Back when Disney merged with 20th Century Studios, the first thing on everyone’s minds was the inevitable inclusion of the X-Men into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. While no new live-action X-Men films have been announced, it’s only a matter of time before the beloved mutants mix into the MCU. Of course, this has led to some speculation about casting, especially when it comes to Wolverine, the character Hugh Jackman played for 17 years. One name that’s been thrown around by fans is Jon Bernthal. On one hand, Bernthal is already a Marvel actor, having played The Punisher on Netflix. On the other, there’s some debate as to whether or not those shows are canon, and if Chris Evans’ turn from Johnny Storm to Captain America has taught us anything, it’s that a man can play two Marvel heroes. However, Bernthal recently spoke with Forbes about the Wolverine casting speculation, and it seems he’s not too interested in playing any Marvel character other than Frank Castle.
“Look, the criteria in which I sort of decide what I’m doing next is: Does the script move me?, Who am I working with?, Who is the filmmaker, and is that somebody I’m dying to work with? I’m going to hold onto that moving forward no matter what that is,” Bernthal said when asked about Wolverine. “I get it, I get that the Marvel questions, you’re asking these questions because it’s super important to a lot of people; people love these characters and I get that and I come to that with absolute respect. What I will tell you again is that Frank Castle is in my bones. Frank Castle is in my bones.”
“Beyond anything, I’m a father and I’m a husband and the kernel of Frank is what would happen if someone took them away from me; something that I understand, something that I empathize with,” he added. “And I have a deep, deep reverence for the military community and I have deep respect for the people that this character means so much to. Beyond that, whatever comes my way I’m going to judge it as it comes and I’d be grateful if anything came my way.”
As for whether or not Bernthal will be returning as Frank Castle, the actor recently had a discouraging response when asked about a potential Marvel comeback.
“You know, we’ll see,” Bernthal told ScreenRant while promoting his new indie film Small Engine Repair. “I mean, honestly, I don’t think about it very much. I’m really happy — look, we’re all enormously blessed to be doing this. I can say for the other guys that you’re talking to as well, we really love this. We really love doing this. We work hard at it, we support our families by it, through it, but we never lose touch just how grateful we are to be in the position that we are that we get to do this for a living. I like to do this. I like to work with people I really respect and love and admire and make stuff with. This kind of project is precisely, it’s exactly the kind of stuff I want to be doing. So, whatever else comes, you know, kind of down the road, comes. But, this is something that’s really worth celebrating.”
Would you like to see Bernthal play Wolverine or return as The Punisher? Tell us in the comments!