Some lucky young actors are now competing for some of the most recognizable characters in the Marvel universe, but which will land a spot in Fox's upcoming finale [X-Men: Apocalypse](movie:1194267)?
Because the third film in the "First Class" trilogy will follow the backwards time hop in [X-Men: Days Of Future Past](movie:203942), we will see younger versions of Jean Grey, Cyclops, and Storm. In the fall, news reports flew around about the list of young actors being considered for two of these roles. For Jean, Chloe Moretz, Elle Fanning, and Hailee Steinfeld made the shortlist. Ben Hardy, Charlie Rowe, and Timothee Chalamet were initially being considered for Cyclops.
Now, according to Latino Review, there's another roster of young talent on the shortlist, and this time it even includes some names for Storm. But, which of these new faces be part of Professor X's School for Gifted Youngsters?
Who could be the next Jean Grey?
Saoirse Ronan and Sophie Turner
Sophie Turner, a.k.a. the indefatigable Sansa Stark in [Game of Thrones](movie:817617), has the quintessential Jean Grey look and a growing fan base to boot. As Sansa continues to scheme her way through Westeros with a more active role this season, Turner's star will only rise.
While Turner has certainly got the look, it's hard to argue with a resume like Saoirse Ronan's. Not only can she act the pants off of everyone else in the room (look no further than her star-making role in Atonement), the Irish actress has made a name for herself playing pint-sized badasses like Hanna in Hanna and Daisy in [Violet & Daisy](movie:941573).
Turner has been looking to break into larger projects since her success on Game of Thrones, and Ronan has always killed it whenever she's part of an ensemble. But, can either of them measure up as Jean Grey?
Which actress would make the best Jean Grey: Saoirse Ronan or Sophie Turner?
Now who's in the running for Cyclops?
Tye Sheridan, Jamie Blackley, and Taron Egerton
You might recognize Tye Sheridan as the kid from [Mud](movie:216839) or maybe as the kid from The Tree of Life. In both movies, he's held his own against established talent like Matthew McConnaughey and Brad Pitt.
Jamie Blackley is best known for his leading role in the romance [If I Stay](movie:612375) alongside Chloe Moretz (who was rumored to be one of the actresses on the shortlist for Jean). Could we be seeing their onscreen reunion in X-Men: Apocalypse?
And then there's Taron Egerton, who is slated to have a huge 2015 with [Kingsman: The Secret Service](movie:713143) hitting theaters in February. He's even commented on the casting rumors already, saying that "everyone would like to play a superhero, but this is by no means me saying I would like to go play Cyclops." Okay, so he's protesting, but with his friend Nicholas Hoult playing the Beast and his future co-star Hugh Jackman coming back as Wolverine, I think we may be seeing Egerton wear those iconic shades.
Do you see any of these guys as Scott Summers?
Who would make the best Cyclops: Tye Sheridan, Jamie Blackley, and Taron Egerton?
Who's in contention for Storm?
Alexandra Shipp and Zendaya Coleman
Interestingly enough, both of these actresses were attached to the poorly received Lifetime biopic [Aaliyah: Princess Of R&B](movie:1518737) (Alexandra Shipp took up the lead role after Zendaya Coleman dropped out).
For Storm, they're going a little bit younger than I was expecting, effectively putting Storm in the same age bracket as Jean and Scott. This makes sense in terms of the Marvel age calculator, but for some reason I was anticipating Ororo being introduced as bit older than Jean and Scott.
While I'm all for much more Storm in X-Men: Apocalypse, I do find these choices a little perplexing considering the lack of name recognition for both actresses, and, well...I mean, Lupita Nyong'o exists, people. Storm is an Omega-level mutant who can lift Thor's hammer for crying out loud! I'm just hoping that whoever gets this role can really do it justice and bring a regal, commanding version of Storm to screen.
Who would make a better storm: Alexandra Shipp or Zendaya Coleman?
Out of the options so far, my guess is that they will go with Sophie Turner for Jean Grey and Taron Egerton for Cyclops. Turner has the quiet complexity that could bring the necessary humanity to Jean, and Egerton has a kind of effortless charm that makes Scott Summers a natural leader. As for Storm, I would wager that they will keep looking and maybe even go with an unknown.
Is Fox on the right track with these new additions, or do you think they need to go back to the drawing board?