If (but really, when) they join the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the X-Men will need a new Wolverine. Hugh Jackman, who retired the Adamantium claws following 2017’s Logan, explained that he was done playing the character after 17 years because “it’s a bit like you’re at the greatest party you’ve ever been at, you’ve been dancing for an hour and a half, and then you’re just like, ‘It’s time, ok. If I stay any longer, it’s gonna get ugly.’ It’s like, it’s time.” Jackman has already named his preferred successor, “King of Bollywood” legend Shah Rukh Khan, and now Kevin Smith has revealed his Wolverine dream-casting, too.
During a recent episode of his Fatman Beyond show, the Clerks director and his co-host Marc Bernardin discussed Tom Cruise’s future in the Mission: Impossible series, which was picked up for two more installments. “What’s he going to do next?” Smith asked (go to space!). “Next movie they’re going to be like ‘Cruise fights a shark!’… My only downside for [the next two Mission: Impossible movies] is it sounds like he’s going to be busy then and I look forward to them bringing him into the comic book world. Like, I think he’s ripe for a Marvel takeover.” When Bernardin suggested that Cruise would be a “really good Stryker for when they reboot the X-Men over at Marvel,” Silent Bob fired back, “No, f*ck that, make him Wolverine.” He then made a bold prediction.
“Tom Cruise as Wolverine makes a billion dollars.”
Somewhat surprisingly, not a single Tom Cruise movie has crossed the billion dollar barrier; the closest is Mission: Impossible — Fallout, which made $790 million at the worldwide box office. Then again, Cruise has never been in a Marvel Cinematic Universe movie, six of which have earned $1 billion-plus.
Cruise and the MCU actually have a past: he was considered for the role of Iron Man, but he was “not close” to getting the gig. “I love Robert Downey Jr. I can’t imagine anyone else in that role and I think it’s perfect for him,” he said. Cruise would probably be uninterested in playing Wolverine, even if it was offered to him, because with the exception of Mission: Impossible and Top Gun, he rarely dives into franchises. Besides, the part should go to Keanu Reeves.