The old gang is really getting back together. After weeks of speculation, Halle Berry confirmed to HitFix this weekend that she'll return as Ororo Munroe, better known as Storm, in Bryan Singer's "X-Men: Days of Future Past."
The Oscar-winner portrayed the powerful mutant in the first three Marvel X-Men films: "X-Men" (2000), "X-2: X-Men United" (2003) and "X-Men: The Last Stand" (2006). The franchise was recently "retro-rebooted" by director Matthew Vaughn with the critically acclaimed "X-Men: First Class" (2011) which featured an entirely new cast and was set in the early 1960's. Vaughn is only producing the upcoming sequel, "Days of Future Past," but original franchise helmer Singer is returning to the director's chair after having sat out "Last Stand" and "First Class" (which he co-produced). The new film is rumored to begin in 1973 and will find the young "First Class" X-Men (Nicholas Hoult - Beast, Jennifer Lawrence - Mystique) traveling through time to engage with some version of the "old" but more modern day X-Men (Hugh Jackman - Wolverine, Ellen Page - Kitty Pryde).
The film's plot and title are seemingly inspired by the classic "Future Past" storyline featured in Uncanny X-Men issues 141 and 142 which found Pryde transporting her mind to a dystopian future where mutants live in labor camps and many of your favorite X-Men have already killed fighting the government forced oppression. The inclusion of former series stars Ian McKellen (Magneto), Patrick Stewart (Professor X seemingly killed in "The Last Stand"), Anna Paquin (Rogue), Shawn Ashmore (Iceman), Page and now Berry make an adaption of that exact story unlikely. More intriguingly, Marvel recently launched an All-New X-Men comic that finds the five original mutants (Angel, Iceman, Cyclops, Marvel Girl and Beast) transported to present day to meet their future selves. The teenagers are appalled at what they have become and seem intent on fixing the "present" or making sure it never happens. HitFix spoke to Singer recently and he admitted the time travel element may allow him to "fix" some of the mistakes fans were disappointed by in "The Last Stand" (maybe). No matter what the case, Berry, whose career has been more successful creatively than commercially over the past few years is more than happy to join the party.
"Yeah, I'm really happy to to," Berry told HitFix of returning to wearing Ororo's notorious white wigs. "I love Storm and I'm happy I get to be a part of it this time."
Proving once again that "never say never again" should be Hollywood's motto, Berry is reuniting with Singer after the two had an infamous falling out during the production of "X2." Considering the performance of Singer's "Jack the Giant Killer" this weekend (an expected huge write down for Warner Bros.) and Berry's box office performance of late sometimes old enemies make the best of friends.
"X-Men: Days of Future Past" is expected to begin production this spring. It's scheduled to open nationwide on July 18, 2014.