X-Men Prequel Moves Forward With Kick-Ass Director at the Helm

After winning over fanboys but fizzling at the box office with his alt-superhero flick Kick-Ass, director Matthew Vaughn has decided to explore more conventional comic book territory. THR‘s Heat Vision blog confirmed today that Vaughn has signed on to helm the Marvel origin tale X-Men: First Class, which traces the beginnings of the rivalry between Professor X and Magneto, mutant archenemies who once “were closest of friends, working together, with other Mutants (some familiar, some new), to stop the greatest threat the world has ever known.” And that threat, boys and girls, was called Disco.

X-Men vet Bryan Singer had been slated to direct First Class before wisely opting for a reduced role as the prequel’s figurehead producer. According to Heat Vision, Fox is fast-tracking the prequel for a June 2011 release, which means they’ll have to start rendering the CGI effects sometime tomorrow morning to have any hope of delivering the prints on time. Good thing Fox isn’t being hasty about this. We wouldn’t want another half-baked rush job.

The great irony, of course, is that Vaughn was the original director hired to make 2006’s X-Men: The Last Stand, but bowed out mere weeks before the start of shooting due to those pesky, ever-ambiguous “creative differences” that so often sabotage promising film projects. One can only assume (and dread) that Fox has Brett Ratner on speed-dial.