Screenwriter Simon Kinberg Updates X-Men: First Class Sequel
02.17.12 by Ryan
Now that Twentieth Century Fox has officially hired back director Matthew Vaughn to helm a sequel to his comic book adaptation of X-Men: First Class, all speculation rests with the script, which First Class producer Simon Kinberg is reportedly writing. Kinberg, who also wrote 2006's fanboy-maligned X-Men: The Last Stand, was reportedly hired to script the sequel last November and confirmed his involvement in a recent interview with MTV.
I don’t know what the title is going to be but certainly I’m working on the sequel to X-Men: First Class right now. I’m going to be writing and producing it, I’m starting now, with Matthew Vaughn directing.
Kinberg admitted to growing up "loving the comic books" and was excited to write the second installment and work with actors like James McAvoy, who played Charles Xavier, a.k.a. Professor X, and Michael Fassbender, who played Erik Lensherr, a.k.a. Magneto. Kinberg said that "the plan" is to do some "unexpected" things with the two lead characters, which may mean that Magneto, who was the X-Men's main adversary in the previous trilogy of X-Men movies, won't become the lone villain of the prequel sequel. "We’re still figuring that out," said Kinberg of Magneto's state of mind.
That’s what was so cool about the first one and what we want to continue. Magneto becomes the villain ultimately of the franchise but he’s a much more complicated character as a young man. He’s someone you sympathize with, you care about you root for even though might not necessarily agree with his methods, you understand his philosophy.
I think the truth is ultimately that because Michael is such an interesting actor, he’ll never be full-on anything. He’ll have a villainous side and he’ll have a sympathetic human side you’ll be able to relate but you’ll also be afraid of him. He becomes Magneto, he says "Call me Magneto" at the end of the first movie.
Of course, once Kinberg writes his draft, it seems likely, even inevitable, that he will hire screenwriter Jane Goldman to handle a rewrite, much like he has done for First Class, 2010's Kick-Ass and 2007's Stardust. Goldman recently said in an interview that she was "honestly not involved" in the First Class sequel at the moment, but admitted that she would like to be and that Vaughn would like her back as well. Therefore, it's no surprise that Goldman continues to be asked about it, most recently by Film School Rejects, who asked whether the sequel might use the original X-Men team from the comic books (including the comic book version of X-Men: First Class which only served as a loose inspiration for the movie) — Cyclops, Jean Grey, Iceman, Angel and Beast (who did appear in First Class).
You know, I can always make suggestions, and I did last time. Ultimately, those decisions come down to someone other than me. Would I, personally? Well, it’s really tricky. I think the route we had gone down with First Class — it’s sort of a question of where to go next, and I think those two characters were very strong, especially having Fassbender and McAvoy play them so brilliantly. In a comic sense, I still think there’s room for an X-Men [film] with the original X-Men [Laughs]. In terms of how they fit in this new universe that First Class kicked off, I don’t know. I mean, yes, I think there’s room for that. All sorts of ideas have been talked about and Matthew has some particular ideas, and, in this case, all of those decisions will be done through Matthew.
Vaughn revealed last May that the characters in First Class were chosen by producer Bryan Singer and Fox, but he could have more say in the sequel. At the time, Vaughn said he would like a sequel (at the time, only a speculative possibility) to keep the mutants tied to historically significant events — the Kennedy assassination was mentioned as a possible opening scene — and that he would like to bring in a new character that would be an adversary for Magento. "Someone that will be [Magneto's] equal," said Vaughn at the time, adding: "I know who it is."
Let the speculation begin!