Sophie Turner, who will star in the upcoming film X-Men: Dark Phoenix, says that the movie is going to “revolutionize” the superhero genre.
Calling it a “dark, gritty drama,” she said “We are revolutionizing it. We wanted to create a whole new genre of superhero movie.”
The X-Men films have actually been doing that a bit lately; both Logan and Deadpool were hailed for taking their stories in new directions, the former being a modernized Western, the latter a crude, dark comedy filled with slapstick. Also upcoming is New Mutants, which has been billed as something of a horror flick.
Turner plays Jean Grey, one of the original X-Men and a powerful psychic. In 2016’s X-Men: Apocalypse, we see her manifest more of her powers than previously known, which also created a halo that comic book fans recognize as being the mark of the Dark Phoenix, a dangerous entity associated with Jean.
In the famed “Dark Phoenix Saga,” Jean is possessed by the Phoenix, a cosmic force with powers of both creation and destruction. With the being in control, Jean winds up going on a rampage and even draining the energy from a star, which winds up destroying a planet full of alien life. (Whether or not the film will get so cosmic remains to be seen.) In the end, Jean manages to take control of herself again, and willingly dies in order to keep the creature from continuing its violence against the universe.
(Oh, and then she turns out to be a clone and the real Jean is still alive… comic books are weird. Presumably the film will parse things down a bit.)
It is worth noting that the X-Men films tried to adapt this story before with its third entry, X-Men: The Last Stand, back in 2006. The movie was not well received, being too “down to Earth” and having the epic saga share a story with a plot about scientists developing an injection to turn mutants into normal humans. This film, set in a different timeline (see X-Men: Days of Future Past) seems to be an attempt to make up for those mistakes.
For now, fans of the comic book saga, and especially Jean Grey, will have to hope that the film lives up to Turner’s hype.