The upcoming X-Men: Apocalypse will serve as the conclusion to the X-Men film trilogy that began in 2011 with X-Men: First Class and continued last year with X-Men: Days of Future Past. James McAvoy (young Professor X), Michael Fassbender (young Magneto), and Jennifer Lawrence (young Mystique) - the three leads in the First Class series - are all expected to step away from the X-Men franchise after Apocalypse, too.
It's a good thing, then, that Apocalypse will introduce not just younger versions of mutants featured in past X-Men movies, but also those that haven't been featured yet - not in any significant capacity, that is. One such mutant, as we learned today, will be Jubilation Lee a.k.a. Jubilee: a character who has made blink-and-you'll-miss-her cameos in previous live-action X-Men films (and who almost showed up in Days of Future Past's post-apocalyptic future setting).
Jubilee, who possesses a super-human ability to create pyrotechnic energy plasmoids with her hands, first appeared in the Uncanny X-Men comics in 1989. She was the youngest member of the X-Men during the early 1990s comics, around the same time that she was featured as one of the main characters on the '90s X-Men animated TV show. The character, as mentioned before, has been brought to life in live-action form before (by Katrina Florence and Kea Wong), but in Apocalypse it will be newcomer Lana Condor's turn to play the role - and fingers crossed, she'll actually get more than a minute or two of screen time.
Bryan Singer, who is directing Apocalypse (his fourth X-Men movie to date), confirmed the Jubilee news, as you can see below:
Here's a rundown of the young actors (besides Condor) playing mutants for the first time in Apocalypse:
- Sophie Turner (Game of Thrones), who is taking on the role of Jean Grey.
- Tye Sheridan (Mud), who is playing young Scott Summers a.k.a. Cyclops.
- Alexandra Shipp (Straight Outta Compton) as the young Ororo Munroe a.k.a. Storm.
- Kodi Smit-McPhee (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) as the young Kurt Wagner a.k.a. Nightcrawler.
- Ben Hardy (EastEnders), whose character remains TBA - though he's presumably playing a mutant.
These Apocalypse cast members won't be the sole new additions to the X-Men film universe debuting next year. The role of Colossus is being recast for the upcoming Deadpool movie (releasing a few months before Apocalypse), while Channing Tatum is locked in place to portray Gambit in the upcoming solo character film (arriving a few months after Apocalypse). Indeed, by the time 2016 draws to a close, the X-Men cinematic universe will have introduced several new mutants who could feasibly carry the torch forward, in whatever X-Men movies 20th Century Fox decides to green-light in the future. (Don't forget, that X-Force script is just sitting around, gathering dust...)
That being said, the older X-Men roster isn't done with their run just yet. We've heard that such players as Ian McKellen as older Magneto will figure into the storyline for Apocalypse (how, remains to be seen). Meanwhile, Patrick Stewart as the older Professor X may be going on a buddy adventure with Logan (Hugh Jackman) in the Wolverine movie scheduled for 2017. And speaking of Jackman, he's made it clear: he'd be perfectly happy to play Wolverine for the rest of his life. (Old Man Logan, anyone?)
Fantastic Four opens August 7th, 2015, Deadpool on February 12th, 2016, X-Men: Apocalypse on May 27th, 2016, Gambit on October 7th, 2016, Wolverine 3 (not the official title) on March 3rd, 2017, Fantastic Four 2 on June 9th, 2017, and some as-yet unspecified X-Men film on July 13th, 2018.
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