The release of next year’s third solo Wolverine movie will be the end of an era; Hugh Jackman is set to hang up his claws and shave those impressive sideburns. Joining Jackman for the as yet untitled sequel will be fellow X-Men veteran Patrick Stewart, and in an interview with ITV he revealed this could be his farewell to the franchise.
“I can’t say because I don’t know, but I would imagine this is probably the end of this franchise for me. But the thing about science fiction and fantasy is that you can never, ever say it’s the end, it’s over.”
The plus side to the sci-fi genre is that horrible mistakes from previous sequels can be retroactively undone. Xavier was famously vaporized in X-Men The Last Stand, at the time it was believed that the main franchise wouldn’t be revisited with the original cast. Thankfully, Bryan Singer returned to the X-Men universe for Days of Future Past and Xavier was alive and well. I say well, he was living in a post-apocalyptic future where mutants are hunted to extinction by giant murder-bots.
Stewart also teased that the Xavier we see next year will be a very different incarnation of the character.
“But watch out! In March, I’m going to be back on the screen again. A very different Charles Xavier, that’s all I’m allowed to say. Nothing like the Charles Xavier you’ve seen in the past.”
James McAvoy has already been linked to an appearance in the forthcoming spin-off X-Force, but I’m hoping this isn’t the end of the line for Stewart in the role. Also starring Richard E. Grant, Stephen Merchant, Eriq La Salle, Elise Neal and Elizabeth Rodriguez, Wolverine 3 arrives in cinemas on March 3, 2017.