Out filmmaker Bryan Singer has officially signed on as the director of X-Men: Days of Future Past, the 2014 follow-up to X-Men: First Class. According to Deadline, Singer—who helmed the first two X-flicks, 2000’s X-Men and 2003’s X2—is stepping in to replace First Class director Matthew Vaughn, who is said to be adapting the indie comic book Secret Service to film.
This could mean the franchise’s inherent queer-relatability factor will be even higher: “The gay rights/post-Holocaust Jewish identity/civil-rights allegory stuff was all put in there on purpose,” First Class screenwriter Zack Stentz posted online. “Joss Whedon designed the whole ‘Cure’ storyline in the comic books specifically as a gay allegory, and Bryan Singer wove his own feelings of outsiderdom as a gay man into the movie series.”
Since Singer started the film franchise, many more gay characters have come into play in the X-comics, including the speedster Northstar, the camouflaging Anole and the telepath Karma. In the X-Men comic books, “Days of Future Past” was a storyline that saw the team time-traveling to a dystopian future where mutants are hunted by giant robot Sentinels.
First Class stars James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender and Jennifer Lawrence are all on board to return in Days of Future Past, set to hit theaters July 18, 2014. Below, check out some homoerotic shenanigans between McAvoy’s Professor X and Fassbender’s Magneto in a deleted scene from First Class.