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Second chances are a dime a dozen in Hollywood. Because we live in an age of reboots and remakes, studios frequently go back and reimagine projects that stumbled in the past, which is why Halloween will reset that timeline beginning in October, and Linda Hamilton is suiting back up for a new Terminator movie next summer. Rarely, though, does the same creator get a chance to correct their own mistake, as Simon Kinberg is able to do with next year's X-Men: Dark Phoenix, a movie that will retell a famous X-Men comic book storyline that was brought to the screen a few years ago... by Kinberg himself. In a candid roundtable discussion, the writer-director now admits:
I co-wrote X-Men 3, the 'Dark Phoenix' story, which is probably the most sacred of the X-Men storylines in the comics. Fanboys and girls did not love the movie [X-Men: The Last Stand]. When I wrote X-Men: Days of Future Past years later --- it was a time travel story --- I thought, 'Well, here's an opportunity to rewrite this mistake --- bring Jean Grey back to life.' I got to go back and essentially erase a $200 million movie.
Simon Kinberg, whose association with the X-Men saga dates back to 2006's X-Men: The Last Stand, was participating in a roundtable conversation for THR with other heads of very popular genre franchises. And in the conversation, Kinberg cops to the fact that he used the timeline resetting X-Men: Days of Future Past to revive a character he helped to... "ruin" is too strong of a word. But yes, Kinberg co-wrote X-Men: The Last Stand, which botched the Dark Phoenix plot. So he used Days of Future Past to restore Jean Grey (Famke Janssen) and remove the Phoenix saga from the existing X-Men series.
Here we see Jean reunited with her X-Men colleagues when Logan (Hugh Jackman) returns from his mission in 1973 and explains to Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart) that they are living on a new timeline now. At least, I think that's what's happening on the X-Men timeline now:
Simon Kinberg, in essence, erased a $200 million movie that he helped create so that, in X-Men: Apocalypse, he'd be able to introduce a new version of the beloved Jean Grey (now played by Game of Thrones co-star Sophie Turner), and thereby setting up a second crack at the Dark Phoenix story in a movie that was supposed to come out this year, but has since been delayed. One would assume that Kinberg will have more control over X-Men: Dark Phoenix, as he's credited as the director of it. But because we haven't seen any footage from the movie, there's debate about whether it will come out, or be delayed due to the pending Disney/Fox merger.
Did you ever have a mistake you had to correct? Did your mistake cost $200 million? And did you throw another $200 million at a new version of your mistake? Only in the X-Men universe!