The interview lasted over 45 minutes, and because it was only for sites that write about film (unlike other round tables where we share with all sorts of outlets), it’s pretty much concentrated on things that should interest you. It certainly fascinates us.
This third section of the interview (3 of 3 that will be published) is about the relationship the film has with the comics., you can read the first part of the interview, which focuses on Writing and Character, here and the second part, concerning itself with the Production, is right here.
On Relation to the Comics
Q: You did a great job sacrificing characters, but was there anything you had to cut out to make the film work?
MV: There was a whole love story between Moria and X, and we cut all that out. Most of my movies, I always cut out one -I normally try to shoot too many things; it’s better to be able to take it down to to not be able to build it up.
Q: X-Men-wise, you’ve got hundreds of characters to choose from, how did you go about chosing the characters?
MV: they were already chosen by Bryan and Fox. The draft they gave me, the characters were in there.
Q: you didn’t cut anyone, you didn’t add anyone?
MV: We cut, is it Quicksilver? No, not Quicksilver. Sunspot. We didn’t have enough time or money, we couldn’t make him work, it was a pain in the arse.
Q: Did you have a favourite X-Men character in this movie?
MV: for me it’s obvious, but Magneto. I sat down with Michael and said, ‘I’ve always wanted to do a Bond movie. Imagine you’re Bond, but you don’t have to have gadgets. Bond would have to use his watch to make it magnetic, you can do shit that other people can’t; you’re sort of the ultimate assassin in a world that no one knows about, you with your powers’. I’ve always loved Magneto, and I don’t know why. It’s weird, because his power’s bloody odd if you think about it, it’s not that great a power, but there’s something about Magneto I’ve always loved.
Q: How much pressure did you have from the hardcore fanbase? Did you read a lot about what the fans thought?
MV: You read about it, but you have to, and don’t take it the wrong way, ignore it, because you’ve got to make a movie. I remember talking to Daniel Craig about this when he was doing Bond, and I was like ‘fuck these fuckwits, it doesn’t matter. They haven’t seen what you’re doing, you’re a good actor. Just let your work do the talking.’ And I always knew when people saw him in Bond they’d say, ‘he’s great’.
It’s very odd. You read, and you do want to hear what the concerns are, and see if you can address them, but at the same time, you don’t know who the hell’s writing it. It could be some eight year old kid. You actually meet these people and you suddenly go, ‘I’m listening to an eight year old about how to construct a film’, but every now and then there can be some valid points.
I was amazed at the negativity though, towards the X-Men world – not really, actually after watching Wolverine – but there was a whole – it was quite scary thinking, ‘am I going to turn fanboys round to actually enjoy it?’ and I thought the best way of doing it was, try to make a good movie that is respectful to the other X-Men movies, but not reverential to them.
Q: One of the things I really liked was their relationship with Mystique.
MV: Well, Mystique was the catalyst between the two of them as well, the way they both treat her differently, you need a third character…
Q: Watching them change sides like that, you could see the emotion behind it.
MV: It was hard to get that balance right. Tricky character Mystique, as well. We came up with a whole, the idea of – now that I’ve got daughters and stuff – girls not being comfortable in their own skin. You’ve got that thing where Magneto says, ‘does a tiger cover up?’ and Professor X going, ‘are you going to put some clothes on?’ Always trying to show the different attitude towards the sane thing.
You can check out our review of the film here. X-Men: First Class is released in UK cinemas on the 1st of June.