How X-Men’s Apocalypse Influenced ‘The Mummy’

Posted: December 9, 2016 in Comic Book News

With production on Universal’s upcoming reboot film The Mummy currently in full swing, the project has attracted a ton of responses thus far, both positive and negative. Among the negative comments/reactions include criticisms directed towards the casting of actress Sofia Boutella as Ahmanet, the titular villain in the upcoming film, with many complaining about the traditionally male role being given to a female actor. However, in a recent interview with Cinemablend, director Alex Kurtzman revealed that this wasn’t always the case:

There was a moment when I had sort of rendered a design that I liked for a male version of The Mummy. And in that version of The Mummy, the Mummy had been born with a skin pigmentation that at the time would have made him really sort of an outcast…I was reaching for a way to make the Mummy a character who is relatable, understandable, and that spoke to issues that we’re dealing with now.

So, what stopped him from continuing on that road? None other than Bryan Singer’s take on the X-Men villain Apocalypse, whose cameo appearance in X-Men: Days of Future Past sharply turned the direction of Kurtzman’s film as soon as he saw Singer’s film:

I was going down that road, and then I saw the end of Days of Future Past. And they had the character that Oscar Isaac wound up playing as a boy, and it was, I kid you not, the exact same design. And I was like, ‘Oh, man! That is not good!’ And actually it was the catalyst, it was the moment of, ‘Okay, not only is this not going to be different enough, Bryan Singer just did it, I definitely don’t want to go down that road.’

I had had that voice in my head for some time to make it a woman, and that was the moment where, the minute I saw that post-credits scene, I went, ‘We have to start over.’ I don’t want to mess around even remotely with anything that feels familiar or feels like it’s been done. I have to go in totally new territory.’

Thankfully for Kurtzman, the transition of the Mummy character from a male to a female actually proved to be beneficial in the end, allowing him to craft a story that ultimately felt “right” for him:

In a way it was very helpful to me, because it made me take that leap. And once we took that leap, the story presented itself in such a beautiful way, such a different way. A lot of the decisions, you spend a lot of time talking to people and you think it through as much as you can, but ultimately it comes down to what feels right. And the minute I allowed myself to let the Mummy be Ahmanet, it just felt right. And that’s the best way for me to say it.

The Mummy will arrive in theaters on June 9, 2017

What do you think about Apocalypse having such a strong influence on the direction of The Mummy? Let me know in the comments below, or with a tweet through that widget on the left. While you’re at it, don’t forget to like the Comic Books vs The World Facebook page, subscribe to the official YouTube and Twitch channels, and follow the official Comic Books vs The World Instagram to keep up with all the latest on Comic Books vs The World.

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