Director Bryan Singer is currently bringing together 20th Century Fox’s two X-Men timelines as cameras roll on next year’s time-travelling mutant epic X-Men: Days of Future Past, but the studio itself has bigger plans afoot, bringing in acclaimed comic book writer and producer Mark Millar (Kick-Ass) to serve as creative consultant as it attempts to replicate the success of Marvel Studios’ with its own shared movie universe.
Of course, given the fact Fox only has the rights to X-Men and The Fantastic Four (which is being rebooted in 2015 under Chronicle helmer Josh Trank), the studio will be hoping that the uncanny world of the X-Men provides enough of a pool of heroes to spearhead this universe. Speaking to SFX (via ComicBookTherapy), Singer has spoken briefly about Millar’s role, as well as his own plans to develop the X-Men universe which he launched himself back in 2000:
“It’s been a worthwhile thing as [Mark Millar] has been brought in to just look at the whole universe. I’ve basically rebooted the universe twice already, in that I booted it up once with X-Men and then rebooted it with X-Men: First Class. I’m very keenly interested in exploring the X-Men universe in the same way that Marvel have done with the Avengers. It’s an enormous universe and not just in the issues that it confronts. A lot of Marvel’s famous characters have already been used but there’s still a few left. DC have got some as well; the Justice League film is going to be a monster!”
There’s certainly a lot of anticipation surrounding X-Men: Days of Future Past – and a lot of crossed fingers for Singer to correct some of the mistakes made with X-Men: The Last Stand – but the film will face some stiff competition in the 2014 superhero season; in addition to Sony’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2, the X-Men will have to compete with two Marvel Studios offerings in Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Guardians of the Galaxy. So how does Singer plan to make the X-Men sequel stand out?
“You can never compete with [the Marvel Cinematic Universe]. Tonally it’s a very different experience as the X-Men movies operate on very specific themes and it’s a much more serious kind of universe as the Marvel movies universe is not so serious. It’s got its own emotional points and the characters are obviously amazing.”
X-Men: Days of Future Past is scheduled for release on July 18th, 2014, and stars Hugh Jackman (Wolverine), Ian McKellen (Magneto), James McAvoy (Professor X), Michael Fassbender (Magneto), Jennifer Lawrence (Mystique), Nicholas Hoult (Beast), Halle Berry (Storm), Ellen Page (Kitty Pryde), Anna Paquin (Rogue), Shawn Ashmore (Iceman), Daniel Cudmore (Colossus), Omar Sy (Bishop), Evan Peters (Quicksilver) and Booboo Stewart (Warpath), with Game of Thrones star Peter Dinklage as the main villai, thought to be Bolivar Trask, creator of the Sentinels.