“X-Men: Apocalypse” has another mutant. Olivia Munn will join the cast as Psylocke (a.k.a. Betsy Braddock). Director Bryan Singer made the announcement on his Instagram page Monday.
“Excited to welcome @oliviamunn as Betsy Braddock! #Psylocke #XmenApocalypse #XMEN,” Singer wrote.
Psylocke is just one of several new characters in “Apocalypse.” While Channing Tatum is rumored to be making his "X-Men" debut as Gambit, Jubilee (Lana Condor) and Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee) have been confirmed to make their first appearances.
Like all comic book characters, Psylocke has quite a history. Created in 1970s, she has plenty of backstory that Singer can utilize. Here are just a few facts that fans should know about her:
1. Powers – Psylocke’s powers have gone through quite a few changes over the years. When she started, her “original powers were precognition, telepathy, mental bolts, mind control and generating illusions,” according to Marvel. Later, she had a telepathic katana and psychic knives that could stun or even kill people.
2. British – No word on whether Munn will keep the accent for “X-Men: Apocalypse,” but Psylocke was English in the comic books. Her first appearance was even in the “Captain Britain” comics.
3. Day Job – Before she realized she was mutant, Betsy was just a charter pilot. That could come in handy for the X-Men. She stopped being a pilot while her powers were developing, and the psychic superhero spent a brief period as a supermodel.
4. Family – Psylocke has a fairly respected family. Her father is bioengineer Sir James Braddock and her brother is Brian Braddock, a.k.a. Captain Britain. We’re guessing that the 2016 movie won’t introduce her brother as the British hero.
5. Jean Grey – Psylocke and Jean Grey swap powers in the comics. It seems this is one comic book story that could very well appear in “X-Men: Apocalypse” since “Game of Thrones” star Sophie Turner was cast as Jean Grey earlier this year.
6. Ninja Assassin – The British beauty once swapped bodies and was suddenly a Japanese ninja for a while. The plotline is often criticized for being too confusing, so that’s one arc that seems unlikely to be in the new film.
7. Purple Hair – Munn might have to adapt a Kelly Osbourne-like hair color for “X-Men: Apocalypse.” The series has made various other actresses adapt the quirky hair colors of their superhero personas (though they’re usually wigs). Anna Paquin has donned Rogue’s gray streaks, and Halle Berry wears a white wig for Storm. Hair hue might be one of the few areas where fans can expect the films to stay true to the comics.
“X-Men: Apocalypse” is scheduled to be released on May 27, 2016. Are you excited to see Psylocke on the big screen? Sound off in the comments section below!