How Well Did Wizard Magazine Predict The X-Men Movie In 1995?
20 years ago, the now defunct comic book magazine Wizard played casting director for the (then non-existent) X-Men movie, and they nailed it. Sort of. (They got one right.) Let’s see how their casting holds up in hindsight.
In January of 1995, Wizard Magazine ran their very first "Casting Call" article, in which the writers and editors fantasy-casted an X-Men film that at that point didn't yet exist, and wouldn't for another five years. Hollywood and the X-Men have both come a long way since they made their choices.
1. In 1995, Wizard predicted that Professor X would be played by Patrick Stewart.
And they were right! Patrick Stewart played Professor X!
Since his first appearance as Professor Charles Xavier in X-Men in 2000, Patrick Stewart has appeared as the character in 11 different X-Men movies and video games.
That means that, so far, Wizard Magazine is 100% correct with their predictions. That's an astounding accuracy rate that I'm sure they'll be able to maintain through this entire article.
2. Wizard wanted to see Bishop played by Michael Dorn.
But he was played by Omar Sy.
3. In 1995, Dolph Lundgren would have made a great Colossus.
But by 2003, Daniel Cudmore was the better choice.
When Colossus joined the line-up in X2 in 2003, Dolph Lungren was already 46, so he probably was past his prime to play a young mutant. Luckily, Daniel Cudmore was available, and was 22 at the time, and made of organic metal, so he was the obvious choice. (He's not actually made out of organic metal.)
4. Wizard thought that Michael Biehn might make a good Cyclops.
But the role ended up going to James Marsden.
Look, we all know that Cyclops is the most boring X-Man ever, so they could have cast literally any blank-faced white dude to play him and it would have been fine. The one they chose was James Marsden, which was actually a good call, because he wasn't terrible, which is quite a feat when you're playing such a terrible character.
5. Wizard thought Storm could be played by Iman.
But they went with Halle Berry. Smart call.
Supermodel Iman definitely gives off that Storm vibe, and she's had impressive careers in modeling and cosmetics, but her acting career mostly consisted of minor roles and TV appearances, so it's probably a good thing that Academy Award winner Halle Berry ended up with the role in X-Men.
6. Who better to play the Gambit – the Ragin' Cajun – than Jean-Claude Van Damme?
I mean, pretty much anyone, but it ended up being Taylor Kitsch.
When Gambit finally did make it into the movies, it was in the lesser X-Men film, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, and he was played by high school football legend Tim Riggins.
Being from British Columbia, Taylor Kitsch wasn't the perfect match for Gambit, but neither was Belgian-born Van Damme. Tough call.
7. Nicole Kidman! A-list actress and great choice for Jean Grey, right?
Wrong! Famke Janssen!
Despite Wizard's wrrrrrrrowww-worthy designation for Nicole Kidman, the actress was busy being an even bigger A-list actress in 2000 when X-Men came out, so the role went to Famke Janssen, who has played the character ever since.
8. Wizard's vision for Psylocke was Tia Carrere.
But she ended up being played by Mei Melançon... sort of.
You probably don't even remember Psylocke appearing in any of the X-Men movies, but she was there in 2006's X-Men: The Last Stand, just barely. Like Bishop, Psylocke wasn't really headlining many comics in the 00s, so she wasn't a priority for the films, and only had a very small role in the third film.
9. Wizard thought there was nobody better for Cable than the then-65-year-old Clint Eastwood.
And they were way off! NOBODY has played Cable in an X-Men film yet.
There are some rumors that Cable may be coming to the big screen in an X-Force film, but Clint Eastwood is 85 now, so we should probably find someone a little more spry to play the part.
10. Wizard predicted that Magneto would be played by Rutger Hauer.
But Ian McKellen ended up getting the part.
In the '90s, Magneto was a little younger, a little more handsome, and a little more ripped up, so Rutger Hauer probably wasn't a bad choice. By the time 2000 came around, Magneto was reimagined as an older and more serious character though, and Ian McKellen played him perfectly.
11. Clancy Brown made a pretty great Kurgan in Highlander, so who better for Sabretooth?
Two people, actually. Tyler Mane and Liev Schreiber.
Don't get me wrong, Clancy Brown probably would have killed it as Sabretooth. But Tyler Mane made for a savage choice in the first film, and Liev Schreiber pretty much carried X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
12. They thought that the "White Queen" would be played by Seinfeld punchline, Rebecca de Mornay.
But by the time she made it into the movies, she was back to being called Emma Frost, and she was being played by January Jones.
In the mid-'90s, the X-Men were always going toe-to-toe with the Hellfire Club, which is where Emma Frost came in, but she was like royalty within the group, so she was calling herself the White Queen at that time. Eventually, she dropped the title and went back to Emma Frost, or just Emma to her friends.
13. Remember pro wrestler Vader? Me neither! But Wizard thought he'd be the perfect Juggernaut.
But the role ended up going to Vinnie Jones...
...who delivered quite possibly the corniest line ever, "I'm the Juggernaut, bitch!" Great job, Vinnie. Nailed it.
14. Wolverine is pretty metal, so Glenn Danzig was an obvious choice.
But as we all know, Hugh Jackman is pretty metal too, so he's the one who ended up playing Wolverine.
Glenn Danzig had precisely zero acting credits to his name back in 1995, so it was definitely a bold choice from Wizard.
So, one out of fourteen isn't a great record, and they also predicted that movie tickets would still only be $7 by the time X-Men came out, so I'm going to deduct the one point they did manage to earn, making it a total shut out.