Logan continues to do impressive numbers at the box office and collect glowing reviews and one of the main reasons for the movie’s success thus far has been the addition of Laura – otherwise known as X-23. Marvelously portrayed by Dafne Keen, Laura’s mixture of innocence and brutality epitomizes so much about Hugh Jackman’s version of Logan and allows the actor to show emotional shades of the Wolverine that haven’t been present in his previous excursions.
Given that Jackman has confirmed Logan to be his last dance as the famous superhero, thoughts are naturally beginning to turn to how the character of Wolverine can continue on the big screen. The actor himself has stated he’d love to see another actor take on the Wolverine role – and since X-23 received such a positive reaction from fans and critics, many commentators are suggesting that a X-23 spinoff movie could be on the cards for Keen.
In an interview with THR‘s Heat Vision, the man responsible for creating the original comic book version of X-23 – Craig Kyle – gives his opinion on his character’s live-action adaptation, stating “I am so grateful for how he [James Mangold, director] brought her to screen” and also suggested his idea for how a spinoff movie could work in the future. Kyle pitches:
“I’d love to see some of the stories that we told [in the comics], see as much as we can of how she came to be, but then really get into the stories of what she was forced to do an commit. She said she killed people. She said bad people. The bulk of who X-23 and Laura killed in the comic books were bad people, but she did kill some children. She did kill a whole press corps. I think there’s something powerful about watching her go through those horrors without any say and without any ability to not take those actions.
A story I always wanted to tell was, once she’s free and once she’s gone through what she’s gone through, the only way she can have a hope for a future is for her to go back and trace the lives that remained and were harmed by the actions she was forced to commit. You put her on this journey of redemption… She can go through them one by one and face everyone affected by the murders she was forced to commit, if she can get to the end of that road without being killed by those that remain, there’s something on the other side of that.”
Craig Kyle’s pitch is certainly something that could work on-screen. While Logan did provide backstory to X-23, it also left plenty to the imagination, which means a deeper exploration of the character’s past could go be an interesting route to go down. However, fans will also want to see what happens to Laura after the events of Logan and given the clear remorse she showed in the movie, a journey of redemption would be an appropriate theme to base a spinoff upon.
Although the hype around X-23 is significant right now, it could perhaps be argued that the character isn’t well-known enough to a mainstream movie-going audience to warrant their own spinoff. An alternative might be to include the character in other movies as part of an ensemble cast. Quite how this would fit into the timeline of the X-Men universe is anyone’s guess. Still, given the current complexity of the franchise’s timey-wimey meddling, Fox could easily fit the character in somewhere if they so desired.
With that said, the studio is currently having far more success with smaller-scale features than they are with their flagship X-Men series, with the most recent movie, X-Men: Apocalypse receiving a mixed reaction both in commercial and critical terms. In stark contrast, the almost-never-made, small budget Deadpool was the studio’s highest grossing movie in the series. And with an R-rating and two mediocre previous solo films, Logan perhaps shouldn’t have worked on paper either, but that theory is currently being proved vastly wide of the mark. With that in mind, perhaps taking a risk on an X-23 spinoff wouldn’t be such a bad idea after all.