Dark Phoenix Simon Kinberg Michael Fassbender

Dark Phoenix director Simon Kinberg says that the X-Men film took a note from Logan, teases Genosha

Contributed by
Sep 30, 2018

It's no secret that X-Men: Dark Phoenix will be a dark movie. After all, you've got the lightless adjective right there in the title.

However, the gloomy tone and more mature themes of Simon Kinberg's directorial debut were formed by other Marvel pictures at Fox, particularly Hugh Jackman's Wolverine swansong, Logan. Just as that movie was an unconventional and R-rated superhero movie, so too is Dark Phoenix very different from every mutant-related offering that's come before, also inspired by a certain galaxy far, far away. 

Whilst breaking down the film's first teaser for Empire Magazine, Kinberg said:

"The way I wanted to make the movie was very different than the aesthetic of previous X-Men movies, which I’ve been very involved in and proud of. But I wanted it to feel more naturalistic, I wanted it to feel edgier, more handmade, more real. I was very inspired by what James Mangold did with Logan, and I felt like if I could bring a measure of that aesthetic in the film that all of the intergalactic and larger-scale things that happen in the movie would feel more shocking, more realistic, more emotional. They’d be grounded in some reality. And so, all of the movie – from the costumes, to the title card, to the set design, to the way the X-jet looks – all of that stuff is just more analogue in a way. More like, let’s say, the original Star Wars movies. Not that analogue, but the movies I grew up loving had this very gritty, edgy, cool, human feeling to them.”

In addition, Kinberg touched upon the role of the mysterious character played by Jessica Chastain, credited as "Smith" on IMDB. All he could give up was that she's not of this world. 

“I can tell you this much. Jessica’s character is not of this Earth. She’s an extra-terrestrial character, an alien character,” he said. “I won’t say much more in detail on the specifics of that. While everyone else is trying to control this power inside of Jean, she’s much more interested in essentially encouraging her to go further with it and try to be the peaceful side of herself. She is the devil on Jean’s shoulder, so to speak.”

Oh, and did you see that commune in the trailer where Magneto is living? Yeah, Kinberg revealed that it's an early iteration of Genosha, a fictional mutant country within the Marvel Universe. Pretty cool, huh?

This could end up being an X-Men movie that is most faithful to both the comics and the cartoon series. The costumes alone pay homage to the original designs. 

“I was excited finally as the director to have more of a say and clothe them in their classic costumes ... I had a board full of my favourite images from the comics, and then I worked with our costume designer, who also worked on Logan, to create something that was incredibly loyal to the comics and then also had a little bit of its own feel," said Kinberg, who has only produced the X-Men films up until this point. "There’s little nuances from the cartoons, the comics, from whatever it is that if you were a fan you grew up reading or watching.”

On Friday, 20th Century Fox pushed the movie off yet again, slating it for theatrical release on June 7, 2019. Sophie Turner (Sansa Stark on Game of Thrones) reprises her role as a young version of Jean Grey from X-Men: Apocalypse


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