Jennifer Lawrence seems ready to slip back into the blue skin of mutant Mystique in the newly announced X-Men movie, Dark Phoenix.
Lawrence, who has played the part in three previous X-Men films — First Class (2011), Days Of Future Past (2013) and Apocalypse (2016) —will reunite with Michael Fassbender as Magneto, James McAvoy as Charles Xavier, Nicholas Hault as Beast, Alexandra Shipp as Storm, Sophie Turner as Jean Grey, Tye Sheridan as Cyclops, and Kodi Smit-McPhee as Nightcrawler. New to the mix is expected to be actress Jessica Chastain as Shi'ar Empress Lilandra Neramani.
The plot deals with Neramani, of an alien race, making contact with and a connection to Xavier. She is also connected to the Phoenix Force, guardian of the M'Kraan Cystal, which decides to use Jean as a host body. Gradually it causes her to unleash her psychic abilities (something we saw her having a hard time mastering in Apocalypse) and go all — you got it — Dark Phoenix.
Serving as director of Dark Phoenix is Simon Kinberg, who has been a writer and/or producer on the last three X-Men films. So far that film franchise consists of six entries focusing on the X-Men themselves, three on Hugh Jackman's Wolverine (the last of which, this year's Logan, marks his final appearance in the role), Deadpool and next year's New Mutants. For a time there has also been talk of another solo film, Gambit.
(Photo Credit: 20th Century Fox)
For his part, Kinberg points back to the the first film in the series, 2000's X-Men, which was directed by Bryan Singer. "Bryan doesn’t get enough credit for redefining the superhero genre with that first film. Just the way that movie opened in Auschwitz, it added a seriousness of purpose to it; a drama to it before those Batman movies that I think really did change the sort of grammar of the superhero comic book movie," he says. "But back then I could not have imagined that there would be a world in which you could have two or three X-Men movies coming out in the same year. But having said that, I would read tons of X-Men stories in a span of a single year when I was a kid growing up reading comics, and there are so many resonant characters that it does offer itself up to multiple movies.
(Photo Credit: 20th Century Fox)
"One of the things we're really trying to do from movie to movie is create different voices so it doesn’t just feel like they're all of a piece," Kinberg continues. "Obviously they live in the same universe and adhere to similar rules and they acknowledge the events of the different movies, but Deadpool is a hard R sort of comedic darker film than the X-Men movies. Gambit is a fun different tone, a New Orleans swaggering movie. It will feel very different from any X-Men movie you've seen before. Wolverine has his own entirely unique vibe to him. And I think what [director James] Mangold did with the last movie, what he wanted to do with Logan as well, is also a different tone from the first Wolverine movie or any of the X-Men movies. It's almost more like a Clint Eastwood western than anything else. So we've been really, in a very concerted and conscious way, trying to make each of these different iterations feel like a unique experience, even though they exist within the same universe."
Dark Phoenix will be released November 2, 2018.