Who should play the X-Men in the Marvel Cinematic Universe?

Photo: Marvel Future Fight X-Men PHOENIX FIVE Uniforms.. Image Courtesy Netmarble Corp., Marvel Entertainment
Photo: Marvel Future Fight X-Men PHOENIX FIVE Uniforms.. Image Courtesy Netmarble Corp., Marvel Entertainment /
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Richard Armitage as Logan/Wolverine

Starting with the most famous member of the X-Men, Armitage is no stranger to rugged roles with a soft core, having played the Dwarf king Thorin Oakenshield in the Hobbit trilogy and monster slayer Trevor Belmont in the Castlevania TV series. He’s proven he can embody the natural gruffness and understated pathos needed for Wolverine.

However, the animalistic mutant also needs to be a palpable onscreen presence. He’s often the roguish outsider, so he has to be able to stand on his own as well as on a team. Luckily, Armitage has this covered, possessing the charisma to carry a project as the leading man in works like North & South, Strike Back, and Berlin Station.

Finally, one of the most important qualities of Wolverine is intimidation. This is a violent character with decades of combat behind him. When provoked, he can fly into a homicidal rage and mow down anyone in his way without a second thought. As such, you need someone with an unhinged aura, someone with the dark demeanor of a killer, someone who’ll shred you with his bare hands (or claws).

X-Men
(Photo by Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images) /

This is where Armitage’s villain roles come in handy. He’s capably played cold-hearted killers in works like Pilgrimage and 2006’s Robin Hood series, but no character has been as effective in this area as the Great Red Dragon in Hannibal. As insane serial killer Francis Dolarhyde, Armitage gives a supreme demonstration of a man transforming into an animal.

Morphing his voice, grotesquely contorting his body, and crawling around like a beast, he barrels toward his enemies with feral intent and murder in his eyes. He channels such rabid, imposing intensity that he overpowers the room, sometimes without saying a word.

Suffice it to say, he’s more than qualified to tackle the berserker brawler. As if this choice couldn’t be more fitting, Armitage even voiced Wolverine in a scripted podcast last year.