The X-Men film series is a series of superhero films based on the fictional Marvel Comics team of the same name. The films star an ensemble cast, focusing on Hugh Jackman as Wolverine, as he is drawn into the conflict between Professor Xavier and Magneto, who have opposing views on humanity's relationship with mutants: Xavier believes humanity and mutants can coexist, but Magneto believes a war is coming, and intends to fight. The films also developed subplots based on the comics' Weapon X and Dark Phoenix storylines.
20th Century Fox earned the film rights to the characters in 1994, and after numerous drafts, Bryan Singer was hired to direct X-Men (2000) and returned for X2 (2003). He left a potential third and fourth film to direct Superman Returns, leaving Brett Ratner to direct X-Men: The Last Stand (2006). Critics praised Singer's films for their dark, realistic tone, and subtexts dealing with discrimination and intolerance, but Ratner's film was met with mixed reviews. Nonetheless, each film outgrossed the last, and Fox is developing spin-off prequels. The X-Men films are also attributed as leading to a reemergence of superhero films in the 2000s, such as the Spider-Man film series.