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Bryan Singer Talks X-Men: First Class, Franchise Future & "Frenemies"

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Mar 18, 2010 | 7:44am EDT

Bryan SingerSource: The LA Times

After abandoning the mutant franchise he helped build, Bryan Singer's Superman Returns performed poorly at the box office and all thought that his tenure as King of the Comic Book movies was over. He was lucky enough to be brought back into the fold by 20th Century Fox and producer Lauren Shuler Donner, who have hired him to direct the prequel X-Men: First Class and now, the Los Angeles Times has sat down with the duo to discuss their plans to further the franchise.

On why he thinks the X-Men movies are suited for him, Singer said:

"I genuinely like the people, and my personality meshes more with this universe than it does with other universes, I think; I see that now at this point... I feel a connection to the X-Men characters and also the ensemble nature of the films. If you look at 'Usual Suspects'' or my last film, 'Valkyrie,' I feel especially comfortable with ensemble juggling. In the space between all the characters you can disguise a central thought that's hidden in all the discourse. I missed that with the singular relationship story of Superman. And, well, it always gives you something to cut to..."

According to the article, Singer says X-Men: First Class will find its axis in the relationship between Professor X and Magneto and the point where their friendship soured. It will also detail the beginning of the school for mutants and have younger incarnations of characters with new actors (He shrugged when asked if Hugh Jackman might appear as Wolverine).

"Just doing younger mutants is not enough. The story needs to be more than that. I love the relationship between Magneto and Xavier, these two men who have diametrically opposite points of view but still manage to be friends -- to a point. They are the ultimate frenemies."

Shuler Donner also has pitched Singer on doing a fourth installment of the previously established "X-Men" franchise and Jackman had lunch with Singer to coax him into a project as well, which may or may not be Wolverine 2. Jackman has said the sequel will be set in Japan and released in 2011.

In the interview, Singer turned to Shuler Donner and said of X-Men 4: "Hold that one off for just a little, I'm fixated on the other one right now." She nodded and answered, "I will, I will ... I'm holding it open with high hopes. It's totally different [from 'First Class'] and it will be so interesting for you."

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