Hugh Jackman’s charms alone were insufficient to persuade Evangeline Lilly to join the X-Men (or woman, as the case may be). While promoting Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, Lilly disclosed that she had previously rejected Jackman’s offer to have her appear in an X-Men movie.
She explained to the Happy Sad Confused podcast that the request came while they were both working on the 2011 film Real Steel.
“The X-Men guys are asking me if I would approach you because they know that you won’t talk to anybody,” he said, according to the woman. They were curious to know if you would ever be interested in doing something X-Men-related since they knew I was working with you.
Lilly made her choice fairly quickly.
“I thought, ‘No. I’m not interested in it. I’m not interested, she remembered saying. ‘I feel like such a dick because I’m talking to an X-Men,’ I exclaimed. “The X-Men!” And I’m saying, “No, that doesn’t appeal,” to him. What, exactly? I felt so unkind!
Lilly had prior rejection experience from superheroes. She once discussed making Wonder Woman with Joss Whedon.
Lilly reflected on the encounter, saying, “I think my impression, coming away from it, was I had no desire and he could tell.” She added that she was “too young to be that polite” to at least pretend to be interested in the idea of taking on the identity of the DC character.
“Nothing about the meeting, like, jazzed me up or made me feel like, ‘Oh, I’ve gotta do this,’ so it didn’t appeal to me. Nothing made sense. She stated that nothing felt good. I am much too real for my own good. It’s not good, really. You’ll be aware if I’m not impressed. And occasionally, perhaps, you shouldn’t know.”
Lilly claimed she believed Whedon didn’t appreciate her perspective on it. “I didn’t mind that at all. I didn’t mind tearing down walls, she said. I accepted that not everyone in Hollywood wanted to work with me.
She said, “I simply always had to do what felt right for me. And to be quite honest, the major reason I felt like I didn’t get much out of any of these experiences was because I wasn’t a fan of superhero movies.
Before her agency advised her to watch certain superhero movies, Lilly said she didn’t understand them.
Lilly admitted, “I was very critical of them frequently.” Before Marvel came along, I was infamous for making fun of them and treating them as inferior forms of entertainment.
“When I did, I was like, ‘Oh, they’re doing something very different and very cool,'” she continued.