Are ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’, ‘Amazing Spider-Man 2′, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Becoming Overcrowded?
With Iron Man 3 recently hitting the box office in big way, and Man of Steel and The Wolverine quickly on their way, it’s hard for one’s attention not to be firmly set to the pending comic book movies that we’re more than happy to accept with open arms into our wallets. As much as we as viewers, though, love and want nothing but the best for these type of films, one must sit back and ponder: are some of these movies in danger of becoming overcrowded, which is the last thing movies like this should be. The most obvious and pressing of these are X-Men: Days of Future Past, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, and Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy.
Wind the clock back to 2006 with Brett Ratner’s massive flop X-Men: The Last Stand, which was universally scorned by critics and audiences alike. If you were to ask anyone that’s seen that travesty-of-a-movie, nine times out of ten they’ll mention how it had far too many characters that clogged the film up and was simply unable to juggle all of them successfully. The three upcoming movies that I listed above are in danger of that very same thing.
Take X-Men: Days of Future Past; not only does it have the cast of X-Men: First Class to deal with (which includes James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, and Nicholas Hoult), but also the cast of the original X-Men (which includes Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Anna Paquin, Ellen Page, Shawn Ashmore, and Daniel Cudmore) through a rumored time-travel plot that’s sure to make things interesting. As if that wasn’t a large enough cast to begin with, there’s also three prominent newcomers: Omar Sy, who Indiewire has confirmed is playing time traveling, sentinel-fighting mutant Bishop; Peter Dinklage of Game of Thrones fame, who most assumes is playing sentinel creator Bolivar Trask; and Evan Peters, who will be playing Pietro Maxinoff, AKA Quiksilver, AKA Magneto’s son. That’s quite a hefty cast, but director Bryan Singer (the director of X-Men and X2) has proven in the past that he’s a talented storyteller and more than capable of pulling that delicate balancing act off, despite what Jack the Giant Slayer may suggest).
Then there’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2. The cast that are returning from The Amazing Spider-Man is relatively small in comparison to the newcomers entering the picture. From the first are Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Martin Sheen (for some reason), and Sally Field. The newcomers’ list is significantly longer: Dane DeHaan as Harry Osborn, Shailene Woodley as Mary Jane Watson, Jamie Foxx as Electro, Paul Giamatti as The Rhino, Chris Cooper as Norman Osborn, and Felicity Jones, B.J. Novak, and Colm Feore in unknown roles. That’s a heavy docket for any director to deal with and I’m not entirely convinced that director Marc Webb is capable of rising to the occasion. Granted, it’s nearly impossible to predict what kind of capacity any of these characters might have in the overall scheme of the film, but it is cause for at least some concern.
One mac-daddy unknown exists in all of this and that is Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy. The core cast that we know who will be playing whom is Chris Pratt as Star-Lord, Zoe Saldana as Gamora, and WWE wrestler Dave Bautista as Drax the Destroyer. I wish that I knew enough about Guardians of the Galaxy to be able to describe who these characters are, so the names themselves will have to do for now. The other actors who could be playing only-God-knows-who is John C. Reilly, Karen Gillan (from Doctor Who), Lee Pace, Ophelia Lovibond, and Glenn Close. This isn’t a troublesomely large cast (yet), but this is one that will be a hard pill to swallow, regardless of how many actors are in it. Even if the cast only consisted of the Guardians of the Galaxy themselves, that’s still a task in and of itself. The goal of all of these Marvel/ Avengers movies is to introduce you to characters before they’re all plopped into one film together. Guardians of the Galaxy‘s job, in that case, is already much more difficult than that of Thor‘s, which some might argue didn’t do a great job of getting that character, either, and that was just one character. Guardians of the Galaxy has five! Did I mention one of them is a talking raccoon, too?
Is the fate of any post-Avengers to plop as many characters into a movie and just hope for the best? The Avengers director Joss Whedon was talented at balancing screen time for characters. Bryan Singer, Marc Webb, and Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn are clearly all very talented people, but it’s crazy to expect them, or any director for that matter, to have that same skill.
Do you smell doom for X-Men: Days of Future Past, Amazing Spider-Man 2, and/or Guardians of the Galaxy? Leave your thoughts in the comments.
- Drew Koenig