Patrick Stewart & Ian McKellen Join ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’

2 years ago by  

[Update: Hugh Jackman is in talks to join X-Men: Days of Future Past.]

As The Wolverine reaches the final stretch of principal photography, the next team-based X-Men franchise installment pushes forward in pre-production with director Bryan Singer now at the helm. Serving as both a sequel to X-Men: First Class and a bridge between it, the X-Men trilogy, and potentially the Wolverine solo films, X-Men: Days of Future Past is the most ambitious X-project to date.

Singer began using Twitter this month and is taking advantage of the social media platform to divulge tidbits of exciting information on Days of Future Past, from photos of meetings with the writer Simon Kinberg and returning costume designer Louise Mingenbach to more recently, major casting announcements.

After officially welcoming back returning stars James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender and Nicholas Hoult from X-Men: First Class, Bryan Singer added a major followup announcement:


We told you to count on Patrick Stewart returning from what he said on multiple occasions about reprising the role and we’re happy that it’s now a reality.

With the story of Days of Future Past being that of a tale of time travel, from the outset and confirmation of the film’s subtitle Singer explained that this project would strive to explore the larger X-Men universe and draw from grander stories from the books, taking inspiration with what Marvel Studios has done with their unified cinematic universe. He said that with the time travel plot device, they can connect the dots so to speak, between the X-Men films and ideally, make sense of the broken continuity.

Patrick Stewart Professor X Ian McKellen Magneto X Men Chess 570x320 Patrick Stewart & Ian McKellen Join X Men: Days of Future Past

With Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen both returning as Professor Charles Xavier (Professor X) and Eric Lensherr (Magneto), respectively, we have to ponder how exactly they fit into the story. At the end of X-Men: The Last Stand, Magneto had seemingly lost his mutant ability to control magnetism but there was a hint his powers could be returning to him. For Professor X, he died at the hands of the Phoenix, but in the post-credits scene, it was revealed that he passed his mind into the body of his brain dead brother.

If Days of Future Past picks up from there, at least for one of the time periods it will explore, older Professor X could very well walk again and Magneto may not be the powerful mutant terrorist leader he once was. The alternative however, and one that may be more appealing to Singer (and fans) is that he uses time travel as a way to rewrite the events of X-Men 3, the film he was originally meant to direct before dropping out for Superman Returns. If that’s the case, we could get Singer’s version of what should have happened in X-Men 3 (read about it here) and all of these characters – or at least most of them – could potentially return.

While it’s not confirmed yet, it seems likely that Hugh Jackman will return in some capacity as well. He’s not only the poster boy of the entire X-Men movie franchise, but the Wolverine character was also central to the Days of Future Past story in Marvel Comics. That being said, while we do believe Jackman will reprise the role again, Singer’s film may be very, very different from what’s in the books, even if there are giant mutant-hunting Sentinels, as revealed by Fox’s newly hired Marvel movies consultant.

James McAvoy Michael Fassbender X Men First Class Chess 570x380 Patrick Stewart & Ian McKellen Join X Men: Days of Future Past

While the story details remain up in the air, with plenty of announcements (Famke Janssen says stay tuned!) to come over the next few months before production begins in April, we can safely and happily say that the black leather costumes of the X-Men trilogy will not be returning. That either means X-Men in normal clothes, or perhaps costumes more in tune with what the characters wear in the books since the retro-inspired designs worked well in X-Men: First Class and fans accepted the authentic from-the-books attire from The Avengers and The Amazing Spider-Man.

Bryan Singer will direct X-Men: Days of Future Past with returning stars Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Nicholas Hoult, Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen, who could be joined by the return of Hugh Jackman, Famke Janssen, Anna Paquin, James Marsden, Ellen Page, Shawn Ashmore. Stay tuned!

The Wolverine releases July 26, 2013 and X-Men: Days of Future Past hits theaters on July 18, 2014.


Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes.


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  1. I m still worry abt this franchise. I mean they alrdy mentioned that the Wolverine took place after X3 and with this future past title going on things can easily gets messed up between the timeline.

    • not really. if The Wolverine is set AFTER the events of X3, then there can be continuity.

      It CAN work with the right push, story, and directing…

      I think Singer is an OK writer, X1 was good, and X2 was.. just okay.

      I want to see a GREAT film.
      I do think this film is going to be the best in the series, so as long as they don’t rush it, and if the story is well, and if ALL the original actors/actresses needed come back, it’d be a stretch, but it’d work with the right amount of cash. Who knows..

  2. Put your trust in Singer, we’re talking about the guy who gave us Usual Suspects. Perhaps confusing plots is what he’s best at.

  3. In Singer we trust!Unlike in DC which is we all know will fail with there JLA movie!I will cry when we see the very first Sentinel chasing a mutant!True they are only robots but they are so iconic and menacing and and and..SO FRAKKING COOL!!

  4. Of course Pat and Ian are in. Fox only makes Wolverine/Magneto /Professor X movies.

  5. so does this mean we get Kelsey Grammar back for Beast? that’d be… beast..

  6. Not everybody should come back…especially not without Storm(Halle Berry) who still presides as the leader of the X-Men(if anybody forgot) in the wake of Professor X’s assumed annihilation. They should hint at bringing other players (Cyclops,Rogue, and Pheonix) into the mix as a means of setting them up to be in X5 and X6 like in subtle plot clues and perhaps mid-credit/post credit scenes

    • The thing is how they left the movies means they can only do so much. They gave Cyclops that lame off-screen death, and did even more half-baked deaths of Xavier and Jean Grey. If they go mainly by the comic Wolverine will still be a major part of the story and Kitty Pryde will also be used. The way X-3 three ended the only other team members around were Storm, Beast, Iceman, Colossus, Kitty and the de-powered Rogue.

      Adding other characters on top of whoever they use from First Class might just make this more confusing and what I don’t get is why they would want to have so many characters when they have had such a hard time giving the proper screen time to so many characters in the past.

      And there is still the issue of who the villains will be. Everyone is rightfully assuming the Sentinels will be involved, but they are machines with no personality that can’t interact with the heroes as far as dialog goes. They have already burned through a lot of the anti-mutant government types, so they have to establish who is pulling the strings so to speak.

  7. I am getting sick of seeing Magneto in all these movies. can i see a new villian? Professor X had other friends. They are running him into the ground like they did Sylar in Heroes. cant a past tense magneto be the only one in the film and its next triliogy?

  8. I think this storyline can work. all you have to do to is bring Bishop in the mix. Bishop can put the story together because he is a time traveler. you can even bring Cable, because cyclops is cable father so cyclops has to live. besides bishop can change things in time so he can warn them and prevent the deaths of professor x and cyclops death that took place in Xmen last stand. I have the perfect actors to play them, the rock can play cable because he has the build. bruce willis can play cable because he has that natural combat experience from die hard movies