Hugh Jackman: It’s a tall order being me

Hugh was 32 when Wolverine made him famous (Image: PA Images)

Hugh Jackman was trying to break Hollywood, but it soon became obvious that there was a big problem. Literally. They told me that I was too tall! He says. He says, “I am 6ft 2in tall, and everyone thought I was a man when I came in.” All the movie star names were listed and they all seemed shorter than I was! Perhaps it is for girls.

But I know I started with half a squat and wore my shoes off. That’s how I got my first Hollywood job. Do you have twelve hours to spare? It’s not a problem! You can also squat for leg health!

With a giggle, he adds that his height wasn’t an issue when he got the role of Wolverine, the feared, muscle-clad hero in Marvel Comics series X-Men.

After meeting Tim Rothman, the chairman of Sony Pictures, everything was great. Then, as I left his office, he told me, “Oh, there is just one issue. In comics, Wolverine measures 5ft 5in. It’s no problem, I replied. I literally left his office bent at my knees.

Wolverine was his 32th birthday. He says he’s grateful that he didn’t get it sooner.

He says, “I am fully aware of the fact that I was more than 30 at the time I did it.” “I had no profile in Hollywood before then. I am glad that it was so because you will hopefully know your identity, who you are and what is important to you by 30. Some actors find fame to be too overwhelming and suffocating. For me, however, it was a great experience.

Hugh and his wife Deb consider their children before making any move (Image: PA Images)

He is a versatile actor who can move effortlessly from superheroes worlds of X-Men to the realms of Les Miserables to dancing in The Greatest Showman to gritty fare in films like Prisoners. His new film, Reminiscence, explores his serious side.

Hugh is a science-fiction drama that explores the sobering topic of “reliving people’s pasts”.

“I wasn’t really a science person when I was at school. It’s surprising how passionate I am about it now. It’s actually quite frightening to see where humanity is at this point as a species. Now that we have a good understanding of the basics of human nature, we are able to create any kind of people we like. This is all happening very quickly and, hopefully, will provide a strong engine to solve our problems. We must be cautious.

Science is not necessary to make the kind of people he desires in his life. He happily married for 25 to a shorter woman.

Deborra Lee Furness is an Australian actress and producer. He’s proud to be the father of their adopted two children Oscar (21 years old) and Ava (16 years).

He smiles when you ask him about his ability to maintain his family’s stability in his profession that is notoriously unfriendly towards family.

Deb and I made it a point to look at one another at all times when we were married. We would ask each other, “Is this decision beneficial or detrimental for our family?” Although it seems like a straightforward question, the answer is not always clear. There are four people involved in this process. For example, you might be able to do something for your career, while making a small sacrifice for your family.

On the other side, it is important that the children see their parents do the things they enjoy so there can be a balance.”

Deb is the only person that he can call when he struggles to achieve that balance. He exclaims with pride, “She’s incredible like that.” I can count on my fingers that she has said, “Oh!” at least seven times in all the years that they have been there. It’s a great opportunity. This is your chance!

And I would look at Deb, and she’d just say, “No, it’s not the right time.” “She is my best friend and the most reliable barometer. Without her, I would never have figured it out.

He quickly adds that Deb has at least once generously sacrificed her interests to support his.

VERSATILE: Hugh stared singing and dancing in The Greatest Showman (Image: PA Images)

Oklahoma was an opportunity that I got to experience a moment no one else knows. London and, at the same moment, was offered a place at the Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne, which is extremely prestigious.

Deb wanted to be a director and this was an important moment in her life. I told Deb that we would stay here so she could take the course and she responded, “No. This is what you need. Oklahoma is your destination! We need to travel to London.” She said that with such selflessness and I will never forget it. Hugh Jackman insists that the Jackmans don’t want to live extravagantly.

He admits that handmade shoes are expensive. I have a few pairs and it’s amazing to put them on.

“Aside from that, I am not very materialistic.” My most treasured possession are a few journals Deb gifted me with our children. It was the best gift she gave me.”

Hugh started writing diaries when his children were very young. He told his stories of his adventures and lived them as a storyteller, ready to share it with his grandchildren.

He recalls, “I flew somewhere years ago and I waited for my bag with the luggage to arrive.” At first, I thought, “Whatever, fine”, but it was then that I realized the journals were inside and began to sweat. Although it did eventually come out, I would be extremely upset if either one of the journals was lost.

Meditating helps him keep his balance. He says, “I have done it for 25-30 years.” It’s all about accepting the fact that water can surface calmly and peacefully in our day. But underneath it is calm. That is what meditation provides me.

That helps me tremendously because I worry about my children, not just for myself but also for their future, given the life that I lead. Because I was born in it, I am okay with it. I also try to protect my children.

He still finds the time to dance and sing every day, even when he isn’t making movies.

He smiles and says, “A little bit keeps me sane.” While I have one to two days off, for five to six days per week I am able sing and dance all day.

Do you remember Oliver Sacks the author who inspired Robin Williams’ film Awakenings?” Everywhere he went, he used to bring a pair flippers. His motto was “You don’t know when you will be in water,” and he said that flippers were essential. Tap shoes are something I always carry with me everywhere I go.

Because you don’t know when the dance floor will be coming.

Publited Sat, 21 August 2021 at 12:46.48 +0000

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