Oscar-winning director Gavin Hood reckons that mutant superhero Wolverine represents a better role model for kids than Clint Eastwood.
Speaking to whatsontv.co.uk’s film blog Movie Talk about the Blu-ray release of his blockbuster X-Men Origins: Wolverine, the South-African director said that Wolverine represented a new kind of hero.
Despite his fiery temper and razor-sharp claws, the mutant fighter played by Hugh Jackman offers young people a very different model of male heroism than the ones 46-year-old Hood grew up watching on screen – the kind of hero typified by Clint Eastwood’s remorseless, unfeeling avenger in Pale Rider. Clint wasn’t ‘a good role model of masculinity’, he reckons.
“When I grew up,” says Hood, whose 2006 film Tsotsi won the Oscar for Best Foreign Film, “you were meant to be tough, play rugby and never cry. You were supposed to suck it up, shut up and don’t be emotional. That was the message of the Pale Rider-type heroes and we all aspired to that. My problem was, of course, I wasn’t like that. I get upset. I want to talk.
“Wolverine is an alternative type of hero, one who is concerned with his own morality and willing to walk away.”