Back in October 1999, Dougray Scott was poised to become a huge international movie star. He was filming the sequel to “Mission: Impossible,” starring opposite Tom Cruise. And it was announced that he landed the coveted role of Wolverine in Fox’s first “X-Men” feature film. But weeks before filming, Scott was reportedly injured on the set of “Mission: Impossible 2” and forced out of “X-Men,” leaving Hugh Jackman to land the role three weeks before filming commenced. And the rest, as they say, is history.
But according to a new interview with Scott, there might have been quite a bit more to the story than just a back injury on set that forced him out of his superhero debut.
Speaking to The Telegraph, Scott, who is now promoting a film titled “Sulphur and White,” opened up about the real reason he was forced out of the first “X-Men.” And while it was because he was signed on to work on “Mission: Impossible 2,” there doesn’t seem to be an injury to blame for his departure from the superhero film. In fact, it was his A-list co-star who changed the course of his career forever.
“[‘X-Men’] was out of my control,” said Scott. “Tom Cruise didn’t let me do it. We were doing ‘Mission Impossible’ and he was like, ‘you’ve got to stay and finish the film’, and I said I will, but I’ll go and do that as well. For whatever reason, he said I couldn’t. He was a very powerful guy. Other people were doing everything to make it work.”
He added, “I love what Hugh did with it. He’s a lovely guy.”
As Scott mentioned, Hugh Jackman did indeed land the role and would go on to become a film icon for his performance as Wolverine. Would Scott have received the same acclaim? That’s obviously nothing we’ll know for sure, as Jackman excelled in ways that not many predicted. But it is incredibly interesting to think about what might have happened if Cruise didn’t interfere.