In the year 2000, the X-Men franchise was born, and would ultimately change the movie industry forever. For decades, despite some incredible successes, superheroes were seen as a risky investment in Hollywood, but Marvel's mutants smacked that concept down with a strong mix of quality and success. The arrival of the film ushered in the modern age of comic book movies, and helped it grow to become the all-powerful genre that it is today. The X-Men titles have long been a part of that, with 10 films released over the last 17 years, but thanks to the recently-announced merger between the Walt Disney Company and 21st Century Fox, everything will be changing in the next few months. When all is said and done, the X-Men will become a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Of course, what is totally unclear at this point is exactly how that is going to happen. Both the X-Men movies and the Marvel Cinematic Universe are franchises that have spent years establishing deliberately sovereign continuities, and it's going to take some creativity to figure out exactly how they can dovetail. It's this very subject that we will be analyzing in this feature, working to determine the best way that the two previously separated Marvel Comics adaptations come together and become one.

Just Reboot The Whole Thing

The X-Men franchise experienced a soft reboot of its own in 2014 when the third act of X-Men: Days of Future Past erased every event post-1972, but there still remains a lot to the canon - and it continues to grow every year. Through the various movies we've had the chance to get to know big screen versions of incredibly important characters, and they've successfully left their mark on pop culture at large. This is the unquestionably the biggest hurdle to leap when it comes to merging with the Marvel Cinematic Universe... but there is a very easy way to just step around it. Going forward, the X-Men movies could stop permanently, and the MCU could cast their own original versions of Professor Xavier, Wolverine, Jean Grey, Cyclops, and everyone else.

From a creative standpoint, this is certainly the easiest methodology, but it has its significant issues. First of all, while the track record for the X-Men titles has been far less strong than the Marvel Cinematic Universe's, they still have developed a devoted fanbase over the last two decades (something that can't be said about the Fantastic Four). This audience just might take issue with the disappearance of films they love because of no other reason than behind the scenes business machinations, and creative convenience. And as far as introducing the new versions of the heroes, that might be a bit complicated to pull off given that the MCU has spent its 10-year-long existence keeping a significant distance from the term "mutant."

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