Lilandra Neramani is a name that tends to strike fear in the hearts of mutants and X-Men fans the world over.
She is, in essence, the empress (or Majestrix) of the Shi’ar Empire, one who is set to feature quite prominently in Simon Kinberg’s 2018 sequel, X-Men: Dark Phoenix. And though initial reports had linked Angeline Jolie with the villainous role, two-time Oscar nominee Jessica Chastain recently emerged as the frontrunner, and we’re now learning that the actress is bound for Montreal to begin filming her scenes as Lilandra.
Word comes by way of Chastain’s latest Instagram post, which stitched together two photos – one in character; one on the red carpet – of her opposite James McAvoy, the Scottish actor who has led the X-Men as the young Charles Xavier all throughout Fox’s ongoing prequel saga. What’s interesting here is that, as seasoned comic book readers will know all too well, Lilandra actually shares a lifelong bond with Charles, and it’s only after the Cassandra Nova incident that their marriage is annulled.
Whether Kinberg’s Dark Phoenix adaptation will stay true to that storyline remains to be seen, but after sharing the screen in Ned Benson’s three part saga, The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby, we’re excited to see Chastain and McAvoy back at it once more. The picture below was captioned as so: “Hey @jamesmcavoyrealdeal you ready for me up in Montreal? Im gonna make you cry so hard 😈 #xmen @simondavidkinberg.”
Hot off her magnetic performance in Miss Sloane, in which she played a fierce, unrelenting Washington lobbyist, Jessica Chastain is a major coup for the X-Men franchise. Granted, the same would’ve been said about Oscar Issac’s addition to Apocalypse, so let’s just hope the underlying script brings the very best out of Chastain.
X-Men: Dark Phoenix has been pegged for release on November 2nd, 2018, though we’ve already gone ahead and compiled a list of 10 characters who we’d like to see appear in Simon Kinberg’s forthcoming sequel.