After years of negotiating and strategizing, the X-Men are finally going to make it into the MCU. How and when they will be integrated is anyone's guess, but with Marvel seemingly making plans to throw them in, it's only a matter of time before we see mutants and Avengers working together on the big screen. With a major shift in universe, there will likely be some changes when the X-Men are placed into the MCU. A tonal shift will probably be in place, but we'd also wager that Marvel would take the time to do some even greater changes. Having rebooted franchises before (regardless of how recently their franchises had been going), there's a strong possibility that we could see some new X-Men. Characters like Mystique, Cyclops, and Beast could have entirely new faces when they're fighting alongside Spider-Man and Black Panther.
On that note, there are several X-Men characters we think are due for a recasting. After some lackluster FOX movies, perhaps it's time to give another actor a shot at playing a beloved character. If there were a good time for the X-Men to be recast, the change to the MCU would be the moment. On the other hand, plenty of actors have already proven their worth with other characters, so we hope that Marvel doesn't go ahead and change them -- any change like that would likely be a step down. With that out of the way, we'll hop through a convoluted timeline to discuss 10 X-Men castings we hope the MCU keeps and 10 we hope they recast.
20 KEEP: DEADPOOL
After Ryan Reynolds recognized the failure of the version of Deadpool in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, he did right by the fans in starring in both Deadpool films, where he effectively rebooted the character in a way that was both exciting and fresh. Reynolds is committed to being the Merc with a Mouth, and the movies are extremely successful, so this is one role Marvel shouldn't change.
Besides, having the opportunity to put Reynolds and another actor like Paul Rudd in the same superhero movie is just too good of an opportunity to pass up. Wade Wilson has a good thing going, and Marvel could use that to their benefit.
19 RECAST: PSYLOCKE
Fan-favorite X-Men character, Psylocke, finally made her full cinematic debut in X-Men: Apocalypse. Unfortunately, the result wasn't memorable, as Olivia Munn didn't seem to be given enough material to go above and beyond with the character. Serving as a voiceless horseman of Apocalypse, Psylocke didn't do much other than have some neat action scenes and effects on her blades.
If Marvel wants to use this character, they could easily recast her and nobody would likely notice. Furthermore, it would give them an opportunity to give more depth to the character beyond a cool fight scene.
18 KEEP: CABLE
While there were some problems with Cable in Deadpool 2, there's no denying that Josh Brolin served as a nice straight man to the strange comedy of Deadpool. Bringing a certain amount of weight and drama to the role, Cable was almost exactly what the fans wanted. With him sticking around by the end of the film, there is more opportunity to make him even more interesting going forward.
It could create some awkward jokes if Brolin plays two characters in the same universe, but he does such a great job at both, that it would be sad to see him lose the part of Cable for that reason alone. Furthermore, there would be no way to recast Cable and make it seem graceful at this point.
17 RECAST: ANGEL
After having an awkward appearance in X-Men: The Last Stand, Angel didn't reappear until X-Men: Apocalypse, where he was turned into fan-favorite Archangel. Like the rest of Apocalypse's Horsemen, though, Angel greatly suffered in the character department. There was never a moment where it felt like he was interesting or memorable.
Honestly, he could've been written out of the movie and it would've stayed the same. Not only could Marvel take the chance to recast Angel as someone with more charisma, but they could also give him a costume that's much more distinct, referencing his comic design.
16 KEEP: MAGNETO
Michael Fassbender has proven his worth as Magneto. While Ian McKellen brought a sinister element to the character, Fassbender constantly reassures that the X-Men's greatest villain is a sympathetic and reasonable character -- every one of his actions is understandable.
Being such a big character in the X-Men lore, Marvel would have to put a lot of effort into recasting him, bringing someone who has as much if not more impact than Fassbender. The easier way out would likely be just to bring that character over. Not only would it be great to see him interact with some of the Avengers, but it would give Marvel room to do interesting stories, possibly even adding Xorn.
15 RECAST: STORM
Halle Berry's version of Storm, for all of her campiness, was a popular and beloved character. Alexandra Shipp's version, on the other hand, wasn't given a lot of room to grow. X-Men: Apocalypse recast younger versions of many of the franchise's major heroes, and few of them landed well. The younger version of Storm had a few lines and very confusing reasons for joining Apocalypse.
After bringing the character over to the MCU, Marvel could easily recast and take the opportunity to ground her origin in the world. For example, she could even have ties to Wakanda and possibly even be a future love interest for Black Panther.
14 KEEP: PROFESSOR X
It's great that we live in a world where both versions of Charles Xavier in the movies are great. While Patrick Stewart has been done with the role since Logan, James McAvoy still has some juice left in him, portraying the younger version of the character. With Marvel bringing the X-Men over, it makes sense that they would have to get the portrayal of Professor X just right.
Because McAvoy has already been doing a great job, there is simply no reason to recast him. He and Fassbender have excellent chemistry, and that would be missing if two entirely new actors were drafted to play the characters on-screen.
13 RECAST: STRYKER
Stryker is one of the X-Mens' bigger villains and was responsible for the Weapon X program that created Wolverine. In the movie timeline, three different actors portrayed the character but for this list, we'll be focusing on the most recent version that appeared in Days of Future Past and Apocalypse.
While not bad, Stryker doesn't carry any sort of seriousness or weight in those films. He feels as snivelling and coniving as ever, but he doesn't leave an impact on-screen. If Stryker were to appear in the MCU, Marvel could easily recast him and make him a more interesting villain. If they use a new Wolverine, it would make sense to use a new Stryker as well.
12 KEEP: QUICKSILVER
With Marvel and FOX both using the Quicksilver character, the challenge was on to create the best version. Surprisingly, FOX won the race and Evan Peters' Quicksilver was the better of the two. As the X-Men transition to the MCU, it would be a shame to see Evan Peters booted from the role.
While it could complicate the universe with having two Quicksilvers, Marvel could easily make Peters' version a legacy character of sorts. He could function as a "new" Quicksilver who is given the name by Scarlet Witch after he reminded her of her brother. There are ways to integrate him, and such a great character is worth the effort.
11 RECAST: CYCLOPS
Cyclops didn't make any serious movie appearances after X-Men: The Last Stand until X-Men: Apocalypse, where Tye Sheridan was cast to play a younger version of the character. However, Sheridan doesn't quite capture the aloofness and sometimes rude personality of Scott Summers from the comics.
He feels interchangeable, with his only interesting trait being that he lost his brother. Known for having iconic characters that recreate the source material well, the MCU wouldn't be remiss to recast him. Sheridan hasn't been in the visor long enough to become iconic, so it would be easy to bring a new face to the mix and give him his classic costume.
10 KEEP: PHOENIX
FOX seems to be righting several wrongs made in their past X-Men films with the release of Dark Phoenix. Among them is the portrayal of Jean Grey as it relates to "The Dark Phoenix Saga". Sophie Turner had some standout moments in X-Men: Apocalypse with her crazy powers on full display.
Her inevitable transformation into the Dark Phoenix was even foreshadowed by Apocalypse, who was at awe with her strength. Recasting her yet again to have another different version in the MCU would feel seriously redundant, especially if Dark Phoenix makes the character even better. Marvel would be better off keeping Sophie Turner and not having a new Phoenix so soon.
9 RECAST: MYSTIQUE
It's not entirely clear what Mystique's purpose is in the current slate of X-Men films. After being a conflicted character in First Class and the somewhat antagonist of Days of Future Past, she was somehow turned into a hero in Apocalypse despite already leaving the X-Men prior.
Jennifer Lawrence isn't a bad actress, but her version of Mystique feels hollow and without direction. If Marvel brings Mystique to the MCU, it would be a great time for them to recast her (it wouldn't make that much of a difference because of the makeup) and turn her into the classic villain that she once was, complete with a comic-accurate costume.
8 KEEP: NIGHTCRAWLER
Nightcrawler has been one of the most popular X-Men ever created, so it's a shame that he only appeared in two of the X-Men films. However, both portrayals have been on point, with Kodi Smit-McPhee's younger portrayal being a version that feels familiar yet different.
Nightcrawler is a key member of the team, so it makes sense that Marvel would push to have him in their films. With Smit-McPhee's performance being one of the highlights of X-Men: Apocalypse, it would seem pointless to recast him. All that needs done is him to get his red and black costume, and Marvel would have a great Nightcrawler from the very start.
7 RECAST: JUGGERNAUT
Vinnie Jones' performance as Juggernaut in X-Men: The Last Stand has already been so "iconic" that it's created an entire series of memes. For this list, we'll be focusing on the version that appeared in Deadpool 2. Juggernaut was an entirely CGI creation and was voiced by Ryan Reynolds.
However, Juggernaut had a lot of poor effects and didn't leave a lasting impression after the film, being used solely as the butt of a joke. Marvel could easily recast the character, having a different actor voice him and giving him his iconic brown and red armor (though the CGI design was a step in the right direction, it needed some severe polishing).
6 KEEP: BEAST
Nicholas Hoult, as a younger version of Beast, has done a great job. He captures the intelligent yet nervous version of Dr. Hank McCoy while bringing a certain level of ferocity to his alter ego. The films have already figured out how to make Beast look and feel like his version in the comics, so there's no reason for Marvel to change it.
They could recast Beast and few people would know, but if they plan on using Hank McCoy as well, it would certainly be a jarring change with little purpose. He's usually connected to McAvoy's Professor X, so if Marvel keeps one in the MCU, they should definitely keep the other.
5 RECAST: KITTY PRYDE
Kitty Pryde is a popular X-Men character, though hasn't been given a real chance to shine on the big screen. She had a few scenes in both X-Men: The Last Stand and X-Men: Days of Future Past, but she hasn't made an impact outside of that. In bringing her to the MCU, Marvel has the chance to make her the standout X-Men she was in the comics.
In creating a different version, they could also put her in all sorts of interesting scenarios. She could even team up with the Guardians of the Galaxy just as she did in the comics.
4 KEEP: COLOSSUS
While Colossus' change for Deadpool was a little disheartening for some, Stefan Kapicic has proven that he's worthy to wear the metal suit of the most durable X-Man. Colossus served as the perfect counterpart to Ryan Reynolds' Deadpool. He was hopeful, embodying every good moral and lesson he was ever taught by Charles Xavier.
Having two performances that were both excellent, changing him all of a sudden would feel weird. Furthermore, it seems that he'll be a continuous part of the Deadpool franchise going forward, so Marvel would probably be best just keeping him the way he is.
3 RECAST: SABRETOOTH
Despite how Sabretooth has rivaled the X-Men and Wolverine in the comics, he has yet to have that same kind of presence on-screen. Both versions in X-Men and X-Men Origins: Wolverine, left a bit to be desired, neither having any presence to be remembered later in the franchise.
Sabretooth has bee absent from the films since and with him being out of the game so long, Marvel could easily take the character, recast him, and do him a few favors along the way. Sabretooth is a monstrous villain who gave into his animal instincts, and Marvel has a great chance to fully utilize that.
2 KEEP: X-23
One of the best parts of Logan was Dafne Keen. Despite concerns that a child actor would be poorly suited to hold a dramatic rater-R film, Keen did an excellent job. She was both ferocious and emotional, capturing a version of X-23 that fans have wanted to see on screen for a long time.
With her only appearing in one film with room for a reprisal in the future, Marvel would be remiss not to capitalize on that. With them establishing some younger characters in the MCU, Keen's X-23 would be a perfect fit, as she could be built up as that universe's Wolverine.
1 RECAST: ROGUE
Rogue was a big part of the first few X-Men films only to disappear until X-Men: Days of Future Past (if you watched the "Rogue Cut", that is). Even when many of the bigger X-Men were given younger incarnations, Rogue was not on that list and was strangely absent from the franchise altogether.
Despite Anna Paquin doing a good job as the character, that version has never fully embraced her design or her impressive powers from the comics. Marvel has the chance to reboot the character with a new face and look, allowing her to have the insane powers that she did in the comics.