Matt Vaughn's X-MEN: FIRST CLASS are enrolling

I understand that filming was originally set to begin either this Monday or next on X-Men: First Class but 20th Century Fox recently agreed to delay the London-set production till August. The idea being to give Matthew Vaughn a little more time to put his cast together and so Jane Goldman could re-write the screenplay (to make it a more Goldman/Vaughn film, than a Bryan Singer one). This is highly encouraging news as it means Vaughn is being allowed to shape the movie the way he wants it, and unsurprisingly, he is going mostly after Brits for his ensemble. We already know James McAvoy will play a young Prof. X and now Deadline say a firm offer has now gone out to Michael Fassbender to play a young Magneto after his audition last week... Fox are confident he will decide to join the X-Men franchise over Sony's 3D Spider-Man reboot, where he is also being courted to play the new, as yet unnamed villain. Kick-Ass actor Aaron Johnson, is almost certainly on board as Cyclops, whilst 28 year old American actor Benjamin Walker has been cast as a young Hank McCoy (Beast). Three other Brit actors have been offered roles; Andrew Garfield from Red Riding Trilogy and Fincher's upcoming The Social Network, we believe, has been offered the role of Angel... (previously played by Ben Foster in X-Men 3: The Last Stand)... Jack Huston from Outlander and who had a supporting role in Twilight: Eclipse we think is being courted for Mastermind, an original member of Magneto's Brotherhood of Mutants who has the power to generate complex telepathic illusions. This character has yet to be used in the film series... Eddie Redmayne who was recently cast in Spielberg's War of Horses only for the director to quickly change his mind, we can only think of as Toad, also for Magneto's Brotherhood... (previously played by Ray Park in X-Men). Then we hit rumour territory, but strongly linked with roles are; The gorgeous and sure to be star of the future Amber Heard, whois heavily expected to play a young Mystique. Z-list actress Jasmine Dustin (she played "watermelon girl" in the last Iron Man movie) revealed Mystique was likely to be a character in the film after tweeting that she was auditioning for the part on June 15th...
"On my way to my X-Men audition...I think I can pull off Rebbecca Romijin's character...just a younger version! Wish me luck"
Former Bond girl Rosamund Pike is expected to play Professor X's assistant Dr. Moira MacTaggert after she was spotted outside of the casting offices with X-Men comics in hand. The part was played by Olivia Williams in X-Men 3: The Last Stand. The really great thing about the movie Singer, Vaughn and Goldman have put together (although, I still say X-Men 4 is the way they should have gone, but oh well) is that they are consciously going back to the very first appearance of these characters. That very first X-Men #1 issue from Stan Lee and Jack Kirby that was published in 1963, and introduced the main core of characters that will feature in this movie. If you want to know the plot of X-Men: First Class I suggest you get into your comics archive and look back at that. The complete and original X-Men team that debuted in that issue were; Professor X, Cyclops, Iceman, Angel, Beast and Jean Grey. And Magneto's Brotherhood... Magneto, Toad, Mastermind, Quicksilver and Scarlett Witch. So presuming I'm right about how this movie is being put together, we can expect casting for Jean Grey to be imminent. And because of how Singer originally setup his X-Men film series, I think you can substitute Iceman (as he was already a young character in the original trilogy) and replace him with Storm, who would make far more sense in what we have to remember is a prequel and not a reboot. And as far as Magneto's Brotherhood team goes... well with the Mystique audition, it's likely she has been added to the team, possibly as a replacement for Scarlett Witch. Which means we could see Quicksilver feature in the film, probably as character fodder for a death. Whenever a prequel movie is made, the fate of those characters you haven't seen before are always up in the air because for example, we know all of the original X-Men team survives as we've already seen them at later points in their life, so characters like Mastermind and Quicksilver could easily be sacrificial lambs. Oh, and we can't forget Sabretooth but maybe we are suppose to believe he is still fighting Wolverine somewhere??? X-Men: First Class will film late summer for a release June 3rd, 2011.

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.