Halle Berry as Storm in 'X-Men,' released in 2000 (Photo: 20th Century Fox)When it comes to the new "X-Men" movie, is a Storm not a'comin'?
Director Bryan Singer, who's returning to the "X-Men" franchise after a ten-year absence, has conjured quite the ensemble cast for his homecoming project, "X-Men: Days of Future Past." But while the mutant lineup features familiar faces from both the original "X-Men" trilogy and "X-Men: First Class," there is one graduate of Xavier's School For Gifted Youngsters that's noticeably missing (for now, anyway): Ororo Munroe, aka Storm, played by Halle Berry.
So, will the "Days of Future Past" not involve the weather-controlling mega-babe?
"I can't say. I don't know yet. And it's not necessarily a deal making aspect at all," Singer said in a recent interview with MTV. "I want to make sure it'll make sense. But I love working with her."
"Sense" hasn't always applied to the character of Storm in the live-action "X-Men" movies, as she was often called upon to utter inexplicable lines like "Do you know what happens to a toad when it's struck by lightning? The same thing that happens to everything else" and ridiculously shortchanged in contributing to the plot of both "X-Men" (2000) and "X2" (2003). Storm didn't really come into her own until the Brett Ratner-directed "X-Men: The Last Stand" (2006), where she finally took center stage and emerged as a formidable warrior, teacher and leader ... and, indeed, one of the few survivors of that film's rather head-scratching mutant purge.
However, Storm became headmistress at Xavier's School at the end of "The Last Stand," so if Singer's new film incorporates both sets of characters and merges their continuities, it would make sense that she comes back. We have a feeling the real issue is that Berry herself might not want to come back to the series; indeed, she allegedly only signed on for "The Last Stand" after she was assured that Storm would actually have something to do in that film.
Whether Berry/Storm is back or not, it sounds like Singer is utilizing the already rather large cast to finally bring a sense of teamwork to the "X-Men" movies, especially after the first three movies could've easily just been titled "Wolverine 1," "Wolverine 2" and "Wolverine 3."
"I don't want to say [who the protagonists are] yet, or talk about that yet, but I will say that every character has a very important function in the story," Singer said. "The story is designed and catered to the combined cast. It's not just throwing in people to occupy the screen, occupy the billboards. The story 'Days of Future Past' and our version of 'Days of Future Past' is geared very much toward the mass cast and all their relationships and all their foibles and their achievements."
The original comic book story of "Days of Future Past" was told in "The Uncanny X-Men" issues #141 and #142, published in 1981. The grim yet extremely popular tale takes place in a dystopian alternative future in which mutants are incarcerated in internment camps. A grown-up Kitty Pryde transfers her consciousness to her younger self, who rallies the X-Men to prevent a moment in history that triggers anti-mutant hysteria.
The cast of "X-Men: Days of Future Past" includes the "First Class" lineup of Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Nicholas Hoult and Jennifer Lawrence as well as original cast members Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Ellen Page and Anna Paquin. The film is set to hit theaters on July 18, 2014.
Watch 'X-Men: First Class' Theatrical Trailer: