Actor Hugh Jackman has promised action and terror from the upcoming X-Men prequel.

Scheduled for a May 2009 opening, X-Men Origins: Wolverine will reveal the back story of the enigmatic mutant, with Jackman set to reprise his role as the clawed character.

David Benioff, screenwriter of 25th Hour and The Kite Runner, has penned the script for the film, set some 17 years before the X-Men movies, while Tsotsi helmer Gavin Hood is to direct.

And speaking in the new issue of Empire magazine, the Australian revealed he and Hood purposefully shot more action sequences than intended.

"We ended up doing quite a lot of it. I wanted the fight scenes to be a little more brutal - I want people to wince a bit more," he explained.

Jackman, whose new film Australia is released on Boxing Day, also revealed he took inspiration for his portrayal of Wolverine from none other than Robert De Niro.

"I had this image in my head of De Niro in that remake of Cape Fear," he explained.

"You were terrified of that character from the moment he took his shirt off - you knew he was this coiled spring that would rip your head off, no matter how nonchalant he acted.

"That's who Wolverine is."

Other members of the X-Men Origins: Wolverine cast include Ryan Reynolds and R 'n' B star

Taylor Kitsch, (Tim Riggins on NBC's acclaimed Friday Night Lights) is to star as Gambit - able to infuse objects with explosive kinetic energy - and is thought to have signed a three-picture deal.

Danny Huston, Liev Schreiber and Lynn Collins have also been added to the cast, with 30 Days of Night star Huston to essay the role of Colonel William Stryker, the crazed military general played by Brian Cox in X2 who was responsible for the experiment that saw Wolverine's skeleton laced with adamantium.

The January issue of Empire goes on sale on Thursday November 28th.

27/11/2008 06:31:01