So it appears there may be more going on with Fox's New Mutants film than previously reported. Earlier today producer Simon Kinberg talked a little bit about the plan for the Josh Boone's film, which which included having a mix of old and new characters. I speculated that we'd probably see some of the cast from X-Men: Apocalypse involved, and now a rumor suggests that is exactly the case, along with a couple of surprising new prospects.
According to HitFix, Alexandra Shipp could reprise her role as Storm in New Mutants. She recently took over the role from Halle Berry as a younger version of the character. Meanwhile, Maisie Williams is reportedly up for the role of Rahne "Wolfsbane" Sinclaire and The Witch breakout Anya Taylor-Joy is being eyed for the role of Illyana "Magik" Rasputin, the younger sister of Colossus, who was just seen in Deadpool. Sam "Cannonball" Guthrie, Roberto "Sunspot" DaCosta, and Dani "Mirage" Moonstar are also expected to be in the film, basically fulfilling my wishlist for the team. Also, it looks like James McAvoy will be sticking around as Charles Xavier, which makes sense considering the New Mutants are basically students and he is their teacher. Something to consider is that Storm's presence suggests the film will take place in the '80s, just as 'Apocalypse' does.
Wolfsbane, as you probably surmised, has the ability to transform into a wolf. Sinclair is a Scottish mutant who was raised in a strict conservative society and had a father who thought her to be a demon. She's usually in control of her feral instincts but not always, and she tends to feel shame at the pleasure she gets from cutting loose. Magik has one of the most complicated back stories in X-Men history. She's Colossus' younger sister and has the ability to teleport herself and others. She has been a teenager, then de-aged into a child, killed by the Legacy Virus, reborn as a teen again, and through it all she has been the sword-wielding ruler of Limbo, a demonic nether realm. Something tells me most of that will be ignored for the big screen.
Is it possible New Mutants will become the new centerpiece X-Men movie franchise? With no announced plans for an X-Men 4 or a continuation from 'Apocalypse' it's looking like this is the case. Or at least it could be if this rumor is true. New Mutants is targeting a release date some time in 2018.