Why X-Force Should Be Fox’s Next X-Men Movie

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Fox's Marvel Comics line of films is at a turning point. A disastrous reboot, critically and financially, of Fantastic Four has all but shelved the series entirely. It's up in the air whether 20th Century Fox will ever make another movie using those characters. Thus, it turns to the successful X-Men line to fill that void, expanding into a more Marvel Cinematic Universe style franchise.

The first steps for that expansion have already been taken. Deadpool movie kicked off Fox's slate in February, ahead of the X-Men: Apocalypse ensemble piece in May. While Gambit's release date was removed from the schedule, it's expected to start filming soon.

An X-Force movie was proposed several years ago, with a treatment and even various levels of script work reportedly done. The decision was made to hold onto that when Deadpool got fast-tracked (ironically, after years of being on the back burner), but 20th Century Fox should be looking at X-Force as the next step in their expansion, and they should be looking at it now.

The time is perfect for an X-Force team. Using the updated versions of the squad combined with the original 90s incarnation, you have a paramilitary team that is proactively trying to shut down mutant threats. It's the easiest pitch in Hollywood: think A-Team or Fast and Furious with superpowers. It's also the team for the world's modern era of terrorism and wars being fought on nearly infinite fronts. A strike team to strike first.

The characters you need are almost all there, too. Deadpool gives us that character, an interesting and slightly odd, but exciting and easily recognizable anchor for the team. Apocalypse gives us Psylocke and Archangel, whose presence on the more modern rosters gave a boost in sexual tension and visual excitement. An Archangel and Psylocke who are struggling to shake off and make up for Apocalypse's influence gives them both great motivation going forward, too. Yes, there's the slight issue of timelines here, where those two are currently being shown in the 80s while Deadpool is in the modern day, but luckily we also have time travel in this universe, especially at the hands of another character who should be introduced through this film.

Before we get to him, though, X-Force could also be used to introduce X-23, the young, female clone of Wolverine. It's no secret Hugh Jackman's time as Wolverine is growing short, and using a replacement that has seen success in the comics doesn't just make sense, it also injects some youth and danger into this line-up.

You can probably squeeze one or two more (aside from the team leader I'm getting to) into this line up, as well, and should probably go with one of the classic members. Domino is an exciting one, and could certainly play well of Deadpool, even if her abilities are a bit hard to showcase on camera (though don't require many, if any special effects!). Throw in someone like Boom-Boom or Rictor for good measure, and you have yourself a nice, varied team.

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Of course, every team needs a leader, and one of the reasons the time is right for X-Force is the character that should lead it: Cable. Cable is the perfect link between every franchise in the X-Men universe, with ties to the future and the past, to the dirtier black-ops side of things with characters like Deadpool to full, colorful superheroics. He is the soldier and the orphan. He's the son of a legend and a legend himself. His time traveling antics can bring in a much-needed element of fantastic into this universe, but what he does once he gets there can be hard-lined and realistic.

Fox's Marvel plans after Apocalypse and Deadpool, for now, include a couple of solo films and a nebulous idea for more movies. X-Force should top that list, with Cable as the anchor - if not just of the film, as the anchor of the new era in the X-Men movie universe.