Rumor: ‘The Wolverine 2’ Might Be Looking to Introduce X-23
Hugh Jackman is preparing to hang up his adamantium claws and exit the X-Men franchise, with The Wolverine 2 serving as his official farewell to the iconic character. Many have wondered if Fox will be able to convince Jackman to stay a while longer, and if — or when — Wolverine will be re-cast, but a new rumor suggests an alternative could be in the works…if the implication of this recent casting call is correct, anyway.
ComicBook.com picked up on a casting notice for The Wolverine 2, which calls for stand-ins that are “Caucasian, Hispanic and Asian looking females over the age of 21,” with a height of 4' to 4'11" and “size 0-4 with dark brown hair.” Granted, they might be casting stand-ins for a minor role, but another suggestion has been making the rounds:
The Wolverine 2 just might be introducing X-23. Who is X-23? Her name is Laura Kinney, and she debuted in the animated series X-Men: Evolution before officially joining the comics in 2004. She’s a female clone of Wolverine who boasts the same regenerative powers, speed, agility and strength as her male counterpart, as well as a set of adamantium claws. But unlike Logan, X-23 has two claws in each hand and one in each foot — IN EACH FOOT.
Laura was created following 22 failed attempts to replicate Wolverine and remove the Y chromosome — hence the name X-23. She eventually meets Wolverine and attends Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters before joining up with X-Force.
Although this casting rumor is merely a rumor, it does hold a certain logic: With Fox developing an X-Force adaptation and expanding their X-Men universe, Laura could help establish an additional connection between films. And since no one at the studio wants to re-cast Wolverine any time soon, it would allow for a younger character to serve as his successor. In the comics, Laura eventually takes up the Wolverine name when Logan dies. It would also fit the current Hollywood “Legacyquel” narrative, with The Wolverine 2 serving as both a sequel and a passing of the torch.
The Wolverine 2 will also feature Patrick Stewart reprising his role as the elder Charles Xavier, and will take some inspiration from the Old Man Logan comic book arc. James Mangold is returning to direct the sequel, which hits theaters on March 3, 2017.