Upcoming superhero movie Dark Phoenix has long been touted as the end of 20th-Century Fox’s long-running X-Men franchise, which began in 2000 and has continued through various reboots and spin-offs for nearly two decades.
With Disney buying Fox and reportedly planning to bring X-Men into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it seemed that fans would be waving goodbye to this particular version of the X-Men – or at least that’s what we thought.
According to X-Men star Nicholas Hoult (who has played Beast/Hank McCoy since 2011’s X-Men: First Class) Dark Phoenix may not be the end after all.
The actor has suggested to RadioTimes.com that the current cast of actors shouldn’t be completely written out of the franchise just yet.
“That’s the thing, it’s a character that I love,” Hoult told RadioTimes.com. “That character’s grown as I’ve grown, and I feel like when I grow and get older and discover new things in life I can put more into the character.
“So who knows what the plans will be for the X-Men? But if it were something that made sense for me to do and they wanted me to, then I’d be happy to play him again.”
Hoult added that while he’s hopeful for the future, he was also grateful for the opportunity to “take that character to new places” in the upcoming Dark Phoenix.
“I did not expect then to play him for as long as I’ve been fortunate to do,” Hoult said.
“And in [Dark Phoenix] I’m very lucky to take that character to new places and explore new emotions and ideas with him.
“So if it is the last time I play him, I’m glad I got to push new ideas and feelings.”
Hoult added that if Dark Phoenix does end up being the conclusion of the current franchise, it will at least offer closure for fans.
“I think it felt like a culmination of what we’d been doing,” he said.
“When I joined that franchise, I was playing one of the students. And then by this point I’m playing one of the Professors at the school. So it certainly felt like an evolution and a culmination of the work up to that point.”
In other words, then, Dark Phoenix might be just the tonic to cap off years of X-Men storytelling, but it doesn’t necessarily mean Disney and Marvel need to throw the baby (actors) out with the bathwater (the canon). Nicholas Hoult, for one, will be waiting by the phone…
Nicholas Hoult stars in Tolkien, out now, and Dark Phoenix, released on 5th June