This summer, the X-Men trilogy that started with 2011's X-Men: First Class and continued with 2014's X-Men: Days of Future Past comes to a close with X-Men: Apocalypse. The story is set in 1983, 10 years after the events of X-Men: Days of Future Past, centering on the villainous Apocalypse (Oscar Isaac) and his plan to conquer the world. Yahoo! Movies UK spoke with director Bryan Singer on the set, where he compared this upcoming action-adventure to the beloved HBO fantasy series Game of Thrones.
"I'm a huge Game of Thrones fan. There's a crossover between X-Men and Game of Thrones, they're both about a younger generation finding their powers, finding out who they are, and what their place in the world is. I like how the show's about different groups of people moving towards a common goal. They don't even know if that's the right goal, who wants to sit on that uncomfortable throne? I don't! Everyone in King's Landing is miserable. But for some reason they want that power."
Of course, there is an actual "crossover" between the show and this movie, with Sophie Turner joining the cast as a young Jean Grey. This movie will also finally showcase James McAvoy as a bald Professor Xavier, much like Patrick Stewart's version of this iconic character in the original 2000 blockbuster X-Men. The director compared the newly bald character to another iconic role, Marlon Brando's Colonel Kurtz in the 1979 classic Apocalypse Now.
"We talked about Kurtz and the lighting of that reveal [in Apocalypse Now]. Obviously, they did it for that character because Brando showed up so fat Francis Ford Coppola didn't know how to introduce him, and he thought 'I'll do it very slowly and gradually and hide the body' because it might be a shock to the audience. There was a practicality, which ended up being a piece of magnificent artistry, with one of the greatest improvised monologues in film history. Here, there's nothing that direct, but we do laugh about it looking through the monitor."
We know that X-Men: Apocalypse will mark the end of this current trilogy, but it still isn't quite clear what plans 20th Century Fox has for the franchise. Rumors have spread that director Bryan Singer will return to Montreal next year to film X-Men 7, but that hasn't been confirmed by the studio. Yahoo! Movies UK also spoke to James McAvoy, who teased that this movie marks the end of "three stories," with three characters on the "verge of death."
"It's the end of three stories. Raven is on the verge of death. For me, I see Jennifer [Lawrence] on the verge of death. And I've known Jennifer and Raven for five years now, and I love them both. Peter [Maximoff] is on the verge of torture and death, and I feel that too. Erik and Michael, they're on the edge of this pivotal moment in their life, and I feel all this. I've got a good enough imagination that I can place my friends and these characters I've shared five years with in these situations, and it's f***ing horrible. What sets 'X-Men' apart for me is that it is fun, it is a glib, flippant and throwaway popcorn movie sometimes, but the relationships are so strong it creates this emotional space in which big things are felt. It wasn't just the weight of the world I was feeling. It was the death of the world."
Yahoo! Movies UK also debuted a new behind-the-scenes photo with the director alongside James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender, along with new shots of Jennifer Lawrence, Kodi Smit-McPhee and Oscar Isaac. Take a look at these new photos, and stay tuned for more on X-Men: Apocalypse.