial hair, and that’s important for the role of Wolverine.
5 Scott Caan
Marvel may be looking for someone younger to portray Wolverine, or they may be looking to keep that maturity. Scott Caan is a 38-year-old actor who is best known for his roles on television shows Entourage and Hawaii Five-0. Caan is looking into broadening his career; he recently signed on to do the film Rock The Kasbah alongside greats like Bill Murray and Bruce Willis. His father, James Caan, has starred in some of Hollywood’s most memorable roles, think The Godfather and The Gambler, and we think the younger Caan deserves the opportunity to step up to the plate and do the same thing.
4 Norman Reedus
The Walking Dead has an enormous fan base. It may be strategic for Marvel if they were able to utilize this fan base by casting resident zombie-killer Norman Reedus as the new Wolverine. His role as Daryl Dixon on AMC’s popular television series may have thrown him into the spotlight, but Reedus will need to find another acting gig to keep him busy when The Walking Dead comes to an end or when Daryl gets killed off, whichever comes first. His film career is lackluster, so he may be looking into signing on to something that could elevate his filmography to new heights.
3 Jon Bernthal
With that same idea of using the massive fan base of The Walking Dead, Jon Bernthal undeniably looks like he could be the next Wolverine. The movies he stars in, like The Wolf of Wall Street and Fury, show audiences that Bernthal would be able to make the role his own while also keeping that toughness and intensity. Since being killed off of The Walking Dead far too soon into the series, fans have been wanting to see more of Bernthal and the role of Wolverine may just be the right fit for the actor.
2 Tom Hardy
Tom Hardy would absolutely be believable as a superhero. He has already made his mark as a villain, playing the role of Bane in The Dark Night Rises. Hardy is currently portraying the lead character of Max Rockatansky in Mad Max: Fury Road. The sequel, Mad Max: The Wasteland, will also star Hardy, so he may not be up for signing on to another big budget franchise. Although we do hope that if the actor gets offered the part of Wolverine, he won’t hesitate to take on the role. His resume and hardcore demeanor would work in his favor.
1 Taylor Kitsch
If there is anyone right for the job of replacing Hugh Jackman as Wolverine in the X-Men films, it’s Taylor Kitsch. Yes, he’s already starred in X-Men Origins: Wolverine as the mutant Gambit, but hopefully Marvel fans can overlook that fact. Kitsch can play a badass; think Savages, Battleship, or Lone Survivor. He’s good looking enough to get girlfriends to consider X-Men as a legitimate date movie, considering all the hearts he won over as Tim Riggins on the television series Friday Night Lights. He’s currently the epitome of cool in True Detective’s second season, and he can grow an awesome beard. That’s why he’s at the top of this list.