‘X-Men: First Class’: Bryan Singer talks about Azazel, Havok and Mystique

Feb. 10, 2011 | 5:39 p.m.

The trailer for “X-Men: First Class” landed today and immediately tilted the landscape of this summer’s slate of superhero films — if this smart, sleek and sinister trailer is representative of Matthew Vaughn’s retro-mutant film as a whole, then it’s suddenly unwise to view “First Class” as a second-class citizen compared with the two big Marvel Studios releases, “Captain America: The First Avenger” and “Thor.”

The makers of the Fox film, however, say they never viewed the summer season as a competition against the Marvel films or Warner Bros.’ “Green Lantern.”

“You can never think about that,” producer Bryan Singer said.  “That’s just something you can torture yourself with or stress out about, but you can’t do that and sit there and think, ‘What are they doing? We need to do that.’ That’s the worst thing you can do. You have to make your own movie. It needs to exist in its own universe in terms of perception. Your goal is to make a cool movie. You need to stay focused on that goal.”

james mcavoy and michael fassbinder x men first class X Men: First Class: Bryan Singer talks about Azazel, Havok and Mystique

James McAvoy and Michael Fassbinder in "X-Men: First Class" (Fox)

Singer directed the first two “X-Men” films, which became landmarks in this new age of superhero cinema. After his departure, the follow-up films were less acclaimed, but their commercial success exceeded or matched the Singer releases. This new teaming of Singer, as a producer, with firebrand filmmaker Vaughn looked great on paper, and now, with the trailer, it’s looking pretty good onscreen. Time will tell — trailers can be quite deceiving — but Singer sounded as enthused as a fan himself during a recent interview.

Asked about the new lineup — or the “old” lineup, given the film’s 1960s setting — Singer got specific about his favorites. “We have younger versions of Mystique and Beast, so I’m very excited about them and what they bring to the film. Jennifer Lawrence’s work [as Mystique] and Nicholas Hoult’s portrayal of Beast — these are characters that we’ve seen in the earlier films, but then these are very different portrayals and you have to bring a lot of attention to those.”

x men first class cast X Men: First Class: Bryan Singer talks about Azazel, Havok and Mystique

"X-Men: First Class" (Fox)

“I’m also excited about Jason Flemyng as Azazel, which is a really cool character. It’s like this sinister alter ego of Nightcrawler in a way, which again brings some of the things that we like about that character but at the same time has a different quality. And I really, really like [Lucas Till as] Havok, who we’re bringing in [to the continuity] at a sort of  a different time, relative to the comic book lore. It’s an extremely cool character. What’s great, too, about all of these characters is that they haven’t honed their abilities yet. Havok is a danger to himself and everyone around him. That’s where this movie is at — the recruiting of these mutants and bringing them together.”

I asked Singer about the specific relation between Havok and Cyclops — in the comics they are Alex and Scott Summers, respectively, brothers who possess raging, hard-to-manage energies within their bodies, but the decades at play now in the X-Men installments take that sibling connection off the table, story-wise.

bryan singer X Men: First Class: Bryan Singer talks about Azazel, Havok and Mystique

Bryan Singer

“Yes, the timeline is different,” Singer said. “It wouldn’t physically fit for him to be the brother of Cyclops. We take some liberties on that. There are notions, but, um, I don’t want to give away certain interrelations, but let’s just say there are some things that do adhere to the comic books and do so in a way the fans will get a kick out of. And those things can, perhaps, move forward into the future…. That’s one reason we wanted to call the film ‘First Class’ even though it isn’t the [Jeff Parker-penned story arc called] ‘First Class’ in the comics as fans know it. You couldn’t really tell that story without going even earlier and explaining how they got there and how it came to be. I liked the title, so we kept it, but this is a prelude in a way that will eventually lead to the [scenarios] that fit in more clearly with the ‘First Class’ comics and situations.”

— Geoff Boucher


hugh jackman X Men: First Class: Bryan Singer talks about Azazel, Havok and MystiqueJackman is ‘really, really pumped’ about “Wolverine”

“X-Men: First Class”: Report from stressed-out set

Patrick Stewart: My biggest  “X-Men” regret

January Jones stressed by sexy Frost suits

Vaughn: Hollywood is killing the hero genre

After “Inception,” Vaughn axes “Class” scene

Singer: It’s got to be about Xavier & Magneto

Director: “Captain America” is going to surprise people

Favreau: The reason I’m leaving “Iron Man” series


77 Responses to ‘X-Men: First Class’: Bryan Singer talks about Azazel, Havok and Mystique

  1. Dumdum Dugan says:

    (screams like a little girl) eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!! Mymymy I am looking forward to this!

    THEY GOT THE MAGNETO HELMET RIGHT THIS TIME!!!!! eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!

  2. robert mayfield says:

    bryan singer your a moron, everybody knows the first class was cyclops, jean grey , beast, iceman, and angel, and here you go again turning classics into crap, how can you sit there and put havok in the movie and say the brother relation isnt possible…. what how can you take somones brother completely out. havok wasnt even an xman he was part of x-factor there is no way you can dismiss the fact of havok and cyclops real fans know this and you know they know this so why did u even make this movie knowing that you completely ruined a classic comic.. im done its just going to get reebooted anyway and get done right they way its suppose to be done instead of you trying all this new direction crap!

  3. Nagud Mudmud says:

    This movie looks awesome. Yes, it would be great if the chronology was right but that ship has sailed, it was screwed up long ago. I mean they put the real original Angel in X-Men 3 as a young guy so there was no way he could've been around when the team first formed according to the movie chronology. So they put a different, more recent character called Angel in from the comics, so they still have an Angel albeit a female one.

    Iceman was just a kid in the other movies which take place much later so he was out. Then there's Havok instead of Cyclops – a different Summers kid, and Emma Frost instead of Jean Grey – a different psychic. So it's a different team but still a bit of an homage to the original. At least Beast is in there. And also we've seen these same characters Cyclops, Jean Grey, Iceman, Angel and the Beast already. This movie gives a chance for some of the many other mutant characters out there to shine. Just think of it as a different universe from the comic books.

  4. Michael K says:

    Your absolutely right Mr. Mayfield. I love the X-Men, and I will see this movie but all these movie guys never even come close to making these comic films as great as the actual comics are. Marvel and DC need to start making their films the way Peter Jackson made The Lord Of The Rings movies, with full respect for the original artists. I have news for all you directors and producers and movie studios and actors, you will never do a better job then what's already been successful on paper, so please, with all due respect, stop trying and just use what's there without alterations.
    For the love of God, where is Iceman!!!!!!! Why does Bryan Singer refuse to bring one of strongest, coolest (no pun intended) of the X-Men, who is a true member of the first class, into a large role with his powers in full blast. I have waited through 4 movies to see the ice slide, which would be one of the coolest movie visuals, and should be prominent. But Singer and others have shied away from it. It just makes no sense in this glorious, computer visual age of movies.

  5. Michael K says:

    I love Havok but he doesn't need to be in this movie. He should show up with the second round of first classers, in the sequel, along with Storm, Collossus, Nightcrawler, Banshee, Thunderbird, Polaris, Shadowcat and, of course Wolverine.
    Well, I guess my point is, as always, if it's not broken don't fix it. And if the ones in charge of making movies want to get creative with other peoples art, TRY ACTUALLY CREATING YOUR OWN STORY AND CHARACTERS

  6. JaB says:

    i agree with rob, but you got one thing wrong buddy, havok was an x-man. after the original first five, he and lorna dane (polaris) joined the team. they left with original class, but both found their ways back over the years, then ended up in x-factor.

    but you are 100% on the rest. title shouldn't have been first class, had they not named it this it would work, you could introduce which every characters you wanted and stayed true to the comic, but calling it "first class" and not having the first class. i mean didn't you guys know or atleast have an idea you were making this, then you wouldn't have ruined angel in "last stand".

    going to see it, but i'll watch it knowing how wrong it is

  7. Andre says:

    Robert, Havok was in the X-men. First when they discovered him and rescued him from the Living Pharaoh, when the X-men were in the outback and during Austen's run on Uncany X-men a while ago. I think what they wanted to do was bring a fresh cast so they would have the freedom to do more. But I am not compaining as I get to see characters like Havok and Moira onscreen. Remember it is a movie and it has to sell to the public and not just the fans. It wouldn't please everybody but it looks amazing.

  8. Geo says:

    maybe there will be a second movie after first class and thats when jeans and cyclops and ice man will be introduced. Maybe this is like a movie before the real teams comes in. who knows but I have high hopes for this movie

  9. Tiffani Schnetzer says:

    I totally agree with Robert. Alex and Scott should always be portrayed as brothers. Plus Alex is Scott's younger brother which makes putting him in this movie even wierder. This would place Havok at roughly the same age as Corsair, their dad. The only way this could work is if somehow Havok was sent back in time. Also I just looked up the cast on IMDB and it shows that Havok is still going to be known as Alex Summers? Won't that confuse people who have never read the comic books and only watch the movies? Aren't they going to wonder why he has the same name as Cyclops?
    Another thing, why is Hank in this? Beast was a teenager when he meet Prof. X, who was already older and in his wheelchair at that point. The very first comic was Beast, Angel, Bobby, and Scott already attending Xavier's school and Jean showing up for her first day.

  10. moron says:

    Azazel is nightcrawler's father…not an alter ego.

  11. Benlaok says:

    I think Bryan Singer is exciting, He's very creative… I cant wait for this one :) Surely, this will be a hit at box-office…

  12. Eric Cruz says:

    Robert Mayfield is in the right for what he's said.. But atleast we get to see Havok, he's going to be as cool as seeing Gambit in Origins(even though i would've loved to see them both in 1st three films) but its still nice to see new characters since Havok was always a favorite of mines.. I wouldnt mind seeing Quick Silver, Sunspot, Cable & Bishop

  13. Christopher says:

    Attention Robert Mayfield.
    Your unabashed insult to Mr. Singer is entirely unnecessary. Fans of the franchise should understand at this point, after 3 X-films and the Wolverine movie, that these cinematic adaptations are, in fact, ADAPTATIONS rather than direct copies of the stories fans have read again and again in the pages of the books of yester-year. This is a FRESH and UNIQUE story that looks promising and entertaining for fans of the X-Men, as well as new audience participants. I applaude the creative teams bravery in breaking away from continuity of the books. This looks great.

  14. Liam says:

    They've made Havok the older brother. It works nicely I think.

  15. Brett says:

    I don't think this trailer has changed the landscape of summer movies one iota. Fans of the "X-Men" comics and movies were always going to see this movie; I don't think even the wholesale rewriting of comic book lore is going to deter them. I highly doubt that Singer's attachment or Vaughn's direction are going to significantly increase the box office numbers. As big a fan as I am of Marvel Comics and of the Captain America character in particular, I think the biggest comic book movie this year will probably be "Green Lantern," and while I hope that the movies starring Cap and Thor bring in respectable numbers, I don't think we're going to see really huge box office statistics from any of them.

  16. Bob Mitchum says:

    To the myopic fanboys commenting here: the is an ADAPTATION, not a TRANSLATION.

    The fact is that the majority of the audience who will see this movie has never read a comic book and cares not a whit about continuity. I'm a life-long fan myself, and all I care about is that it works as a movie – as long as it captures the spirit of the comics, which it appears to do, that's fine with me. Movies are movies, comics are comics, and each exist as it's own unique medium.

    Besides, you comic fans should know that the funnybook continuity is even more elastic than the movies and constantly evolving or being retconned.

  17. David says:

    It seems they've nailed down both Iron Man movies and the Hulk. Capt. America and Thor look spot on. The Avengers movies will be even better. It's obvious the BEST comic book movies are the ones that follow the plot and don't try to satisfy every single audience.

    By this time we all must accept a great X-Men movie will never be made. There are too many elements within the story line to make a good movie anyways. The only way it would be possible would be to focus on one particular event. Say, The Age of Apocalypse or M-Day. The story line isn't linear like Captain America.

    Bryan Singer isn't a fan of the comics. He obviously has zero passion for these characters. He wants to make a buck. He doesnt care about making good movies. What he doesn't realize, however, is that if he stayed true to the storyline (see Iron Man, Hulk) he would bring in even more revenue.

  18. Feron says:

    I'll watch it online

  19. Crabbe721 says:

    I am excited for the opportunity Hollywood can deliver another movie to the fans. However, I like the X-Men universe and it's continuity. I don't favor producers taking liberties and changing formulas in the comics versus the silver screen. If this is exclusive or outside the first 3 X-Men flicks being a first class story why not introduce the character Sage a telepath who Xavier planted in the Hellfire Club as a spy. Darwin is good look but why not throw in his other teammates from the comics Sway, Petra and Summers sibling Vulcan?!? Banshee is a good look per the comics had experience as an Interpol spy and became a lover of Moira McTaggert. Changing the time-line with the Summers brothers is a gamble and a bit arrogant, I guess you have to include a Summers sibling in a first class scenario. The general public is smarter than producers believe who can defer to comic books or research characters and see films portrayals are less than perfect. As far as backhanded compliments go, Get a clue and get it right for change. Comic books hold a wealth of good stories. For Pete's sake, adapt a good storyline and go from there. How difficult can it truly be. All in all good effort either way.

  20. Dumdum Dugan says:

    Everybody has to calm down about this whole different character thing. It gives us a new opportunity to see new characters that would otherwise never be put in an X-Men movie!

    Yeah the timeline is a little tweeked. I get how that might upset the hardcore X-Fans.
    But could you imagine what Superhero Movies would be like if they stuck to Comic Cannon?
    The Avengers Movie would have the Hulk joining the circus! Superman would have his origins intimidating large business owners! Almost every single villain would be the result of a tragic lab experiment gone wrong! Batman would be just wearing cloth tights! No kevlar, no carbon fiber plates!

    And so on and so forth. I encourage all the angry fans to rewatch the trailer with an open mind, or if you have to – just know in your mind that the Marvel Movieverse is just one extensive "What If?" story.

  21. janzten beach says:

    umm is everybody forgetting that emma frost was in wolverine origins? and that she met a young cyclops and a very older very bald prof x? if all the movies are in the same movie time continuity dosen't everybody think that its a major f**k up on bryan singer's behalf???

  22. skyjedi says:

    I love JFK being in this trailer as a voice-over he was a true patriot and a great President.

  23. Alixtii says:

    Beast appeared in X2 without fur . . . how can he be furry in this?

  24. Matt S says:

    I love the comments that bash a script that isn't correct or a direction a movie is going to differ from the "facts"(fictional truths) only to also include that "of course I will still see it…". That's when you should slap yourself in the face and man-up to the understanding that if no one sees the film, they wont bullshit your favorite comic/book/story/whatever to make a profit. When a director completely trashes the "facts", disregards the fans input (you know, the ones that actually care about the story,characters, subtleties in detail), they are just pissing on your face and still making the money they had planned to make in the first place. You are only helping people destroy your taste. Don't see a movie if it isn't what you know it should be. The next movie WILL be better and you didn't waste money seeing some bullshit.

  25. Kai says:

    Im not over jealous about this Bryan Singer producer guy. Seems West Hollywood.

  26. Josh P. says:

    Honestly, Marvel themselves have created so many alternate continuities and reboots of their own comics, that I really am not mad about this so-called foul up. I'm just happy to see my favorite mutant (Havok) in a movie at all.

  27. 16yrOLDawesomeness says:

    This movie is terribly offensive to well-versed X-Men fans in general. The thing about this movie, is that while the past four films have had their strays from the comic (ie the Angel/Iceman timeline, the neglect of TRUE Brotherhood members like Quicksilver, and Magneto's children, and Emma's presence in Wolverine's origin etc) they maintained a strong presence in the genuineness of their characters and their history. This movie, however, has done the COMPLETE opposite and nobody who has followed these movies and care about the comic's characters was prepared to be completely taken out of the world that the X-Men films have created.
    I respect and applaud the character connection between Magnet and Xavier and how they come to be. But Emma is not nearly the same age as them, she SHOULD be around Scott Summer's age, but I guess he might not exist in whatever Dimension this movie takes place. But I do like the Mystique/Azazel "birth of Nightcrawler" plot which is great (Though again Mystique should be a LOT younger than Xavier and Magneto). And to incorrectly label this as "first class" which is THE BIGGEST deal in X-Men history because it is the BIRTH OF THE X-MEN, and force characters into the story which have nothing to do w/ it is….inconsiderate to say the least. I've come to the conclusion that this movie has nothing at all to do with the X-Men story we've been following all this time. This is some alternate dimension thing…that's the only explanation of this travesty.

  28. wow says:

    Im obviously going to see this because 100% wrong or not i LOVE xmen and the movies have been good so far especially WOLVERINE. But five or more years from now ill be happy when someone realizes "hey! i should make a movie true to the comics!" and use the actual "first class" with Prof X, his five students (Scott-cyclops, Jean-marvel girl/phoenix, Bobby-iceman, Hank-beast, and Warren-angel) and their rival/enemy Magneto. Because lets face it Cyclops and Angel got crapped on in this franchise. Cyclops is so much more interesting and complicated and even a little more relaxed in the beginnig than in the movies and Beast and Angel not appearing til the third film was ridiculous. After that then you can add Collossus Kitty Banshee HAVOK Storm and the rest. For now evryone just enjoy the film cuz we all know eventually it will be rebooted just like Batman was and how superman and spiderman are right now with movies coming out in 2012

  29. good or bad? says:

    Ok at first i was going to flip about this film and how Cyclops and Havok have no relation but then i saw a post on here that conflicted my original opinion. We r all getting to upset ovr this it is a MOVIE not a comic. Movies are allways different from the comics to make them more interesting cuz ill be honest i read comics evryday and ill be the first to admit writers come up with some dumb crap sometimes. Stan Lee's ideas and writing were amazing but U dont see anything from him saying how pissed he is about it and hes the creator! so y should all of you get mad? if u dont like the movie concept dont watch it plain and simple. There will be a reboot years from now anyway just like with evrything especially since xmen are so popular. The fact is movies are suppose to connect with evryone not just us comic readers. You all have to realize tht over half of the people who will sit and watch this will have nvr read a xmen comic and if they have not many so they dont care. This is being made for two reasons. 1 to be a good action packed movie (faithful or not) and 2 BRING IN THE MONEY

  30. Ben says:

    I thought this one was gonna be a relaunch. Something that told the story correctly from the beginning and then we could move forward. I know stories can't always stay the same and have to fit into that two hour window for a movie, but you'd think they'd at least get the basics right. Guess its back to just making it up.

  31. Will says:

    I just feel that with Iron Man, Hulk, Spiderman, and Thor which I just saw. Can be true to the concept and ideas of the comic book and still give a good story. Proof that the fans can be happy with the stories without the writer or producer taking his own liberties to tell me what I will and won’t like. I’ve been a fan of the X-Men for decades please just give me what I like this is what brought me to the dance not your else world type stories. I just feel you don’t respect the material enough to think it can stand as it is even though the earlier movies I mention prove you wrong.

  32. TheWretched_dm says:

    Mystique as a little girl with Xavier you have got to be kidding me, shes a thousand year old time traveler… So ridiculous. Why make a comic movie and then change so much of the histories.. and don't tell me you can't do it without changing their bios. Green Lantern has managed to keep it true to the story. These directors and writers think us comic goers are stupid, but we are not. They need to try harder to be more true to the fans. If they are smart they will realize there is more money and respect in that.

  33. I posses the mutant gene says:

    All i gotta say is .. Wow .. Wtf.. Scott and alex summers are brothers im disapointed, but yea im looking forward for the movie cuz yea like someone said up there they have past present future all kindss of universe in marvel, im not sure of the time but i think this is suppose to be after origins right i mean emma frost looks all grown up nd in origins she was about the same age as scott a teenager nd who knows probably u will see scott nd jean nd other original members they still havent told us nothing, after all we saw storm as only a child in origins.. All i gotta say is it looks good, theyll make it work. :D. But did u guys see the previews havok looks bad ass

  34. Caoilinn Hughes says:

    Ok he says that Azazel is a evil alter ego of nightcrawler retard it’s his dad
    These directors really need to get their facts straight or there is no point making these movies

  35. rob says:

    OH NO! Something new and not something we've seen already in comics… What on earth will we do!?!

    Comon guys…. Lets speak caveman for a moment.

    Me like movie , me think movie good, me think movie is ten times better than it would have been if they'd stuck to the comics….

    BTW… You moan that you want some form of continuity yet the comics had very very little in them, so IF you want to be all literal, This movie is teeming with continuity.

  36. Krish says:

    For all those people pointing out that this is an ADAPTATION.

    WE Know. The fanboys (using the word in full respect), KNOW these are adaptations.

    The point is, STOP MAKING ADAPTATIONS, and just put the comic books onto film as they were written. The adaptations are also far too close to the storyline to really be true adaptations. It would be much better, and if the studios and directors stopped cow-towing to the masses to try to make these movies populist blockbusters, they would get the same amount of $$ and much more respect from the fanboys whose childhood stories are able to come to life thanks to the technology of the era we live in. There's still a lot the studios can do. Writers need to have the creativity in dialogue and timing of introductions of the characters, because, let's face it, what is IN the comic books can only be taken so far with regard to dialogue, since much of it is IMAGNIED by the reader. But the STORYLINE must be preserved.

  37. Steve S says:

    Everyone needs to remember that the movies are not the comics. They're different genres with different styles and guidelines to tell stories. You love the comics with this character appearing at that time? Great, go love it. Just stop thinking that the movie has to be the same.

  38. elle says:

    but they completely trashed every character in the x-men last stand and now havok and cyclops can´t be brothers because of the timeline(or their mother doesn´t age). JUST SAY IT`S A REBOOT, it will be the best for all of us or they can just say that the third movie never happened and the first two are set in the 80s-90s.

  39. ALB says:

    300 was a instant classic because they followed the comic to the letter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

E-mail It
Powered by ShareThis