Why Dark Phoenix Reshot Its Original Ending, According To Simon Kinberg

Sophie Turner is Jean Grey in Dark Phoenix

The following story will not contain spoilers for Dark Phoenix**. However, we will discuss the story a bit, so on the off chance you want to go into next week’s release knowing absolutely nothing, stop reading right now.**

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Jean Grey (Sophie Turner) seems destined to interact with the Phoenix force. It happens in comics, in one of Marvel’s most popular comic storylines. It happened in the initial run of X-Men movies, captured in The Last Stand. And now that the timeline has been reset via X-Men: Days of Futures Past, it’s about to happen to the version of Jean that we met in X-Men: Apocalypse.

Longtime X-Men writer and producer Simon Kinberg steps into the director’s chair for Dark Phoenix, which opens everywhere on June 7. And in a recent chat with EW, he dropped a terrific tease of an alternate ending to his debut film that he ended up reshooting, mentioning only that it took place in outer space. (This isn’t so far-fetched, as trailers have shown us that the X-Men are on a space mission when Jean interacts with the Phoenix in this film.)

As a rabid fan of the X-Men characters, I was curious about this original ending, though when I asked Kinberg about it during a recent press event in London for Dark Phoenix, he candidly told me why he thought the space finale had to be changed. He told CinemaBlend:

That was a version that was when it was sort of the less-grounded version of the movie. … It wasn’t a version of the movie where the X-Men and the family are -- we weren’t as focused on them coming together at the end of the movie. It was really more entirely Jean, and what it lacked was this sort of emotional closure. Thinking of this movie as the sort of culmination of all of the X-Men movies, where these strangers have become this sort of surrogate family, and then in this movie they get challenged like they’ve never been challenged before, it felt like at the end of the movie, it would be much more satisfying for the audience to both see Jean have extraordinary power… but also see the X-Men come back together as a family and perform. I sort of wanted to do both.

How they come together, we will leave it for you to learn by checking out Dark Phoenix. But it can be shared that one of the most exciting elements of the new film is the fact that we see the X-Men working together as a team for one of the few times in franchise history (for real, this group is usually so fractured and ostracized), so it makes sense why Simon Kinberg made the decisions that he made.

In Dark Phoenix, the X-Men must figure out a way to contain one of their own after Jean (Sophie Turner) encounters an alien force that greatly amplifies her natural mutation.

The movie co-stars X-Men alums James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence and Nicholas Hoult, while giving more screen time to Tye Sheridan, Alexandra Shipp, Evan Peters and Kodi Smit-McPhee. Dark Phoenix is being viewed as the culmination of this X-Men saga, so see where the story goes on June 7.

Sean O'Connell
Managing Editor

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. He's frequently found on Twitter at @Sean_OConnell. ReelBlend cohost. A movie junkie who's Infatuated with comic-book films. Helped get the Snyder Cut released, then wrote a book about it.