Sad news for any X-fans keen to see Anna Paquin's Rogue in the upcoming time-travel mutant mash-up X-Men: Days Of Future Past, because Bryan Singer has revealed that the touchiest superhero out there will not make the final cut.
The scene she shot also included Ian McKellen's older Magneto, Sir Patrick Stewart's older Professor X and Shawn Ashmore's Iceman, and so would be firmly set in the post-Sentinel apocalyptic future. It was set to appear early on in the film, before Singer and his team realised it was "extraneous". This leaves the poor, deprived movie with only two Best Actress Oscar winners - Jennifer Lawrence and Halle Berry - but hopefully the Blu-ray release will make up for it.
“Through the editing process, the sequence became extraneous,” Singer told EW. “It’s a really good sequence and it will probably end up on the DVD so people can see it. But like many things in the editing process, it was an embarrassment of riches and it was just one of the things that had to go."
"Unfortunately, it was the one and only sequence Anna Paquin was in, the Rogue character was in. Even though she’s in the materials and part of the process of making the film, she won’t appear in it.”
With so many different characters involved in the project, and such a lot of story to get through, it's no great surprise that certain sections will have to bow out in honour of more important plot beats - and it's good for viewers that Singer's placing story considerations over his affection for his large cast of characters, even if it does mean we lose out on Rogue. As for Paquin, she's already in the know about Singer's decision.
"She completely understood,” Singer added. “It’s very disappointing, but she’s very professional and she knows that stuff happens, particularly with material you shoot early on in production. Films evolve.”
To fill you in, Days Of Future Past finds Professor X (Patrick Stewart), Magneto (Ian McKellen), Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) and the current X-team confronting a dark alternate future where mutants are an endangered species, tracked down, imprisoned or killed thanks to Bolivar Trask (Peter Dinklage)’s Sentinel program and an overwhelming level of distrust from regular humans.
They boldly plan to send Wolverine’s consciousness back in time to the First Class era (or a few years after we last met those versions of the characters) to convince the younger Professor X (James McAvoy), Magneto (Michael Fassbender) and the rest to work together to stop the threat at its source.
X-Men: Days Of Future Past opens on May 22 next year, and you can find out more about it in upcoming issues of Empire. If all this is making you feel nostalgic about your favourite X-Men characters, be sure to click this way (and check out our trailer breakdown with Singer himself here).