The makers of ‘Logan,’ Hugh Jackman’s triumphant swansong as X-Men hero Wolverine, have confirmed they are “working on a script” for a spin-off movie centred on Dafne Keen’s character, which seems to be provisionally entitled ‘Laura.’
While ‘Logan’ was first and foremost a great send-off for both Jackman and his fellow ‘X-Men’ series veteran Sir Patrick Stewart as Charles Xavier, director James Mangold’s film was also a fantastic introduction for young newcomer Keen as Laura, AKA X-23, a genetically engineered mutant clone of Wolverine.
With Jackman seemingly unwavering in declaring ‘Logan’ his last time around in the role, there was immediately speculation that Keen might be developed into a new key role in the ‘X-Men’ movies, essentially becoming the new Wolverine, much as X-23 has been developed in the Marvel comic books.
Now, Mangold and producer Hutch Parker confirm to The Hollywood Reporter that this is something they are working on.
Parker says, “there are other facets of that character and some others potentially to explore in their own way. It may not be in the same exact tonality or with the same genre orientations as ‘Logan,’ but I think part of what has been opened up in this universe to all of us now is, drawing on different genre traditions, there are new pathways to be opened for new characters that populate this universe.”
The ‘X-Men’ movie universe has indeed opened up in a variety of directions. First, ‘Deadpool’ proved that there was an audience for risque, R-rated superhero movies; next, ‘Logan’ proved that the format could be utilised for genuine prestige filmmaking, potentially worthy of Oscars.
And next year, ‘The New Mutants’ will be the first X-Men horror movie.
Mangold also acknowledges that the success of ‘Wonder Woman’ may have helped blaze the trail for an X-Men movie centred on a female character: “Patty [Jenkins]’s success with that film only solidifies more for studios that there’s less to fear with a female protagonist.
“The more that keeps getting hit home, that ends up giving me more space turning around and going, ‘Well here we are with a female protagonist. That’s incredible. And what are we going to do with her?’
“And that’s where we are with that [the Laura script] right now, dreaming.”
Meanwhile, although Hugh Jackman will not be involved in ‘Laura,’ he says he “will be lining up on the Thursday night at 10 pm to watch it… [Dafne Keen] is just phenomenal.”
No release date for ‘Laura’ has been announced at present, nor is James Mangold confirmed to direct (although his comments would imply he’s at least interested).
In the meantime, the ‘X-Men’ series continues in 2018 with ‘The New Mutants’ on 13 April, ‘Deadpool 2’ on 1 June, and ‘X-Men: Dark Phoenix’ on 2 November.