Jason Flemyng has signed on to join the cast of Matthew Vaughn‘s X-Men: First Class. The news was revealed at Movie Con in the UK (found on ComingSoon), where it was revealed that Flemyng will play Azazel, a teleporting mutant who later becomes Nightcrawler’s father.

According to Wikipedia:

His first appearance was in Uncanny X-Men #428, during “The Draco” storyline, written by Chuck Austen. … Azazel claims that many years ago an ancient horde of demonic mutants from biblical times called the Neyaphem were in an epic battle with a group of angelic over-zealous mutants, named the Cheyarafim. They were victorious in the battle and vanquished the “evil” mutants to an alternate dimension for all eternity. The Neyaphem’s leader, Azazel, was the only one who was able to breach the dimensional void for brief periods of time due to his teleportation powers. His only hope to return to earth was by impregnating women because his children are linked to his dimension. … Azazel has the ability to teleport across interdimensional distances, generate bolts and streams of paralyzing energy, as well as destructive energy which causes a form of disintegration, and can disguise his appearance. In addition to this, he and all other Neyaphem are negatively affected by the healing blood of the Cheyarafim which causes their body to begin to break down. Azazel also has the ability to mentally control the reptilian Firedancers that inhabit the brimstone dimension, and has a great knowledge of ancient magic.

Flemyng has had roles in Guy Ritchie’s films Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Snatch., Matthew Vaughn’s Layer Cake, Stardust and Kick-Ass.

Previously:

In case you’re confused, here is the official casting thus far:

  • James McAvoy is Charles Xavier aka Professor X
  • Nicholas Hoult has been cast as Dr. Henry Philip “Hank” McCoy aka Beast
  • Michael Fassbender (Inglourious Basterds, Hunger) is playing Eric Lensherr aka Magneto
  • Alice Eve, the lead actress from She’s Out of My League, was in talks with Fox to play Emma Frost.
  • Caleb Landry Jones (Friday Night Lights, The Longshots, The Last Exorcism) is Sean Cassidy aka Banshee.
  • 19-year-old actor Lucas Till (Walk the Line, Dance of the Dead, Hannah Montana: The Movie, The Spy Next Door, and the upcoming Battle: Los Angeles) is Alexander “Alex” Summers aka Havok, the younger brother of the X-Men’s Cyclops.
  • Kevin Bacon (Mystic River, Apolo 13, Sleepers) will play the villain (no name revealed thus far, although its rumored to be Sebastian Shaw)
  • Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone) will play Mystique
  • Twilight vampire Edi Gathegi will be playing the mutant named Darwin, who has “limitless mutation abilities being in a state of continual reaction, adapting to whatever his current situation demands.”

And here is a list of the unconfirmed casting rumors:

  • Pride & Prejudice/Surrogates star Rosamund Pike is in talks to play Moira McTaggert.
  • Spider-Man shortlist actor Frank Dillane may also be up for a role.
  • Surfer Erica Hosseini auditioned for the role of Willow.
  • Kick-Ass star Aaron Johnson might be in line for the role oc Cyclops. The producer has suggested that the rumor is untrue.

Matthew Vaughn beat out eight directors to take the helm. Bryan Singer was originally attached to return to the X-Men franchise to helm this new film, but his commitment to Jack The Giant Killer at Warner Bros will prevent him from directing. Singer’s treatment was a Str Trek-style reboot/prequel, which will focus on “the formative years of Xavier and Magneto, and the formation of the school and where there [sic] relationship took a wrong turn.” Singer has previously admitted that First Class would “probably utilize some of the [planned/announced X-Men Origins:] Magneto story because it deals with a young Magneto,” and that “it might supersede” that plan because this new movie would explore “that relationship between a young energetic professor and a disenfranchised victim of the Holocaust.”

“It’s basically about the formation of the X-Men. How they began and the relationship between a young Xavier and a young Magneto.”

Here is the official plot synopsis:

X-MEN: FIRST CLASS, following the classic Marvel mythology, charts the epic beginning of the X-Men saga.  Before Charles Xavier and Erik Lensherr took the names Professor X and Magneto, they were two young men discovering their powers for the first time. Before they were archenemies, they were closest of friends, working together, with other Mutants (some familiar, some new), to stop the greatest threat the world has ever known. In the process, a rift between them opened, which began the eternal war between Magneto’s Brotherhood and Professor X’s X-Men.

The day after Jamie Moss handed in his first draft, Fox head Tom Rothman fast-tracked the project.  It was at this moment that Warner Bros informed Singer that they would not delay the production of Jack and the Giant Killer. Singer will still produce the project. I’ve heard the script is solid, and everyone who has read it is excited to make it. Fox is scouting locations in West Michigan.  The film is set to go into production this Summer, and the studio has set a June 3rd 2011 release date.

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