From the year 2000 to present there have always been two or three years between each X-Men feature film, but going forward, that’s about to change. Twentieth Century Fox is done with the Daredevil franchise and plans to take full advantage of the key Marvel assets they still own in a big way.

This July will see the standalone feature The Wolverine and next summer, 14 years of X-Men films will come together in X-Men: Days of Future Past, followed by a reboot of Fantastic Four the year after.

Reports of the seemingly dead Deadpool and future crossovers between the X-Men and FF down the road aside, what’s official is that there are three Marvel movies coming from Fox in the next three years and all three of them are designed to radically evolve each respective series.

Despite negative critical reception on two of the X-Men installments, every movie in the series has been profitable. With The Avengers showing just how powerful the appeal of superhero epics can be at the box office, Fox wants to take advantage of their brand and the timing to do something similar with their own properties going forward.

They’ve enlisted the help of comic book creator Mark Millar to serve as a consultant, and Bryan Singer is back in the director’s chair for the next X-Men team-up adventure and has ideas of his own for the series going forward. Despite the age of the series and the talent involved, it’s not over yet and next summer may define the future of the X-Men movies as we know it.

X-Men: Days of Future Past begins shooting today in Montreal, Quebec, and director Bryan Singer is continuing to provide updates via behind-the-scenes photos, tweeting an image of what could be the enclosed Cerebro set (image below) and another of Patrick Stewart in costume, standing, and getting his photo taken (click here for larger version).

X-Men: First Class began shooting in August 2010 for a June 2011 release, less than 10 months of time from start to finish. There were reports of it being rushed and Matthew Vaughn feeling rushed, but for the more ambitious followup, Days of Future Past has just over 16 months of production time before its July 2014 release date.

Ian McKellen tweeted that he was fitted recently for a new, sleeker costume and mentions not needing a helmet. That’s likely because the helmet is there to protect him from telepathic mutants and in the future depicted in Days of Future Past, other mutants may not be his enemy. The Sentinels will be. That or he has minimal powers leftover from X-Men 3 but we’ll ignore that.

Bryan Singer will direct X-Men: Days of Future Past with newcomers Peter Dinklage, Omar Sy, Boo Boo Stewart and Fan Bingbing, along with returning stars Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Nicholas Hoult, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Hugh Jackman, Anna Paquin, Ellen Page, Shawn Ashmore, Halle Berry, Daniel Cudmore.

The Wolverine releases July 26, 2013, X-Men: Days of Future Past on July 18, 2014 and Fantastic Four on March 6, 2015.

Let me know on Twitter @rob_keyes which returning character you’re most excited about seeing again!

Source: Bryan Singer