So after many a hiccup, The Wolverine is approaching production. Hugh Jackman is set to wield adamantium claws as Marvel's most popular mutant for the sixth time (including the cameo last summer's prequel/reboot), and pre-production on the standalone Logan adventure is currently underway in Australia to prepare for the start of principal photography next month. A batch of images from the set showing construction and some revealing, potentially spoiler-y concept art has popped up online, providing some more tangible evidence that The Wolverine is a thing that is actually happening for realsies.
To back up quickly before the photos, let's do a rundown on casting so far. Last week we learned that Russian Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy actress Svetlana Khodchenkova is in talks to play Viper
, a role for which Jessica Biel
was briefly in talks earlier this month. Assuming her negotiations work out, Khodchenkova will join a cast led by Jackman that also includes Will Yun Lee
as the villainous Silver Samurai, along with Tao Okamoto, Rila Fukushima
, Hal Yamanouchi
, and Hiroyuki Sanada
But back to the photos. These images and more are courtesy of If.com.au, via Superherohype. In the first picture you can see Jackman and director James Mangold hanging out with Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard as she tours the under-construction sets and glimpses a few models. In the third image, you can see a well of some sort being built, while the fourth picture shows a reference model for the structure. That model shows that the cylinder holds a prisoner in the bottom, possibly Logan himself. Then there is a bulletin board covered in concept art.
This film is less a sequel to 2009's not-so-good X-Men Origins: Wolverine and instead adapts Wolverine's famous Japanese saga by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller. The amnesiac loner with unbreakable bones finds himself in Japan, where learns about honor while also finding love and tangling with the Tokyo underworld. The screenplay is by Christopher McQuarrie and Mark Bomback.
The Wolverine is scheduled to arrive in theaters on July 26, 2013.