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Jason Flemyng Is Nightcrawler’s Father Azazel In X-Men: First Class

Jason Flemyng revealed today at Movie-Con in London that he’ll reunite with director Matthew Vaughn for X-Men: First Class, playing Nightcrawler’s father Azazel.

The actor, who co-starred as Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde in 2003’s The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, appeared in Vaughn’s Layer Cake, Stardust and Kick-Ass.

“Matthew showed me my costume just the other day,” Flemyng told Empire. “Now I swore I’d never be in heavy make-up again, but this role is going to involve it. But at least they said, ‘Don’t worry, we’ll add the tail in post.’ I am Azazel, and I can teleport by waving my arms [gestures like a cross between a flamenco dancer and a Bollywood star].”

News of Azazel’s inclusion in the Fox reboot will likely leave X-Men fans scratching their heads, or else pulling out their hair. A Satan analog introduced in 2003 during writer Chuck Austen’s widely vilified run on Uncanny X-Men, Azazel is a demonic mutant from biblical times who was banished by angels to the Brimstone dimension. Able only to leave his prison for short amounts of time, he fathered numerous children across the Earth — most notably Nightcrawler, with the shape-shifting Mystique. As Flemyng explained to Empire, the crimson-colored Azazel can teleport across dimensions, as well as generate devastating energy blasts.

How Azazel fits in the story of the early friendship between Charles Xavier and Erik Lensherr is, of course, anyone’s guess. Vaughn & Co. already have indicated with the inclusion of Emma Frost, Sean Cassidy, Mystique and Darwin that First Class won’t follow comic-book continuity. But the use of Azazel seems kind of, I don’t know, out there.

Flemyng joins a cast that includes James McAvoy as Charles Xavier, Michael Fassbender as Erik Lensherr, Alice Eve as Emma Frost, Nicholas Hoult as Henry McCoy, Caleb Landry Jones as Sean Cassidy, Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique, Lucas Till as Alex Summers, Edi Gathegi as Darwin, and Kevin Bacon as their as-yet-unnamed enemy.

X-Men: First Class opens on June 3, 2011.


  • Generalgrievous365

    I'll most likely be crucified for this, but i never understood the chuck austen hate. Yes, Nightcrawler's father being a devil was a little far, but i loved the “fake rapture” plot the Friends of Humanity were trying to enact. I loved Juggernaut's redemption. I didn't have a big problem with Havok leaving Lorna Dane for Annie. (If anything, them being together now seems weird after all that.) And he had a good run going with Superman. I loved the Gog and Preus stories, and i wish DC had let him finish them instead of having FUTURE DOOMSDAY IN A SUPERMAN SPEEDO come to Clark's rescue. His ending HAD to be better than that.

  • Chris

    OMFG, NO!

  • Eric

    I really like Jason Flemyng. Let's hope he gets more than one line of dialogue.

  • Tim

    this movie is going to suck. to much overcrowding marvel characters!

  • Darknessatnoon

    lol this is the stupidest goddamn thing I've ever heard of.

  • nik

    Oh, so the new X-Men movie is picking plot points from the comic's stupidest periods. That's comforting.

  • Alex

    I've read tons of X-men comics over the years. I've never heard of 'Azazel'. I don't know if Mystique being Nightcrawler's mom is still sticking. So…

  • rasx

    Azazel is hardly known because he never appeared again after the “Draco” storyline. If they wanted a biblical mutant Apocalypse, would've been a better choice since he's more popular and interesting.

  • Zach

    For starters, Catholics don't believe in the Rapture.

  • nickmarino

    Azazel??? who's in charge of story development for this movie? i LOVE some of Austen's stuff (Hardball, US War Machine), but “The Draco” is not the story to emulate. i bet Austen'd even cop to that himself.

  • some guy


  • Zach

    I actually think this might be a good idea. Basically, they wouldn't take such a stupid idea from one of the worst comics ever written without having some idea how to make it cool.

  • JTMaxwell

    while i like Flemyng a lot (enough to forgive the atrocity of LXG), and i've been excited for this movie so far…this news fills me with dread. why, why, WHY can't we just ignore Chuck Austen's run and pretend it never happened? i'll keep my fingers crossed that Vaughn knows what he's doing since i've loved all of his movies so far. but…yeah…dread…

  • Generalgrievous365

    Really good point. I'm Christian but not Catholic. Had forgotten.

  • Johnny

    Austen's work on X-Men was great; The Redemption of Juggernaut, Sammy the Fish Kid, The Draco, Northstar joining the team, Angel's ability to heal, Polaris going nuts, etc., was fun and interesting. The only reason fanboys didn't hate it is because they enjoy mediocrity. They eat it up! Give them the same old BS and they throw down their money. “Character development? F*** that! Just give me the same crap I've been reading since 1985.”

    Also, Azazel isn't a Demon or the Devil, he's a mutant. Azazel and his people are decendents of a race of ancient Mutants (whom probably pre-date En Saba Nur aka Apocaplypse) who use dark magic and that people thought were Demons. There was also talk of another race of Mutants that Azazel's people were enemies of that may of had some connection to Angel. This race was considered Divine and appeared as Angels.

  • seb

    The character development with Chuck Asutin's X-Men was terrible! All female were define by who they had sex with. Warren gains the power to heal with his blood, he retcon Nightcrawler's priesthood and say it was all staged… mutants who are werewolves (original).

    the Draco was the worst of it. It was convoluted, overlong and very stupid. Azazel needs children to open a portal to earth to escape the Brimstone dimension… so he goes on Earth to father some kids (why does he needs them if he can go on earth anyway). Also, Havok peeing a new body for Iceman (WTF!)

  • Equinox999equinox

    People will whine about everything. If this is a reboot, I will give it a chance. I enjoyed the run that included the Azazel story (still wish the Juggernaught angle would have stuck). That said, this movie will stand or sink on its own merits for me and not how close it sticks to “canon”.

  • Johnny

    Nightcrawlers origin was always flat. His dad was a nameless German Baron (did they even still have those 30 years ago?) and his mom was his wench. It wasn't until much much later that they revealed that Mystique was actually his Mom (which I'm sure if there was an internet back then, people would have been complaining about that).

  • Johnny

    Angels ability to heal was a Secondary Mutation. Being able to “Just Fly” was getting boring. And I never liked Nightcrawlers “Catholic” deal. By the way, if you want convoluted, Kurt acutally becoming a priest is stupid! Aren't Priests sworn to Non-Violence, among other things? How can you be a Super Hero and Priest in that case? :P

  • DanoKDath

    I officially go from having minimal interest in seeing this movie to detesting it unseen and leaving it unseen.

  • Guest

    I love that people do X-Men movies. I just hope it doesn't turn out to be an abomination like X-Men 3 was. That movie sucked.

  • Fredjones345

    watch your mouth