Exclusive: “Gavin Hood, Why Wolverine?”

It’s hard to talk to director Gavin Hood, maker of the South African Oscar-winner Tsotsi, for a few minutes, because he’s such an astute and lively talker that he always has a lot to say on any subject. When we spoke to him about his new political thriller Rendition, we were so caught up in his enthusiasm about the film that we barely had a chance to get to his Wolverine prequel before he was dragged away by a New Line rep.

Since we probably only had a chance for one question, we decided to go for the most obvious one. Because Hood would not seem to be the most obvious director to want to do a studio movie centered around a superhero, we asked that age-old question, “Why?”

“What appeals to me about the Wolverine character of all the other characters is that my feeling that he’s the one that suffers from the most existential angst,” he began. “Since I’m a guy who loves emotional complexity, it seemed to me that… when I was first approached to do it, my first thought was, ‘What? Me? Do this? What is that? I don’t know enough about comic book characters.’ And of course, I then did some further research and I realized that the character of Wolverine, I think his great appeal lies in the fact that he’s someone who in some ways, is filled with a great deal of self-loathing by his own nature and he’s constantly at war with his own nature. It seemed to me that really what it is, is that it’s a little like great Greek mythology, which is something I’ve always been in love with where the Greek Gods threw thunderbolts and Poseidon conjured up storms, but those mythological stories were designed to examine emotional truths. It seems to me that the character of Wolverine epitomizes in a modern context, a kind of great mythical tradition of using larger-than-life characters in order to play with and examine human emotion at a sort of operatic level.” (Holy Sh*t! Is that an awesome answer or what?)

And before his New Line handler grabbed the phone out of his hand and hung up on us, we got to squeeze out one more question about whether he might shoot in Japan, as one might expect from a Wolverine prequel, especially considering the director’s globetrotting resume:

“No, sadly no. We’re not going to Japan,” he responded then mischievously added, “I think that will be in ‘Wolverine 2′ but I won’t say any more than that.”

You can read our full interview with Mr. Hood over on ComingSoon.net in the coming weeks leading up to Rendition‘s opening on October 19, and considering how much he has to say about that, we can’t WAIT to talk to him about Wolverine, which is scheduled to open next year.

Source: Edward Douglas