Despite how cool all the official X-Men 2 propaganda
has been, rumors have sprung up that all is not well in the
world of Mutantkind.
Tom DeSanto, in need of a nap.
In the last week, reports of trouble on the set have been
running rampant through the media, not just movie websites.
According to the story circulating, director Bryan Singer
showed up on the set having taken a non-prescription painkiller,
making the day's shooting rather erratic.
Stepping into the situation, so the story goes, was executive
producer (and long-time Singer friend) Tom DeSanto, who allegedly
chewed out Singer's Driver for giving the director the Drug.
Tensions escalated to the point that Singer wanted DeSanto
off the set and off the film.
Rather than allow that to happen, the cast banded together
in support of DeSanto. At one point, if the story is to be
believed, Halle Berry got angry enough to tell Singer to osculate
her dusky derriere, only not quite in those words.
Is it possible? Could the stress of shooting such a high-profile
and eagerly anticipated film cause such a breakdown?
To be fair to Singer, if you read recent pieces on the film,
you'll notice that he has either recently sustained a back
injury or had an old one flair up. Either way, it's been painful
enough for reporters to make note of it. So the man could
very well have been in need of a painkiller. And we all know
such things can muddy the vision.
Fights do get out of hand, especially among old friends.
But it seems a far cry from the optimistic director I interviewed
back in August.
As for Tom DeSanto, he has been in the shadow of Singer
for a while, but has often seemed content to be so. Just after
the release of the first X-Men, I met DeSanto at the
San Diego Comics Convention and interviewed him for the late
It seems as good a time as any to dig the interview out
of the archives and present a side of the man who is now at
the center of rumor.
Derek McCaw: First off, please settle an argument
we've been having. Did Cyclops mean to hit Magneto, or did Jean
Grey guide that shot?
Tom DeSanto: (loudly into the tape recorder, for
the benefit of this reporter's friend who wouldn't believe
him) Scott meant to hit Magneto.
DM: (vindicated) THANK YOU!
TD: That was the big thing in the comic adaptation.
Wolverine uses his claws to destroy the machine; he was working
alone. But during the re-shoots we gave this idea to Bryan
(Singer, director) about Cyclops getting a shot on Magneto,
taking Magneto out which freed up Wolverine so that he could
destroy the machine.
If Wolverine were working alone he would have failed, which
is basically Wolverine's arc. He couldn't do it by himself.
DM: There were a lot of weird rumors on the
internet about the film, and you guys are starting to talk
about working on the sequel. What weird rumor would you like
to spread now?
TD: Let's spread the rumor that it's going to be
Granny Goodness and Arcade teaming up in the sequel.
DM: So Warner Brothers is going to get involved
in this one in a co-production?
TD: Yes. And we will have nipples.
DM: That's producer Tom DeSanto committing
to nipples. Excellent. Did you see The Specials? It
satirizes the personal life take, which you guys did.
TD: No, but it looked funny. Of course if it's a
good movie it will stand on its own. I wish them well. The
funny thing is that when we were in pre-production, all of
a sudden this movie, Mystery Men geared up, and there's
this character Mr. Furious. I'm like, oh, no, this is a disaster.
They're parodying Wolverine before we make the movie. But fortunately
it was unique unto itself.
only the ancient art of shadow puppetry, DeSanto does
his Wolverine impersonation.
Really. That's what he was doing.
DM: And Mr. Furious had existed in comics
DM: You are a long time fan, let's get that
on the record, so you know what you're talking about.
TD: I know the Flaming Carrot (the book where the
Mystery Men originated). Geez, I've got twenty thousand books
my parents keep trying to remind me of.
DM: My wife's making me sell mine.
TD: Ow. Sell some of them. Don't sell all of them.
DM: So when's the sequel coming out?
TD: I don't know. I want a nap.
DM: You worked with Bryan on his other films.
Do you guys want to do something else in between?
TD: It depends on the story.
DM: Or do you just want to sleep for six months?
TD: I want to sleep for a little bit, but I think
it's in both our bloods. We'll see. I think Bryan has the
best answer. We finished the movie three weeks ago, so it's
tough to start talking about a sequel.
DM: Or even anything else.
Of course, we now know that the sequel will be out on
May 2, 2003, and despite a few announced plans, DeSanto and
Singer did not do anything else in the interim.
For a while the two were attached to the revival of Battlestar
Galactica, but Singer pulled out and DeSanto seems to be off
the project. Though when I saw him this summer, he did say
he was willing to talk about it. Tom, we're willing to talk
about it, too...
Some of this piece originally
appeared in August, 2000 on Daily Radar.com