Judging by the barrage of set snapshots that recently popped up on the web (which Fox are promptly having taken down,) X-Men: First Class is clearly up and running. Yet, there still remains a lingering question about this new entry in the X-Men film franchise which is primarily set in the swinging 60's: Is it a prequel or reboot? For a time, it seemed like the casting of January Jones as Emma Frost (played by younger actress Tahyna Tozzi in X-Men Origins: Wolverine at a point supposedly later in time,) was the official stamp indicating First Class' reboot status. Well, the latest news tidbit has certainly raised that question once again. According to a report from BleedingCool, director Matthew Vaughn has pulled-off what is allegedly a shot-for-shot remake of the opening scene of Bryan Singer's first X-Men film. -- At least, "up to a point." So, what's going on here?
The scene, detailing Magneto's origin as a small child (played by Bill Milner and by Michael Fassbender as an adult) in 1945 imprisoned in a Nazi concentration camp in Poland, is a conventional version of the mutant master of magnetism's tragic upbringing. So, there's certainly no surprise that said film would try to represent this angle in some way. In fact, this was to be a centerpiece in the scrapped X-Men Origins: Magneto project. Yet, the report of a shot-for-shot remake of the scene from Singer's film has again raised speculation that this film is not so much a reboot, as it is a proper prequel to Bryan Singer's X-films (which were wrapped-up by Brett Ratner.)
According to BleedingCool's report:
"This sequence plays out shot-for-shot in the upcoming X-Men: First Class… at least, up to a point. They casting is different too, of course – this time around, the tremendous Bill Milner is playing Lensherr – and when the sequence does deviate, it’s with some very dramatic twists… which we’ll be keeping under our hats for now, I’m afraid."
While the overly-crowded cast of mutants, many of which are obscure and anochronistic to the time period may have given some fans (myself included) some apprehension, I'm actually pretty excited to see Kevin Bacon playing Sebastian Shaw. With the whole Hellfire Club storyline playing out, it should make for a unique X-Men experience. However, as a fan, I also hope that this film's status ultimately reveals itself as a reboot. I don't think I'm in the minority when I say that the way X-Men: The Last Stand played out was a complete and total mess and the idea that this version of the X-Men mythos would ultimately end with the events in THAT film, would leave a horrible stain on this upcoming film.
What's your current outlook on X-Men: First Class? Is it shaping up to be worthwhile? Or is it a waste of time?