‘X-Men: First Class’ took place in 1962, during the Cuban Missile Crisis, which played a heavy role in the film. ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’ featured a time travel story, with some scenes in the distant apocalyptic future, and some in the “present,” but the bulk of the story was set in 1973, with President Richard Nixon still in power and acting as the man responsible for adopting the Sentinels as a means of policing the growing mutant population. Then, ‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ was set during 1983 and featured a scene of the younger X-Men going to see ‘Return of the Jedi’ in a theater.
“It’s 1992, nine years after Apocalypse. The X-Men have become the X-Men that many of us know from the comics – they are heroes. They’re still viewed as different by society, but they’ve been more embraced than ever before. And when the movie starts in 1992, they are a known superhero team.”
Though the original ‘Dark Phoenix Saga’ from the comics was published in 1980, 1992 was still an important time for the characters. The comic books were undergoing a resurgence in popularity, under the pen of longtime writer Chris Claremont and edgy new illustrator Jim Lee. Their new ‘X-Men’ #1 became the bestselling single comic book of all time and with the original ‘Uncanny X-Men’ series established two separate books chronicling the mutants’ adventures. Toy Biz also launched the first ever ‘X-Men’ toy line and FOX introduced the ‘X-Men’ animated series that became a ratings powerhouse through the early ’90s.
We know that ‘X-Men: Dark Phoenix’ includes scenes in outer space. In the real world, 1992 saw the inaugural launch of the space shuttle Endeavor, which carried seven astronauts into space to recover and repair the Intelsat VI satellite. This also marked the first three person spacewalk in history. Could this real-life event tie into the events of ‘Dark Phoenix’?
In other news of that year, Bill Clinton was elected for his first term as President. Parts of the U.S. were deluged by Hurricane Andrew, while Chicago was beset by a different disaster, the Great Chicago Flood. Meanwhile in Los Angeles, riots broke out after four white police officers were found not guilty of beating black man Rodney King, even after the event was captured on camera. In lighter news, the Mall of America opened its doors in Bloomington, Minnesota, the Cartoon Network launched and Boyz II Men escorted radio listeners to ‘The End of the Road’.
Written and directed by Simon Kinberg, ‘X-Men: Dark Phoenix’ was recently bumped to June 7, 2019. The film stars Jessica Chastain, Michael Fassbender, Summer Fontana, Nicholas Hoult, Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy, Evan Peters, Tye Sheridan, Alexandra Shipp, Kodi Smit-McPhee, and Sophie Turner.