Look out Marvel and DC, there’s another group of super heroes on the scene and they’re raising the heart rate of comic book fans everywhere: the X-Men. In this article, we’re going to answer all your burning questions about the X-Men universe. What order should you watch the X-Men series in? Where can you stream X-Men movies and TV shows? Which X-Men movies and shows are in the works? Is there any overlap between the X-Men and the Marvel Cinematic Universe?
Wolverine, Magneto, Rogue & more: the ABCs of the X-Men Universe
Just like the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), the X-Men Universe is a beloved superhero franchise based on a series of comic books originally published by Marvel. They also both have movies and TV shows. Technically, the X-Men movies are not part of the MCU, though. They have been produced by various movie studios including 20th Century Fox and Sony Pictures before being snapped up by Disney for 71 billion dollars.
The X-Men stories revolve around a ragtag group of mutants – humans with extraordinary abilities (explained in-universe as resulting from the “X gene”), who are often discriminated against and persecuted by society because of their differences. Mutants then come in two flavors, good and bad. Wolverine, Professor X, Rogue, Iceman, Cyclops and Storm are some of the best known “good mutants.” They want to find a way to live as part of regular human society. Magneto, Apocalypse, Sebastian Shaw or Viper meanwhile are evil, striving for mutant supremacy over humankind. But which side will prevail? Might they team up? You can read much more detail on the different kinds of mutants here.
Read also: Want more bingeable content? Check out our similar article on Marvel movies.
X-Men movies in chronological order
So far, the X-Men universe comprises 13 movies and over 100 mutants. If you haven’t seen any of the X-Men movies yet, it might be useful to watch them in chronological order to get a better understanding of the plot and characters. However, many of the X-Men movies tell independent stories and focus on different time periods or characters. So, if there’s one movie in particular you’re interested in, you can start there and catch up after.
In any case, here we’ve listed all the X-Men movies in order of their original theatrical release.
All X-Men movies ordered by original theatrical release
|Film (Release)||Runtime||Where to stream?||Trailer|
|X-Men (2000)||1:40||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Trailer|
|X2 (2003)||2:13||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Trailer|
|X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)||1:44||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Trailer|
|X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)||1:48||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Deutsch; Englisch|
|X-Men: First Class (2011)||2:12||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Trailer|
|The Wolverine (2013)||2:06||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Deutsch; Englisch|
|X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)||2:28||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Trailer|
|Deadpool (2016)||1:48||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Trailer|
|X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)||1:44||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Deutsch; Englisch|
|Logan (2017)||2:17||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Trailer|
|Deadpool 2 (2018)||2:01||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Deutsch; Englisch|
|Dark Phoenix (2019)||1:54||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Trailer|
|The New Mutants (2020)||1:34||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, Sky||Trailer|
Read also: Learn more about how to get the best sound from your streaming services.
But what about spoilers? This order is after all based on theatrical release dates not events in-universe. Watching in order of release date makes sure you experience the films the same way the original fans did, but it certainly isn’t the only way to enjoy them. In fact, watching the movies chronologically, i.e. according to their in-universe order might give an even better understanding of the plot. This series also has time jumps though, so things are a bit confusing. X-Men: Days of Future Past, for instance, undoes the events of X-Men: The Last Stand and the entire early-2000’s trilogy. In fact, the movies essentially take place in two different timelines (except First Class, which is set before the split), so things get pretty head-spinning.
Ultimately, it’s all down to personal preference. If you’re sensitive to spoilers, the above order is suggested. But if you can handle them and want the ultimate understanding of the X-Men universe, treat yourself to a viewing session in the order below.
Chronological order of the X-Men movies (ordered by setting time)
- X-Men: First Class (primarily1962)
- X-Men: Days of Future Past (primarily1973)
- X-Men Origins: Wolverine (primarily late 1970s)
- X-Men: Apocalypse (1983)
- X-Men: Dark Phoenix (1992)
- X-Men (early 2000s)
- X-Men 2 (the mid 2000s)
- X-Men: The Last Stand (the mid 2000s)
- The Wolverine (2013)
- Deadpool (2016)
- New Mutants (the mid 2010s)
- Deadpool 2 (2018)
- Logan (2029)
Watch tip: It’s a bit more complicated than all that! This explainer video (heavy spoiler alert!) goes into all the intricacies of the X-Men movies’ timeline.
Super for mutant action: Teufel home cinema sets
What’s the deal with TV shows in the X-Men universe?
There are currently no signs of an imminent flood of TV shows like the MCU has given us on Netflix, Disney+ or other platforms in recent years. All we have are a few dusty old classics in the form of animated and live-action TV shows, which we have listed by release date.
|Series (Release years)||Genre||Where to stream?||Clip|
|X-Men (1992-97)||Animated series||Disney+||Opening Theme|
|Mutant x (2001–2004)||Live-action series||Amazon, Joyn, others||Trailer|
|X-Men: Evolution (2000-03)||Animated series||Disney+, Google Play, Amazon, Apple TV||Zu den Episoden|
|Wolverine and the X-Men (2008/09)||Animated series||Disney+, Apple TV||Trailer|
|Marvel Anime: Wolverine (2011)||Animated series||Amazon, Apple TV, others||Trailer|
|Marvel Anime: X-Men (2011)||Anime series||maxdome||Trailer|
|Legion (2017-2019)||Live-action series||Amazon, Disney+, Apple TV, others||Trailer|
Mutant future: upcoming X-Men movies and TV shows to look forward to
After Disney’s takeover of 20th Century Fox, the X-Men are gradually planned to be introduced into the MCU. So far, we’ve seen only Professor X, who appeared in the second Doctor Strange movie. The only other clue so far has come in the season finale of Ms. Marvel, which out of the blue featured the iconic soundtrack to the 1990’s X-Men the Animated Series. Many took that as a sign, but how will it really play out? Based on teasers, we may be in for a bigger taste in The Marvels (coming out November 10th, 2023).
For a long time, Marvel’s creators such as Kevin Feige kept tactically silent on the matter but since last year’s announcement of MCU Phases 5 & 6, it is clear: X-Men and Marvel action will come together on the big screen in Deadpool 3! And that means something else: X-Men fans will get another chance to see Hugh Jackman as Wolverine! Also encouraging is the fact that there are plans for an animated X-Men series called X-Men ’97, which picks up where the popular 90s animated series left off. It is expected for release on Disney+ in the fall of 2023.
Unfortunately, that’s all we have for great news. In contrast to the very detailed DC and Marvel plans, we have only sparse details on the X-Men in the MCU thus far.
Beyond that, of course there are tons of rumors and speculation about future X-Men movies and series, but no official announcements from Marvel. We’ll keep an eye on it and update this space regularly so you’re always up to date.
- X-Men ’97 (Fall 2023)
- Deadpool 3 (November 8, 2024)
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How about a little more nerd info? 5 X-Men fun facts
- The idea for the X-Men comics was developed by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in 1963. Lee was responsible for the characters and stories, while Kirby handled the visual design of the characters and world building.
- Patrick Stewart, who plays Professor Xavier in the X-Men movies, also voiced Professor Xavier in the 1990s television program X-Men: The Animated Series.
- Hugh Jackman, who plays Wolverine in the movies, was cast with very short notice after Dougray Scott, who was originally slated for the role, had to drop out due to scheduling conflicts.
- X-Men: First Class contains a scene of Professor Xavier and Magneto lying in bed discussing their future. This scene alludes to a similar one in the 1999 film Cruel Intentions, where characters Sebastian and Annette also lie in bed and discuss their future.
- The most successful X-Men film to date is Deadpool 1. It has grossed over $785 worldwide, making it the most financially successful film in the X-Men series. The two Deadpool spin-offs focus on comic-book character Deadpool, played by Ryan Reynolds.