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Simon Kinberg Plans Shared X-men/Fantastic Universe; 'X-men: Apocalypse' Update

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With Bryan Singer's announcement that X-men: Apocalypse would be arriving on May 27th 2016, any doubt that Fox was seriously expanding their X-men line has gone out the window. But it goes further than that, as the studio also has the rights to big league Marvel property, the Fantastic Four, which is to revamped by director Josh Trank. Both franchises share one name in common, and that's writer/producer Simon Kinberg, and it looks like he's going to using the Marvel Studios template to create a shared cinematic universe.

According to THR, Kinberg's Genre Films label has signed a three-year deal with 20th Century Fox with their major goal to further develop the X-men and Fantastic Four franchises, connecting them similar to what has been done with The Avengers. Kinberg is one of the most prolific figures in Hollywood today, as he's involved with the upcoming Star Wars movies and the Star Wars: Rebels TV series, not to mention producing the live-action Cinderella. He also produced Neill Blomkamp's Elysium and will do the same for his next sci-fi film, Chappie. He's been involved with Fox's X-men movies since X-men: The Last Stand and has been as much an influence on them as Singer.

Kinberg: "I have a lot of ideas on how to built those brands and do what everybody is thinking of these days: Be like Marvel. I want to be able to build stories over multiple movies."

Meanwhile, our friends at Bleeding Cool have unearthed a few more details on X-men: Apocalypse, which mostly remains a mystery. The film will be a direct sequel to X-men: Days of Future Past, with " a clear narrative thread" that connects the two stories, and as the title suggests it will be the villain Apocalypse at the center of it. 'Days of Future Past' has a massive roster combining the new and old casts and apparently everybody who makes it through unscathed will be sought to return, although there will be plenty of new characters as well.

Bryan Singer's part in it is still uncertain but he's expected to direct. A few months ago he had a memorable exchange with Bleeding Cool on the subject of Apocalypse, which seemed to indicate the villain was in Singer's plans. Assuming that's true, this is a plan Singer has been formulating for awhile and there's little chance he'll give it to someone else.

Anyway, big things are happening over at Fox, and let's not forget that the X-men universe is just as large, just as varied as The Avengers. They can easily build a brand large enough to match it, or even surpass it to be the dominant superhero movie force in Hollywood.

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