This standalone story set within the X-universe is based on the 1982 Japanese Saga by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller, regarded by many fans as the finest Wolverine tale in the Marvel canon. In it, Logan finds himself drifting to Japan, where he begins training in the way of the Samurai and taking his honor most seriously, whilst also falling in love and getting into trouble with the criminal underground.
Way back in March, a poster concept for The Wolverine showed up online. Like that ultimately unused design, this one is very informed by the movie's setting, but is more visually focused on the lead character. Even in a simplified, painted form, Hugh Jackman's Logan must always be shirtless.
Toplessness aside, this is a striking, well designed poster, one that steps very far away from the polished steel look associated with the X-Men movies.
This film has been a long time coming. Darren Aronofsky was originally set to direct from a much lauded screenplay by The Usual Suspects writer Christopher McQuarrie, but Aronofksy bailed last spring. The search for a new director caused a delay in production, since Jackman's schedule required him to spend some time on this winter's Les Miserables. Eventually, though, 20th Century Fox hired James Mangold to direct, and he worked with Mark Bomback of Live Free or Die Hard and the Total Recall remake to revise the screenplay.
We learned last week that The Wolverine takes place after X-Men: The Last Stand, rather than in that big prequel window between X-Men Origins: Wolverine and X-Men.
The Wolverine arrives in theaters on July 26, 2012.