Very excited to welcome #annapaquin, @ellenpage & @shawnrashmore to #XMen #DaysofFuturePast - thank you @brettratner for letting them live!
— Bryan Singer (@BryanSinger) January 26, 2013
Which is terribly exciting given that Page's Kitty Pride was one of the few good things about X3, though well done to Singer for noting one of the worst elements within the same tweet.
For the purposes of future smugness, here's my theory about a story element of X-Men: Days of Future Past.
One of the problems with this stream of X-films is that beyond the first two Singer directed parts, continuity has become messy or as Rob Bricken noted in one of his first posts after he moved to i09, "irretrievably fucked".
Some of this is because of scripting of First Class which in places looks like a complete reboot, so often does it contradict what went before, or rather after. But there's also incongruities between Wolverine and the films it really is supposed to be the prequel to.
But I don't think it is "irretrievably fucked".
I think having looked at the work Disney's been doing with their corner of the Marvel Universe, part of the fun of X-Men: Days of Future Past, with its time travel element, will be in sorting out, or explaining many of these continuity errors or at least why they might exist.
Here are three potential options:
(1) The fiddly approach. The writers make a big long list of all the messier elements and have them be explained as temporal fall out because of attempts to fix the timeline, X-Men: Days of Future Past becoming a kind of meta-narrative which has all of the other films occurring within it, montage sequences agogo. By the end of the film only one Sabretooth will exist.
(2) Retcon X3. The ideal solution would be just to retcon X3 out of continuity, explain it away as an unseen element changing the timeline and causing all the nastiness and death and that none of it was "supposed to happen". But that seems a big step for a film studio (even if it's the sort of thing which happens in comics all the time). Singer's tweet suggests that anyone who died in X3 will stay dead. Unless it's a joke and they'll bring who they like back (which also happens in comics a lot too).*
(3) Retcon the whole lot. Full reboot. Given the storyline of the original Days of Future Past comic, its possible the whole of the first film trilogy and Wolverine will become the story of the possible future and the "First Class" version will become the official version moving forward.
Anyway, having done whatever it is they're going to do, this version of the Marvel Movie Universe will be in such position that the studio can then slot in whichever other characters they have the rights to should they want to like the Fantastic Four or Deadpool.
Of course, fans would be even happier if all of these studios sat down and agreed that they were all happening in the same universe and cross-pollinate the franchises so that an Avengers film can acknowledge the existence of mutants or a Spider-man film can feature the Kingpin, which will just make more money for all of them, but that's not looking terribly likely.
* It's also possible that First Class was indeed a reboot and all of these actors are simply coming back to play older versions of those characters not the ones we had before. But given the audience confusion over whether The Incredible Hulk was a sequel despite having entirely been recast, that doesn't seem likely.