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Here’s why ‘Dark Phoenix’ director Simon Kinberg didn’t want to include ‘X-Men’ in the title

Published Oct 2nd, 2018 9:31PM EDT
Dark Phoenix title
Image: YouTube

We got our first look at the upcoming Dark Phoenix movie last week via the release of the highly anticipated trailer, and if you were among those wondering why the designation of “X-Men” wasn’t played up along with the title, we’ve got you covered.

Director Simon Kinberg, in an interview with Collider, said he wanted to go the Logan route. To indicate that this is something with a bit of its own identity and edge.

“I wanted to call it Dark Phoenix in again very much the way we wanted to call Logan ‘Logan’ as opposed to ‘X-Men: Logan’ to indicate that it’s a different kind of film and to indicate that it’s a more character-driven movie,” Kinberg told Collider. “And for me, and Hutch [Parker], as people who worked on X-Men III: The Last Stand, that didn’t have any trace of Dark Phoenix in the title, we really wanted to indicate that this is the Dark Phoenix story and that she’s at the center of this story, she’s the A-plot of this story, everything around this story revolves really centrally around Jean/Dark Phoenix as really the subject of the movie, not the object of the movie.”

Kinberg very much wants this to be a strong capstone to the X-Men film franchise that he’s been involved with since 2000. Especially after X-Men: Apocalypse earned a poor critical and audience reception. The Dark Phoenix plot also ended up being only a somewhat haphazard element of 2006’s X-Men: The Last Stand, so this is a chance to tell that story the way he thinks it needs to be told.

We should also add, unrelated to this news about the title — the release date has also been pushed back again, unfortunately.

The release of the trailer last week came with word that the film was headed for a February release. That’s since been pushed back to June, with the director also telling Collider that it’s a function of a few different things.

“It was a date, Feb. 14th, that we initially liked for the movie but (then) we realized that we weren’t gonna have the visual effects ready to release it globally the way we wanted to, and the Gambit date opened up because it wasn’t gonna be ready for that June 7th date,” he said. “We looked at that date versus the February 14th date, the studio did and we did, (and) we felt like that June date was a bigger opportunity for us globally. More screens, more IMAX screens, a better chance to play in China where these movies have a massive following.”

They also paid attention to the fact, he said, that some 44-45 million views of the Dark Phoenix trailer were in China alone. So, this new date “is an opportunity to be a bigger movie day-and-date globally.”

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Andy Meek Trending News Reporter

Andy Meek is a reporter who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming. Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.