Friday, 22 August 2008

Is Fox Head Tom Rothman Dulling the Claws of 'Wolverine'?


If there's one important lesson that can be drawn from the blockbuster performance of Warner Bros.' The Dark Knight, it's that audiences aren't afraid of a comic-book movie that takes a walk on the dark, grim side. However, the same can't necessarily be said for Fox topper Tom Rothman (the bane of AICN) who greenlit two Fantastic Four movies, hired Brett Ratner to direct X3, and now is allegedly mucking with the X-Men spinoff Wolverine. Despite the fact that the gritty, Hugh Jackman-topped film was met with a giddy response at this year's Comic-Con, Jeff Wells says that Rothman is pressuring director Gavin Hood to make the movie more kid-friendly — and when Hood won't cave, Rothman is taking matters into his own hands:

There was/is a huge Wolverine set being recently used. I'm not even sure which lot it was built on, but the look or mood of the set is, according to a source who was told Hood's view of things, supposed to be on the dark, dinghy and somber side. I only know what I was told, but the basics are that Hood was away from the set for whatever reason (shooting something else, taking a day or two off), and when he returned to the big somber set he was shocked to find that it had been repainted top to bottom on Rothman's orders. The murky-scuzzy vibe was gone, and a brighter and less downish look had taken its place.

Perhaps Rothman has taken his fan letter from Steven Spielberg too much to heart, but a child-friendly Wolverine feels less "X" and more "Y?" Does this mean his bristly greeting of "Bub" will be redubbed "Buddy," or his iconic cigar will be replaced with a pixie stick? C'mon, Tom: Wolvie isn't meant for buoyant musical numbers — or don't you remember what happened last time?

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