Actor Jennifer Lawrence has played Mystique/Raven Darkhölme in three films, debuting in 2011’s X-Men: First Class. It was announced in June that she would return for X-Men: Dark Phoenix, despite her contract with having expired in 2016. Now, Lawrence has revealed that long-time X-Men contributor Simon Kinberg directing this film is a big part of why she signed back on for X-Men: Dark Phoenix.
“I kind of f—ed myself,” Lawrence told Entertainment Weekly. “Because when I was trying to talk Simon into directing, he said something like, ‘If I direct it, you have to do it,’ and I was like, ‘Of course! Duh!’ Then they offered me the movie, and I was like, ‘Goddammit!'”
“It was the fan base, though, too — the other reason was for the fans,” she added.
Lawrence also mentioned that she had a good experience playing Mystique this time around. “Acting-wise it was the best experience I’ve had [on these films],” she said. “[Simon Kinberg has] been writing these characters for so long and he knows them so deeply. I suddenly felt more connected to my character than I ever have been before.”
Kinberg has been a part of the X-Men franchise since 2006’s X-Men: The Last Stand. He was a producer on X-Men: First Class, X-Men: Days of Future Past and X-Men: Apocalypse, and the writer of Days of Future Past and Apocalypse. This marks his directorial debut, taking the reins from Bryan Singer, who directed Days of Future Past, Apocalypse and the 2000 original X-Men film and its 2003 sequel, X2. Kinberg has also been involved as a producer of X-Men spinoff films, including 2016’s Deadpool and the upcoming New Mutants.
Arriving in theaters on Nov. 2, 2018, X-Men: Dark Phoenix stars James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Sophie Turner, Tye Sheridan, Nicholas Hoult, Alexandra Shipp, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Evan Peters, Olivia Munn, and Jessica Chastain.