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Antonio Banderas in Pain and Glory

The New Mutants is finally coming out this April, two years after it was originally supposed to hit the silver screen. While originally the intention was for the movie to spawn a sequel or two, as so many comic book movies do, given that Disney now owns 20th Century Fox and there are plans to incorporate the X-Men into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it seems unlikely that The New Mutants 2 will ever happen.

As a result, Josh Boone is willing to share some details about what would have happened in the sequel, like how it would have starred Antonio Banderas and introduced classic New Mutants characters Warlock and Karma. Regarding Banderas, who recently scored an Oscar nomination for his performance in Pain and Glory, this isn’t the first time his name has been associated with The New Mutants, as it was reported in 2018 that he was going to appear in a post-credits scene to replace an earlier one featuring Jon Hamm as Mr. Sinister.

Josh Boone has confirmed that the plan was for Antonio Banderas to play Emmanuel da Costa, the father of Henry Zaga’s Roberto da Costa, a.k.a. Sunspot. Banderas would have reprised this role in The New Mutants 2, which Boone described as New Mutants: Brazil. However, because the New Mutants reshoots never took place, the post-credits scene was never shot, with Boone explaining:

It was intentional that we didn’t shoot it. We had always planned to have a tag at the end of the movie that introduced the villain for the next movie. We even had an actor cast, but because of the merger and because Marvel owns X-Men now and is going to do their own thing, there was no reason to go shoot it.

For those unfamiliar with the New Mutants comic lore, Emmanuel da Costa was a member of the Hellfire Club, and he tried to kill Roberto’s estranged mother, archaeologist Nina da Costa, for his own nefarious interests as Roberto attempted to reconnect with her. So having Emmanuel serve as The New Mutants 2’s villain would have been fitting… well, one of its villains.

Had The New Mutants 2 moved forward, Warlock and Karma would have also featured prominently, with the latter initially serving as another antagonist. Here’s what Josh Boone had to say about these characters during his interview with EW:

Karma was always going to be the villain in the second movie that would be absorbed into the group by the end. We had always wanted to bring Karma and Warlock into the second one when we couldn’t do it in the first one. For us, we wanted that initial core team [for the first movie]. We just couldn’t swap out Illyana. We felt like there was no reason to do [the movie] if we couldn’t bring that character to life in the first one. Swapping out for someone like Magma I don’t feel fits very well in the kind of movie we were gonna make. I’ve got Bobby already. We tried to make a team that made sense.

In the comics, Karma is a mutant who’s able to telepathically control other beings, and she was one of the founding members of the New Mutants. Warlock is a shapeshifting techno-organic alien who joined the New Mutants later on in their solo book, and it had been rumored that he might show up in The New Mutants movie.

Josh Boone added that just like the first New Mutants movie, The New Mutants 2 would have been inspired by Chris Claremont and Bill Sienkiewicz run on the team's comic book, specifically in “the tone and the look and kids not necessarily in costumes.” Looking at all this new information, it sounds like the New Mutants could have opened up some cool corners for Fox’s X-Men universe, just like the Wolverine and Deadpool spinoffs did.

Alas, the X-Men landscape has changed so much since the Disney/Fox merger, and while Josh Boone is hopeful that The New Mutants “makes a bunch of money” so a sequel can get the green light, Marvel Studios having its own plans for the X-Men characters means that the chances of such a project moving forward. Still, fingers crossed The New Mutants will function well enough as a standalone tale, and it’ll also stand out as one of the few horror-infused superhero movies out there.

The New Mutants opens in theaters on April 3, and feel free to browse through our 2020 release schedule to learn what other movies arrive later in the year.

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