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It’s hard to believe it’s been 20 years since X-Men first hit theaters and introduced audiences to Fox’s big screen version of Marvel’s mutants. That film would, of course, spawn a massive franchise that would run for well over a decade. Now, following the Disney/Fox merger, the X-Men are about to get a serious, cinematic makeover, as the franchise will be integrated into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. While most are excited to see what Marvel Studios does with the heroes, one of X-Men’s original cast members isn’t quite as eager.
In 2000’s X-Men, Bruce Davison played the villainous Senator Robert Kelly, who would end up captured by Magneto’s Brotherhood of Mutants and be transformed into one himself. Davison looks back on the role fondly but revealed that he’s not that interested in Disney’s plans for the X-Men. He actually wants to see the studio come up with other ideas as opposed to established properties:
I'm not really interested in what Disney does to refresh the X-Men. They're just rebranding another story. Come up with a new thought, a new idea, a new character. Stan Lee did it all the time. Go find the Stan Lees in the world and see what they come up with. And then build it all on that.
The 74-year-old actor was definitely honest when speaking with Inverse though, when asked if he would ever return to the franchise, he gave a very surprising answer:
I’d drop dead, I’d be so shocked. I'd be more than happy to do anything that had to do with that, but I certainly ain’t holding my breath.
It’s interesting to hear that Davison would indeed reprise his role as the anti-mutant politician. But honestly, it’s hard to deny that there is a major appeal in joining the ever-expanding franchise that is the MCU.
And it’s certainly wouldn’t be impossible for Bruce Davison to return as Senator Kelly, as Marvel Studios has already proven to be open to integrating past actors into the MCU. This was true of J.K. Simmons who returned to the news desk to play J. Jonah Jameson and, now, the actor is even contracted to return. So there is a slight chance that Davison could once again serve as an antagonist to the X-Men.
One can imagine that Marvel Studios likely wants to put a totally different spin on the X-Men, so Bruce Davison may be right in assuming that he won’t be brought back into the fold. Yet stranger things have happened in the world of comic book movies.
X-Men is now available to stream on Hulu.