X-Men: First Class, 20th-Century Fox's reboot of the X-Men franchise, is weeks away from beginning principal production (it won't hit theaters until next summer), but writer-director Matthew Vaughn (Kick-Ass, Stardust, Layer Cake) and screenwriter Jane Goldman (Kick-Ass, Stardust) have tossed 12 pages of their screenplay and the accompanying storyboards after Vaughn took time away from pre-production to see Christopher Nolan's "existential heist film," Inception.

Here's Vaughn, via LA Hero Complex's Geoff Boucher:
I saw Inception, which I loved, but my heart sank when I saw that a few of the ideas we had were up [on the screen]. So it's either leave it in and look as if you're copying or change things. We completely ripped out about 12 pages of the script and the storyboards.
The X-Men: First Class franchise reboot will focus on the early friendship (and later rivalry) between Charles Xavier, a.k.a. Professsor X and Erik Lehnsherr, a.k.a. Magneto. James McAvoy (Wanted) has been cast as Xavier, Michael Fassbender (Hunger) has been cast as Lehnsherr. Other members of the cast include Kevin Bacon as the central villain, Sebastian Shaw, Alice Eve as Emma Frost, Nicholas Hoult as Hank McCoy/Beast, Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique, and Edi Gathegi as Darwin. Bryan Singer, the director of the first two films in the X-Men franchise, is back as producer on the reboot. He also contributed the original story idea.

Vaughn and Goldman's screenplay included an action set piece similar to Inception's gravity-defying, hotel hallway fight scene. Vaughan, concerned that audiences (and critics) would see the sequence in X-Men: First Class as derivative and uninspired, decided to ditch the scene completely. With principal photography scheduled to begin within weeks, Vaughan and Goldman are facing deadline pressure to find something new and innovative to replace the jettisoned sequence.

Whether they can remains to be seen, but I'm disappointed Vaughn would ditch the scene rather than try to give it a different spin to distinguish the scene in X-Men: First Class from Inception. Hopefully that doesn't mean other filmmakers won't avoid similar action scenes, but instead find a way to make them unique and memorable.

X-Men: First Class is scheduled to hit theaters June 3, 2011.

What do you think of Vaughn's decision to ditch this set piece? Should he have kept it? Changed it? And if so, to what?
categories Cinematical