X-Men: Dark Phoenix writer/director Simon Kinberg says that female X-Men characters are the main focus in his adaptation of Chris Claremont’s acclaimed comic book storyline, The Dark Phoenix Saga.
Dark Phoenix is the studio’s second shot at bringing Claremont and Josh Byrne’s acclaimed 1980 comic story arc to life on the big screen. However, given how director Brett Ratner handled the story in X-Men: The Last Stand, the hope is that Kinberg – who wrote The Last Stand, but was forced to reduce the Dark Phoenix story thread to a subplot in his script – will do much better, now that he’s calling the shots and has more creative control over the final product.
However, it isn’t just the Jean Grey show. Speaking to EW, Kinberg said that the rest of the women will all get their moments to shine:
“I really wanted to acknowledge the strength of the women in the comic and in the actresses that we have and the central storyline demands it.”
Sophie Turner will once again be reprising her role as Jean, noting the importance of the female character development in the movie:
“I feel like this movie is a revelation because of it being like a drama but the hero is a female and she’s also the villain. It really is about her relationships with the females in the film, especially Jessica Chastain’s character. It’s really interesting to have those two characters be kind of the two biggest characters in the movie and both be female and so layered and so complex.”
Obviously Jean will be the focus of Dark Phoenix, but with an all-star cast of supporting women like Jennifer Lawrence and franchise newcomer Jessica Chastain, it sounds like Dark Phoenix should manage to do justice by more than one X-Woman. Chastain herself told EW that it was Kinberg’s women-dominated screenplay that actually drew her to the movie for her mysterious part as an otherworldly villainess.
“The Dark Phoenix Saga” follows Jean’s transformation into a dangerous weapon in the world of superhero mutants. As she struggles to harness her own power, expect Dark Phoenix to have a few shocking twists and turns along the way. However, at least Kinberg and the rest of the cast appear to have done their homework this time around. Hopefully, there will be a faithful adaptation of the story with an update for the changing cinematic landscape, where the likes of Wonder Woman are leading the way.
In the past, the X-Men movies could be accused of being a bit of a macho affair held up by the likes of Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. Fortunately, starting with X-Men: First Class, the franchise has offered a much larger role for Lawrence’s Mystique. With Turner, Lawrence, and now Chastain leading Dark Phoenix, it sounds like there will be a trifecta of fierce women for the men of the X-Men franchise to contend with.
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