“X-Men” Caused A “Mummy” Gender Swap

Universal premiered the first trailer for its reboot of “The Mummy” over the weekend, one which gave us a first proper look at Sofia Boutella as the titular monster – an ancient queen seeking vengeance.

Originally though, the gender swap of the monster wasn’t the case. Last year director Alex Kurtzman had planned to use a male actor to play the Mummy. But, after seeing the post-credits scene of Bryan Singer’s “X-Men: Days of Future Past” which sets up “X-Men: Apocalypse,” Kurtzman changed things up. He told Cinema Blend this week:

“I’ll let you in on a secret. 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.

And I thought it was an interesting backstory, because it began to tell the story of someone who had been bullied, which I found topical. 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.

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 […] 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.'”

Tom Cruise leads a diverse cast in the film which also stars Russell Crowe, Annabelle Wallis, Jake Johnson, Courtney B. Vance, Javier Botet, Chico Kenzari, Shihoko Nagai and Solomon Taiwo. Christopher McQuarrie and Jon Spaihts penned the script with the film to open next Summer.