X-Men Movieverse

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Name: X-Men Movieverse
Abbreviation(s): XMM
Creator: Bryan Singer (director, producer, X1/X2/DOFP, XMA),
Brett Ratner (director, X3),
Gavin hood (director, XOW),
James Mangold (director, The Wolverine and Logan),
Matthew Vaughn (director, XMFC).
Simon Kinberg (XMDP),
Tim Miller (DP1),
David Leitch (DP2),
Josh Boone (TNM).
Date(s): 2000, 2003, 2006, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020
Medium: Film, Television
Country of Origin: United States
External Links: IMDB; Wikipedia
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

The X-Men Movieverse consists of a number of films and television series, based on characters from the Marvel comic books, The Uncanny X-Men and related titles. The XMM (X-Men Movieverse) is not considered part of the extended MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe), having been released by Fox, the rights having been sold to the company in 1994. The XMM itself has a number of non-compatible components due to lack of cooperation between the various creators.

The movies and comics have a separate canon and fandom because many canonical details were changed in the movies (for example, Rogue's origin), and the movies attracted many new fans who had little or no exposure to the comics.


The Original “Trilogy”

The original trilogy of movies consist of X-Men (sometimes known as X1 or X-Men: The Movie) (2000), X-Men United (X2) (2003), and X-Men: The Last Stand (2006).

X-Men: Teenaged mutant runaway Rogue meets with rough but charismatic loner Logan (also known as Wolverine, according to the dog tags he wears). The become entangled in the ‘war’ between Professor X/the X-Men and Magneto/the Brotherhood of Mutants. Additional characters introduced are Cyclops, Storm, Jean Grey, students Bobby Drake and John Allerdyce, and Toad, Sabretooth and Mystique.

X-Men: United: A human general wants to exterminate all mutants and the X-Men must work with Magneto and Mystique to save mutant kind. Characters introduced include Nightcrawler, Colossus, Artie Maddicks, Siryn, Shadowcat, Jubilee, Lady Deathstrike and Jason Wyngarde/Mastermind.

X-Men: The Last Stand: Jean Grey returns from the dead as the highly-powerful but unstable Phoenix and kills Cyclops and Professor X before joining Magneto in his quest to eradicate the newly-discovered mutant cure. The X-Men try to stop him and are forced to face Phoenix. New characters: Callisto, Juggernaut, Multiple Man, Angel, Moira MacTaggert, Arclight, Quill, Leech, and a number of others seen briefly in group scenes.

The Wolverine: The sixth film in the franchise to be released (in 2013), The Wolverine is a direct sequel to X-Men: Last Stand and focusses on Logan as he mourns Jean and is taken to Japan where he faces the Viper and the Silver Samurai and falls in love with Mariko Yoshida. New character Yukio makes the prediction that she sees Logan’s death… “covered in blood, holding your heart in your hands”.

X-Men Origins

There were a number of X-Men Origins movies planned, but only one made - X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009). It was a critical disaster and the fandom response to largely to pretend it had never been made. The events precede the original trilogy, being set in the 1980s and featuring the Weapon X program and “the Dead Pool”, which turns out to be Wade Wilson with various mutant powers grafted onto him by William Stryker to create a mutant killer. The movie also introduced fan-favourite character Gambit, as well as Silver Fox, Blob, Agent X, Wraith, and teenaged versions of Cyclops and Emma Frost. Sabretooth’s role was played by Liev Schreiber and was considerably less animalistic and feral than the previous appearance in X-Men by Tyler Mane.

Second Trilogy

X-Men: First Class: The fifth movie in the franchise, X-Men: First Class, released in 2011, was another prequel which attracted enormous amounts of fannish attention, particular for the slash pairing of Charles Xavier/Erik Lensherr. It follows how the young Charles Xavier and his foster sister Mystique recruit a number of mutants (Magneto, Banshee, Beast, Havok (in the movieverse, the elder Summers brother), Angel and Darwin), in an effort to stop the machinations of the Hellfire Club (Sebastian Shaw, the White Queen, Azazel and Riptide) and prevent the Cuban Missile Crisis from turning into all-out nuclear war. Charles is paralysed in line with Professor X’s later appearances in a wheelchair. Hugh Jackman appears as Logan in a brief cameo.

X-Men: Days of Future Past: The seventh film is X-Men: Days of Future Past (aka, DoFP) (May 2014) which is a sequel to X-Men: First Class but merges with the earlier films actors/characters more and is based on roughly the time-travelling storyline from the comics. Following this movie, there are effectively two timelines - the original movie timeline where Jean Grey dies, and the alternate timeline where she doesn’t. Characters that were introduced include Warpath, Blink, Sunspot, Bishop, Bolivar Trask and Quicksilver and it was revealed that First Class’ Angel and Banshee were killed before the events of DoFP.

X-Men: Apocalypse: The ninth film in the series is X-Men: Apocalypse (2016) and featured only X-Men: First Class cast/characters along with young versions of Jean Grey, Cyclops, Jubilee, Nightcrawler, Angel and Storm. Wolverine briefly appears and Charles receives his iconic bald look during the battle with ancient mutant Apocalypse. Psylocke is also introduced, as one of Apocalypse’s Horsemen.

X-Men: The Dark Phoenix: Released in 2019, this was the twelfth movie in the franchise. It is set nine years after X-Men: Apocalypse and features the comics storyline of "The Dark Phoenix Saga". In this iteration, the Phoenix is an outside force which chooses Jean as its avatar, but she is unable to control the power it gives her. Selene Gallio was introduced, while Mystique was killed off.


While the Deadpool movies [Deadpool (2016), Deadpool 2 (2018) and the upcoming sequel, Deadpool 3 (estimated release 2024)] are technically part of the XMM as they are Fox movies and reference X-Men characters, they do not quite follow the same continuity. Colossus is very different, for example, much older and speaking in a typical Russian accent (and being played by a different actor) and none of the established X-Men characters are seen. Fan-favorite Teenage Negasonic Warhead is introduced in the first movie and her girlfriend Yukio appears in the second. Other comic characters who appear are Ajax, Arclight, Blind Al, Vanessa Carlyle (although without shapeshifting powers so far), Rusty Collins, Cable, Shatterstar, Juggernaut, Domino, Bedlam, Zeitgeist and the Vanisher. The post-Dark Phoenix X-Men from the second trilogy also appeared very briefly.


The tenth film is Logan (2017) which is set in 2024 where Logan and Professor Charles Xavier must cope with the loss of the X-Men and the decline of mutants. With Logan's healing abilities slowly fading and Xavier's Alzheimer's hampering his control of his psychic powers, Logan must defeat Essex with the help of a young girl named Laura Kinney/X-23, his female clone.

The movie is considered “The End” of the franchise, although there have been other movies and television shows released since which are set before the events of Logan. The film is considered a critical success and there is a nice little call-back to The Wolverine - Logan dies, covered in blood, holding his “heart” in his hand as described in Yuriko’s vision - his heart is X-23, the daughter he never knew he’d had.

Deadpool 3, to be released in 2024 is rumoured to have Hugh Jackman returning to the role he had announced he’d retired from - the movie will be set before the events of Logan CITE.

Bits and Pieces

In October 2015, Marvel Television announced that two television series based on X-Men characters, Legion and Hellfire were in development and would take place inside the X-Men Movieverse. Legion, based on the character David Haller, was ordered by FX and aired in 2017 for an eight-episode season. Hellfire was later dropped, and The Gifted X-Men television series was announced instead[1], airing in late 2017 for two seasons before being cancelled in 2019. Neither series is set within the XMM or at least not in the two known timelines[2][3] and contradict established XMM continuity (such as it is!).

The New Mutants (2020), a "superhero horror movie" about a group of young mutants held in a secret facility fighting to save themselves included the Mirage, Wolfsbane, Sunspot, Cannonball and Magik as well as Dr. Cecilia Reyes. Fans raised concerns with the whitewashing of Roberto De Costa and Dr. Reyes, as well as racist language used by Illyana. The movie included elements of the Demon Bear storyline from the comics.

Mark Millar has stated that the reboot of the Fantastic Four film series will exist in the same universe as the X-Men Movieverse although no crossovers are planned[4]. In the wake of Marvel (through Disney) subsequently regaining the rights to the mutant-verse in 2019 and the appearance of Reed Richards in Dr. Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, it seems unlikely this will still happen. It also seems unlikely at this stage that the long-awaited Gambit movie (with Channing Tatum hoping for the lead role) will happen either. A full list of cancelled X-projects can be found on the official Wiki page.

Main Characters

This character list will focus only on the first four movies - see X-Men: First Class.

  • Wolverine - the main character in every single movie
  • Professor X - leader of the X-Men
  • Magneto - the main antagonist/enemy of the X-Men
  • Storm - the weather witch
  • Cyclops - Jean's fiancée, one of the first Professor's students according to X1
  • Jean Grey / Phoenix - another one of the first students, woman that both Scott and Logan loves. Due to her alternate personality she becomes a villain after her resurrection in X3.
  • Rogue - a young mutant that Logan rescues in Alaska and later joins the X-Men
  • Mystique - partner of Magneto (or pretty much just does all the dirty work for him)

Minor Characters

  • Iceman - interested in Rogue & later her boyfriend, in X3 he started showing interest in Kitty.
  • Pyro - was part of the X-Men until X2 when he joins Magneto's cause
  • Kitty Pryde - minor character until X3 where she joins the X-Men team
  • Beast - only appeared X3 (later XMFC), where he is confident and is in the U.S. Cabinet as the Secretary of Mutant Affairs
  • Colossus - fairly minor character until X3
  • Nightcrawler - helps the X-Men in X2. Joins them in XMA.
  • William Stryker - main antagonist in X2 & X-Men Origins: Wolverine, part of Weapon X. Secondary antagonist in XMDOFP & XMA
  • Sabretooth - in X1 part of Magneto's team and enemy of Wolverine. In X-Men Origins: Wolverine he's half-brothers with Logan and they fought together as mercenaries until after Logan leaves Weapon X program and loses his memory (completely losing his memories of his half-brother)
  • Jubilee - appears in X2 briefly and in novelization, appears fully in XMA


To fanworks-creating and -consuming fans, the X-Men Movieverse often denotes the initial trilogy (perhaps the first two Bryan Singer-directed movies in the trilogy even more than the third Brett Ratner-directed installment), as the X-Men Origins: Wolverine movie is largely ignored, and the most recent X-Men: First Class movie has gained a large fandom which seems more separate than not from the earlier trilogy's fandom.

Slash Fandom

The main slash pairing of the original trilogy was Scott/Logan.

The X-Men Movieverse canon is an unusually friendly one towards slashers. In both the movies and the comics, being a mutant is explicitly paralleled with being gay:

The scene when Bobby Drake’s family find out he’s a mutant is rife with metaphors. After Bobby confides his secret, his mother fires off a round of typical cliches any queer person can identify with: “Honey, have you ever tried not being a mutant?”; “This is all my fault.”; “We still love you, Bobby.”[5]

In addition, with a gay director (Bryan Singer) and a prominent gay actor, Ian McKellen, playing Magneto, the slashy subtext became text in several interviews.

[McKellen] told Empire magazine, "He hasn't been given a love line, which I think is a pity.
"It would be wonderful if the camera hovered over Magneto's bed, to discover him making love to Professor X."[6]

Since Iceman/Pyro and Xavier/Magneto are two of the most popular slash couples in the fandom, this was particularly good news.

The New Mutants had the first canon gay relationship, between Dani Moonstar and Rahne Sinclair.

Het Fandom

X-Men Movieverse fandom was not limited to slash shipping. The Wolverine/Rogue pairing was the juggernaut het ship for the fandom, which attracted several BNFs (presumably based on the actors' chemistry and scenes together). Jean Grey/Wolverine and (film canon pairing) Jean Grey/Cyclops also had significant presence, and some fans shipped film canon pairing Rogue/Iceman as did the fanon pairing of Storm/Wolverine. However other pairings also became quite common as well such as Storm/Nightcrawler, Storm/Wolverine, Rogue/Pyro, Rogue/Cyclops and Iceman/Shadowcat (due to third film's scenes it's quite common in break-up fics relating to past-Rogue/Iceman stories).

There are quite a lot of rarer pairings, such as Storm/Cyclops, Rogue/Colossus, Rogue/Angel, Magneto/Rogue also appeared in the fandom.


See X-Men: First Class for their list.

The main characters used in the fandom are the same as the main characters: Wolverine, Storm, Cyclops, Jean Grey, and Rogue. However Gambit, Sabretooth, Pyro and Iceman are pretty popular in the fandom as well.

The fairly common characters (usually used as secondary characters in fics) are Kitty Pryde, Professor X, Magneto, Nightcrawler and Mystique. Beast, Colossus, and Angel also gained some popularity in the fandom especially after X3.

Some of the minor characters (characters that got only cameos in the film) that fandom cherishes are Jubilee and Siryn.

Common Tropes & Themes

Notable Fanworks


During the release of the first three movies, there was a wave of new fanfiction in response, by writers such as Minisinoo, Victoria P, Diebin, Devil Doll, Jane St. Clair and Penknife.

With X-Men: First Class, fics tended to focus on Charles/Erik. See the X-Men First Class for examples.

[see Category: X-Men Fanfiction for both comics and movieverse fanfic]





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