When Darren Aronofski walked away from directing the comic book adaption The Wolverine last March, I wondered if if studio Twentieth Century Fox would be able to find a replacement director that at least approached the level of interest that Aronofski generated in the project. Turns out the answer is they aren’t.
Deadline is reporting that Fox is about to enter into talks with James Mangold to direct this sequel to the lackluster X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Since the deal is far from final, things could change. But since Fox wants the film in front of cameras thyis fall, expect things to go fairly smoothly.
If you’re wondering why I don’t think that Mangold is a good choice for the film, than you are probably one of the many, many people who stayed away from his last film, the Tom Cruise-headlined action flick Knight And Day. Sure, he also has such films as Girl, Interrupted and Walk The Line on his filmography, but those are more dramatic fare. Based on Kinght And Day, I would charitably describe his ability to direct action as “adequate.”
And adequate is not what the X-Men franchise needs right now. Although it has been performing decently, this summer’s X-Men: First Class is coming in under expectations in regards to box office. X-Men: Origins did marginally better, but felt like a completely unnecessary film from a story standpoint. The Wolverine needs to be the shot in the arm to revitalize the X-Men franchise, but I doubt that Mangold is the one to supply it.