Matthew Vaughn Reveals Scrapped ‘X-Men’ Trilogy Plans, Including Tom Hardy as Young Wolverine

If the writer-director had his way, "X-Men: Apocalypse" would have never happened.
Tom Hardy and Hugh Jackman
Tom Hardy and Hugh Jackman
Shutterstock/20th Century Fox

Matthew Vaughn’s 2011 superhero movie “X-Men: First Class” is widely regarded as one of the comic book franchise’s best movies. The film introduced younger iterations of fan favorite X-Men characters such as Charles Xavier (James McAvoy), Magneto (Michael Fassbender), and Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), all of whom would factor into sequels such as “X-Men: Days of Future Past,” “X-Men: Apocalypse,” and the upcoming “Dark Phoenix.” That trajectory, however, is not what Vaughn originally envisioned for the “X-Men” movie franchise.

Speaking to ComingSoon, Vaughn revealed he originally planned for “First Class” to be the first of a new “X-Men” trilogy that would continue with a second installment centered around a young Wolverine in the 1970s and then conclude with a third installment based on “Days of Future Past.” 20th Century Fox and the producers behind the “X-Men” film series did not want to follow Vaughn’s plan, which is the reason he left the franchise behind after “First Class.”

“When I finished the ‘Days of Future Past’ script with it ready to go I looked at it and said, ‘I really think it would be fun to cast Tom Hardy or someone as the young Wolverine and then bring it all together at the end,'” Vaughn revealed. “Fox read ‘Days of Future Past’ and went., ‘Oh, this is too good! We’re doing it now!’ And I said, ‘Well what do you do next? Trust me you’ve got nowhere to go.’ Then they did ‘Apocalypse’ and it’s like…If you flip that around even it would have been better. Hollywood doesn’t understand pacing. Their executives are driving 100 miles-per-hour looking in the rear-view mirror and not understanding why they crash.”

“Days of Future Past” followed “First Class” and continued the “X-Men” franchise’s run of critical and box office hits, but that momentum was stopped with the next sequel, “Apocalypse.” Vaughn did not even want an “Apocalypse” movie made as part of his original trilogy. The writer-director’s idea to make a young Wolverine movie set in the 1970s would have surely drawn interest from comic book and movie fans, especially if he got to see his dream casting of Tom Hardy in the role come true.

The “X-Men” movie franchise comes to a close with the release of “Dark Phoenix,” in theaters nationwide June 7.

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