X-Men: First Class 2 – Sequel Plans11.06.11 # Sequel # 269 Comments
There’s been plenty of X-Men: First Class 2 talk over recent days, so what has been said and how likely is a sequel?
First the bad news. A sequel has not been announced. …Yet. If the movie was a complete slam dunk, it would have been. After all, a screenwriter for The Hangover Part III was hired virtually the day after it opened.
Quality-wise, First Class is a roaring success, with an 87% rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes, and an 8.2 rating from the public on IMDB, putting it into the top 250 public-voted movies ever made. What’s causing the studio to pause for thought is the slightly underwhelming box office. First Class had the least attended opening weekend of any of the X-Men films, its $55m only passable by the standard and down significantly on X-Men Origins: Wolverine’s $85m. Hopefully better word of mouth will help it keep afloat longer, and all sequels are victims to a certain extent of the previous film – Spider-Man 3 opened huge because Spider-Man 2 was so good, First Class opened weaker because audiences were underwhelmed by Origins: Wolverine. Another factor is, unlike the previous three movies, First Class didn’t have any stars. If the studio are wise they’ll remember that Batman Begins (which only did decent box office, but thrilled those who saw it) led to The Dark Knight (which did enormous box office). The First Class actors will be a much bigger draw next time around.
Unusually, First Class is potentially the second X-Men franchise running simultaneously, what with Wolverine about to get another film next summer. It’ll be interesting to see which one wins out, or if they can both co-exist. There’s a slim chance the studio won’t make any firm decision until Wolverine 2 comes out, giving them an opportunity to compare the numbers.
But all things considered, an X-Men: First Class sequel is much more likely than not.
Plot-wise, there’s not much point looking to the comics for where the story will head. Although there is a series of the same name, the differences with the first movie are enormous. Instead it’s wiser to listen to producer Bryan Singer who’s said “When [First Class] happened, Kennedy had not been assassinated and the Vietnam War hadn’t happened yet. …[Also] what’s really interesting about the ’60s setting is the civil rights movement. [Professor X and Magneto are] really the Malcolm X and Martin Luther King of comic mythology.”
Meanwhile, First Class director Matthew Vaughn has stated “We will only have one more new character [in an X-Men: First Class sequel]. I won’t say who he…I won’t say who he or she is! …As Professor X is in a wheelchair, Magneto needs to have a nemesis he can fight with. Someone that will be his equal. I know who it is. It would be nice if I could say something, but I can’t.”
There’s also a possibility Wolverine himself could join the franchise in a more significant way than his cameo. Singer adds, “I think there would definitely be room. I think it would be very exciting. This universe has to establish itself first, but that would be a very interesting and fun thing.” It’s likely that a sequel would be set before Wolverine lost his memory in the 70s. And besides, the director has shown he will throw out continuity with other movies if it serves his story. If the Wolverine franchise starts to faulter, then moving him back over to the winning team could make sense, especially if Jackman is still keen on playing the character.
What would you like to see happen in an X-Men: First Class sequel? Which time period should it be set in? Which new characters should they add? Would having Wolverine be a blessing or a curse? Leave your thoughts in the comments.