The first photo for The Wolverine has hit the web, but we didn't need the shot to know how good a shape Hugh Jackman is in.

The promotional shot shows a ripped Jackman in character as Wolverine.

Standing shirtless and clearly poised for a fight, the dark photo has been issued ahead of the film's release in July 2013.

On Monday, Jackman used Twitter to give fans a heads-up. "Can't wait for all to see!! @AgentM: Just got word that I have something WAY cool to share on Monday morning."


Filming for the $US100 million-plus sequel to X-Men Origins: Wolverine began at Sydney's Fox Studios in August.

The image release comes after a number of setbacks to the highly anticipated film that started shooting in July.

Last March, director Darren Aronofsky left the project, and James Mangold stepped in to replace him. Then the shoot, which was originally meant to be in Japan, was postponed last October because of weather conditions.

Mangold told a press conference in July that The Wolverine was based on a series of comics that detailed the mutant's journeys in Japan.

Jackman, who has played Wolverine in five different movies over the past 12 years, said he took the movies on one at a time.

He saw the screenplay and was sold.

"I feel like a golfer, always looking for a hole in one and I thought this was the best script we've had," he said.

- with AAP