Fox Slates Three X-Men Movies For 2018, Release Dates Announced

Twentieth Century Fox had one of the sleeper hits of 2016 with the release of Deadpool. They’ve now announced that not only will fans get Deadpool 2 in 2018, but they’ll also get two other X-Men-related films. New Mutants will hit the screen first in 2018, and X-Men: Dark Phoenix will come later in the year. The Hollywood Reporter has the scoop on the release dates and who will direct or possibly direct the two newly announced films.

“Next year is going to be jam-packed in terms of Fox superhero titles: New Mutants will open April 13, 2018, while Dark Phoenix hits cinemas on Nov. 2. New Mutants, directed by Josh Boone, follows a young team of superheroes, while Dark Phoenix will revisit a classic comic book storyline that saw Jean Grey (Sophie Turner) become the host for the Phoenix Force, a cosmic entity that eventually drives her to becoming a destructive force that ultimately leads to her death. Longtime X-Men writer and producer Simon Kinberg is a top contender to direct the project, which is a followup to 2016’s X-Men Apocalypse.”

Deadpool 2 will hit the big screen on June 1, 2018. Ryan Reynolds returns in the role of Deadpool/Wade Wilson, and the new movie is adding Zazie Beetz as Domino and Josh Brolin as Cable. Deadpool and Cable frequently cross paths in the comics, so it should be entertaining to see them interacting with each other on the big screen.

For X-Men: Dark Phoenix, Sophie Turner will reprise her role as Jean Grey. “The Dark Phoenix Saga” originates in the comics with the run Chris Claremont and John Byrne had on X-Men in the 80s. This particular story was alluded to in X2: X-Men United and X-Men: The Last Stand. Since the latter movie in 2006, there have been some rumors of the storyline being revisited, and fans now have confirmation on that.

The New Mutants cast includes Maisie Williams as Wolfsbane, Anya Taylor-Joy as Magik, Nat Wolff as Cannonball, and James McAvoy as Professor Charles Xavier. The New Mutants are a group of teenaged superheroes. They’re still in training, but that’s nothing new for the X-Men because moviegoers have seen Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters many a time already. This movie will just have characters who haven’t been at the forefront of the movies before — other than Professor Xavier, of course.

Sophie Turner at X-Men Apocalypse premiere
[Image by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images]

What Comics To Read Before Watching The Movies

If comics interest you, there are definitely some runs to check out relating to each of the three movies before you go watch them. Many, if not all, can be found on Marvel Unlimited, a monthly digital comics service that Marvel offers.

Before Deadpool 2 comes around, be sure to check out Cable & Deadpool. The series ran for 50 issues from May of 2004 until April of 2008. Now, you probably don’t need to read all of them, but at least make it through the first story arc (issues No. 1 through No. 6, titled “If Looks Could Kill”) to get a feel for how the two characters interact with one another. Ryan Reynolds made Deadpool an extremely enjoyable character, and all fans can do now is eager await Josh Brolin’s performance as Cable to see if it stacks up with the comics.

New Mutants is a little tougher to decide on, but Chris Claremont has such a storied history with Marvel comics that it’s hard to not recommend him. His run is now collected in quite a few volumes, so start with New Mutants Classic Vol. 1.

“The Dark Phoenix Saga” is the must-read comic before X-Men: Dark Phoenix hits the theaters. It’s available in a collected edition, which includes X-Men issues No. 129 through No. 137.

With that, you should be all set for reading material prior to the various X-Men movies coming out. For a recap, New Mutants will be out on April 13, Deadpool 2 will be out on June 1, and X-Men: Dark Phoenix will round out 2018 with a November 2 release date.

[Featured Image by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images]