Jason Flemyng and Rose Byrne join X-MEN: FIRST CLASS

Shooting begins on X-Men: First Classthree weeks from today and I'm guessing there's only a few casting decisions left to be made. Over the weekend, Vaughn regular Jason Flemyng (who has appeared in Layer Cake, Stardust and Kick-Ass) announced he had been cast as Azazel, the biological father to Nightcrawler and today THR say Rose Bryne is close to joining the movie as Dr. Moira MacTaggert. Firstly, the Azazel part will be heavily make-up'd and will require Flemyng to act with a CGI tail. Comic Book Resources writes;
News of Azazel€™s inclusion in the Fox reboot will likely leave X-Men fans scratching their heads, or else pulling out their hair. A Satan analog introduced in 2003 during writer Chuck Austen€™s widely vilified run on Uncanny X-Men, Azazel is a demonic mutant from biblical times who was banished by angels to the Brimstone dimension. Able only to leave his prison for short amounts of time, he fathered numerous children across the Earth €” most notably Nightcrawler, with the shape-shifting Mystique... the crimson-colored Azazel can teleport across dimensions, as well as generate devastating energy blasts.
Previously in X-Men 2 - director Bryan Singer decided to ignore the mother/daughter heritage of Nightcrawler and Mystique (there's a scene where Alan Cumming wags his tail in lust at her, so unless he has Freudian incestuous ideas, he doesn't know she's related) but with a teenage Jennifer Lawrence playing the flexible blue tinted villain, it would seem likely there's going to be a sub-plot exploring this issue. In regards to McTaggert...she is Professor X's assistant and a genetic mutant expert who was played by Olivia Williams in X-Men 3: The Last Stand - and she is sometimes depicted as having an on off relationship with the chrome dome mind reader. Apparently, she will be Charles' girlfriend in the movie. Former Bond girl Rosamund Pike had been an early contender for the part. Being so close to the start of filming and with a cast list that is looking bloated already - it seems that reports Cyclops and Jean Grey aren't going to be a part of this adaptation might just be true. Shame we won't see Aaron Johnson as Cyclops. It seems this movie will even pre-date them, and it looks like Storm hasn't made the cut either. Full casting after the jump... James McAvoy (31) portrays Professor X - the powerful mind-controlling mutant who creates the Xavier School for the Gifted. He is the main character of the movie, and alongside his friend Eric Leshner (Magneto) travels the world trying to help mutants come to grips with their powers. He was played by Patrick Stewart in the original trilogy. Michael Fassbender (31) is Eric Leshner, the powerful mutant with the ability to manipulate metal. Alongside his friend Charles Xavier, in this timeline he will be depicted as traveling the world to help mutants comes to grips with their powers. The movie will depict the rift that is formed between them when they have a differing opinion of how mutants should be trained and their intentions with Xavier's school which he helps build. Fassbender will have the unenviable task of stepping into the shoes of Ian McKellen as the character. Alice Eve (28) is Emma Frost, the telepathic, dry witted, and massive bitch of the X-universe. She is dubbed The White Queen, and wasn€™t introduced until the 80€s in the comics, and only then as a clear attempt to titillate the boys. It's rumoured (partly because of her age) that she'll be a mature student in Xavier's school who is the object of desire by both Magneto and Xavier, and is a vital component in their friendship breaking apart. This is why I've dubbed her third on the cast billing as I think she'll be a huge part of the movie. It's the first time Frost will be portrayed in the X-Men movies (except, a brief hint that a character might be her in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, when she is saved by Xavier alongside Cyclops and Angel). Kevin Bacon (52) will portray the main villain of the movie, rumoured either to be Mr. Sinister (a Darwin obsessive who experiments with genetically modifying human cells as part of his research on evolution) or Sebastian Shaw (possesses the ability to absorb kinetic energy and transform it into raw strength). We are hoping it'll be Mr. Sinister. Nicholas Hoult (20) is Hank McAoy, an original member of Xavier's team. There's talk that his character will join the X-team as a normal looking human (with super-human strength and the ability to jump far distances) as consistent with the comics as he slowly turns into the blue furry Beast that we all know and love. Kelsey Grammer played the fully formed Beast in X-Men 3: The Last Stand. Jennifer Lawrence (turned 20 yesterday) as the sexy, blue tinted, shape-shifting mutant Mystique. She will be transformed into the super-villain via the same elaborate make-up so memorably painted on Rebecca Romjin in the original X-Men trilogy. Potentially, as the villain Azazel is in the movie - they may go with the storyline of her being impregnated and birthing Nightcrawler. But continuity wise with X2, that might be difficult. Jason Flemyng (43) as Azazel - the crimson-coloured Satan that can teleport across dimensions, as well as generate devastating energy blasts. It's his first time out in the X-Men film franchise and might hint at him being involved in a love story with Mystique. Rose Byrne (31) is Dr. Moira MacTaggert - Professor X's assistant and a genetic mutant expert who will portray the girlfriend of Charles Xavier. She is human and was briefly portrayed by Olivia Williams via a t.v. screen in X-Men 3: The Last Stand. Lucas Till (19) will play Havoc, the younger brother of Cyclops who generates powerful €œplasma blasts€, an ability he has had difficulty controlling. Surely his addition to the team signifies Cyclops MUST be in the movie, or are Fox's publicity team playing a trick on us and Till is actually Cyclops? If he is Havoc, it'll be the first time out for the character. Caleb Landry Jones (21) will portray Banshee - the Irish mutant who has a €˜sonic stream€™ €“ a kind of powerful wailing cry that destroys his opponents hearing and can cause physical vibrations. He can fly too, handily. It's his first time out in the X-Men film series. Edi Gathegi (31) as Darwin - the first bi-racial mutant . He has the power of €˜reactive evolution,€™ which allows him to adapt to any situation or environment. Plunged underwater, he€™ll grow gills, he€™ll gain night vision in pitch black and his skin grows fire retardant when burned. He's likely to be a sidekick/mercenary for Kevin Bacon's villain. It'll be the character's first outing in the X-Men film series. Matt Vaughn (Kick-Ass, Stardust) directs, based on a pitch by Bryan Singer (X-Men 1, 2), that was turned into a script by Jamie Moss (Street Kings), that was written by Jane Goldman (Kick-Ass). X-Men: First Class will be in theatres June 3rd, 2011.
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Matt Holmes is the co-founder of What Culture, formerly known as Obsessed With Film. He has been blogging about pop culture and entertainment since 2006 and has written over 10,000 articles.