X-Men: Dark Phoenix should have felt like an event, the final installment in a series that’s been around since 2000. Instead, it opened to $33 million, making it the first film in the franchise to not debut at number one. Blame bad reviews, blame reshoots and schedule shuffling, blame franchise fatigue (which also hit The Secret Life of Pets 2 hard). Or maybe blame the fact that the marketing didn’t do a good enough job of showcasing the movie’s true star: Dazzler!
Dark Phoenix writer and director Simon Kinberg has long been a fan of the singing mutant, who first appeared in 1980’s Uncanny X-Men #130, and he finally found an opportunity to put her into a movie. “I love Dazzler. And also, if you remember the Dark Phoenix storyline, she’s obviously a part of the Dark Phoenix Saga as told in the original comic,” he told CBR. “So I wanted somewhere in there just to have an Easter egg of her, so I felt like it was the right story to do it with, and there was an appropriate scene for her to be singing in, so I brought her into the movie.” Dazzler is played by Halston Sage, not Taylor Swift, and the song she sings in Dark Phoenix was written by Odessa.
Despite all the other issues with Dark Phoenix, it seems like X-Men fans at least enjoyed finally seeing Dazzler on the big screen.