Hugh Jackman’s second solo film as the X-Men saga’s breakout star begins filming in August in the actor’s Sydney hometown.
The Wolverine, directed by 3:10 To Yuma‘s James Mangold, is based on Chris Claremont and Frank Miller’s legendary Eighties run on the character, which saw Logan embroiled in a battle between feuding Yakuza clans in Japan (with a few ninja and mutants thrown in for good measure).
A whole bunch of supporting characters have now been cast, so here’s a run down of the actors and just who they are, or who they might, be playing…
Sunshine, Lost and The Last Samurai‘s Hiroyuki Sanada will play Shingen, who in the comics is Shingen Yashida, the head of the Yashida clan and disapproving father to Logan’s lover Mariko, played by extremely prolific Japanese model Tao Okamoto.
Where things get confusing is that The Life Aquatic‘s Hal Yamanouchi has also been cast as a character called Yashida, so perhaps the role has become two, and this older actor is Mariko’s father, or else an even older member of the clan who encounters Logan in a flashback.
Japanese model and actress (mainly of music videos) Rila Fukushima will star as Yukio, who in the comics is an unpredictable rogue ninja carrying a torch for our clawed Canuck, while according to The Hollywood Reporter Jericho and Grimm‘s Brian Tee will play a corrupt minister of justice betrothed to a Yakuza boss’ daughter, probably Mariko, because otherwise why would we be talking about him?
According to Variety meanwhile, Total Recall and Bionic Woman‘s Will Yun Lee (incidentally he’s Korean-American, not Japanese) will be playing the Silver Samurai. In the comic-book the original Silver Samurai is the mutant half-brother of Mariko who sees himself as the real leader of the Yashida clan. His mutant power enables him to generate a tachyon field in his sword allowing him to cut through anything – apart from the Adamantium bonded to Wolverine’s skeleton.
So love triangles and power struggles aplenty look to be on the cards.