Adding to the bevy of X-Men: First Class-related material from the past week is a new interview with director Matthew Vaughn. The Kick-Ass director is currently busy editing the film, but took some time to sit down and talk about the next installment in the X-Men franchise. He actually talked quite a bit about the flick, comparing it to a Bond film:
The best way of describing it is X-Men meets Bond, with a little bit of Thirteen Days thrown in for good measure. It’s set in the ’60s, and I basically molded a young Magneto on a young Sean Connery. He’s the ultimate spy — imagine Bond, but with superpowers.
For more from Vaughn, including what time period the film starts in (not the 60’s), why die-hard fans are wrong about criticizing him for changing X-Men history, the difficulty of casting the role of Charles Xavier and the film’s similarity to Twilight, hit the jump.
In the interview with EW, Vaughn talked about the nature of Erik and Charles’ (Magneto and Professor X, respectively) initial relationship:
Erik and Charles meet each other and hook up with the CIA to try and prevent World War III. You find out everything about what went on between Erik and Charles. It starts in 1942, and then works its way up to 1962.
When asked whether he had concerns about angering die-hard comic book fans with his version of the history of the X-Men, Vaughn responded thusly:
Yeah, but I could tell those fans that they’re wrong. One thing about the X-Men world is that, if you know your X-Men universe, every writer reinvented the storyline. I did my research, and none of the histories of the characters make any sense. Each writer just totally changed the history to make their plot work. So I can quite safely say that X-Men has a history of reinventing its history for the sake of the plot.
Professor X is a very hard character to cast. Out of all the characters, he’s the dullest if you really think about it. He’ll be in a wheelchair eventually, and he’s sort of a sanctimonious preacher half of the time. Patrick Stewart brought so much to that role, and I needed to get an actor who could do the same — who could give him a fourth dimension that’d make him sparkle. James was literally at the top of the list, and he said yes, so I got my first actor very quickly.
The director was enthusiastic when talking about the rest of his cast:
What makes me laugh is, by this time next year, half of my cast is going to be extremely popular and famous. Jennifer Lawrence [i.e. Raven Darkholme/Mystique] is going to pop. Nicholas Hoult [i.e. Hank McCoy/Beast] definitely is. People are going to find Kevin Bacon a revelation, and January Jones [i.e. Emma Frost] has got huge star potential.
It’s got a lot of teenage angst. The Twilight girls will like it.
I think Vaughn’s a great director and can’t wait to see his take on this period X-Men flick. He’s rounded up a fine cast, and while the initial cast photo was worrisome, the subsequent images released have calmed some of my fears. X-Men: First Class hits theaters on June 3rd. Head over to EW.com to read the rest of the interview, which includes Vaughn’s answer to why he dropped out of directing X-Men: The Last Stand.