In 1982, legendary X-Men writer Chris Claremont and superb artist Bob McLeod created an X-Men spin-off called New Mutants. The New Mutants were the next generation of the X-Men, a group of young students at Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters. They're adored by fans, with a rich and diverse history behind them. It's no wonder, then, that Josh Boone is now working on a New Mutants movie!
We're gradually learning more about the film, due for release April 13th, 2018. It promises to be a supernatural horror that's a radical departure from your typical #XMen fare. A lot of people have joined the ranks of the New Mutants over the years, but The Hollywood Reporter and The Hashtag Show have both independently given pretty much the same roll-call for the film.
So here we go; these are the heroes who look set to be joining Xavier's School!
No surprise, with the film set for release in a year we're finally getting some confirmed castings too. So let's run through the characters we're expecting to see in New Mutants, and meet the electrifying stars who are set to become the next generation of X-Men!
A "corn-fed Kentucky kid" associated with the New Mutants? There's only one man that can be! For most X-Men fans (me included), a New Mutants movie without Cannonball simply wouldn't work. Hailing from Kentucky, Cannonball's power is to generate a powerful field of energy around himself. This enables him to blast into the air like a human cannonball; while in flight, he's essentially impervious to physical harm. He can also shoot out this energy field as deadly energy blasts, usually from his hands.
Sam Guthrie is a smart, good-natured superhero with a heart of gold. He's a natural leader, and became second-in-command when Cable took over the team. Giving an indication of Cannonball's potential, he's the only New Mutant to ever 'graduate' into the X-Men, and was seen by Cyclops as a future leader for the entire mutant race. He actually wound up a member of the Avengers, and had a child with a member of the Shi'ar Imperial Guard!
Nat Wolff has been traditionally mentioned as front-runner for the role, but The Hollywood Reporter recently revealed that Charlie Heaton — best known as Jonathan Byers in Stranger Things — is in talks. If THR's report is right, then we're soon to hear an announcement.
Blu Hunt, a relative newcomer best known for appearing in The Originals, has been confirmed as another of the team's leading figures — Danielle Moonstar! She's a Cheyenne superhero with the power to generate the fears and desires of anyone as emotionally devastating illusions. Dani has commonly been used to explore the supernatural side of the #Marvel Universe — she was tied to a Demon Bear for a while — and even became one of Asgard's Valkyries!
While infiltrating the terrorist organization known as the Mutant Liberation Front, Danielle learned to project psychic arrows that, on striking an enemy, would subject them to horrific visions of their worst fears. She briefly became a teacher at Xavier's School, until she was stripped of her powers in the early 2000s. Since then, Danielle's remained a constant presence in the X-Men comics, even becoming field-leader of the New Mutants in spite of the loss of her powers!
One of the most popular of the New Mutants, Wolfsbane is a Scottish mutant who possesses the ability to transform into a wolf (or to pause the transformation in various in-between stages, essentially turning her into a lupine warrior). Rahne Sinclair's background is a haunting one; she was brought up by an abusive pastor named Reverend Craig, who attempted to kill her after learning she was a mutant. Although shy and emotionally repressed, Wolfsbane gradually learned to allow others into her heart, and has been a major figure in the X-Men books ever since her creation. Whether a member of the New Mutants, X-Factor, or X-Force, plots featuring Wolfsbane have often been emotionally charged.
For over a year now, there's only been one name associated with part of Wolfsbane; Maisie Williams, of Game of Thrones fame. Now, at long last, it's been confirmed that she's taken up the role!
Described as a "cool, confident, and extremely handsome" Brazilian, Sunspot has the power to absorb and channel solar energy. He uses this solar energy to transform into a physical powerhouse, with super-strength and resistance to injury. Adan Canto played a version of the character in the future portions of X-Men: Days of Future Past. Henry Zaga (from 13 Reasons Why) is confirmed for this role.
Sunspot is the son of a wealthy Brazilian businessman, but his powers first manifested on the football field. Targeted after such a public display, Sunspot was rescued by members of the New Mutants, and enrolled at Xavier's School. Sunspot's path has often diverged from the rest of the team, and he's taken tutoring from shady figures such as the immortal mutant Gideon, who amplified Sunspot's powers, giving him the ability to fly and project energy blasts.
A member of the Hellfire Club (along with many other wealthy mutants, such as Archangel), Sunspot actually attempted to take the Club over. More recently, he became a field-leader of the Avengers. Disturbed by the impending end of the Multiverse, Sunspot used his wealth to buy out Advanced Ideas Mechanics, a terrorist organization with advanced science. He's rehabilitating A.I.M. into doing good, and put together his own New Avengers team to support his vision.
If you like your superheroes rich, be sure to check out our countdown of the richest billionaires in pop culture!
Described by The Hashtag Show as "Russian, sexy, with an obvious mean streak," Magik is one of the classic characters - she's the younger sister of the X-Man Colossus! Magik was captured by the demonic entity Belasco, and taken into his realm; there, with time passing at an accelerated rate, she had become a teenage sorceress by the time the X-Men managed to rescue her. Magik involved the New Mutants into a whole host of cosmic and mystic adventures, using her powers of teleportation — and the Soulsword, a mystic blade crafted out of her soul — to devastating effect. She was ultimately restored to the form of a child, but tragically died of the Legacy Virus.
More recently, Belasco began the process of giving Magik new life by restoring shards of her fragmented soul. She ultimately rejoined the New Mutants, although this was mostly to manipulate the X-Men into a world-threatening battle with mystic beings known as the Elder Gods. Since then, she's become a core member of the X-Men, remaining crucial to two series of Uncanny X-Men and the current Extraordinary X-Men. Her mystic powers are continuing to develop, and she's actually become a student of Doctor Strange!
Nobody's surprised to hear that Anya Taylor-Joy — the superb star of The Witch and Morgan — has accepted this central role. Taylor-Joy can project just the kind of sinister intensity that Magik demands.
Only mentioned by The Hollywood Reporter, and not featuring in The Hashtag Show's casting call, Warlock is an techno-organic entity who — unique among his race — possesses a sense of compassion. He's cultivated this through his relationship with the New Mutants, where he's been a particularly close friend of Doug Ramsey (a character who doesn't sound likely to appear in the film). Like the rest of his race, Warlock consumes the life-energy (or "Lifeglow") of other creatures in order to live.
Given New Mutants is shaping up to be a supernatural drama, it's entirely possible that Warlock will be drastically rewritten. You shouldn't assume too much from his absence in The Hashtag Show's casting call; the reality is that Warlock will probably be CGI.
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So there you have it — the key characters for New Mutants! The team has always been distinctive in the fact that it's impressively international — characters hail from diverse locations, ranging from Brazil to Scotland — and the teenage antics should be tremendous. In their report, The Hollywood Reporter describes the plot as "angst-driven," which means we should see some fun interactions between the cast. For this X-Men fan, the idea of seeing the New Mutants come to the big screen is tremendously exciting!