Matthew Vaughn is revealing the lengths Fox went to to ensure Halle Berry‘s return to the “X-Men” franchise for third film “X-Men: The Last Stand.”

Vaughn, who was slated to direct the 2006 movie, revealed during the 2023 New York Comic Con (via The Hollywood Reporter) that a fake script was allegedly created for Halle Berry, catering to her vision for superhero character Storm. After Berry agreed to reprise the role, the script would be axed, according to Vaughn’s interpretation of the events.

“I went into one of the executive’s offices and I saw an ‘X3’ script, and I immediately knew it was a lot fatter,” Vaughn said. “I was like, ‘What the hell is this draft?’ He went, ‘Don’t worry about it,’ and I’m like, ‘No, no. I’m the director. I’m worrying about this draft.’ He wouldn’t tell me, so I grabbed it literally — it was like a crazy moment — opened the first page, and it said, ‘Africa. Storm. Kids dying of no water. She creates a thunderstorm and saves all these children.’”

Vaughn continued, “[I said] ‘What is this?’ [They said] ‘Oh, it’s Halle Berry’s script.’ I went, ‘OK, because she hasn’t signed up yet.’ ‘But this is what she wants it to be, and once she signs up, we’ll throw it in the bin.’”

While Vaughn said the idea of Storm going to Africa was a “pretty cool idea,” he did not stand by the tactic of misrepresenting the storyline to Berry.

He added, “I was like, ‘Wow, you’re gonna do that to an Oscar-winning actress who plays Storm? I’m outta here.’ So, I quit at that point.”

Vaughn was originally hired to helm “X-Men: The Last Stand” after Bryan Singer exited for “Superman Returns.” Vaughn was then replaced by Brett Ratner. Vaughn went on to later direct “X-Men: First Class” in 2011, which introduced the younger versions of the core characters.

Vaughn told ComingSoon in 2019 that he envisioned “First Class” to be a new trilogy showing the origins of all of the characters, including recasting Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine with Tom Hardy or another younger star.

“Fox read ‘Days of Future Past’ and went, ‘Oh, this is too good! We’re doing it now!’ And I said, ‘Well what do you do next? Trust me, you’ve got nowhere to go,’” Vaughn said. “Then they did ‘Apocalypse’ and it’s like…If you flip that around even it would have been better. Hollywood doesn’t understand pacing. Their executives are driving 100 miles-per-hour looking in the rear-view mirror and not understanding why they crash.”

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