The cast of X-Men: First Class continues to absorb and consume a good percentage of Hollywood's actors. The latest victim, if you will, is veteran actor Oliver Platt. According to Deadline, Platt has joined the cast to play a character who is described as a "non-mutant" called The Man in Black. (Holy Damon Lindelof, Batman!) No other details have emerged as to the scope of his role, but the fact that a respected actor of Platt's caliber has been cast is probably indicative of it being critical to the plot. Platt will join a cast lead by James McAvoy's Professor Xavier, Michael Fassbender's Magneto, Kevin Bacon's unnamed villain, and a myriad of others. In fact, just over the weekend, Jason Flemyng was also added to play the Nightcrawler-esque teleporting mutant, Azazel. Yup, it's getting a bit crowded in the Danger Room.
The ever-expanding nature of First Class's lineup is not even a punchline anymore; it's an unstoppable, insatiable epidemic that won't rest until every single working actor, both live and dead are swept into this film. At this point, 99.99999% of this film's budget is probably devoted to the cast. (Give or take a .9.)
Kidding aside, still in its early stages, it's difficult to really come to any objective conclusions about the film. But, at this point, this project is coming across like the clown car of a comic book films. It's undoubtedly a quality cast, but it leaves you to wonder if there's room for anyone to shine. While much of these additions will likely be for cameos and bit parts, we still see an odd dichotomy of big names playing obscure parts (Platt as this "Man in Black" character) and obscure or "new" names playing big parts (Nicholas Hoult as Beast.) For all we know, director Mathew Vaughn will find a way to put it all together in a compelling way, but from the outside looking in, it seems messy. With a projected release date of June 3, 2011, the clock is ticking fast.
What do you think about X-Men: First Class? Is it approaching things correctly? Or is it becoming a glorified Ocean's Eleven for comic geeks?