by Travis Helwig
There’s no bad blood (just mutant blood) between Patrick Stewart and his young replacements in the summer blockbuster “X-Men: First Class.” Stewart, who has played Professor Charles Francis Xavier (or just Professor X) in every other “X-Men” film, insists that while he hasn’t sat down to watch it, he’s certainly not holding any sort of grudge.
“I haven’t seen it,” Stewart told MTV News during a recent interview, “I haven’t been to the movies in over nine months. Believe me, and no one will believe this, especially I think James [McAvoy], there’s nothing personal about this.”
McAvoy took over the role of the wheelchair-bound Professor Xavier in “First Class” to rave reviews from audiences and critics alike. “This is because I’ve been in the theater working all the time,” he clarified, “I’m not able to see movies.”
Stewart admitted that it looks curious that he hasn’t seen the film but joked, “[I’m] unlike my dear friend Bill Shatner, who always made a point of saying he had never seen [’Star Trek:] The Next Generation,’” he laughed, “you know like, ‘why would I waste my time?’”
Explaining that he hopes to see “First Class” soon, Stewart acknowledged, “I have a significant break coming up, and I shall get myself down to the cinema. I’m looking forward to it.”
“X-Men: First Class” opened on June 1 to both widespread praise and widespread box office success. Since opening, the film grossed over $348 million and counting. “The word on it is ‘terrific,’” said Stewart.
In addition to McAvoy’s performance, Michael Fassbender has also received admiration for his work as Magneto, originally helmed by Sir Ian McKellen. When asked about the new esteem that has befallen their “X-Men” heirs, Stewart said, “Well look at whose shoes they’re stepping in!” He even went one step further by joking, “a little bit of spade work might have been done in advance.”
And in the highly likely case that James McAvoy stays on as the bald Professor X for upcoming “X-Men” films, Stewart warned that he should be prepared to start looking the part. “I just get great fun saying to James, ‘you know, you’re gonna lose all that lovely hair at some point,’” he laughed, “It’s all gonna go.”
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