James McAvoy has found his nemesis. Twentieth Century Fox is in negotiations with German-Irish actor Michael Fassbender for the role of Erik Lensherr, the man who becomes Magneto in the X-Men origin story X-Men: First Class. Fassbender, who most recently appeared in Quentin Tarantino’s Inglorious Basterds, has been a hot commodity of late: Rumor has it he was considered for the villain role in the reboot of Columbia Picture’s Spider-Man. Fassbender appeared in Spielberg’s Band of Brothers and garnered a lot of attention for his role in last year’s indie Fish Tank as well as his role as Lt. Archie Hicox in Basterds. He’ll show up this weekend in the Warner Bros. flick Jonah Hex.
First Class will be helmed by director Matthew Vaughn (Kick-Ass). The film will depict the early years of the relationship between Charles Xavier and Lensherr, two young mutants who are first discovering their powers. The two are the closest of friends at first, working together to stop a huge global threat. They later become enemies, leading to an eternal war between Magneto’s Brotherhood and Professor X’s X-Men.
Production is set to begin this summer in London. X-Men: First Class is scheduled for release on June 3, 2011.