The official synopsis for the new X-Men movie, X-Men: Apocalypse, has landed online. Bryan Singer is back in the director’s chair after returning to the franchise he created in X-Men: Days of Future Past, and for this entry he’s taking the action fully into the 1980s. With the time travel device of Days of Future Past now behind us, Apocalypse shifts the focus back on the X-Men: First Class mutants, with the character arcs of Professor X (James McAvoy), Magneto (Michael Fassbender), Raven (Jennifer Lawrence), and Beast (Nicholas Hoult) culminating in a bit of a conclusion to the reboot trilogy.
This isn’t the end, though, as Singer and 20th Century Fox no doubt intend to continue the X-Men story, but the fact remains that contracts for McAvoy, Fassbender, Lawrence, and Hoult are up for re-negotiation, so their future in the series is somewhat up in the air.
But that has nothing to do with X-Men: Apocalypse, which is in the can and heading towards its May 2016 release date. We know that the film brings Oscar Isaac’s villainous Apocalypse into the fold and also introduces young versions of Cyclops (Tye Sheridan), Jean Grey (Sophie Turner), Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee), Storm (Alexandra Shipp), and Jubilee (Lana Condor). This official synopsis, which was revealed through a marketing tie-in with M&M’s (via Heroic Hollywood), sheds more light on the story and reveals one key change:
“Since the dawn of civilization, he was worshiped as a god. Apocalypse, the first and most powerful mutant from Marvel’s X-Men universe, amassed the powers of many other mutants, becoming immortal and invincible. Upon awakening after thousands of years, he is disillusioned with the world as he finds it and recruits a team of powerful mutants, including a disheartened Magneto (Michael Fassbender), to cleanse mankind and create a new world order, over which he will reign. As the fate of the Earth hangs in the balance, Raven (Jennifer Lawrence) with the help of Professor X (James McAvoy) must lead a team of young X-Men to stop their greatest nemesis and save mankind from complete destruction.”
So yeah, we knew that Apocalypse enlisted Magneto to complete his Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (alongside Storm, Ben Hardy’s Angel, and Oliva Munn’s Psylocke), but there’s a curious bit of wording at the end with regards to the X-Men themselves. The language makes it clear that Raven is leading the X-Men. Professor X is also involved, but this synopsis seems to suggest he’ll be more of a co-pilot or mentor, or maybe he’s just otherwise engaged.
Regardless, this is one of many big changes we could see occur as a result of the altered timeline from the end of Days of Future Past. I’m curious to see what other shifts we can glean in Apocalypse, as the events of the time-bending follow-up no doubt have major repercussions for the future of the X-Men universe.
For now, peruse all of the officially released X-Men: Apocalypse images thus far below. The film opens in theaters on May 27, 2016.