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The Real Reason Hugh Jackman Never Wore The Wolverine Suit

The Wolverine apparently doesn't feel the need to advertise. 

It's been 20 years since Hugh Jackman made his big-screen debut as the adamantium-clawed, not-quite-immortal mutant in 20th Century Studios' superhero bonanza X-Men. In the year's since, Jackman has suited up to save the world as the Wolverine nine times (10 counting that hilarious Deadpool 2 "cameo"). To the dismay of some X-Men purists, not one of those times did Jackman ever don the traditional yellow and blue spandex uniform Wolverine typically wears in the pages of Marvel comics. In fact, on more than one occasion, that particular uniform was openly mocked in the X-Men films

Even though fans never got to see Jackman in the traditional Wolverine garb, the actor's work as the character was universally adored by the fandom. And that includes director James Mangold, who brought Wolverine's film saga to a bittersweet end with 2017's Oscar-nominated offering Logan. Mangold recently revisited his superhero masterwork via a Twitter watch party, during which he directly addressed why his Wolverine never put on the character's traditional uniform.

Though Mangold offered apologies for never putting the character in his comics specific attire via his Tweet, he bluntly reiterated his own opinion that Logan wearing the flashy yellow X-Men uniform would've been the least Wolverine thing Wolverine could ever do. In response to ComicBook.com's Brandon Davis asking whether Jackman ever "actually put the Wolverine mask on," Mangold wrote, "Sorry. He never put it on. We never even made a version of the outfit. Everything about his character as I understand it, would keep him from donning a self promoting 'uniform'."

That flashy comic book uniform really wouldn't have worked for Jackman's Wolverine

If you've seen Logan, or any of the 20th Century Studios X-Men movies, it's hard to disagree with Mangold's stance on the yellow spandex. On the silver screen, Wolverine was frequently the least vain of all the X-Men. In fact, through most of the X-Men movies, Jackman's Wolverine didn't even want to be part of Charles Xavier's (Patrick Stewart) do-gooding mutant team at all. So yeah, having the character as written for the X-Men films actually want to draw attention to himself through a flashy costume and mask would've felt very off-key. And besides, Hugh Jackman's Wolverine looked super cool in the black leather digs he typically wore in the X-Men movies. 

Still, Logan actually did come close to appearing in his more traditional outfit in Mangold's underrated 2013 X-Men flick The Wolverine. Mangold even shot footage of Logan laying eyes on a mockup of the more classic Wolverine uniform for the film. That scene didn't make it into the final cut, but it was included on The Wolverine's special DVD release, and served as a bit of a teaser that fans might see Jackman properly suited-up in a potential sequel. 

Given the gritty, humanistic nature of The Wolverine's follow-up, Logan, any sort of flashy getup would obviously have been wildly off tone. While Mangold could never bring himself to properly fit Jackman for that jazzy yellow costume and mask, the director made clear in his tweet that fans may see it in the next big-screen iteration of Wolverine: "I'm sure the next incarnation of the Wolverine will go there." 

The next incarnation of Wolverine will arrive in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. So the question becomes whether Marvel Studios mastermind Kevin Feige can find a way to justify the new Wolverine showboating around the MCU in a flashy yellow costume. Only time will tell.