Jackman Discusses Upcoming "Australia" Movie
DALLAS, /PRNewswire/ -- Get ready to gallop with Hugh Jackman in
the December issue of Cowboys & Indians, The Premier Magazine of the
West, now on sale at newsstands everywhere.
Jackman has played everything from a comic-book hero (Wolverine in the
"X-Men" franchise) to a Broadway musical lead ("The Boy
from Oz"), from a legendary monster hunter ("Van Helsing")
to a time-tripping British gentleman ("Kate & Leopold"). But
now the charismatic superstar is blazing a new trail for himself in
"Australia," the eagerly awaited epic romantic drama in which he
co-stars opposite Nicole Kidman for director Baz Luhrmann ("Moulin
Set to open Nov. 26 in theaters nationwide, "Australia"
focuses on the charged relationship between Lady Sarah Ashley (Kidman), a
prim and proper British aristocrat who travels to the Outback to look for
her missing husband in the early 1940s, and The Drover (Jackman), a
roguish, rough-hewn loner Lady Sarah employs to drive hundreds of cattle
across hundreds of miles of the world's most beautiful yet unforgiving
terrain. Passions swell, tensions mount, cattle stampede -- and at the end
of the trail, the leads must survive the bombing of the city of Darwin by
the same Japanese forces that attacked Pearl Harbor.
Call it "Red River" meets "Gone With the Wind," and
you won't be far off the mark.
"But it's also in the style of 'Out of Africa,'" Jackman
tells C&I writer Joe Leydon. "And 'The African Queen.' And
'Titanic.' That kind of genre, whatever you'd call it. A big, epic,
romantic adventure story. I've been doing some (dubbing) work on the film,
so I've had the chance to look at everything again. And more than ever
before, and I've had the feeling of, 'Oh, my goodness. I'm in one of those
movies.' It's a real old school, Hollywood classic sort of movie. And I've
found myself getting a little tingle in the back of my neck: 'Wow! I'm in
one of those!' It's definitely a dream come true."
Before signing on for "Australia," Jackman admits, he had
only limited experience as an equestrian. So he gamely endured several
weeks of grueling training, in order to look convincing as an Aussie
cowboy in many of the movie's elaborate action sequences. After about
three months of hard riding during on-location filming in the Outback,
"I really started feeling that connection with a horse," Jackman
says. "And now it's something I'll have forever and ever. I
absolutely love it. That was a pretty good point to get to, because I'll
tell you: We did some pretty hairy things while we were out there filming.
If I hadn't gotten to that point, I'm pretty sure I would have been a lot
more circumspect about doing some of those stunts."
With that experience under his belt, does he think he could ever get a
job as real cowboy? "I reckon I might have a chance," Jackman
says with a hearty laugh. "A very, very outside chance. But would I
survive if I got the job? I don't know, mate. I may be a little too
pampered, I think."