One might argue that Fox is to thank for the superhero boom we’re currently in, after releasing X-Men in 2000. Now, sixteen years on, the super-hero franchise that started it all is a mess.
It’s a series that spans two timelines, has at least two actors playing the majority of its characters and a wealth of inconsistencies from one film from the next. Furthermore, the most recent X-Men outing, X-Men: Apocalypse, was poorly received by most. Many even found it hysterical that one of the lines in the film seemingly points out that the film isn’t that good, as Jean Grey claims “At least we can all agree that the third one is always the worst”.
But in spite of these problems, Fox has kept powering on with the X-Men franchise, this year releasing the hit film Deadpool and preparing an array of new directions for the franchise, including X-Force, New Mutants and the Channing Tatum-starring Gambit.
But according to The Hollywood Reporter, Fox may have finally decided enough is enough.
Reports say that a reboot may soon be in store; one to help wash away the mess that is the X-Men continuity. According to unnamed sources, producer Simon Kinberg (the man who co-wrote X-Men: Last Stand, the film that started this whole mess) is being targeted to oversee a new reconfiguration of the franchise, working as producer and writer.
This could be good or bad news depending on how you look at it (but also consider that he co-wrote and produced another recent Marvel/Fox property, Fant4stic).
However, the problematic factor is that Fox doesn’t seem to be fully committed to this approach, and are considering their reboot a la the Sony Spider-Man debacle (wherein Sony cancelled their planned Amazing Spider-Man franchise in favour of sharing the character with Marvel Studios, only to once again start talking about their pseudo-spin-offs Venom and Sinister Six still moving ahead). The new Kinberg-penned script is being written with the hopes that James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender and Jennifer Lawrence, whose contracts have all come to an end, may consider returning. Similarly, New Mutants and Gambit are still on the table, directors willing.
Likewise, Deadpool doesn’t seem to be tied into this reboot, as not only is the studio moving ahead with trying to find a new director and to cast the characters of Cable and Domino, but apparently Deadpool 3 is already being discussed, and will be the film in which the aforementioned X-Force shows up.
In short, in considering a reboot but not fully committing to it, Fox looks set to make the franchise even more of a confusing mess than it already is. Only time will tell.
For now, the only thing that’s certain is the fact that Logan*, the final outing of Hugh Jackman as Wolverine and the logical place to end the franchise before they start over, is due to be released this coming March.
*The trailer of which is apparently the most watched in the history of the franchise.