Exclusive new look at X-Men: Apocalypse

If we’ve been a little quiet about our upcoming X-Men: Apocalypse issue that hits newsstands next week (we totally haven’t), forgive us. If nine character covers and an apocalyptic subscribers’ cover weren’t enough, we’ve now got some exclusive new stills.

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First up is Ben Hardy in pre-Archangel form at an East Berlin mutant fight club. And if that jacket’s anything to go by, he definitely means business. A newcomer to the mutant ranks, Hardy’s jump from Peter Beale in EastEnders to high-flying super-man was a nerve-racking one. “I was terrified!” the actor told Empire about the day before filming. “There wasn’t much sleep that night.”

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But what of the mutant who recruits Archangel to join Magneto (Michael Fassbender), Psylocke (Olivia Munn), and Storm (Alexandra Shipp) as his Horsemen? He may look rather harmless lying down, but Oscar Isaac’s Apocalypse is so terrifying that he’s named after actual biblical destruction. This X-outing’s big bad causes all kinds of mayhem for Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and his band of merry mutants due to possessing a God complex larger than the pyramids of his ancient Egyptian home.

sophie turner kodi smit-mcphee x-men apocalypse

Ben Hardy isn't the only newbie this time around, Kodi Smit-McPhee and Sophie Turner joining Team Charles as Jean Grey and Nightcrawler respectively. With experience battling evil primates in Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes and evil Joffreys in Game Of Thrones, ol' Apocalypse should be a doddle for the pair.

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But all's fair in love and war as the above image with director Bryan Singer proves. Singer, Storm and Mystique temporarily join Charles' gang - now properly bald, incase you hadn't noticed - for this group shot, mixing newbies Smit-McPhee, Tye Sheridan, Turner and Shipp with franchise veterans Nicholas Hoult, Jennifer Lawrence, McAvoy and Evan Peters.

Keep your eyes on Empire Online for more exclusives before our Apocalypse issue hits all superpowered newsstands on Thursday March 31.

X-Men: Apocalypse arrives in UK cinemas on May 19, before hitting the US on May 27.