Longtime X-Men Producer Says She Had Nothing to Do With Dark Phoenix or Apocalypse

With the release of Dark Phoenix, the run of X-Men movies that have spanned two decades have finally come to a close in a conclusion. But there are few reasons why some fans are unhappy with this final installment, given that it's yet another adaptation of The Dark Phoenix Saga and that the same writer who tacked the poorly received X-Men: The Last Stand also helmed this movie.

And though director Simon Kinberg has shepherded the franchise over the last few years, none of this would be possible without X-Men producer Lauren Shuler Donner, who helped bring every X-Men movie to screen starting with the first movie released in 2000. And she has taken vocally distanced herself from the latest film, going so far as to say that she has not had any involvement in many of the latest films.

Shuler Donner posted on Twitter, requesting that people "Save your condolences. I had zero, nothing to do with Dark Phoenix. Or X-Men: Apocalypse, or The New Mutants." The tweet has since been deleted, but the screen capture can still be seen below.

x-men dark phoenix lauren shuler donner tweet
(Photo: Lauren Shuler Donner)

Dark Phoenix is currently on track to be one of the worst-performing X-Men films at the box office, estimated to haul in a paltry $33.9 million at the domestic box office in its opening weekend. For comparison, the second-lowest grossing film is The Wolverine, which made $53.1 million in its opening weekend.

The film is also one of the lowest scoring among critics and audiences. Rotten Tomatoes currently scores the film at 22% among critics, while the CinemaScore from audiences ranks it as a B-; this might not seem terrible, but it's still the worst among the X-Men movies to date.

In ComicBook.com's own review, Brandon Davis says it is not a satisfying conclusion for fans who have been following these characters over the last 20 years.

"In the end, Dark Phoenix is not the conclusion fans of the X-Men franchise might have been hoping for and it doesn't make much of an effort to tie every narrative thread into a nice bow as the franchise is probably coming to an end here," Davis wrote. "It's a bit behind its time. Still, the movie is fun and safe movie for fans of the characters to watch in a theater with a bass-heavy sound system, and leaves the key characters well enough to remember them fondly."

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Dark Phoenix is now playing in theaters.