Wolverine, by the numbers


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‘The thing about Wolverine,’ Hugh Jackman said with a smile, ‘is that he was such a landmark character in comics. And he’s certainly been a landmark role for me. I owe that character a lot.’ The Aussie actor was sitting in his office at Seed Productions on the Fox Studios lot, and on the wall was a framed piece of original artwork featuring Wolverine, the Marvel Comics lone-wolf mutant who stole the show in three ‘X-Men’ films and now gets his own film with the May 1 release of ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine.’



The issue number of ‘The Incredible Hulk’ that, in 1974, gave the world the first Marvel Comics story starring the mighty mutant Wolverine.


The cover price, in cents, of that 1974 issue.


The price, in dollars, to buy a near-mint copy of ‘Hulk’ No. 181 today.


The height difference, in inches, between actor Jackman and the classic comic-book version of Wolverine, who was portrayed as a hirsute 5-foot-3-inch fireplug.


The domestic box office gross, in dollars, of the three previous ‘X-Men’ films.


Number of live-action box-office hits that Jackman has made when he wasn’t playing a claw-popping mutant.


The century that Wolverine was born in, according to ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine.’ His mutant-healing power has slowed his aging.


The year actor Jackman was born in Sydney.


Number of siblings for actor Jackman. His mother and father separated when he was 8, and his dad raised the kids in Australia after his mom moved to England.


Number of children adopted by Jackman and his wife, Deborra-Lee Furnes. Their son is Oscar, their daughter is Ava.


Number of Grammy winners in ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine.’ The Black Eyed Peas star plays John Wraith, a mutant with the power of teleportation.


Number of Oscar winners in ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine,’ although there is one former Academy Awards host in the cast.


Number of directors who worked on ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine,’ if rumors are true that Richard Donner (‘Lethal Weapon,’ ‘Superman’) stepped in for a late-in-the-game assist to Gavin Hood (‘Rendition'), the credited director.


Minimum number of other super-hero-projects that Jackman has flirted with. He was considered for key roles in ‘The Punisher,’ ‘Daredevil,’ ‘Superman Returns’ (as Jonathan Kent), ‘The Dark Knight’ (the Two-Face role), the Hulk and the ‘Fantastic Four’ (as Mr. Fantastic). He also said he pursued the role of TV’s Superman, George Reeve, in ‘Hollywoodland,’ and he has also expressed interest in making a bio-pic about the late Bill Bixby, who was the star of ‘The Incredible Hulk’ on television.


Number of characters from the cover of ‘Giant-Size X-Men’ No. 1 that have made the leap to Hollywood screen. The landmark 1975 comic book ushered in the X-Men craze. And the only costumed hero on the cover who hasn’t found love in Tinseltown? That would be Thunderbird, the brawny Apache hero who died on his second mission as a mutant and shares a name with a gas-guzzling Ford of yore.


The rank of the wolverine (that would be the animal version, not the mutant hero) when it comes to the largest members of the weasel family. A male South American giant otter can weigh over 100 pounds, while the notoriously bad-tempered and smelly wolverine rarely tips the scale past 70 pounds.


The number of years that passed before Marvel Comics published ‘Origin,’ the Wolverine comic book series that filled in key details of the hero’s past, such as his real name, James Howlett.


A conservative estimate of the number of Internet users who downloaded an illegal copy of ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’ the first week after it was leaked.


The number of those Internet users who will opt not to go see the film at theaters.


The projected opening-weekend box-office total, in dollars, for ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine,’ according to moviegoer tracking survey data.

-- Geoff Boucher


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