Never before has there been as much security outside and inside for a press event at the Ritz Carlton Park Hotel in New York City than it was for “X-Men: Days of Future Past,” that stars Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy, Halle Berry, Michael Fassbender, Patrick Stewart, Jennifer Lawrence, Ian McKellen, Anna Paquin, Ellen Page, and Peter Dinklage.
Fans, photographers and onlookers curious to know what was going on were all tryig to get a glimpse of the cast members there for interviews.
As Wolverine, Jackman is the leader of the superpower pack. A symbol of good onscreen as well as off, Jackman has made audiences fall in love with him. He is well known for his charitable work and just being one of the “nicest” celebrities on the planet. And, he has a bi-racial son. Oscar, who Jackman speaks of constantly, has even asked his dad not to talk about him publicly any more. Besides family being dear to his heart, X-Men holds a special place also for Jackman. He was ecstatic—as he should be—about the way “X-Men: Days of Future Past” turned out.
Citing the brillance of the script, Jackman said it served as a guide. “The script inverted what happened in “X-Men 1” where Professor X was a mental guy for Wolverine and that became the opposite in this one,” he explained. “There’s so much about the script, I’ve been reflecting on—how you call back fans. There are so many great surprises for fans of the “X-Men” comics or the film series, and yet you still make the film just like a celebration, but with a fresh beginning. And, I like watching this movie as you do. We can start again; it feels like an opening.” It was now time to grill the rest of the cast that had assembled to talk about one of the best films in the series.
Speaking of the past and fresh beginnings Patrick and James, how was it to coordinate the Professor X and Magneto characters with the older and younger ones?
PATRICK STEWART: It made me feel that I’d really like to go back and shoot all the other movies again now that I know exactly where I came from and where I was. I could get so much more James McAvoy into that film. [laughs]
JAMES McAVOY: We didn’t talk about it at all. But I’ve been watching you [turning to Stewart] for years; I mean since I was 10 or 11, something like that. The key thing was watching the empathy that pours out of you in the previous movies and I hoped in ‘First Class’ to be able to emulate that, particularly because it’s sort of the prime characteristic of Professor X, this willingness to care, to reach out, help and touch.
MICHAEL FASSBENDER: I didn’t get to talk to you actually until Comic Con. We sort of kept missing each other. For this one I spent more time. I had basically this thing on YouTube which was Ian McKellen in the 70’s giving a workshop of McBeth and it ran for about 10 minutes. So I just sort of played that over and over again, trying to get more of the rhythms and tones of his voice. Then we finally did meet at Comic Con, which was great, but unfortunately I didn’t have a scene with him. We flipped a coin—James and Patrick won the toss.
JM: Also, you’ve got to stretch the characters in order to get the audience something new. Also on top of that, half the point with going back with ‘First Class’ is to show how different people are. And so the audience can be there for the key turning points in their lives, when somebody goes through the crucible, somebody is galvanized, and somebody is formed and becomes who they will be. You’ve got to hang around for the worst moments because if they don’t kill you, they will make you stronger. And what’s interesting in this film.
Peter, would you say you’re the go to guy these days to play a villain?
PETER DINKLAGE: Um, define villain. [laughs] No, you know, I jump at the chance of doing this little indie movies. [laughs] They something can shine more than the big ones with the right script and working with the right actors. I don’t like to argue the whole villain thing. You know, he really believes he is doing the right thing. He wants to save humankind, worldwide. At the same time, in the time of war, the Vietnam war, one of the worst wars in our recent history-I guess they’re all really bad wars—but he thinks this is an opportunity to bring the world together.
But he’s also a capitalist and I think if you’re going to tack on villain or evil on someone, those are the guys I don’t trust. War profiteers. And he sure has his big T on all of these cargo containers with the sentinels in them and that’s ego war profiteering. That’s where true villainy for me lays. The guy screaming at trees in Central Park, he’s crazy and I get that being a New Yorker. But the guys on Wall Street in the suits, bleeding people of their lives [that’s another story].
Syndicated Entertainment journalist Marie Moore reports on film and TV from her New York City base. Contact her at [email protected]