Bryan Singer...please don't make X-Men Origins: First Class.
CHUD has all of the info tied up into a nice little package, including video from yesterday's Avatar premiere where Singer let this slip (although it looks like the news may have initially hit the internet via Twitter). Singer's name has been floating around next to this one for awhile now, but considering the borderline violent way Fox reacted to his wanting to direct Superman before a third X-Men film (which culminated in that whole Brett Ratner fiasco), it always felt, well, wrong. Now we have confirmation from the man himself.
Let me repeat myself: Bryan Singer...please don't make X-Men Origins: First Class.
I would love to see Singer make another X-Men film. X2 remains one of the best superhero movies ever made and I think every fan has wondered how he would have handled the Dark Phoenix Saga, but this is a move that reeks of desperation on either Fox or Singer's part. Fox isn't exactly lighting the box office on fire and has garnered a reputation for borderline abusive behavior toward the creative folk who toil under them. Singer's Superman Returns was a financial and critical disappointment and Valkyrie was, at best, a minor effort. Maybe Singer thinks he needs the X-Men franchise to get anything made in Hollywood ever again. Maybe Fox thinks fans will only support another X-Men film if Singer is at the helm.
I suffered through X-Men Origins: Wolverine. I watched a fine director like Gavin Hood permanently tarnish his reputation by making the second worst blockbuster film of 2009 (he's lucky this was a Transformers year). And don't let the massive opening weekend fool you. The second weekend drop-off for X-Men Origins: Wolverine proves that audiences didn't dig the movie either and I'm sure Fox knows this.
So, this brings me to two points:
1. I don't want to see Bryan Singer anywhere near the X-Men Origins series. Gavin Hood couldn't fight the studio hard enough to produce a watchable film and in his "weakened" state, I don't think Singer will either.
2. This is a prequel. We know who is going to live and who is going to die. We know what is going to happen next. Does anyone care what teenage versions of Storm and Cyclops and Jean Grey did back in the day? I know I don't. Make X4. Move the story forward. Take us on new adventures. Taking us back in time is lazy and silly and will probably feature Patrick Stewart made out of silly putty again and I don't think anyone wants that.
Bryan Singer is working on Jack the Giant Killer for Warner Bros. first. Maybe he'll come to his senses.