In 2004, X-Men producer Laura Shuler Donner, had the idea of a movie with the younger X-Men. While the idea was met with approval, the project never really got past the starting line. However, during the production of The Last Stand, the project was revived, as Zak Penn (one of the writers of X3) was hired to write and direct the film. Now when I say "Younger X-Men", I don't mean a prequel. I mean a spin-off of the younger X-Men characters (probably not unlike what they're doing now).
Anyway, around this time, another spin-off was being developed by FOX and Sheldon Turner. This one was about Magneto. According to Turner,the movie was set from 1939 to 1955, at an Auschwit camp where he met a soldier named Charles Xaiver. The rest of the movie would be him hunting down Nazis that tourted him and Charles didn't like his lust for revenge.
A movie about how killing Nazis is bad? I wonder why this never got made.
Also, most of these would be flashbacks as Ian McKellen was set to return. However, instead of using younger actors, the movie was supposed to use CGI to make the actors look younger. This wasn't knew as FOX did it at the beginning of X3, at the end of Origins, and it was recently done by Marvel at the beginning of Ant-Man.
Simon Kinberg, producer of X-Men movies and writer of X3, asked FOX if they could turn the comic series First Class into a movie. FOX liked the idea, but Kinberg didn't want to stick TOO close to the comics as he felt there would be similarites to Twilight. And as we all know, if anything is simliar to Twilight, it probably sucks (except for Warm Bodies and Beautiful Creatures, but Bodies was a comedy, and Creatures has southern Jeremy Irons). Another reason was because FOX wanted to introduce new characters. Both Kinberg & Donner wanted to introduce characters whose powers have not been seen. Donner also said that they would greenlight the film if their Magneto film. Speaking of the Magneto film, David S. Goyer was set to direct and said it would now be about Charles & Eric in '62 battling a villain.
In 2008, Josh Schwartz was hired to write a script to X-Men: First Class. Also, this movie was seen as the warm-up when it comes to Bryan Singer returning to the franchise. As he was approached to direct, but due him directing Jack the Giant Slayer, he simply produced the film. However, Ian McKellen claimed he would not need to be in the Magneto film, due to there being a younger actor. In fact, Donner said the movie would never be made.
Later on, Ashley Edward Miller & Zack Stentz were brought on to rewrite the script, which would focus on the relationship between Magneto & Mystique. In 2010, Kinberg brought back Matthew Vaughn, who was supposed to direct X3, to direct this movie. He and his writing partner, Jane Goldman, were responsible for the last rewrite. They ended up changing several arcs (like cutting out a Sunspot, and getting rid of a love triangle between Moria, Charles, & Eric). They also had the idea of a psychic battle between Charles & Emma Frost. But after the release of Inception, they cut it out.
Now for casting. James Flemying, who was supposed to play Beast in X3, was cast as Azazel. Taylor Lautner was supposed to play Beast, but he left (thank god). Amber Heard was rumoured to Mystique, but Jennifer Lawrence was cast. Rosemund Pike was considered to play Moria McTaggert, but she said "No". Then she was considered to play Emma Frost, but she said "No". This movie was the first english film with Alex Gonzalez...
OH YEAH, THE WIND GUY.
WHAT'S HIS NAME AGAIN?
Anyway, the movie was released in 2011, and was the best reviewd X-Men film since X2. People praised the acting, the characters, and the writing. Although, there were some complaints from fans about the character of Emma Frost and the villains. However, it became the lowest grossing X-Men movie. Most likely due to the negative recption of the previous two films.
However, those who stuck around after Origins had their faith restored in the franchise. Nothing could ruin this for FOX. Nothing except if there was another superhero team movie that everyone loved, made billions of cash, and was praised for a strong villain that came out a year later. But what were the chances of that...
Yes, in 2012, it was decided that only the MCU can have truly amazing CBMs. Up to the point where people started saying that any property that didn't belong to Marvel before should be theirs now. Even Hugh Jackman said he wants Wolverine to be in the Avengers.
Speaking of the Wolverine, FOX and Jackman tried to make it up to the fans with 2013's THE WOLVERINE.
In 2007, Gavin Hood calimed that there may be a sequel to Origins based on the Japan storyline. Jackman, who was a big fan of the Japan storyline, tried to talk to writers about the project. A few days after the release of Origins, a sequel was confirmed.
Christopher McQuarrie, an uncredited writer on the first X-Men film, was hired to write a draft. Donner stated that the movie would be about Wolverine having a relationship with Mariko, the daughter of a Japanese crime lord. In 2010, Jackman confirmed that the sequel would start shooting in 2011, and McQuarrie confirmed that the script was ready. Later that year, Darren Aaronofsky was hired to direct. Aaronofsky later confirmed that the film was not an Origins sequel.
However, in 2011, Aaronofsky left the film. He left because, despite him enjoying the film, he didn't like filming it far away from his family. FOX had to delay the movie because Japan was hit by an earthquake and a tsunami.
Later on, FOX hired 3:10 to Yuma director, James Mangold to direct, and Mark Bomback to rewrite the script. Bomback's script inclued The Silver Samurai & Rogue (who was cut when Bomback thought shemade the script "goofy"). Anyway, Jessica Biel was supposed to play Viper, but she dropped out and was replaced by some girl who can't act and has a name I can't pronounce or spell.
The film was released in 2013, and it got decent reviews. Some people liked it for the acting, the character development, the action scenes, the first two acts, and the writing. While others didn't like it for the third act and how they wrote the characters of Viper (a mutant in the movies, not in the comics) and Silver Samuri (a mutant in the comics, a giant robot in the movie).
However, one aspect everyone loved about the movie was the post-credits scene, which set up for the next X-Men film. What was even better was that despite not being able to direct the last four movies, and some very disturbing legal issues (that I don't want to think about), Bryan Singer would return to the X-Men.
TO BE CONTINUED...