Sir Patrick Stewart lost twenty-one pounds to play Charles Xavier as elderly and sick. Stewart claimed that he had a steady weight since he was a teenager, and had never deliberately lost weight before. Hugh Jackman genuinely held Stewart in all of the scenes of Wolverine carrying Professor Xavier.
Hugh Jackman induced dehydration for forty-eight hours prior to filming scenes of Wolverine shirtless, losing water weight. He added that the method is dangerous, and no one should attempt it at home. Jackman used this same technique five years earlier to create his emaciated look for prisoner Jean Valjean in Les Misérables (2012).
This is the last movie in which Hugh Jackman will play Wolverine. He has cited his age and his skin cancer as factors in him retiring from the role. He also said that having a discussion with Jerry Seinfeld played a part in retiring the character, as Jerry talked generally about how he wanted to make sure he never got to a point with Seinfeld (1989) where audiences were weary of seeing it anymore, saying, "Oh, it's you again." Jackman felt fortunate to have avoided this for Wolverine, and wanted to ensure it never happened.
(At around fifty-five minutes) When Laura and Charles are watching Shane (1953), Charles mentions remembering seeing the movie as a child in his hometown. This was entirely improvised by Sir Patrick Stewart, because Shane was one of the first memories he had at the theater as a child.
When Charles Xavier suffers from his seizures, Hugh Jackman did not act as if he was being pushed away. Instead, he was held back by a rope pulled by two men in order to give a more realistic portrayal of being restrained.
Hugh Jackman stated in an interview that the only way he would reprise his role is if a crossover between Deadpool and Wolverine would happen. Both Deadpool movies have contained jokes aimed at Wolverine.
James Mangold stated that this movie is set in 2029 to avoid any conflict with the timeline established in X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014), but that his goal was to make a stand-alone movie, that was not bound to continuing previous storylines, or setting up sequels.
According to Director James Mangold, allowing the movie to be R-rated was important, not so much for violent content, but for style: "For me, what was most interesting in getting the studio to okay an R-rating was something entirely different. They suddenly let go of the expectation that this film is going to play for children, and when they let go of that, you are free in a myriad of ways. The scenes can be longer. Ideas being explored in dialogue or otherwise can be more sophisticated. Storytelling pace can be more poetic, and less built like attention-span-deficit theater."
Hugh Jackman admitted to having two lingering regrets about retiring from the role of Logan/Wolverine: that he never appeared in an Avengers movie, and that he never appeared in a Deadpool movie. Jackman said that had he known Deadpool (2016) was going to be such an enormous hit, and that his performance as Wolverine was a recurring gag in the movie, he might have postponed his retirement.
Sir Patrick Stewart claimed that much of the dialogue at the dinner table scene, in which Logan and Charles Xavier tell the family about the school for mutants, was improvised by the actors at the request of Director James Mangold, after having filmed takes of scripted dialogue.
Professor Xavier's Psionic blast was done by shooting shaky footage and then re-stabilizing the frame in post. Resulting in footage containing strange motion blur with smearing effect, that is both organic and very unusual. The team shot the sequences slightly wider than was needed so that shots could be blown up to hide the edges of the stabilizing effect.
Dafne Keen (Laura) was eleven years old at the time of filming, and so was not allowed inside the casino, even with all the correct shooting permits. So some shots were done with Keen on a greenscreen, and some scenes were shot in the actual casino with Keen's body double Cheramie Martin, who is over eighteen, but of a similar build to Keen.
While auditioning for the part of Laura, Dafne Keen asked Director James Mangold if she could improvise her lines. After Hugh Jackman started his dialogue, Keen interrupted him by yelling at him in perfect Spanish, something that was later included in the finished movie. Her dedication for that scene during the audition was praised by Jackman and Sir Patrick Stewart.
(At around fifty-five minutes) According to one of the files attained from the lab, one of the children was the specimen derived from "Christopher Bradley", a former cohort of Logan's from X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009) under the alias "Bolt", which explains the child's ability to summon and manipulate electricity.
In the U.K., the first wide release showing of this movie was at the unusual time of 10:23 p.m., rather than the usual midnight showing for a major release. This is a reference to the movie including the character of X-23. X is the Roman numeral for 10.
This is the first superhero movie to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay. It is also the first superhero movie to be nominated for screenwriting since The Incredibles (2004).
One of the children in Eden is Rictor from the comics, who had the ability to release seismic energy through his fingertips. In this iteration, Rictor was created using the DNA of Dominik Petrakis, known as Avalanche in the comics.
Professor Xavier's Psionic blast initially was conceived as a huge pulse of energy, much more akin to the kind of superhero powers seen in other movies. But Director James Mangold was against that treatment, he wanted to keep everything much more naturalistic. So Visual Effects Supervisor Chas Jarrett evolved the idea from the initial pulse wave idea, into a mind control field that caused people to become immobile. Unable to move and breathe or function properly, the psionic blast would eventually kill those around him. This is a malign version of Xavier's frequently used ability to freeze large groups of people, as seen in the original X-Men trilogy.
(At around one hour and thirty-five minutes) When Laura shouts at Logan In Spanish, the lines are not translated. Her words, roughly transcribed and translated: ¿Tú pretendes que hable contigo si siempre me insultas, si me gritas, si me intentas dejar tirada? Tú pretendes que abra la boca... "Why do you want me to talk to you if you're always insulting me, yelling at me, if you try to leave me behind? You want me to open my mouth ..."
(At around fourteen minutes) When Charles tells Logan that they will come for him at the Statue of Liberty, Logan mistakes it for the end battle in X-Men (2000), but the hotel where Logan meets Laura for the first time is called the Liberty.
(At around one hour and fifty-five minutes) The shot where Logan is running through the forest trees to kill attacking bad guys or "reavers" at the end of the movie was nicknamed "Logan's Run" by the visual effects production team. What seems like one long shot of Logan running and impaling a bad guy on a tree is actually four separate takes of different stunt guys running, combined with head and neck replacements, digital claws, background fix-up, and CG gore.
It was believed that after the success of Deadpool (2016), Twentieth Century Fox decided to aim for an R-rating for this movie, unlike the other Wolverine movies. However, it was confirmed in an interview with X-Men Producer Simon Kinberg that this was not the case, and the R-rating was always going to happen.
Sabretooth was originally going to have a small role, where he helps Wolverine, X-23, and Professor X when they arrive in Oklahoma. Liev Schreiber was even approached about reprising his role from X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009). There was also going to be a scene where Logan encounters a kind of "Underground Railroad" for mutants, which might have had a cameo from a well known character. Both scenes were removed, because the team behind the movie didn't want to have an abundance of cameos, or mutants in the movie.
Director James Mangold confirmed that he wanted to release the Blu-ray of this movie in black-and-white color format, just like Director George Miller did something similar with his chrome version of Mad Max: Fury Road (2015). He later revealed that the idea started after seeing Hugh Jackman's black-and-white location photographs during production stages.
Sir Patrick Stewart told interviewers before the premiere that this would "probably" be his last performance as Charles Xavier, and cryptically noted that regardless of what happened to him in this movie, nothing was impossible in science fiction. After sitting through the completed movie with an audience, he determined there would never be a better final impression, and he is retired from the role for good. However, he later expressed interest in reprising the role for the X-Men drama Legion (2017).
The character X-23 debuted in the X-Men: Evolution (2000) cartoon and has also appeared in Marvel Comics. Also, at one time, she took on the identity as Wolverine after the "Death of Wolverine" comic arc, until 2018.
The coordinates to Eden (48.9770333, -102.155491) lead to a spot in North Dakota. According to the movie, Eden is roughly six miles east of Northgate, North Dakota, and seven miles south of the Canadian border in the Des Lacs National Wildlife Reserve.
Stephen Merchant announced his participation in this movie, by posting an Instagram picture, which showed him with a freshly-shaven bald head, and having a "Wolverine 3" tagline, though the post did not mention his character's name, nor any other specifics about his role. Later footage and notes revealed he is a kind-hearted mutant named Caliban, who is taking care of an aging and very ill Professor Charles Xavier.
Visual Effects Supervisor Chas Jarrett, who had not worked with Director James Mangold before, said he suddenly understood Mangold during the pre-production discussion of the "desert escape". At one stage, Logan had to knock down and drive through the fence. James Mangold just stopped him saying, "No, no, they can't get through, everyone will expect that. It would be a The A-Team (1983) moment. Everyone thinks that they will just knock through it, but they cant, they just can't."
Although the action takes place in 2029, all of the vehicles seen are relatively recent years' models. Exceptions are the modified Chrysler 300 limousine (identified as a 2024 model) used in the first third of the movie, and the early 1970s Ford Bronco used in the final third. Also the Suburban with the horse trailer.
In X2: X-Men United (2003), Stryker's final words to Logan were "One day, someone will finish what we started. One day!" This came to be true, as what started as the investigation from Weapon X program started Transigen.
The red band trailer was an unofficially released trailer, with the added bonus of a grainy clip of Wolverine/Logan stabbing a man in the head. The grainy clip was a small clip that was still being rendered, with no polished and fully rendered CGI.
Johnny Cash's cover of "Hurt" was used on the first trailer for this movie. Lyrics from the original Nine Inch Nails version were printed on the cover to the script draft for X-23: Innocence Lost, which detailed X-23's origin story.
On her dossier, it says that Laura has type O negative blood. O negative blood is the universal donor, meaning anyone can accept her blood and suggests that she might be able to save a dying compatriot by using a blood transfusion. Wolverine has done this successfully when Leech was dying in X-Men: The Animated Series (1992).
(At around fifty-five minutes) When Logan opens the files from Transigen, the first page is to Rictor, who has his genetic donor listed as Dominic Petros. While never shown in any of the X-Men movies, Dominic Petros is a terramorph, and well known enemy of the X-Men, as well as a longtime member of Magneto's "Brotherhood of Evil Mutants", code named "Avalanche".
Although the theme of death and disease is present throughout the movie, the song "When the Man Comes Around" by Johnny Cash also can be seen as a nod to two of the characters' pasts. In comic continuity, Logan and Caliban were members of Apocalypse's Horsemen. Logan being Death, and Caliban being both Death and Pestilence.
(At around one hour and fifty minutes) Logan waking up and finding himself in the children's hideout in North Dakota, and the children cutting his beard is an homage to Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985), which Max, a hero in a post-apocalyptic land, is rescued by a tribe of children, and they cut his hair short.
Second movie in the X-Men franchise to use a Jim Croce song, specifically "I Got A Name" (playing in the convenience store when Laura is shoplifting). The previous was "Time In A Bottle" in X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014), during Quicksilver's slow-motion sequence.
The song playing over the end credits, "The Man Comes Around", and the one playing over the teaser trailer, "Hurt", are both songs by Johnny Cash. Although "Hurt" is a cover of Nine Inch Nails. Director James Mangold directed Walk the Line (2005), a biopic based on Cash's life.
(At around thirty-three minutes) Pierce refers to Professor X as an octogenarian. Professor X corrects him stating he's actually a nonagenarian. An octogenarian is someone between the ages of eighty and eighty-nine. A nonagenarian is someone between the ages of ninety and ninety-nine.
(At around one hour and seventeen minutes) On the back wall of Nate Munson's bedroom, several "deathcore" posters can be seen quite clearly. Deathcore is a sub-genre of heavy metal (a combination of "death metal" and "hardcore"), while the boy himself appears to be listening to pop/rap music on his headset in the same scene. The bands in question are All Shall Perish, Dr. Acula, and Suicide Silence.
(At around fifty-four minutes) Xavier and Laura are watching the classic western Shane (1953). Shane was played by Alan Ladd, whose son Alan Ladd, Jr. was President of Twentieth Century Fox in the 1970s (He is personally responsible for green-lighting Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977)). Twentieth Century Fox produced all of the X-Men movies.
(At around forty-nine minutes) When Logan, Charles, and Laura stop off during their road trip, Logan is seen standing next to a road sign that says "Oklahoma". Hugh Jackman starred in a revival of the stage musical "Oklahoma".
At the beginning, Professor Xavier is rambling on incoherently and starts rattling off a Taco Bell advertising copy. This oddly ties into the movie's plot. The characters start off hiding in Mexico, while Taco Bell serves "Mexican" fast food, and while not one of the things Xavier says, for years, Taco Bell's slogan was "Make a run for the border". The climax involves numerous characters running to cross the U.S. border, not into Mexico, but into Canada.
(At around one hour and sixteen minutes) On the bedside table in the Munson's bedroom, a copy of Sarah Ban Breathnach's "Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy" can be seen while Professor X and Logan are speaking.
The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
The explanation of why there are no mutants in the last twenty-five years in America is that high-fructose corn syrup, derived from genetically modified corn-crops, was altered and spread by Dr. Rice to specifically cause sterility and suppress the mutant gene. Two scenes in this movie allude to this: The first was when Willy Munson tells Logan about the corn while fixing the leaked pipes in the fields; the other one is when Dr Rice mentions corn cereals to Logan at the climax.
This movie is based on the X-men storylines "Old Man Logan" (an aging Logan sets out for one last adventure), "Mutant Massacre" (mutants being slaughtered), "X-23" (Wolverine encounters a female infant clone of himself pursued by her creators), and "The Death of Wolverine" (a dying Wolverine has a last adventure).
In The Wolverine (2013) (also directed by James Mangold), Logan's travel companion Yukio predicted that Logan would die with his chest ripped open, and his heart in his hand. Although this ultimately didn't happen in The Wolverine (2013), many fans point to the fact that she may have been predicting his death in this movie: Wolverine lying down with his chest ripped open, holding the hand of his daughter (his flesh and blood, and therefore his symbolic "heart"). Mangold later confirmed the notion via Twitter.
There was a flashback originally filmed that explains what originally triggered Charles' dementia, and thus causes the catastrophe at his Westchester school. The flashback was to have been shown during the seizure attack at Harrah's in Oklahoma. While James Mangold said that this was cut because having less information would allow the audience to focus more on character, co-Writer Michael Green said that, having seen both versions, the omission of the flashback hits home harder than having the flashback included.
In the "Death of Wolverine" comic arc, Wolverine is poisoned due to adamantium (being a heavy metal) retaining radiation from the Nagasaki nuclear bomb, for which he was present. In this movie, he is slowly being poisoned by his skeleton for unrevealed reasons, possibly the same ones. This could also be similar to the "Old Man Logan" comic arc, as the older version of Logan suffered a similar problem of being poisoned due to his healing powers weakening in his advanced age, as his healing factor is a major factor to protect him from being poisoned by the adamantium.
Hugh Jackman originally didn't want Logan's death in the movie. He envisioned an ending similar to Unforgiven (1992), the story of an assassin who just can't leave behind his violent lifestyle. That movie concluded with the assassin killing numerous more people, but surviving, forcing him to live on with this dark side of himself. However, Director James Mangold was always committed to kill off Wolverine at the end. He convinced Jackman that Wolverine, who is plagued with immortality and a violent past, had finally deserved his peace in death. Mangold wanted Logan dying next to X-23, the younger version of himself, as it was something "interesting on numerous psychological levels."
There are six deleted scenes from the movie: 1. Logan gets a ticket 2. Alternate dinner scene 3. Mutant puppet master 4. Bobby's action figures 5. Caliban's death (extended scene from what is in the main movie) 6. Transigen interrogates worker.
The Munson family being murdered by X-24 in their farmhouse after taking in Logan, Charles Xavier, and Laura was similar to how the old couple were killed in their farmhouse by Agent Zero in X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009) shortly after meeting Logan.
If you watch Xavier's death scene in the black-and-white noir version that is available on the Blu-ray and 4K release, you can easily see that the person who walks into the room is not Logan, but X-24.
Though far from a traditional X-Men movie, there is still plenty of imagery using the letter X. When Wolverine is injured in a battle, the blood on his forehead takes on an X shape. Likewise, at the end, when the cross on his grave is laid on its side, it resembles the letter X.
The adamantium round Logan carries with him is a .44 Magnum. The bullet itself is called an "Xtreme Penetrator" and is shaped like an X. At Charles' burial, Logan has blood on the right side of his forehead in the shape of an X. At the end, when Laura shoots X-24 with the adamantium bullet, it strikes him in the left side of his head.
Logan's funeral scene wherein Laura lowers the cross into an "x" is nearly identical to an early scene in 'The Outlaw Josey Wales' where Clint Eastwood's character lowers his family's grave marker from a cross to an "x," signifying the beginning of his quest for revenge.
Logan is a similar movie to Road to Perdition. In this movie, Logan (Hugh Jackman) hits the road with his daughter Laura (Dafne Keen) and Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart) as they are pursued by Transgien and Logan reluctantly takes Laura to Eden across from the Canadian border. The movie ends with Laura crying when a fatally wounded Logan dies in her arms and Laura leaves with the mutant children to Eden. In Road to Perdition, Michael Sullivan (Tom Hanks) hits the road with his son Michael, Jr. (Tyler Hoechlin) when Connor Rooney (Daniel Craig) murders Sullivan's wife and youngest son. The movie ends with Michael, Jr. crying when Sullivan dies in his arms when he succumbs to a fatal gunshot wound and Michael, Jr. goes to live with the farm couple who nurses Michael back to health.