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Why Logan Cut Xavier’s Tragic Backstory

by  in Movie News Comment
Why Logan Cut Xavier’s Tragic Backstory

WARNING: This article contains spoilers for “Logan,” in theaters now.

Early on in “Logan,” it becomes clear that, not only is Charles Xavier a shadow of his former self, with immense powers that are no longer as fully under his control, but that he’s haunted by a terrible incident, possibly one involving Wolverine himself, that occurred in Westchester County, New York, home of Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters.

RELATED: “Logan” Writer Explains How Time is the Film’s True Villain

Speaking with The Hollywood Reporter, “Logan” co-writer Michael Green explained that early drafts of the screenplay featured flashback scenes that would have revealed exactly what happened at the X-Mansion. However, the film’s creative team made the conscious decision to drop them.

“It actually hits home a lot harder than the versions that really painted out specifically the flashback,” Green said, adding, “of course there are versions we wrote that were never filmed with the actual flashback of what happened, but I’ve found the experience of watching it is far more poignant to just know that it was something really regrettable and it was bad and most likely, friends were lost. Or maybe it was people we didn’t know.”

Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters

In the final film, the Westchester incident, and the more than 600 people (including some X-Men) killed or injured, is mentioned in the background on a radio news program, where it is overtly compared to the devastation that occurs in the Oklahoma casino in the film.

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Green revealed he’s really looking forward to reading fan theories about the Westchster incident. “Nothing will be better than going online and reading fan theories about what happened at the end because I want to hear that version,” he said. “I know what I think happened, I even know what did happen, but it doesn’t matter, because what’s canonized here is the emotional effect of things.”

Directed by James Mangold, “Logan” is set in the near future, years after the epilogue of 2014’s “X-Men: Days of Future Past.” In it, a weary Logan, whose healing factor is failing, cares for an ailing Professor X in a hideout on the Mexican border. But Logan’s attempts to hide from the world and his legacy are up-ended when a young mutant arrives, pursued by dark forces.

Now in theaters nationwide, “Logan” stars Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Boyd Holbrook, Richard E. Grant, Dafne Keen and Stephen Merchant.

logan (film)
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