So having just seen X-Men: Apocalypse I have to say that I haven't enjoyed a superhero movie that much since The Dark Knight Rises. Yes, they're totally different beasts, and no, Apocalypse wasn't perfect — but it didn't take itself too seriously, the SFX were awesome (and I usually hate 3D) and I was even won over by Sophie Turner's Jean Grey.
Some spoilers ahead for 'X-Men: Apocalypse.'
However, someone who usually steals the show is Jennifer Lawrence's Mystique, but I found her performance and character somewhat lacklustre. It's easy to see why. Apocalypse was her last hurruh in the X-Franchise, after signing a three-movie deal back in 2011, a whole year before The Hunger Games and her Oscar win for The Silverlinings Playbook. Her career has exploded since X-Men: First Class so by the time Apocalypse rolled round, it's easy to see why she was ready to leave the X-Men behind.
Apocalypse marks the end of the First Class trilogy, and with Wolverine 3 next up for the franchise (and who knows what it going on with Gambit), we don't have any confirmation (yet - correct me if I'm wrong) of a followup to Apocalypse. However, it is more than likely after the successful introduction of Nightcrawler, young Cyclops, Storm and of course out first glimpse of the rebooted Dark Phoenix. So of course, the show must go on, with or without JLaw, but it can't go on without Mystique, so who could take over the role? As a character who literally shapeshifts into new people, whoever they cast can be easily explained, but I propose we bring back the original Mystique, the one many X-Fans grew up with, in the form of Rebecca Romijn.
I grew up with Rebecca Romijn's Mystique, and loved her brief cameo in First Class when she tries to seduce Eric, and it would also make perfect sense to bring her back for future X-Men movies. The incredible closing scene of Apocalypse showed our new Mutants clad in their iconic outfits from the '90s comic, which leads me to believe that the next movie would be set in the '90s, as the previous movies in the trilogy have been set in 1962, 1973 and the 1980s respectively. Therefore, it would make complete sense that the cast will age and look more as they did in 2000s X-Men, and would satisfyingly link the First Class trilogy with with original (bar Last Stand, we don't talk about that).
Rebecca Romijn was amazing in the role, but it was Jennifer Lawrence who really fleshed the character out. As the defacto leader of the X-Men at the end of Apocalypse, I would love to see Romijn take on this meatier Mystique, and with the timeline shift thanks to Days of Future Past, I would love to see her navigate this character beyond the shapeshifting assassin she played in the originals.
Director Bryan Singer seems pretty convinced that Jennifer Lawrence will not sign on for another movie, but he told Empire that he's nowhere near done with the character, explaining that Mystique is ripe for a solo movie. Speaking to the Empire podcast, Singer said:
I think [Mystique’s] right for [a standalone], whether it’s Jennifer [Lawrence] or not. She has this different view of the world. Xavier can get into Cerebro and look at the world but he’d rather just teach classes and see the beauty of mutants and humans co-existing in his mansion in Westchester. Along comes Raven with a reality check on the state of the world. It opens up a lot of avenues.
However, with no whispers as yet of who could replace her, I believe bringing back Rebecca Romijn would be a great nod to fans of the franchise who grew up with this interpretation, and would neatly link Apocalypse to X-Men.