In the last handful of years, we have been getting absolutely bombarded with superhero movies. Warner Bros. has officially launched their DC Extended Universe with Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice and they have a massive slate ahead of them. Marvel Studios is chugging along and they have at least two movies coming out every year, with three coming out next year including Spider-Man: Homecoming. But, Fox is still around and still making X-Men movies, like the little engine that could, they haven't stopped and they seemingly have no intention of doing so.
Fox officially ushered in the age of the modern superhero movie with X-Men back in 2000, and nothing has really been the same ever since. To date, all of the movies in the X-Men movie universe have grossed more than $4 billion according to Box Office Mojo, and it actually is at an all time high, by some accounts. Deadpool raked in record money for the studio earlier this year and Apocalypse continued with the main X-Men franchise, still managing to pull in pretty decent money as well.
Fox has definitely made some mistakes along the way, and up until X-Men: Days of Future Past, the X-Men franchise had never been one to pull in the massive money that one has come to expect from superhero movies. However, it is still more than enough to keep Fox happy. Fans were hoping that after the failure of Fantastic Four and with a lot of the classic X-Men cast leaving the franchise, that perhaps a deal could be worked out for X-Men characters to finally make their way to Marvel, much like what happened with Sony. That seems very unlikely, as Fox seems to have big plans for the future of the X-Men franchise. What are those plans exactly? Well, we're glad you asked, because here is everything we know about the future X-Men movies.
A lot of details about specific future X-Men movies are way up in the air right now, but one thing you can count on is a Deadpool sequel. Ryan Reynolds had been trying to get a Deadpool solo movie made for a decade, but he and fans knew that to do it right, it had to be rated R. Fox figured that would hinder the movie from making enough money to justify making it, and it turned out that they were very wrong about that. Tim Miller and Reynolds got to make the movie and not only was it a critical smash that fans loved as well, but it made a truck load of money. Deadpool made nearly $780 million worldwide and is now the highest grossing movie in the X-Men franchise. Fox almost immediately greenlit a sequel and even put a in a post credit scene that referenced a little bit of what we can expect from Deadpool 2.
Thanks to that post credit scene, we know that Deadpool 2 will finally bring the character of Cable into the X-Men franchise, but we don't yet know who will be playing him. The other really great thing for fans of Deadpool is that the core creative team from the first movie are all coming back. Tim Miller will be back to direct, Zombieland writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick are penning the script and of course, Ryan Reynolds will be back as Wade Wilson. We don't know when exactly Deadpool 2 will be coming out, but Fox is very likely going to want to fast track it if they can. At the earliest, we could expect a sequel next year if they really get moving, but 2018 seems more likely. Either way, Deadpool is going to a massive part of Fox's plans moving forward.
The idea of an X-Force movie has been floating around at Fox for a very long time in an on-again, off-again sort of fashion. However, during the course of the press tour for X-Men: Apocalypse, Bryan Singer revealed that Simon Kindberg is in the earlier stages of writing the script and that the movie is part of the pans for the studio in the near-ish future. The success of Deadpool no doubt has a lot to do with Fox being big on finally getting X-Force off the ground.
In the comics, the X-Force is very closely associated with the X-Men, but they are more of a band of mercenaries and take a bit more of a mercenary style approach to getting the job done. It is a bit more gritty. The original leader of the X-Force was Cable, who will be appearing in Deadpool 2, so that could easily build out to an X-Force movie. Plus, Deadpool has been a part of the X-Force before, so the team is already coming together. Not to mention that Singer has already teased an appearance by the fan favorite character X-23, who is basically a female Wolverine clone. "I have discussed that with the studio. I actually initially pitched the X-Force and the female," said Singer in an interview with Fandango. We have no idea when an X-Force movie would land in theaters, but it would probably be sometime after Deadpool 2.
Hugh Jackman and his portrayal of Wolverine has been a tremendously large part of what has made the X-Men franchise what it is today. He started off in the first Bryan SingerX-Men movie back in 2000 and has been playing the character ever since. Next year, the third solo Wolverine movie will be coming out and sadly, it will be Jackman's last turn as the character. So, we do know that we will definitely be getting one more Jackman Wolverine performance, but as for the future of the character in the franchise, that is much less certain.
James Mangold is returning to direct Wolverine 3 and it will be taking place in the future, loosely adapting the Old Man Logan comic book storyline. Patrick Stewart will also be returning, presumably for a last time, as Professor X. For right now, it looks like the rest of the X-Men movie universe will be trucking ahead without a hard reboot, even though several of the characters have been recast, thanks to time travel and Days of Future Past. But because of Wolverine's character ark in the franchise, that won't be as easy to do. No doubt, we will be getting a new version of Wolverine at some point because he is simply too popular of a character to just kill off, but we have no idea how that will happen or who it will be. Possibly X-23 could take up some of that mantle, but nobody can replace Jackman.
There are not a lot of very certain things for the future of the X-Men franchise, but there is at the very least a couple of new movies that we can definitely count on, and New Mutants is one of them. Director Josh Boone is already attached to direct the movie and it is in active development, even though there isn't a firm release date set for it yet. New Mutants follows a group of young, somewhat lesser known, mutants who are in training to eventually become X-Men. Boone took to his Instagram a little while ago and posted several pictures that seemed to reveal the lineup for New Mutants, which looks to include Magik, Wolfsbane, Dani Moonstar, Cannonball, Sunspot and Warlock. As mentioned, many of these are lesser known characters to the general public, but they are pretty interesting. It hasn't been confirmed, but there are persistent rumors that casting has already started, and that Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams has been cast as Wolfsbane. We have no idea when or exactly what it will look like, but count on seeing a New Mutants movie at some point in the future.
X-Men: Days of Future Past did a lot of great things. It was Bryan Singer's return to the franchise he launched and he managed to largely undo many of the mistakes made by the much maligned X-Men: The Last Stand. The problem is, because it did so using time travel, things are a bit messy. We now have characters that appear to be progressing forward a decade and a half in time and barely aging a day. We also have a bunch of characters from the original trilogy mingling with characters introduced in First Class and beyond. It seemed like Apocalypse started the process of of pushing the old out and focusing on the new cast, which should eventually serve as a full-on soft reboot of the franchise, but there is no doubt this is going to get confusing at some point. The timeline doesn't appear to be cleaning itself up anytime soon either, as Deadpool and X-Force are going to be taking place in the present time and the main X-Men movies are not, at least right now. And even if they did want to make the main X-Men movies present day, they would have to recast the roles yet again because of age. Just get ready for continuity to get a bit confusing.
90s X-Men Movie
The timeline in the current X-Men movie universe may be a bit messy, but it is what it is and it will lead to some exciting and potentially cool things, despite the potential confusion. For many X-Men fans, it wasn't the original movie that got them on board, it was X-Men: The Animated Series from the 90s. Interestingly enough, it has already been said that the next main X-Men movie will be taking place during the 90s, moving forward roughly another ten years in the timeline from Apocalypse. We know very little about the movie, but for anyone who has seen Apocalypse knows, it seems likely that we are getting a Dark Phoenix storyline redo, after the mess that was The Last Stand. Beyond that, it should be pretty cool to see an X-Men movie that has the aesthetic of the 90s TV series. We sadly don't know who will be directing the movie, but that says a lot in itself.
The modern superhero movie owes an awful lot to Bryan Singer and what he did with X-Men, and maybe more so to X2. After returning to direct both Days of Future Past and Apocalypse, it looks like Singer will be stepping back from the franchise, at least for now. Singer has said that he definitely won't be directing the next X-Men movie and that he wants to go do something "very different." The thing is, X-Men is Singer's baby and there is no way he will be leaving the franchise entirely. He will probably be serving as a consultant, executive producer or something like that. Singer also said that he could see himself returning to the X-Men franchise at some point or another, but for right now it is looking like there is going to be some new blood in the director's chair. That worked out pretty well when Matt Vaughn took over on First Class, but not so well when Brett Ratner took over on Last Stand. So, who knows what will happen, but either way, it is happening.
Even though Bryan Singer may be taking a step back from the X-Men franchise, another long term presence with the series will be a firm presence in the next series of X-Men movies. Simon Kindberg is a massive voice for the X-Men franchise as a producer and writer. He is currently working on the X-Force script and has been producing the series ever since X-Men: First Class. Kindberg has also been a massive voice in the press and is clearly a huge cog in the connected universe. On the press tour for Apocalypse, he revealed details about a possible Fantastic Four sequel and a bunch of other franchise details. There have even been some rumors that Kindberg may be stepping in to direct one of the upcoming movies in the X-Men franchise, but that has yet to be confirmed. What we know for sure is that Kindberg will remain one of the most powerful voices behind the scenes of the future X-Men movies.
Fox may have made some mistakes along the way, but the X-Men franchise is one of their most bankable properties and they intend to hold onto it. With Deadpool and a brand new cast of young mutants having joined the X-Men this year, there is some new blood and some new things to play with, even if we don't know exactly what direction all of that new blood will be moving in. Be sure to stay tuned as we will be keeping you up to date on all of the new news regarding the future of the X-Men franchise.