Hugh Jackman Reveals the Hardest Part of Becoming Wolverine Again at 55 — and It Wasn’t the Crazy Workouts (Exclusive)

Hugh Jackman Reveals the Hardest Part of Becoming Wolverine Again at 55 — and It Wasn’t the Crazy Workouts (Exclusive)

The actor spoke with his 'Deadpool & Wolverine' costar Ryan Reynolds about getting back into superhero shape

For Hugh Jackman, getting his body back in superhero shape was easier in some ways than others.

Speaking with Ryan Reynolds for this week's cover story, which marks PEOPLE's first-ever collectible side-by-side covers featuring the Deadpool & Wolverine stars, the duo opened up about the transformation Jackman, 55, had to make in order to revive his X-Men character for the first time since 2017.

Reynolds, 47, says he “couldn’t believe” the physicality he saw from Jackman.

“Just the sheer relentlessness that you dedicated yourself towards stunts, choreography. It was the first time I'd ever seen how invaluable a background in song and dance is when you are doing an action movie,” he boasts. “You hit your marks in those fight scenes with speed and confidence, the likes of which I have never seen. I don't care if you were 25, 35, 45 or 55. It was lightning.”

“Watching you do what just looked like a clinic on stunt work was one of the most impressive things I've ever seen in my life,” Reynolds adds as Jackman thanks him for the compliment.

Related: Why Ryan Reynolds Believes Having Anxiety Helps Him In Raising His Four Kids: ‘Grateful for It’ (Exclusive)

hugh jackman/instagram
hugh jackman/instagram

Jackman admits that a lot of that physicality came from working with stunt coordinator Brian Smrz, who introduced him to the idea of dance training in order to do the action sequences successfully.

He says he ended up loving the process of that approach and learning to incorporate aspects of dance into his stunts, even as he’s gotten older.

“When I came back to it, it was really fun and I was thrilled. My body was a little sore at the beginning, but I was thrilled that my body was still responding. And I realized how good it is for your brain. But the hardest bit…the food,” Jackman admits, noting that he’s always had trouble bulking up to become Wolverine.

“I have to eat a lot,” he continues. “For me, for my body type, I'm naturally skinny. To get the size on, that's the hardest bit. That's the bit that does my head in.”

Reynolds adds, “Yeah, the five, six meals a day, which sounds great to some people. I'm sure they're like, ‘Well, that sounds great.’ But it's not like the type of food that you would really necessarily enjoy.”

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

<p>Bav Media / SplashNews</p>

Bav Media / SplashNews

Reynolds jokes that even with their 17-year friendship, seeing Jackman’s athleticism on set was both impressive and intimidating.

“I noticed that in the film that we would change things quite quickly and say, ‘Okay, let's try this and that.’ And particularly the physicality — that ability, the dance and that background — really came in because you would do stuff where I was convinced when you were coming at me a few times, there is no way this guy's pulling his punch,” he says with a laugh. “I will be decapitated by Hugh Jackman, and that will be his f—ing cross to bear, not mine.”

“When Hugh Jackman is coming at you at 150 Australian miles per hour, you feel like there's no way you're not going to be dead in four seconds,” Reynolds quips. “And I will never forget that. And thank God I'm in a mask, because under the mask my face is going, 'Oh God!'"

Directed by Shawn Levy, Reynolds and Jackman’s Deadpool & Wolverine hits theaters July 26.

For more on Hugh Jackman and Ryan Reynolds, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday, or subscribe here.

For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!

Read the original article on People.