Over the past few years, Fox has released some of the best comic book movies to hit the big screen, topped off by Deadpool, which is now the highest-grossing R-rated movie of all-time. But all is not well under the surface, and the studio is apparently undecided about how to proceed.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Fox is struggling to figure out how to move forward with the X-Men franchise, especially now that Hugh Jackman is allegedly done playing Wolverine after next year’s Logan.
And it’s not just Jackman who could be done. Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, and Nicholas Hoult have all completed their three-picture contracts, and getting them back will cost Fox a lot of money.
But it’s not even clear if Fox does want them back. X-Men: Apocalypse did poorly at the big office, so the studio is considering just hitting the reset button on the whole thing. Well, kind of, as The Hollywood Reporter says:
Elsewhere, the reset button has been pressed. Sources say the flagship series will be reconfigured, with Simon Kinberg, overseer of the franchise as producer and writer, working on a new script. Singer, who directed four X-Men movies, will not be returning, according to insider, but the script is being written with Lawrence, Fassbender and McAvoy optimistically in mind.
The roadmap is unclear
Elsewhere, Fox has failed to get a Gambit movie off the ground, and the Deadpool sequel has already experienced trouble with director Tim Miller leaving the project. The studio doesn’t appear to have a cohesive vision for where it wants to go. Even Warner Bros. has a clear roadmap for its DC projects.
If Fox does have any chance of rebooting the X-Men franchise, The Hollywood Reporter suggests it might be done with The New Mutants, a spin-off about a group of super-powered teens. That project, the report says, could begin filming next spring.
Whatever happens, fans of these characters will at the very least get Logan next March and a Deadpool sequel the following year. After that, the fate Fox’s X-Men franchise remains to be seen.