Marvel & Fox Announce Two X-Men TV Shows
With the rumors surrounding whether Fox gave the rights for Fantastic Four back to Marvel Studios for two X-Men television shows or not, one thing is certain: there are two X-Men TV series currently being developed at Fox. Marvel and Fox announced that two shows are being developed for Fox Television and FX: Hellfire and Legion.
Both of these shows comes with a really high pedigree of producers. Hellfire and Legion is being produced by Lauren Shuler Donner, Bryan Singer, Simon Kinberg, Manny Coto, Jeph Loeb, and Jim Chory. Hellfire will also be produced by Evan Katz and be written by Patrick McKay and JD Payne. John CameronNoah Hawley will executive produce Legion along with Noah Hawley who will write the pilot and executive produce as well. Here’s the breakdown of both series:
Set in the late 1960s, the series -- which will be produced by 20th Century Fox Television and Marvel Television, with 20th Century Fox handling the physical production -- follows a young Special Agent who learns that a power-hungry woman with extraordinary abilities is working with a clandestine society of millionaires – known as “The Hellfire Club” – to take over the world.
The Hellfire Club was introduced in X-Men: First Class and setting the series in the 60s seems to indicate that this will be a spinoff show from the films. Kevin Bacon and January Jones, who played Sebastian Shaw and Emma Frost in First Class, work on Fox Television shows, so bringing them back to reprise the film roles is a definite possibility - despite the former character being dead. Hey, it’s comics, no one ever stays dead!
Here’s what President of Entertainment at the Fox Broadcasting Company, David Madden, said in a statement:
We are thrilled to partner with Marvel to bring this world to television and build upon the vibrant mythology that has captivated fans for years. These powerful and dynamic characters are complicated and larger-than-life, the pace and visual imagination are unrelenting, and the story takes place during one of the most explosive eras in recent history. We are so looking forward to working with this incredibly talented team.
Jonathan Davis, President of Creative Affairs for 20th Century Fox Television, added:
HELLFIRE is a unique opportunity to be able to go deeper with some of these extraordinary characters, but to also dramatize new characters and give TV viewers a chance to experience this expanded world in an explosive way that everyone will be talking about. The action at the center of HELLFIRE will be dynamic and will satisfy the rabid fans, but that said, newcomers will surely be addicted too!
The pilot introduces the story of David Haller: Since he was a teenager, David has struggled with mental illness. Diagnosed as schizophrenic, David has been in and out of psychiatric hospitals for years. But after a strange encounter with a fellow patient, he’s confronted with the possibility that the voices he hears and the visions he sees might be real.
Legion is a far more of a likely candidate for a self contained show… with the exception of one important comic connection: the character is the long lost son of Professor Charles Xavier. In the comics, David Haller had multiple personalities and each one of those personalities had a different super power.
A New Mutants film is being developed at Fox and Haller also has some stories that connect to that property, so I’m guessing that both Legion and Hellfire will be in Fox’s Mutant Universe series.
Here’s what Nick Grad, President of Original Programming at FX Networks and FX Productions, had to say about the project:
Legion is just the sort of ambitious story that Noah excels at. His adaption of Fargo for television was one of the most acclaimed television events in recent memory. It’s also an honor to partner with Marvel on Legion and to enlist such an accomplished team of Executive Producers to create this pilot.
The interesting thing about both of these shows is that they don’t carry the X-Men moniker. That’s not to say the official titles won’t be X-Men: Hellfire and X-Men: Legion, but it does bring up the question of whether these series will tie in with the X-Men franchise or not.
Image: Fox & Marvel