Entertainment & Arts

Bryan Singer to direct X-Men: Apocalypse release

Bryan Singer Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Bryan Singer is responsible for three X-Men films to date, including the first two

Film-maker Bryan Singer is to direct X-Men: Apocalypse, the next movie in the long-running blockbuster franchise.

The film, which is due for release in May 2016, will be the eighth in the comic book series and the fourth directed by Singer.

He took the helm for the first two X-Men releases and returned for this year's Days of Future Past.

Last month, a man who accused Singer of sexual assault successfully filed to have the case dropped.

A judge in Hawaii granted Michael Egan III's petition to have the action dismissed, while Singer's bid to force him to pay for his legal costs was refused.

Egan previously filed three similar legal actions against other Hollywood figures, all of which were later dismissed.

Judge Susan Oki Mollway said Mr Egan's voluntary dismissal "ameliorated" any "alleged damage" to Singer's reputation.

According to Hollywood publication Variety, it had been thought that Fox, the makers of the X-Men movies, might seek another director for the next outing following the case.

Singer had long been associated with taking the director's chair for X-Men: Apocalypse.

After taking charge for the initial releases in the series, the film-maker handed over to other film-makers including James Mangold and Brett Ratner before returning for this year's episode.

Apocalypse is set 10 years after Days of Future Past and will star Hugh Jackman as recurring character Wolverine, James McAvoy and Nicholas Hoult.

The superheroes have to face their most unrelenting foe yet.

The X-Men franchise - seven films to date - has so far taken more than $3bn (£1.83bn) in box office receipts around the world.

Takings have increased with each release, and the most recent - Days of Future Past - has amassed $746m (£456m) internationally since its release in May.

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