Hugh Jackman shared the best personal and professional advice he received from his X-Men co-stars Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen during a conversation with Stephen Colbert on The Late Show on Thursday.
The top-shelf actor stopped by the late-night talk show to discuss his upcoming film, Reminiscence, and his lead role in the hotly anticipated Broadway production of The Music Man. Speaking on his past projects, Jackman expressed gratitude for his experience working on 2000’s X-Men with Stewart and McKellen, both of whom played a pivotal part in his powerhouse portrayal of Wolverine — his first major movie role.
He recounted advice he received on set from McKellen about film acting, a process which is entirely different to his expertise in the theater.
“He said, ‘It’s going to feel really uncomfortable. When you’re acting on film, it feels uncomfortable, but it will look great. Just go with it,’” Jackman said. “And I always remember that, because when you begin in film, it’s stop, start. It’s very weird. You’re never acting for more than a minute and a half at a time.”
Similarly, Stewart lent the actor valuable advice on maximizing life, specifically through a dedicated morning ritual, which Jackman and his wife, Deborra-Lee, faithfully take part in to this day.
“He said, ‘I learned when I was about 60 — and I wished I had learned it when I was younger — I give myself time of day at the beginning.’ So, if he has a 5 a.m. wake-up call for a film, he wakes up a 4 a.m., he goes and gets a cup of tea, he comes back to bed with his favorite book,” Jackman explained. “He says, ‘I don’t read the paper because it makes me angry. I don’t read emails because that stresses me. I don’t read a script, I get nervous. I just read a book. So I know that no matter what happens for the rest of the day, I’ve had a half hour.’”
“So, I’ve done that,” Jackman continued. “My wife and I wake up every morning, get a cup of tea — coffee for me — and we sit in bed and we just read.”
Watch Hugh Jackman’s full segment on The Late Show above.