Some brand new photos from X-Men: Dark Phoenix have arrived online and they’re pretty revealing. First and foremost, the identity of Jessica Chastain’s villain, which has been pretty mysterious up to this point, has been revealed. Sort of. While there’s still plenty of mystery left to unravel, her character has been given a name in this latest batch of photos, and that name is simply Smith. As for what that tells us? That’s a bit more difficult to say, but what it does tell us leads us to believe we could be in for a bit of a surprise.
It was previously thought that Jessica Chastain is going to play Lilandra from the world of the X-Men comics. That later was debunked, so we were left with the mystery of who exactly her character is. This photo, which shows the character standing upon some rubble, doesn’t tell us much, but the caption saying her name is Smith does. Who is Smith? Nobody of importance from the X-Men lore, as far as anyone can tell, but it seems to mean that Fox and director Simon Kinberg want to keep her actual identity a secret. We do know for sure that she’s playing an intelligent alien shapeshifter.
A couple of these other photos are very revealing. For one, there’s what looks to be a funeral scene with Professor X (James McAvoy), Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee), Storm (Alexandra Shipp) and Cyclops (Tye Sheridan) gathered around in the rain, wearing black and looking rather glum. While it’s tough to speculate, it looks like they’re gathered around mourning the loss of a fallen comrade. We’ve heard that someone could die in this movie in a rather brutal manner, so this funeral scene would make sense. X-Men: Dark Phoenix could, quite literally, in terms of tone, be dark.
There’s also a new photo of Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique, who only has her blue makeup on from the neck up. Lawrence seemed to phone it in quite a bit in X-Men: Apocalypse, so maybe having her spend less time in the makeup chair is a way to get her to turn on her acting skills a bit more this time around. We also see director Simon Kinberg, who has been a longtime writer and producer of the X-Men franchise, hanging out behind the scenes with Michael Fassbender’s Magneto. Lastly, Sophie Turner’s Jean Grey is sitting in the rain looking pretty sullen, not yet transformed into the Phoenix.
Fox has X-Men: Dark Phoenix slated for release on November 2 and, given the recent purchase of Fox by Disney, this could very well be the last X-Men movie we ever see with this cast before a reboot happens. Will they be able to stick the landing and make up for X-Men: The Last Stand which totally botched the Dark Phoenix storyline previously? Fingers crossed. Be sure to check out the new photos from X-Men: Dark Phoenix, courtesy of IGN, for yourself below.