The New Mutants looks like its finally ready to reach our screens.
Since 2018, fans have been waiting with bated breath for The New Mutants, which follows a group of young X-Men who are a bit more dangerous than the world can handle.
But production delays, reshoots, edits, and most recently, the pandemic, have led to the film being postponed several times.
Now, in 2020, it seems like the world may finally be getting a complete cut of The New Mutants—on August 28, 2020, to be precise.
The delays surrounding The New Mutants have become a bit of a joke in the geek community, but it seems that director Josh Boone and the cast have not taken the criticism to heart. In fact, they were quite jovial about it during the panel and even joked about how the fans would finally get to see the film this year.
At SDCC’s Comic Con@Home, the cast and director of The New Mutants came together to discuss the film, what fans can expect from the characters, and even the opening scene.
What is The New Mutants About?
The New Mutants is based on the superhero series from the 1980s—the film has obviously been updated in terms of genre and feel.
In the Marvel Comics universe, the New Mutants are off-shoots of the X-Men—these teen characters were aimed at younger audiences, though they had a few more horror elements than the rest of the franchise.
According to Boone, the film adaptation leans heavily on the popular Demon Bear story arc, which centred on Dani Moonstar/ Mirage. It seems the film will be following a similar pattern, with Blu Hunt, who will portay Mirage, expressing how challenging and rewarding it was to lead the film.
Who Are The New Mutants?
Hunt’s Mirage, a Native American teenager, has the ability to manifest people’s fears in physical form. This ability ties directly into the Demon Bear arc and will be interesting to see in the film.
Alongside Hunt is Maisie Williams’ Rahne Sinclair/ Wolfsbane, a mutant who transforms into a wolf. Though terrifying in appearance, Sinclair in the comics is a gentle soul, and this will be reflected in the film. According to Williams, her Sinclair will be a quiet, observant character in group settings, but comes to life when she’s with Moonstar.
Boone also confirmed that Moonstar and Sinclair will become a couple during the film, which is an exciting change from the comics where the characters are close friends, but nothing more.
Blockbuster films have had a bad track record for featuring queer characters, so this change is a welcome one. Fans will also hope that The New Mutants leans into the more positive aspects of Rahne Sinclair/ Wolfsbane’s trans allegory—but that remains to be seen.
The team also features Sam Guthrie/ Cannonball, played by Charlie Heaton, who, in the comics, is the leader of the team. According to Heaton, Cannonball isn’t at the leadership stage in this film but shows great promise.
Anya Taylor-Joy portrays Illyana Rasputin/ Magik. In the comics, Magik, the sister of Piotr/ Colossus, isn’t a founding member of the New Mutants—she joins the team in later issues.
Rounding off the team is Henry Zaga as Roberto da Costa/ Sunspot. The Marvel Comics version of Sunspot is a talented and affluent young Brazilian teenager, whose mutant powers manifest when he is attacked by racists.
Backlash Against The New Mutants
Considering Sunspot’s background, there has been a significant amount of backlash against the casting of Zaga, a light-skinned Brazilian, with fans decrying the whitewashing of the character.
And this isn’t the only time that Zaga and director Boone have been at the centre of controversy.
Boone cast Zaga in the role of a hearing-impaired person in The Stand, prompting backlash about casting a hearing actor in a role that should have gone to someone from the Deaf community.
The whitewashing of Sunspot, a character who embodies the lived experience of so many Black people and people of colour should have been addressed in the two years that the film had been delayed. That it hasn’t and wasn’t once brought up during the panel is disappointing, especially in light of the recent sweeping Black Lives Matter protests.
Thoughts on The New Mutants Opening Scene
The panel also revealed the opening scene of The New Mutants, which sees Dani Moonstar being whisked out of her bed by her father. As they leave their home, they are attacked by people who seem out of control and violent.
Moonstar Senior hides Dani in the woods and goes back to fight but is killed shortly after. Dani tries to escape but falls and knocks herself out—when she wakes up, she is handcuffed to a hospital bed.
You can watch the full scene on YouTube:
While the opening scene certainly captures the atmosphere the film is going for, some of the editing choices are a bit jarring to watch. Dani and her father seem to be transported from their home to the wilderness in an instant, and when Dani’s father is killed, it looks like he goes a distance, only to fall dead right in front of her.
Boone and his crew have had a long time to fix any issues with The New Mutants so one hopes that this opening scene will not be a portend of things to come.
However, the trailer that was shared after looks much better and could be enough to get fans excited for August 28.
Are you still looking forward to New Mutants? Let us know in the comments.