Buckle up X-Men fans! The first, explosive trailer for Dark Phoenix has arrived and if it's anything to go by, team X are in for their biggest interstellar battle yet!
After multiple adaptations and retellings of the original Dark Phoenix Saga – an extended X-Men storyline in the Marvel comics universe – over a variety of formats, this is Fox’s latest attempt to get the Phoenix “right”.
If you're not familiar with the story already, here's what you need to know:
Super-writer Simon Kinsberg is directing it
This latest instalment in the X-Men franchise has been written and directed by Simon Kinberg, whose previous superhero writing and production credits include The Martian (2015), Fantastic Four (2015) and Logan (2017). He has claimed it will be "the most emotional" X-Men film yet, with a strong focus on its female characters.
It's set in space
This will be the first X-Men film set in space. During a rescue mission, Jean (Phoenix) is nearly killed when she's struck by a mysterious cosmic force. Once she returns home, this force not only makes her infinitely more powerful, but far more unstable. With Jean wrestling with this force within her, she begins to unravel the very fabric that holds the X-Men together, forcing them to find a way to unite – not only to save Jean's soul, but to save our planet from aliens looking to harness Phoenix's power to rule the galaxy. Yikes!
It's got an amazing cast
Sophie Turner, who played Sansa Stark in Game of Thrones, is in the hot seat (no pun intended) as Phoenix, with the now established, X-Men cast of A-listers alongside her, including James McAvoy as Charles Xavier, Michael Fassbender as Magneto and Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique. Joining the already amazing cast is Jessica Chastain as Smith, described as an "otherworldly shapeshifter". The younger mutants will also be back, with Tye Sheridan returning as Cyclops, Alexandra Shipp as Storm and Kodi Smitt-Mcphee as Nightcrawler.
It's set to pick up shortly after X-Men: Apocalypse
In the X-Men's 2016 outing the titular Apocalypse's plans for human extinction were only thwarted when Jean Grey came to the rescue, unleashing fire and fury as her cosmic alter-ego, the Phoenix Force, who was first introduced in the X-Men comics in the 1980s.
We've been here before
Elements of the Dark Phoenix Saga story, albeit a somewhat watered-down version, were introduced in 2006's X-Men: The Last Stand, in which Phoenix was played by Famke Janssen.
It's going to be worth the wait
Although originally scheduled for release this autumn, it has been delayed by a number of rewrites and reshoots but, if this trailer is anything to go by, the wait to see the end result in 2019 is going to be well worth it, building anticipation to see Phoenix star in her own film even more. Having been initially scheduled for a February release, Dark Phoenix has now been pushed back to June 2019.
Why has the movie been delayed again?
A couple of things to consider here. Firstly, Disney's purchase of 20th Century Fox now means they own the non-Marvel Cinematic Universe characters – and therefore Dark Phoenix's release in the wake of Avengers 4 (out in April 2019) might, just might, potentially mean a crossover between the Avengers and the X-Men. It's all speculation at this stage, but given Dark Phoenix has endured more than a few rounds of reshoots, we might be looking at the Marvel intersection point that's been years in the making.
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