X-Men: Supernova is a title that has vexed and confused many fans of the X-Men movies franchise. While the existence of X-Men: Supernova has not been officially acknowledged by 20th Century Fox, the film has appeared in places like Production Weekly and My Entertainment Earth that track the production cycles of film projects.
Popular opinion at first suggested that X-Men: Supernova may be a production title for X-Men: The New Mutants, the upcoming X-Men franchise spinoff film. However, each subsequent appearance of the X-Men: Supernova name has made the project seem independent from X-Men: The New Mutants.
The latest update to Production Weekly not only makes the case that X-Men: Supernova is a separate film from X-Men: The New Mutants, but it also may have revealed what the next X-Men movie will be about.
Production Weekly now has X-Men: Supernova listed with the working title of “Dark Phoenix.” The existence of a working title specifically designated for X-Men: Supernova would seem to confirm that it is not a production title for X-Men: The New Mutants.
The working title of “Dark Phoenix” is a reference to “The Dark Phoenix Saga,” a classic X-Men story written by Chris Claremont and drawn by John Byrne. “The Dark Phoenix Saga” followed Jean Grey’s possession and eventual corruption by the cosmic entity called the Phoenix Force. “The Dark Phoenix Saga” took the X-Men into space and pitted them against the Imperial Guard of the Shi’ar Empire in trial by combat for Jean’s life. “The Dark Phoenix Saga” ended tragically with Grey sacrificing herself to make sure that the Dark Phoenix did not possess her again.
“The Dark Phoenix Saga” was one of several X-Men stories adapted in X-Men: The Last Stand. Writer/Producer Simon Kinberg has stated that he is open to reinterpreting the story for a film once more and setting it in the new, post-X-Men: Days of Future Past timeline. X-Men: Apocalypse foreshadowed the coming of the Phoenix and previous rumors about the next installment of the X-Men movie series suggest that next film will follow through on that setup.