The future of 20th Century Fox's X-Men franchise remains in a state of flux, but it seems to me that the core group of heroes is about to take a back seat. In its place will obviously be Deadpool and possibly X-Force, but also the New Mutants which has had Josh Boone (The Fault In Our Stars) attached to direct for some time now. While we still don't have a ton of details and little in the way of official announcements, Comingsoon has learned the movie's villain will be a familiar one to fans of the comic.
The site received a nearly two-minute long storyboard animatic from "sources close to the production" that shows New Mutant Illyana "Magik" Rasputin facing her foe, the Demon Bear!
The character debuted in New Mutants #3 when it terrorized New Mutant, Danielle Moonstar. It has the power to haunt dreams and corrupt souls, and is virtually unstoppable without some kind of outside magical force. It's unclear if Demon Bear will be the sole enemy in the movie, but I highly doubt it.
Previous rumors have suggested Maisie Williams and Anya Taylor-Joy for the roles of Wolfsbane and Magik, and apparently those stories are factual although nothing is official yet. Meanwhile, it appears Nat Wolff, who worked with Boone on The Fault In Our Stars, is up for the role of team leader Sam "Cannonball" Guthrie. That could turn into a major multi-picture deal, especially if the character is brought over to X-Force, a team Cannonball also led.
The tone is being described as closer to Stephen King and John Hughes than the huge special effects-heavy features seen in the X-Men movie, and assuming this is accurate it's hard to argue with Fox's decision to go a different direction. A spring 2018 release date is being targeted, so it's not one of the two new Marvel dates Fox just opened up on November 2nd 2018 and February 14th 2019.