Hugh Jackman Might Drop Wolverine For SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN?

With The Wolverine sequel at 20th Century Fox now without a director after Darren Aronofsky bailed (we are still in mourning) and seemingly on hold after the Japanese Earthquake tragedy last month, rival major Universal Pictures are the first studio to make an aggressive play to nab star Hugh Jackman and benefit from the downtime. Deadline say that the Aussie A-lister has been offered the male lead role in Snow White and the Huntsman opposite Kirsten Stewart's fairest of them all, and the jealous evil queen Charlize Theron. The movie will mark the first feature film from commercials helmer Rupert Sanders. Jackman is just the latest in a long string of names to be offered the part that include Tom Hardy, Michael Fassbender, Johnny Depp - though the closest Universal got to a firm signature was with Viggo Mortensen who was attached most recently, but bailed over unappealing script re-writes and we are hearing not because the studio couldn't match his fee. Also it would seem that at this stage of his career blockbusters aren't for him (he's turned down a villain role in Zack Snyder's Superman reboot too, only to do a Spanish language film instead). I imagine the offer to Jackman will be a huge one as time is running out for Universal and they don't have the luxury to dilly-dally. Plus his signature would give the project a considerable boost, though Mike Fleming at Deadline does suggests that it could be as long as five months away from a production start. The studio are desperately trying to get their script in order with Hossein Amini (The Four Feathers) beginning negotiations to come on board for further re-writes. Universal are already losing a battle against Relativity Pictures, whose own Snow White project is having no casting trouble at all, and will soon film with Lilly Collins (Snow White), Armie Hammer (Prince) and Julia Roberts (Evil Queen) under the direction of Tarsem Singh and will open June 2012 - six months before Snow White and the Huntsman's Dec 2012 date. Clearly Universal are happy to build their movie around one big box office name (Roberts) unlike Relativity who want several. The big question then is will Jackman take the role? I guess there's a chance... with everything that's going on in Japan, it doesn't look like The Wolverine will film this year. Plus actors usually seem more willing to jump on board projects they perhaps wouldn't under normal circumstances as they just want to go out there and act. Though expect a dozen scripts to be furiously sent to Jackman now other execs think he might be attainable...
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Matt Holmes is the co-founder of What Culture, formerly known as Obsessed With Film. He has been blogging about pop culture and entertainment since 2006 and has written over 10,000 articles.