Last week 20th Century Fox revealed the release dates for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (the sequel to Rise of the Planet of the Apes) and a 3D re-release of the Will Smith alien flick, Independence Day. Also included in the list was the sequel to Matthew Vaughn’s anticipated X-men: First Class 2; the film is due to hit theaters July 18, 2014. According to AICN, an inside source shared with them that 20th Century Fox has just registered the title “Days of Future Past” with the MPAA Title Registration Bureau. Bring on the future, sentinels and possibly Cable and/or Bishop!
** But before we get started remember, this could all be a rumor. Nothing’s been confirmed by Matthew Vaughn, Singer or Fox. Hell, Fox could piss us all off and use the title, but not the story.
What is ‘Days of Future Past’?!
For those of you who don’t know, Days of Future Past is really one of the greatest classic comic book stories. It deals with a lot of time travel, blending together the present with the future, and in the X-men comics there’s a whole lot of that going on. Here’s a more detailed synopsis from Wikipedia:
The storyline alternates between present day, in which the X-Men fight Mystique’s Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, and a future timeline caused by the X-Men’s failure to prevent the Brotherhood from assassinating Senator Robert Kelly. In this future universe, Sentinels rule the United States, and mutants live in internment camps. The present-day X-Men are forewarned of the possible future by a future version of their teammate Kitty Pryde, whose mind traveled back in time and possessed her younger self to warn the X-Men. She succeeds in her mission and returns to the future, but despite her success, the future timeline still exists as an alternative timeline rather than as the actual future. (The Official Handbook to the Marvel Universe: Alternate Universes 2005 gave the numerical designation of “Days of Future Past Earth as Earth-811).
How Will This Tie in to ‘X-men: First Class 2′ and ‘X-Men 1-3′?
This is where it gets tricky. The only thing we know about X-men: First Class 2 is that director Matthew Vaughn wants to kick off the film with the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22nd, 1963 — an act that’ll be carried out by Magneto. We’ve already been introduced to Kitty (Ellen Page) in X-men 3, but the problem here is her age. She was entirely too young in X-men 3 to have any existence in the early 1960s. But to get around that problem she could easily just go back in time without having to be a younger version of herself with the help of a time portal or time traveling mutant. Or Xavier could receive flashes of the future from another mutant such as Bishop…
Let’s break this down for a minute. The future will hopefully include Wolverine (Hugh Jackman), Storm (Halle Berry), Beast (Kelsey Grammer), Iceman (Shawn Ashmore), Rogue (Anna Paquin), Kitty Pryde (Ellen Page), Colossus (Daniel Cudmore) Magneto (Ian McKellan) and maybe Angel. Charles Xavier, Jean and Scott is whole nother problem.
The past will include Charles Xavier (James McAvoy), Magneto (Michael Fassbender), Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), Banshee (Caleb Jones), Emma Frost (January Jones), Azazel (Jason Flemyng), Beast (Nicholas Hoult), Havoc (Lucas Till) and Angel Salvadore (Zoe Kravitz).
Before we go any further, the question is whether or not schedules are clear and/or contracts have expired. If I’m not mistaken I believe the contracts for those in X-men 1-3 have not expired. It’s a matter of will they return/what’s on their schedules. We know Halle Berry is in, she’s been petitioning for another film for the longest, and Jackman is still making X-films. But even if they don’t return, this is an alternative timeline, so Fox could recast them, but for the general audience’s sake, lets hope not. Longtime X-men producer Lauren Donner announced last year that X-Men 4 and 5 were in development and there were previous talks of James Marsden returning as Cyclops. Is this all coming together?
Sentinels: These mutant tracking robots have quite a history of run ins with the X-men and the Brotherhood. They’re the governments way of catching mutants. In the future, the sentinels have been designed to detect mutants and put them in internment camps. In the past there have been previous efforts of bringing the bots to the big screen, but all we received was the practice sentinel in X-men 3‘s danger room sequence.
Cleaning up the Time-line: Lets be honest, the time line for the X-men films have all sorts of problems ranging from Professor X’s balding head to the age of Emma Frost. There’s a lot to be fixed. Honestly, the time-traveling could fix some of this, then again if Fox is sloppy like they usually are it could ruin everything.
Mystique’s Evolution: This is what I’m looking forward to. Either way with or without the storyline of “Days of Future Past”, X-men: First Class 2 should include the relationship between Azazel and Mystique. If you weren’t aware they are the parents X2: United‘s Nightcrawler (Allen Cumming). Some event could happen where Mystique is forced to abandon Nightcrawler, thus giving birth to her hatred toward humans.
Bishop & Cable: If there’s any sort of time traveling involved these guys are usually in the mix. We could probably do without one or the other, but I’m hoping one makes the cut.
The Returning Powers of Magneto and Rogue: I have no doubt that Magneto and Rogue’s power will come back in full force, hopefully making them stronger than they were before. Rogue needs to be established as the ass-kicking woman we all know her to be — flying, super strength and whooping tail.
Bryan Singer and Matthew Vaughn: With these two brilliant minds at the helm of the X-men franchise anything is possible. It wasn’t until Brett Ratner put his paws on X-men 3 that things started to get wonky. But he’s not the only person to blame for the screwup of the Phoenix storyline…
20th Century Fox: I really am not a fan of Fox when it comes to the X-men. I will say that X-men 2 sits in my list of top five superhero films, and First Class brought much needed life back into the franchise. But with a story this complicated, who know what will happen.
Wolverine: This isn’t really a con for me, but I know a lot of X-men comic book fans are sick and tired of Wolverine. He’s been featured at the front of the team while the others have basically been his sidekicks. But remember you can’t have a “Days of Future Past” story without Wolverine, so I say, “Bring on the Jackman!” Plus movie fans love him! You can’t have Sentinels without Wolverine, come on now…
Charles Xavier, Jean and Cyclops: This is a mess. X-men 3 left Xavier’s mind in another person’s body, Cyclops went missing (there’s still debate as to whether Jean really killed him) and Jean’s dead. They could probably get around Charles and Cyclops, but I think Jean should sit this one out.
Balancing First Class Characters with the Original Crew: This will be a challenge. You want both teams to have a fair share of screen time. Plus, I feel as if the First Class crew needs a little more development. Give them one more film, and then combine the two universes.
What are your thoughts on all of this? Is this a good idea or a really bad idea? What characters would you like to see involved? And what about Wolverine? Will he steal too much time from the others? Let us know in the comments below.