Jessica Chastain is in talks to star as the villain in Fox’s X-Men movie “Dark Phoenix” with Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Sophie Turner, and Nicholas Hoult all returning to the franchise.
Fox also announced Wednesday that Simon Kinberg is making his directorial debut on the tentpole from his own adaptation. He’s best known for writing and producing films in the franchise, including “X-Men: Apocalypse” and “X-Men: Days of Future Past.”
“Dark Phoenix” will shoot in Montreal. Kinberg is also producing along with Hutch Parker and Lauren Shuler Donner.
The Cannes Film Festival was at a crossroads this year. It reckoned with new technology and the future of the film world. It reckoned with outside terror threats that cast an anxious pall at the always-glamorous event. Its slate of films in 2017, tended to reckon with the gloomy state of the world at large. But it also reckoned with an issue that has plagued the film industry since the festival became a must-stop for Hollywood power brokers and global stars 70 years ago: the way its carefully selected films represent women on screen.
Jessica Chastain, one of the jury members of this year’s festival (a group headed by Pedro Almodovar), closed the event on May 28 at the final press conference by addressing that issue head on, noting that she was, frankly, disturbed by the way female characters were portrayed in the works she saw. She was responding to a reporter’s question about the female filmmakers at this year’s festival, and began by saying that if there was more “female storytelling,” there would be “more authentic female characters.”
When this year’s Cannes jury roster was announced, there was really only one head scratcher in the bunch: Will Smith.
At first glance, the actor might’ve seemed an odd choice to serve under president Pedro Almodovar for the 70th annual event, considering that none of the 40 films he’s made in his career have screened at Cannes, the most prestigious, and perhaps most discerning, film festival in the world.
But Smith, 48, who for years ranked as the biggest box-office star in the business, silenced snarky film snobs on Wednesday in the most fun way possible: Killing ’em with charisma. He clearly didn’t forget to pack his movie star charm, showing up to a series of events to kick off the film festival and winning over press, cinephiles and adoring fans everywhere he went.
One might dare to say that Smith even stole the show on opening night at the Palais where the festival opened with Arnaud Desplechin’s Ismael’s Ghosts. After getting out of his car, Smith was seen posing for photos with fans against the barricades on the Croisette, high-fiving others, and saying hello to security guards in the street before making his red-carpet debut to join his fellow jury members for a group photo.