Movies

'Prisoners' star Hugh Jackman agrees to co-host TODAY

Sep. 18, 2013 at 9:35 AM ET

Hired! TODAY viewers saw it for themselves on Wednesday: Hugh Jackman has agreed to co-host TODAY with Matt Lauer. The pair even shook on it.

Unfortunately, it won't be a permanent career change: Jackman has no plans to cast aside his lucrative acting career. He's got a brand-new movie, "Prisoners," which is what originally brought him to the set. But in the course of the conversation with Lauer, it came out that Jackman loved growing up watching shows like TODAY and at one point planned to become a journalist. But there was a hitch.

"I actually graduated with a major in journalism, and when I was thinking about going into it, I realized that I'd be bad at it," he told Lauer. "I could probably do half of your job, the traveling bit, the easy interviews. But when it came to the tougher interviews, I'm just gullible, I just believe people."

So Lauer offered him the chance to come back another time and guest host for a day. "I like it, yes, I'm in!" said Jackman. "Deal."

"I want to be clear about this: Guest host with me, not Savannah," said Lauer.

From backstage, Guthrie's despairing wail could be heard clearly.

On a slightly more serious note, Jackman also talked about his new film "Prisoners," in which he plays a father whose daughter is kidnapped.

"My character goes about as far as you could think possible," said Jackman. "There's something primal about this thing, our urge and need to protect our kids. ... It goes beyond reason."

Still, as he says, "I'm always open" to other job opportunities. "That's the way I think it's best to be in life."

That said, once he does join the TODAY crew for a day, he has one requirement: He needs to know he can leave early. "Could we finish at 9?" he asked.

Lauer assured him he could.

"Prisoners" opens in theaters on Sept. 20. Hugh Jackman opens as TODAY co-host on a date still to be determined.

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