Not Everyone Wants to See the X-Men in the MCU

Since Disney purchased Fox, rumors have swirled how the characters, specifically the X-Men, would become part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Debates have raged over the introduction of characters. How will the absence of mutants for all those years be explained? At this point, it’s still unclear how the X-Men will make their debut. But one thing’s for certain, not everyone is thrilled with X-Men in the MCU.  Here’s what you should know.

(L-R) Michael Fassbender, Sophie Turner, Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy and Simon Kinberg
(L-R) Michael Fassbender, Sophie Turner, Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy and Simon Kinberg | Jeff Spicer/Getty Images for Twentieth Century Fox

The backstory

According to Time Magazine, in 1993, Marvel was so cash strapped that it sold the rights to the X-Men to Fox. For years, the X-Men and their close allies, the Avengers, couldn’t be on-screen together. Even though Marvel started producing its own line of films in the 2000s, they had to rely on lesser-known superheroes to make the cut.

That didn’t stop those movies from being super successful. Iron Man was the first movie out of the gate, premiering in 2008 to favorable reviews. Then when Disney acquired Marvel in 2009, movie production was taken up a notch with the Avenger films, and the MCU easily became a hugely profitable franchise. But still, some thought the MCU was missing some important parts.

Now that Disney has officially purchased Fox and the X-Men join up with their other Marvel counterparts, it seems to be only a matter of time before they’re back on the big screen. Directors of Avengers movies Anthony and Joe Russo told Time that Marvel, “is going to incorporate those characters under the large Marvel umbrella.”

What fans think

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Without official announcements, fan rumors run rampant. Many speculate that X-Men characters will be reintroduced into the movies one by one. 

However, it’s pure fan speculation. IGN reports that Marvel Studio’s Phase 4 plans have no trace of the X-Men in any of their upcoming projects. And with studios delaying production because of the coronavirus (COVID-19), it could be much longer before there’s any clear word on X-Men in the MCU.

And that’s just fine with some fans. In a recent Reddit forum, one fan stated, “I may be in the minority, but I’m really hoping that X-Men is never tied into the rest of the MCU.”

Those in the minority claim adding the X-Men to the MCU doesn’t seem realistic. They don’t understand how mutants can exist in the same world as other superheroes. Where have the mutants been this whole time? Wouldn’t their presence in the MCU undercut previous history and character storylines? 

Basically, this group of fans feels the X-Men work better in their own world, telling their own stories. They also can’t seem to get past the fact that the mutants have been missing for so long — how can that be explained?

One thing is certain, though. One way or another, addressing holes in the storyline is the priority to appease die-hard fans. Introducing the X-Men, and their interwoven storylines with the other superheroes will need to be at the forefront.

What’s next

The New Mutants, the final installment in the X-Men series, was released at the end of August 2020. Reshoots and the Disney/Fox acquisition delayed the release. For some time, it was unsure if the movie would even see the light of day or just get released on Disney+. With so much adversity, completing the film seemed almost unlikely.

The New Mutants was originally pitched as the first in a trilogy but with Disney now acquiring Fox, all of those projects have been put on hold. Still, it seems, for the time being, The New Mutants will probably be the best shot at an X-Men film for quite some time.

Agree or disagree, it’s safe to say it’ll be interesting to see how and if the X-Men enter the MCU in future films.