Before shared universes and serialized storytelling became commonplace, the superhero genre had its humble beginnings with Bryan Singer's 2000 blockbuster X-Men. And in the nearly two decades since that movie arrived in theaters, superhero flicks have risen to dominate the film industry, with certain installments going so far as to get award nominations in the process. The X-Men franchise is still going strong, although Disney and Fox's impending merger has the potential to change things forever.
Producer Lauren Shuler Donner has worked on every single installment in the X-Men franchise, although she's poised to step down once Disney takes control of the property. While she's had an impressive career within the property, there's one X-Men movie that Donner never got around to producing: one with an all-female team. As she recently revealed:
Is anybody else's FOMO going through the roof? It looks like Lauren Shuler Donner had thought out a pitch for an X-Woman movie, but it never actually came to fruition. And in the current climate of the superhero genre, that movie would probably resonate well with audiences. Too bad.
Lauren Shuler Donner's comments to Decider are sure to get a reaction from the generations of X-Men fans out there who are hoping that the femme fatales of the brand might become a larger role in the universe. While Storm, Jean, and Rogue were part of the original trilogy, they didn't always get the spotlight the same way that Wolverine, Professor X, or Magneto did. The same can also be said with the current timeline. Jennifer Lawrence has been given some great material as the new Mystique, but the First Class movies haven't been particularly female-centric.
Of course, that is set to change with Dark Phoenix. The upcoming blockbuster will be largely focused on Sophie Turner's Jean Grey, as she struggles with a dark power that takes control of her. Jennifer Lawrence is also set to reprise her role as Mystique, with Alexandra Shipp returning as Storm. While that movie's been pushed back a number of times, Dark Phoenix's very title shows how much the upcoming blockbuster will revolve around Jean.
While the X-Woman movie never came to fruition at 20th Century Fox, perhaps it's possible within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Marvel Studios' Kevin Feige has maintained that the mysterious Phase Four will feature more women, so a female X-Men movie doesn’t seem out of the question. It could be a great way to bring the mutants into the MCU, while also appealing to calls of more on-screen inclusion.
Dark Phoenix is currently set to arrive in theaters on June 7th, so we have a while to wait before the flick is officially released. In the meantime, check out our full 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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