The casting of Patrick Stewart as Professor Charles Xavier for X-Men over a decade ago was probably the best casting in a superhero movie there has been, and will ever be. Ever. So the thought of another actors cheeks warming up that wheelchair isn’t something I’ve wanted to think about, until now. Last month Bryan Singer announced his return to the franchise and said that X-Men: First Class would revolve around “the formation of the X-Men, how they began, and the relationship between a young Xavier and a young Magneto”.
This won’t be the first time we’ve seen a young Xavier and Magneto. We saw Stewart and Ian McKellen all youthful during the opening scenes of X-Men: The Last Stand, and last year producer Lauren Shulder Donner said that “you can’t do X-Men: First Class without Patrick [Stewart]”, so one assumed they would be going for the de-aging technique again. However since Donner made that statement the original script by Gossip Girl writer Josh Schwartz has been pushed to the side, and Singer is worked on a brand new script which, from what we have heard, focuses more on Xavier and Magneto than the previous treatment. This means de-aging two 70+ year old actors for a two hour movie might not be viable. Unfortunately.
Patrick Stewart recently spoke to TrekMovie about First Class, and said:
…working on X-Men with Sir Ian McKellen was “one of the best and most fun experiences” he has ever had, and that it was “the best job in the world” because every day he got to go to makeup and say good morning and give a kiss on the cheek to Halle Berry, Rebecca Romijn, Famke Janssen and Anna Paquin (and even Hugh Jackman). As for the future of X-Men, Stewart talked about the upcoming young Magneto & Xavier film (joking they were going to hire 8-year olds), but he doesn’t expect to be involved. However, Stewart did note that “working with Ian again would be wonderful.”
Singer is expected to make Jack the Giant Killer before heading back to the X-Universe, so they might not have got round to rounding up the cast yet. Although it is looking likely that we will be seeing new actors playing Xavier and Magneto. I saw Ralph Fiennes’ name suggested somewhere, and I think he’d be a good Xavier if they will be needing actors in their 40’s. Do you have any suggestions?