With Hugh Jackman’s tenure as Wolverine complete, Fox is still full steam ahead on numerous X-Men projects that (likely) don’t feature everyone’s favorite mutant. Next up is New Mutants next April, followed by Deadpool 2 in June, and X-Men: Dark Phoenix in November 2018. It looks like we will be getting X-Force after that, with Gambit still on the back burner, stuck in development hell. If I am not mistaken, Wolverine has thus far been in every X-Men film to some capacity, save for Deadpool, where Hugh Jackman’s face still made an appearance. But, in the age of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Sony’s SpiderVerse, Fox can’t allow their slice of the Marvel universe sit while they wait until the time is right to cast a new Logan, even if it means they will be moving forward without their lucky charm.
New Mutants is already paving the way as a unique take on the X-Men formula, melding younger, angsty mutants that would fit into a superpowered Breakfast Club with the horror genre. Director Josh Boone (The Fault in Our Stars) previously had this to say about the project’s uniqueness:
“We are making a full-fledged horror movie set within the X-Men universe. There are no costumes. There are no supervillains. We’re trying to do something very, very different.”
Horror is certainly an interesting direction to take the youngest characters in the X-Men universe, as this easily could have been Fox’s most family friendly X-Men film. No costumes worked to great effect in Logan, so that sounds awesome. But no supervillains? What will the new mutants be dealing with exactly?
Variety conducted an interview with the chairman and CEO of 20th Century Fox, Stacey Snider, and she had this to add concerning the plot and tone of New Mutants:
“New Mutants is about these teenagers who are just coming into their powers. It’s like watching mutants go through adolescence and they have no impulse control, so they’re dangerous. The only solution is to put them in a Breakfast Club detention/Cuckoo’s Nest institutional setting. It protects the people on the outside, but it’s strange and combustible inside. The genre is like a haunted-house movie with a bunch of hormonal teenagers. We haven’t seen a superhero movie whose genre is more like The Shining than ‘we’re teenagers let’s save the world.’”
It all sounds horribly claustrophobic, but that’s part of the point in a haunted-house movie, and Logan proved that smaller, “the world doesn’t need to be saved” plotlines really work in the age of overly giant and destructive final acts in the genre. This is far more appealing to me than the more traditional X-Men: Dark Phoenix, for sure. This kind of genre twisting that Marvel has done within their own MCU has certainly paid off, and may be just what the doctor ordered in a world without Wolverine.
I still have questions regarding whent his film is set within the timeline, if it is set within the broken timeline at all. With this closed off setting, it may not be neccesary to reference the outside world at all, and could be more standalone like Logan. Otherwise, are these new mutants in the current era of X-Men films set in the earlier years, or are we in the current millennium like the original trilogy? After all, Xavier’s school has always been for mutants in their adolescence who can’t yet control their powers, but maybe this batch of new mutants are too powerful to be let loose in his mansion’s halls? We’ll find out more as this next X-Men film approaches, but it certainly sounds more interesting than the title and choice of director originally suggested.
What do you think of what Snider has to say about New Mutants? Does this sound like something you might be interested in, or do you prefer more conventional stories like Dark Phoenix? Care to speculate on the timeline? Let us know in the comments section below!
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