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'X-Men' Movie News: Sentinels, Patrick Stewart and a Possible 'Wolverine' Cameo

Everyone has been so busy piling on to Marvel’s bandwagon as the studio basks in the glow of The Avengers and moves on to Phase 2, that we’ve barely had time to notice how 20th Century Fox is making strides toward righting its X-Men ship. 
 
Matthew Vaughn helped put Marvel’s mutants back on Hollywood’s collective map with the winning prequel X-Men: First Class. He’s hard at work in pre-production on the sequel – tentatively titled X-Men: Days of Future Past – of which Mark Millar spilled a few juicy secrets. 
 
Millar, who recently was hired as Marvel creative consultant, revealed, “You’ve got robots, you’ve got time travel, you’ve got superheroes … it’s got everything in one film.” That has us thinking about Sentinels, massive mutant-hunting robots who factor heavily into the comic-book storyline on which Vaughn’s sequel likely will be based. 
 
It also points out how the X-Men franchise, thanks to its longevity, now has the ability to play around with its moving pieces as it goes forward with various narratives. Patrick Stewart, for example, has said in interviews that he might reprise his role as Professor Charles Xavier (despite the fact that he passed away in the third and final X-Men movie). The Days of Future Past story involves time travel, which could explain how younger versions of Xavier and Magneto will interact with present-day versions of these cherished characters. 
 
The cinematic universe of the X-Men is larger than we realize, and Fox is wisely figuring out how to tie its properties together. 
 
There’s another rumor floating out there that continues this trend. According to reports, Famke Janssen possibly filmed a cameo spot for James Mangold’s The Wolverine, which currently is shooting in Australia. This could be similar to the cameo Hugh Jackman filmed for Vaughn’s First Class. Either way, it’s yet another example of the X-Men pieces interlocking, and building out the mutant world on screen.
 
How else might this franchise expand in time? Will we get to a point where James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender are fighting alongside Patrick Stewart and Sir Ian McKellen? And will Days of Future Past finally be the X-Men movie that delivers on the promise of the Hollywood franchise? 
 
We shall see, but for now, I really like the direction these X-Men properties are heading. Don’t you?
 
Follow along on Twitter @Sean_OConnell and @Fandango
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