Twentieth Century Fox's mutant universe is the oldest of the current blockbuster superhero franchises since it originally kicked off with Bryan Singer's X-Men in 2000. Over the last 17 years - through a reboot, spinoffs, and major continuity alterations - one constant has been Hugh Jackman's portrayal of the gruff, sideburn-sporting Wolverine. Now according to the actor himself, Jackman's run as the adamantium-enhanced hero is coming to an end with Logan. The actor reteamed with The Wolverine director James Mangold for the third solo film following his X-Men franchise character.
Logan takes place in the near-future of an X-Men world where mutants have gone missing, leaving Wolverine to care for an old and ailing Charles Xavier aka Professor X (Patrick Stewart) when a young mutant named Laura (Dafne Keen) enters the picture. Although Logan is still two weeks away from hitting theaters, buzz has been building for Fox's second R-rated X-Men offering. In particular, Keen has received a great deal of praise for her turn as the young Laura and, in fact, her performance has Mangold interested in the possibility of a spinoff following her character.
In an interview with We Got This Covered to promote Logan, Mangold was asked whether he'd be interested in tackling any other comic book related properties. Aside from Logan, The Wolverine is the director's only other film based on comic book superheroes. In response, Mangold said:
I think Dafne [Keen] is incredible in the film and I would love to see another film about that character and that’s certainly something I’d be involved in. For me that was one of the big additions I brought to the table, this decision to try to make the film about family and to try to insert Laura and the pressures that would put and the idea about Charles ailing.
In the X-Men comics, Laura Kinney aka X-23 is a clone of Logan who has similar adamantium claws (though she has two in each hand and one in each foot). Fans have long anticipated the character's arrival in the live-action X-Men franchise, and though it hasn't yet been officially confirmed that Keen's Laura is X-23, the evidence provided in clips and trailers is irrefutable. Certainly, since X-23 is a fan favorite character from the comics and Keen's performance as Laura is garnering early praise, she seems like an obvious choice for a spinoff movie from Logan.
That said, although Mangold has now expressed his interest in a possible X-23 movie starring Keen, it's unclear whether Fox would be open to the idea or if they've even discussed it as a viable option in their continuing X-Men franchise. There are a few roadblocks in the way of a potential X-23 film, not the least of which being Keen's younger portrayal of the character. Plus, considering Logan takes place in the future of the X-Men universe, it severely limits which other characters could be included in the potential spinoff.
Still, fans have waited nearly 17 years for the introduction of X-23 and if early reactions are anything to go by, they'll be pleased by Keen's take on the character. So, if Logan's Laura is popular enough, it may spark discussions of a possible spinoff. However, Fox will first have to see how successful Logan is in theaters - and fans will have the chance to see Keen's version of Laura/X-23 for themselves once the film premieres.
Source: We Got This Covered
- Logan (2017) release date: Mar 03, 2017
- Deadpool 2 (2018) release date: May 18, 2018