Could New Mutants Reshoots Connect the X-Men to the MCU?
As the newest X-Men spin-off, and with apparent plans for the future, it's only logical to assume that New Mutants will need to be prepared to assimilate into the MCU or cease to exist. It's not known how Marvel Studios will handle ownership of the X-Men rights, but Kevin Feige has said he's excited for them to come home, meaning they will likely become a part of the fold. It's possible Fox will mostly be allowed to stay its current course, with "connections" being established in a similar fashion to the Marvel Netflix shows, or, in a much less connected way, follow a "multiverse" connection more akin to the way the Arrowverse brought in Supergirl, allowing it to function entirely outside the day-to-day events of the Arrowverse, but still bringing her in for crossovers.
While both of those approaches would make sense, the X-Men aren't exactly the Guardians of the Galaxy in terms of Marvel prominence, so simply including them in some secluded corner of the larger MCU when B and C list characters are sharing the "main" universe spotlight feels like the wrong direction. The X-Men will have to join the Avengers eventually, and they'll either have to reboot or merge universes to do it. While a reboot might be the cleaner way of accomplishing this, the X-Men film universe has always been about the characters more than the world. After all, it's the characters that are (mostly) persistent. The world around them has been inconsistent at best and outright rebooted in Days of Future Past.
Unlike the MCU, where the larger world and global events are mostly consistent from film to film, the X-Men universe could be totally abandoned, bringing the established characters into the MCU. Whether this is done by time travel, jumping into an alternate dimension, or some other cataclysmic event, something in the X-Men's future will need to change, and New Mutants has an opportunity to plant those seeds.
No, New Mutants likely won't be the primary catalyst for this change, but they do have a potential puzzle piece to make it happen. Deadpool 2 is introducing Cable, a walking time paradox; Dark Phoenix will bring the powers of the Phoenix Force, including the power to travel through time and dimension; and New Mutants introduces Magik, AKA Illyana Rasputina, who also has powers over time and dimension. There's even a Kitty Pryde movie in development, and while her powers are a little more straightforward in the comics, she's already been used to alter the timeline of the X-Men franchise in Days of Future Past (and she also has a lot of involvement with the New Mutants in the comics). With the Infinity Gauntlet already in play on the MCU side of things, we're already on the verge of some universe shaping events all around. The question is just how the universe will be shaped when it's all done.
So what's the true reason for the reshoots? At this point it's all just rumor and speculation. The suggestion that it's just to add some scares feels like an incomplete answer, while some sort of grand plan to plant seeds of an MCU integration is also fairly premature. In light of the Disney acquisition, any changes on Fox's part are going to be examined under a microscope until Kevin Feige and company announce their grand plans for the X-Men.
- Deadpool 2 (2018) release date: May 18, 2018
- X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019) release date: Jun 07, 2019
- New Mutants (2019) release date: Aug 02, 2019