5:00am PT by Aaron Couch
'X-Men: Apocalypse': Nightcrawler Actor on the Franchise's Future and the Battles to Come
A major question left at the end of X-Men: Apocalypse is which path the franchise will take next.
Apocalypse introduced a new class of mutants, with young versions of Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee), Jean Grey (Sophie Turner), Cyclops (Tye Sheridan) and Storm (Alexandra Shipp) bringing new energy to complement the now-seasoned X-Men: First Class versions of Professor X (James McAvoy), Magneto (Michael Fassbender) and Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence).
Smit-McPhee has his own hopes for where things go from here — with the young class front and center. As evidence as to why that makes sense, he says look no further than the final scene of Apocalypse, which features the new lineup in the Danger Room under the watchful guidance of Mystique and Professor X.
"They kind of mended some things that didn't make sense with this timeline, but also they've completely left it to us, very obviously," he tells Heat Vision of the continuity course correction the franchise took with Days of Future Past. "We're in the Danger Room and the door opens up and we're all in our comic book accurate costumes. I think it's kind of teasing the audience to be a little excited for something to come. I only have the same judgment as the audience does. I'm hoping."
The franchise is now 16 years in and is preparing to say goodbye to Hugh Jackman with next March's third Wolverine film. It paid homage to the original stars of Bryan Singer's 2000 X-Men movie with X-Men: Days of Future Past, and going forward, it's unclear how the First Class cast and Apocalypse's young actors all factor in.
If he does portray Nightcrawler in a '90s-set film, Smit-McPhee looks forward to portraying him with a little bit of an edge.
"I obviously displayed him as shy, loving, compassionate, grounded and humble. That would be more abundant in his younger age. If the next movie was to go ahead into the '90s, like they've been doing with the continuity, I feel like I could play him a little tougher, like he's been through a little more battles," says Smit-McPhee.
The star sees that as a way to pay tribute both to the comic book character as well as lead him toward the path to becoming like the version Alan Cumming played in 2003's X2: X-Men United.
"He's just right in that sweet spot where it's an homage to how he's displayed in the comic book and what Alan did," says the actor. "That would really show an arc through not just one movie itself, but all the installments."
X-Men: Apocalypse is available on Blu-ray, 4K Ultra HD and DVD now.