For the first time in the X-Men series, Twentieth Century Fox is bringing a movie with no returning actors from the franchise. Adding that on top of setting the prequel in the 1960s, X-Men: First Class may be the series’ toughest sell yet, not too mention that it’s releasing after two films in a row that received poor critical response.
One of the obstacles the marketers need to overcome is selling the mutant characters unfamiliar to non-comic reading moviegoers, and that’s being addressed today with three new X-Men: First Class character trailers, focusing in on the mutant powers of Banshee, Beast and Havok.
All of the trailers thus far have remained mostly the same, introducing a few hints of new footage with each new version. While we’re eager to find out every bit we can about the film’s story and characters, we do appreciate Fox not unleashing the floodgates so we’re not spoiled.
Last night we also posted some new First Class images you’ll also want to check out, including a Hellfire Club-themed banner. Most of what we’ve seen so far has focused on the film’s two leads in Charles Xavier and Erik Lehnsherr so it’s refreshing to get a few looks at the villains and the supporting character of characters forming the first X-Men superhero team.
Sean Cassidy aka Banshee is the team’s flyer, capable of using his sonic screams for both flight and to unleash all sorts of mayhem. At the end of the trailer we see Banshee land in the ocean (also seen in the previous X-Men: First Class trailers) to take out a submarine (or at least, destroy its sonar).
Comic fans will notice that Caleb Landry Jones’ version of Banshee doesn’t speak with an Irish accent and this is a missed opportunity. It’s an unfortunate trend of the X-Men films to “Americanize” fan-favorite international characters. We also saw it with Colossus and Pyro in the main X-Men trilogy.
We’ve seen very little of Banshee in the marketing until recently, but his flight scenes look great and they kept true to his comic costume design.
Dr. Hank McCoy aka Beast, a character whose film continuity makes little sense, is played by Nicholas Hoult in X-Men: First Class. McCoy, like Rogue in the X-Men trilogy, doesn’t want to be a mutant and is seeking to find a cure. That sentiment is only magnified when he undergoes the transformation into the blue fur ball we know him as from the comics.
From the first trailer, we knew Beast looks amazing after his transformation and I expect he’ll be one of the fan-favorite characters of the First Class film and potential series. Mystique takes a special liking for McCoy, as she also looks very unlike “normal” humans when in her true mutant form.
Alex Summers aka Havok has challenges controlling his plasma energy powers. Unlike the comics where he is the brother of Cyclops, Havok may be playing his father since the film is based in the ’60s. Fans will also note the change in color of his energy blasts to red, more in line with Cyclops’ optic blasts from the previous X-Men movies.
This particular trailer introduces us to a character, afraid of what he’ll do to others, lacking control of his dangerous abilities. It features much more of Professor X taking on the role of a mentor, trying to help mutants cope with their abilities. Both characters were cast well.
These brief trailers are just as good as the others and we can’t help but feel excited for the return of the X-Men to the silver screen. They’re all good and I can’t pick a fave! Which character do you like best?
The X-Men: First Class cast includes James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Kevin Bacon, Jennifer Lawrence, January Jones, Rose Byrne, Nicholas Hoult, Jason Flemyng, Zoë Kravitz, Lucas Till, Oliver Platt, Ray Wise, Edi Gathegi, Caleb Landry Jones and Álex González.
X-Men: First Class hits theaters June 3rd, 2011.
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